Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Brandeis recommends recreation

Brandeis learned a lesson that he would practice and preach to others all his life, namely, that unless one found some way to exercise the body as well as the mind, one could not do good work. As a young lawyer he belonged to a riding club, and later took up canoeing. He also took regular vacations, and all of August off. “I learned that I could do a year’s worth of work in eleven months, but not in twelve.” Brandeis’s insistence on taking time off involved not just health; he understood that a tired person more easily made mistakes, not just of fact but of judgment as well. 
Melvin I. Urofsky, Louis D. Brandeis: A Life (New York: Pantheon, 2009), p. 34

After one walk, Brandeis told his wife “that while the dog had behaved reasonably well, he ‘has occasional lapses from virtue which convince me he should be muzzled. He does bite sometimes & we shall have claims made against us if we don’t act soon.’” Id. at 361.

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