TB’s Exclusive Interview Series–Ben Franklin

Quote of the Day: No one can replace him Sir; I am only his successor.” Thomas Jefferson, in 1785 in response to a query from Msr. Vergennes, the French foreign minister, as to he being Dr. Franklin’s replacement

As is evident by TB’s use of the Quote of the Day before each post, I take great interest and pleasure in the “bon mots” of historical figures, musicians and even everyday acquaintances. Today I combine my interest in the quotable with my surprise (albeit in pathetically low voter participation) at Ben Franklin’s election by TB readers as the “favorite founding father.” Thus, I decided to put many of the important questions of our time to Franklin and found our conversation enlightening, if cryptic at times.

TB–Mr. Franklin, thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule. I’m sure there are lots of folks in the afterlife vying for a bit of your time.

BF–Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.

TB–Um. Ok. Guess that means to get on with it. Forgive me if I ramble a bit. It’s a bit overwhelming to interview someone of your accomplishment and stature, not even considering your, um, deadness. But I’ll do better, I promise.

BF–How few there are who have courage enough to own their faults, or resolution enough to mend them.

TB-Let’s get into the issues. Noted gay gossip peddler Perez Hilton hurled a homophobic epithet recently at a rapper. This after participating in a national crisis involving Miss California’s opinion on gay marriage.

BF–Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.

TB–Have you seen “The Hangover?”

BF–Lost time is never found again.

TB–Yeah, in real life you can never recover so much after a blackout, but still, it was really funny. The best ARB drinkin movie ever I’d say.

BF–Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

TB–Damn right! High Five!

BF–(high fives)

TB–Back to the issues. Have you been keeping up with Jon and Kate?

BF–Where there is marriage without love there will be love without marriage.

TB–Wow, you are taking that really seriously. Any advice for Jon?

BF–Wise men don’t need advice. Fools won’t take it.

TB–So you are on Kate’s side.

BF–Wars are not paid for in wartime. The bill comes later.

TB–That’s true I guess. Nobody ever really wins in these situations. Our time is short. Let me ask a few questions that are important to me personally. Mississippi State has a new football coach. We’re going to be a lot better aren’t we?

BF–We are born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.

TB–Hmmm. Can’t argue with that. It is hard work to be a Bulldog fan. Still, better than being a Rebel, right?

BF–Those that won’t be counseled can’t be helped.

TB–Amen. So what do you think about the blog?

BF–The first mistake in public business is going in to it.

TB–Good point. But its fun, at least when I have something interesting to say or share. Some days I put stuff out there that I know isn’t really that good, but I feel compelled to produce something anyway.

BF–God works wonders now and then. Behold a lawyer, an honest man.

TB–Ok, ok, Poor Richard’s this ain’t. But do you at least like the new layout? Pretty much everyone was against it, and Zeek, as official naysayer of the blog called me out on it.

BF–Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.

TB–HA! Take THAT Zeek!  But give me a little credit Ben. Some people have told me they really enjoy visiting here each day.

BF–Admiration is the daughter of ignorance.

TB–That’s cold dude. Our time is up. Any parting words? A bonus QOTD of sorts?

BF–For having lived long, I have experienced many instances of being obliged, by better information or fuller consideration, to change opinions, even on important subjects, which I once thought right but found to be otherwise.

TB–Dang right. That’s a subtle dig at MD, right?

BF–He that speaks much, is much mistaken.

TB–Wait a minute. That sounds more like me.

BF–Be slow in choosing an asshole runnin buddy, slower in changing.

TB–Yeah, whatever. Have a nice day.

About travellinbaen

I'm a 40 year old lawyer living in Ridgeland, Mississippi. I'm several years and a couple hundred miles removed from most of my old running buddies so I started the blog to provide an outlet for many of the observations and ideas that used to be the subjects of our late night/happy hour/halftime conversations and arguments.
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25 Responses to TB’s Exclusive Interview Series–Ben Franklin

  1. Sweet says:

    Nice interview. I wonder if his ARBs would have come up with the Baen nickname if Star Wars was available then. We really need a phonetic spelling on the computer. I have thought the new layout was due to my malfunctioning computer. I agree with Zeek, I didn’t like it then and don’t like it now.

  2. Yeah, everybody hates the layout. But the contrasting colors make it easier to read for those of us with color blindness–and don’t make your usual comment to that, I may use it in a future “conversation” piece.

  3. Sweet says:

    But you will, only with a different goal.

  4. Harmony says:

    LOL This is hilariously perfect!

    Man..I always knew I was related to ignorance, I just didn’t know we were immediate family. Damn!

  5. Samsmama says:

    “That’s cold dude.” Possibly my favorite line. What was it like high fiving a dead guy? Is it like how I imagine it to be and his brittle wrist snapped and fell off? And if it did, did you keep it?
    And what the hell is wrong with the new layout? I have no complaints. I’ll accept my award as “favorite” anytime.

  6. Jessie Lou says:

    Was BF dusty or completly clean, shiny and perfect? I thought this quite entertaining.

    Most folks don’t like change but once they get used to the layout they won’t notice it. If they like the blog they will keep coming back. I doubt they quit drinking beer (or liquor of choice) just because the label changes.

    I can see where it would help with your color blindness. Light vs. dark.

