When I reneged on a promise to my wife a few days ago about something that was for my benefit but that I was rluctant to do, I quoted what Toad said to Badger in Wind In The Willows. She wasn't amused...
'There's only one thing more to be done,' continued the gratified Badger. 'Toad, I want you solemnly to repeat, before your friends here, what you fully admitted to me in the smoking-room just now. First, you are sorry for what you've done, and you see the folly of it all?'
There was a long, long pause. Toad looked desperately this way and that, while the other animals waited in grave silence. At last he spoke.
'No!' he said, a little sullenly, but stoutly; 'I'm not sorry. And it wasn't folly at all! It was simply glorious!'
'What?' cried the Badger, greatly scandalised. 'You backsliding animal, didn't you tell me just now, in there——'
'Oh, yes, yes, in there,' said Toad impatiently. 'I'd have said anything in there. You're so eloquent, dear Badger, and so moving, and so convincing, and put all your points so frightfully well— you can do what you like with me in there, and you know it. But I've been searching my mind since, and going over things in it, and I find that I'm not a bit sorry or repentant really, so it's no earthly good saying I am; now, is it?'
'Then you don't promise,' said the Badger, 'never to touch a motor-car again?'
'Certainly not!' replied Toad emphatically. 'On the contrary, I faithfully promise that the very first motor-car I see, poop- poop! off I go in it!'
- Kenneth Grahame, Wind In The Willows