Refer to Re: youth is wasted on the young
"Shaw liked to be paradoxical and contrary, and the paradox here is obvious. From middle age onward we observe the energy, strength and enthusiasm of young people and think, "What I could do with those. Now that I have some wisdom and maturity, I could put those qualities to good use and make something of them, rather than squandering them in childish carelessness." The paradox is, of course, that if we were allowed to be youths once again we would do exactly what we did then, and squander our youth (as it seems now) just as we did then. Of course, Shaw knew perfectly well the inherent fallacies of this and other of his dicta, but he enjoyed turning a phrase based on the painful contradictions of life."