Work and Pleasure
To be really happy and really safe, oneought to have at least two or three hobbies, and they must all be real. It isno use starting late in life to say: “I will take an interest in this or that.”Such an attempt only
aggravates the strain of mental effort. A man may acquiregreat knowledge of topics unconnected with his daily work, and yet hardly getany benefit or relief. It is no use doing what you like; you have got to
likewhat you do. Broadly speaking, human being may be divided into three classes: thosewho are toiled to death, those who are worried to death, and those who arebored to death. It is no use offering the manual laborer, tired out with a hardweek’s sweat and effort, the chance of playing a game of football or baseballon Saturday afternoon. It is no use inviting the politician or the professionalor business man, who has been working or worrying about serious things for sixdays, to work or worry about trifling things at the weekend.
It may also be said that rational,industrious, useful human beings are divided into two classes: first,
thosewhose work is work and whose pleasure is pleasure; and secondly, those whosework and pleasure are one. Of these the former are the majority. They havetheir compensations. The long hours in the office or the factory bring withthem as their reward, not only the means of sustenance, but a keen appetite forpleasure even in its simplest and most modest forms. But Fortune’s favoredchildren belong to the second class. Their life is a natural harmony. For themthe working hours are never long enough. Each day is a holiday, and ordinaryholidays when they come are grudged as enforced interruptions in an
absorbingvacation. Yet to both classes the need of an alternative outlook, of a changeof atmosphere, of a diversion of effort, is essential. Indeed, it may well bethat those whose work is their pleasure are those who most need the means ofbanishing it at intervals from their minds.