Writing to a Boston friend in 1934, Oliver St John Gogarty, MD, aviator, archer, and former cycling champion, said:
I, for my poor part, have chosen the sock and not the Miltonian buskin. My spirit is God given? Very well: why does it prefer Aristophanes to Aeschylus?... Because the first does not usurp the metier of the Gods: and we are not thronged with destiny.
In his youth (he was born on Aug 17, 1878, the eldest son of Henry Gogarty, FRCSI), when attending Trinity College, Dublin, his wit, levity, and irreverence made him an apt companion for James Joyce. He is Buck Mulligan in Ulysses—"Buck Mulligan, panamahelmeted, went step by step, iambing, trolling"—but when the novel was published, Gogarty was a member of the Irish Free State Senate and a leading ear, nose, and throat surgeon. Understandably, he resented the overstated characterization. He was more sensitive and less