Quotable Texas Women Review
By Susie Kelly Flatau
A Treasure Trove of Quotables
I admire good ideas. Susie Kelly Flatau and Lou Halsell Rodenberger of Austin and Baird, Texas, respectively, have turned a very good idea into a marvelous volume of quotes by Texas women entitled, appropriately, Quotable Texas Women. And, I must say, I don't judge books by their covers but, if I were going to, I would love this book without even opening it.
Texas is and has always been peopled by strong characters that, as often as not, know how to turn a phrase. This quality runs deep in Texas women. Many of the names of these quotable women will be familiar and many will not. My personal reading, in fact, has made me wonder about some of those quoted and, with the assistance of a good search engine, lead me to an expanded learning experience.
The book is small enough (6x6 inches) to carry around with you, which you will want to do because the wisdom, humor and enlightenment on each page compels you to turn it in order to see what's on the next. It's perfect to page through while waiting for the dentist or the water to boil. Or sit down with it and take in section after section.
The authors have ordered the quotes into by sections, some fifty-four of them, like Age, Attitude, Beauty, Death, Food, Leadership, Men & Women, Nature, Pioneer Women, Self-Reliance, Success, Truly Texas and Wisdom. There's just an awful lot to appreciate here.
Samples are in order:
On Age: The truth is, at seventy-eight, I'm a little more, "whatever happens, happens." I've had the greatest life in the world. Barbara Bush
On Attitude: If you think you can, you're right; and if you think you can't, you're right. Mary Kay Ash
On Books & Reading: I have a real soft spot in my heart for librarians and people who care about books. Ann Richards
I imagine every person who loves to read can think back on points in their life, with great nostalgia, when you remember the summer, for instance, that you read all the Russian writers. Laura Bush
On Community: Like many another rural community across the plans and prairies of West Texas, Pyron lives when nearly all visible traces have vanished. That it can still be seen by the discerning eye and felt by the understanding heart is due to such intangibles as community spirit, country cussedness, and the indelible stamp of place upon the human psyche. Jane Gilmore Rushing [This one sent me straight to Google.]
On Death: We fear death, my friend Maria told me, so we laugh at it, and adorn it in gaudy colors, and give it shape in the form of macabre candies in order to hide our fear and make death palatable. It was El Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead. Allana Martin
On Education: Do not call for black power or green power. Call for brain power. Barbara Jordan
On Enlightenment: Nothing like a lot of distracting saber-rattling to get you to take your eyes off the shell with the pea under it. Molly Ivins
On Food: Cook things so you can tell what they are. Good plain food ain't committed no crime an' don't need no disguise. Mary LasswellOn Guidance: You cannot take part in the fray without getting some stabs and cuts and abrasions. Lady Bird Johnson
On Music & Dance: Dance, preferably the waltz. Wear a full skirt and whirl a lot. Sherry Craven
On Myth & Lore: Few former farm people wax nostalgic about the old days. No one misses the near-starvation, the shacks, the rags that sometimes passes for clothing. Rebecca Sharpless
On Texas Women: I am Woman - hear me roar… Or is that my vacuum cleaner? Liz Carpenter
On Truly Texas: I know I belong to a Texas country church, because the only time I lock my car or pick-up in the parking lot is during the summer so my neighbors can't leave me a bag of squash! Anne Terry
I was always proud about being from Texas and, you know, maybe that was part of fearlessness. I love the fact that Texas is so big, but you don't feel small because of that. Sissy Spacek
That's just a tiny sampling.
Quotable Texas Women is a great book to own and to share. However, if you share it, write your name in it to ensure its return. You'll want to read it more than once.
- Capitol Women
Texas Female Legislators, 1923-1999, by Nancy Baker Jones and Ruthe Winegarten
- Texas Wisewomen Speak
"Let me tell you what I've learned"
by PJ Pierce
- Start With A Laugh
by Liz Carpenter
- The Atheist: Madalyn Murray O'Hair
by Bryan F. LeBeau
- I'm Not Slowing Down
Winning My Battle with Osteoporosis
by Ann Richards