Man to emulate: Teddy Roosevelt

teddyroosevelt

On October 14th, 1912, Teddy Roosevelt was shot in the chest. The bullet passed through a metal eyeglasses case, his folded up speech in his shirt pocket, and three inches of tissue. Supporters tried to get him to go to the hospital, but he continued on with his speech. His opening words:

“Ladies and gentlemen, I don’t know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose.”

Teddy Roosevelt was an almost unstoppable force in American politics and in American history. While I don’t agree with everything he did (e.g. His actions after the Maine explosion), I admire his spirit as an explorer, thinker, change agent, and citizen. I read somewhere that there are three types of people in this world: Those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who ask, “What just happened?”. Roosevelt is pretty unmatched in American history for “Making things Happen.” I can think of few Americans who “made things happen” more than Roosevelt. In his lifetime he accomplished the following things:

1. Work as state legislator, police commissioner, and governor in New York
2. Own and work a ranch in the Dakotas
3. Serve as Assistant Secretary of the Navy
4. Fight as a Rough Rider in the Spanish-American War
5. Serve as President for two terms, then run for an unprecedented third term
6. Become the first President to leave the country during his term in order to see the building of the Panama Canal
7. Write 35 books
8. Read tens of thousands of books-several a day in multiple languages
9. Explore the Amazonian rainforests
10. Discover, navigate, and be named after a completely uncharted Amazonian river over 625 miles long
11. Volunteer to lead a voluntary infantry unit into WWI at age 59.

Read more: Art of Manliness

One of my favorite quotes of his:

Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure… than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.

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