Beston Jack Abrams turns 89 today. As he approaches his tenth decade, I honor and celebrate the “ancient aphorist,” as Jack refers to himself, with what I consider his top 10 aphorisms, excerpted from Abramisms: Lives of the Ancient Aphorist, Volumes I and II and the steady stream of new sayings it is my privilege to receive from Jack. For more Abramisms, see my posts from 2007, 2011, 2012, and 2014. Happy birthday, Jack!

#10. At this point I am less concerned about the future simply because there is less of it; and as for death, as with any adversary, fear is reduced as proximity increases.

#9. If we don’t accept reality today, it will not disappear but will return tomorrow as myth and legend.

#8. The ear is a better communicator than the tongue.

#7. Grace is to win without bragging; lose without excuse; live without complaint and share without regret.

#6. Contentment wears slippers; curiosity wears boots.

#5. Complete arrogance is the result of incomplete data.

#4. To be a success first show up, pay attention and then show up again.

#3. Nothing causes greater adherence to an opinion than opposition to it.

#2. A well conceived conclusion may also be an introduction.

#1. The first impression reveals as much about the observer as the observed.