  7. Sweet says:

    BF brewed his own beer

  8. Well done, TB, well done.

    Everyone who is someone knows that Benjamin — Bennie to me — Franklin has always been one of my favorite historical figures. The fact that he didn’t give me a shout out demonstrates just how hard death has been on his normally agile mind.

  9. RockStarRambler says:

    Stellar interview Baen…and Ben.

  10. Jessie Lou says:

    A great Ben Franklin quote:

    “A slip of the foot you may soon recover, but a slip of the tongue you may never get over.”

    And in honor of the Govenor of the Great State of South Carolina:

    “All human situations have their inconveniences. We feel those of the present but neither see nor feel those of the future; and hence we often make troublesome changes without amendment, and frequently for the worse. “

  11. irvineredd says:


    FYI, I have no problems with the new layout at all. It’s evolution. Changing things up keeps the mind agile, so in a way TB has done all you aging fogies a favor, by helping to stave off your impending senility and Alzheimer’s. This will stop you from coming in my store and seriously telling me that the guys at the tattoo parlor down the street put people in trunks and drive the cars into a lake, and that the Titanic sank off the coast of Florida. (By the by, a nutty old man actually came in and said that to me two days ago. He knew the exact date the Titanic sank, but he thought it happened off the coast of Florida and then he asked if the North Atlantic is cold all year round. Be thankful, be very thankful for TB’s unappreciated medical help)

  12. irvineredd says:

    Also, who’s next in this exclusive series? Do the denizens of the TB universe have any say in this matter?

  13. You mean the Titanic didn’t sink in the Bermuda Triangle? Huh. Who knew?

  14. Jessie Lou says:

    The nutty old man thought he knew.

  15. irvineredd says:

    He comes in here around once a week. The other day he asked if he’d seen me before. He also claims that sharks only lived on the south side of Cuba until the Cold War. So watch out for sharks, they’re commies!

  16. H–thanks, I debated whether that line would be more insulting to the author or readers and decided if folks hang out here they have a sense of humor so it was safe.

    S&M–In my minds eye the interview took place in the metaphysical realm so BF was looking spry, however the high five thusly resulted in only the appearance of contact and was unsatisfyingly silent.

    Irv, the nutty old man justifies a whole post. You could start your own “conversation” series.

    TDW, I never knew you were bff’s with BF. Go figure. Parenthetically, I did not like the TDW change in appearance or name at first, however I now cannot even recall what the old looked like.

    Irv–feel free to suggest an interview selection or any other topic. Since I was not, as I feared I would be, the only one who liked the idea of interviewing through quotations, expect the exclusive interview series to continue.

  17. irvineredd, the shark think is hilarious. It proves, once again, that fact is funnier than fiction. If I set about to make up stupid shit, sorry TB, stuff that people believe, I wouldn’t have the creativity to think about commie sharks.

  18. I love Benjamin Franklin with all my heart. Truly.

  19. irvineredd says:

    DW, that guy has something nutty to say just about everytime he comes in here. He may or may not have a thing for my assistant.

    Of course he’s got nothing on the guy who came in a week or two ago. This guy just said things at random. Like I’ve got 150 tickets to Blue Oyster Cult; Kansas, Charlie Daniels Band, they stole my golden fiddle; Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, I’m Colonel Klink, look at my monocle. He would literally just say these things in this order completely out of the blue.

    That was a small sampling. Crazy crackheads and senile old men are fun!

    Exclusive Interview series suggestions: Hunter S. Thompson, Churchill, Andrew Jackson, Augustus Caesar, Jerry Garcia, and Keith Richards liver. Also Ricard Pryor and George Carlin.

  20. Wendy says:

    IR – have you said what kind of place you work in? How does your assistant feel about the attention?

    Loved the BF conversation with his newfound BFF TB. Would in be in poor taste to nominate Michael Jackson for a conversation – not sure why I’m worried about poor taste on this site but still……I think TB could do a great one after a proper mourning period. Tito hand me a tissue….seriously it is quite sad indeed.

  21. irvineredd says:

    “Tito hand me a tissue…..” nice! I think on MJ, there is no point where you have to ask, “Too soon?” Guy has been a walking joke for years and he’s probably lucky he made it this far.

    Wendy, I run a college textbook store, and I think my assistant is a strange brew of aroused and frightened while talking to the crazy old man.

  22. I was wondering today about the whole disparagement of the dead taboo. MJ will surely test that. But I figure its worse to disparage the living. Once the disparagee is dead, they are either oblivious, in heaven and thus laughing at our comments while living the good afterlife, or they are in hell/purgatory where they have greater concerns.

    Irv, one of you conversation nominations will be featured very soon.

  23. irvineredd says:

    Can’t wait to see which one!

  24. irvineredd says:


    I was just shown this video. In honor of Michael Jackson I thought I’d throw it on here. It’s Fillipino prisoners doing the entire dance routine from Thriller. It looks like everyone in the prison was involved. Pretty funny!

  25. Jessie Lou says:

    I think MJ is a very sad situation and what a shock! But I bet you could have a funny conversation with him TB…..especially on the crotch grabbing. If one becomes the most perfect version of himself in heaven then Michael Jackson is likely an 8 year old black boy singing “I’ll Be There”.

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