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Classical Notes

Roger Ebert: Thumbs-up for Happiness

Posted at 7:33 AM on April 5, 2013 by John Birge

The late, great Roger Ebert died Thursday. He'll be long remembered for his prolific thoughtful film criticism, but I'll remember him for saying this, reflecting on his battle with cancer in Esquire Magazine:


"I believe that if, at the end of it all, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn't always know this, and am happy I lived long enough to find it out."


Ebert's happiness in his writing was abundant, and his joy in writing about music was infectious, be it his favorite movie composer, or Beethoven's Fifth Symphony.

Farewell Roger. Thank you for making the world happier.

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