Wasn’t Mad at Nobody
A Klamath Falls merchant, K. Sugarman, sold his store and went out of the men’s furnishings business the other day, after nearly forty years of service. Well, you say, what about it? You have other fish to fry. But this K. Sugarman happens to be the citizen who coined for Americans the handiest, wisest and most philosophic of slogans for the ruckuses in towns both great and small. There was a controversial fracas of some sort going on in Klamath Falls some twenty years or more ago, and K. Sugarman, men’s clothier, was vouchsafed an inspiration. He wrote and published a newspaper ad which declared, “I ain’t mad at nobody.” It sort of cooled things off, for partisans who read the advertisement fell to wondering just why they were so mad.
The Sugarman shibboleth caught on. In the field of colloquial adage the Klamath Falls clothier had made the better mousetrap, and presently the line he had written was being quoted, without credit, the country over. To be sure, there may be another claimant-probably there has—but we aren’t going into that. It had to originate somewhere, and we believe that it had its origin in K. Sugarman’s heart, thence to his wit, and thence to the printed page. We Americans, who most generally are mad at somebody all the time, needed such a saying-for out advice as for our rebuke. That there are times to get mad, times when the citizen has to choose between being a man or a mouse, goes without saying. But lots of times it is so unnecessary , so futile, so wasteful of energy. If you know someone who continually is enraged about something, feel sorry for the poor cuss-he needs it.
From the Oregonian March 11, 1944 courtesy of Newspapers.com