The Life and Opinions of Bonnie Prather, Gentlewoman
I have undertaken, you see, to write not only my life, but my opinions also; hoping and expecting that your knowledge of my character, and of what kind of mortal I am, by the one, would give you a better relish for the other: As you proceed farther with me, the slight acquaintance, which is now beginning betwixt us, will grow into familiarity; and that, unless one of us is in fault, will terminate in friendship. - O diem proeclarum! - then nothing which has touched me will be thought trifling in its nature, or tedious in its telling. Therefore, my dear friend and companion, if you should think me somewhat sparing of my narrative on my first setting out - bear with me, and let me go on, and tell my story my own way: - Or, if I should seem now and then to trifle upon the road, - or should sometimes put on a fool's cap with a bell to it, for a moment or two as we pass along, - don't fly off, - but rather courteously give me credit for a little more wisdom than appears upon my outside; - and as we jog on, either laugh with me, or at me, or in short, do anything, - only keep your temper.
- The Life and Opinions of Bonnie Prather, Gentlewoman
(...with help from and thanks to Tristram Shandy and Lawrence Sterne)