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Trick or treat

Published Thursday, October 31, 2013 @ 7:09 PM EDT
Oct 31 2013

Youngest granddaughter Joelle (six months old) as a bumblebee entranced by a ceiling fan.

Categories: Holidays, KGB Family

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Quotes of the day: Federico Fellini

Published Thursday, October 31, 2013 @ 12:35 AM EDT
Oct 31 2013

Federico Fellini (January 20, 1920 - October 31, 1993) was an Italian film director and scriptwriter. Known for a distinct style that blended fantasy and baroque images, he is considered one of the most influential filmmakers of the 20th century, winning five Academy Awards. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A created thing is never invented and it is never true: it is always and ever itself.

A different language is a different vision of life.

A good opening and a good ending make for a good film provided they come close together.

All art is autobiographical; the pearl is the oyster’s autobiography.

Censorship is advertising paid by the government.

Cinema is an old whore, like circus and variety, who knows how to give many kinds of pleasure.

Don't tell me what I'm doing; I don't want to know.

Even the most miserable life is better than a sheltered existence in an organized society where everything is calculated and perfected.

Experience is what you get while looking for something else.

Fate is written in the face.

God may not play dice but he enjoys a good round of Trivial Pursuit every now and again.

Happiness is simply a temporary condition that proceeds unhappiness. Fortunately for us, it works the other way around as well. But it's all a part of the carnival, isn't it?

I think television has betrayed the meaning of democratic speech, adding visual chaos to the confusion of voices. What role does silence have in all this noise?

If there were a little more silence, if we all kept quiet... maybe we could understand something.

It's easier to be faithful to a restaurant than it is to a woman.

Life is a combination of magic and pasta.

Money is everywhere but so is poetry. What we lack are the poets.

Realism is a bad word. In a sense everything is realistic. I see no line between the imaginary and the real.

The only place where you can be a dictator and still be loved is on the movie set.

There is no end. There is no beginning. There is only the infinite passion of life.

You can’t teach old fleas new dogs.

You exist only in what you do.

There is abundant testimony that if we choose love rather than self, we gain immeasurably.

You have to live spherically—in many directions. To accept yourself for what you are without inhibitions, to be open.

Categories: Federico Fellini, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: John Adams

Published Wednesday, October 30, 2013 @ 6:24 AM EDT
Oct 30 2013

John Adams (October 30, 1735 - July 4, 1826) was the second president of the United States (1797–1801), having earlier served as the first vice president of the United States. An American Founding Father, Adams was a statesman, diplomat, and a leading advocate of American independence from Great Britain. Well educated, he was an Enlightenment political theorist who promoted republicanism, as well as a strong central government, and wrote prolifically about his often seminal ideas, both in published works and in letters to his wife and key adviser Abigail Adams, as well as to other Founding Fathers. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.

A pen is certainly an excellent instrument to fix a man's attention and to inflame his ambition.

Abuse of words has been the great instrument of sophistry and chicanery of party, faction, and division of society.

All the perplexities, confusion and distress in America arise, not from defects in their Constitution or Confederation, not from want of honor or virtue, so much as from the downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation.

But America is a great, unwieldy Body. Its Progress must be slow. It is like a large Fleet sailing under Convoy. The fleetest Sailors must wait for the dullest and slowest.

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of the facts and evidence.

Fear is the foundation of most governments; but it is so sordid and brutal a passion, and renders men in whose breasts it predominates so stupid and miserable, that Americans will not be likely to approve of any political institution which is founded on it.

Government has no right to hurt the hair of an Atheist for his Opinions. Let him have a care of his Practices.

Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war.

Human nature with all its infirmities and depravation is still capable of great things

I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.

I read my eyes out and can't read half enough... The more one reads the more one sees we have to read.

In politics the middle way is none at all.

It is folly to anticipate evils, and madness to create imaginary ones.

It is more important that innocence be protected than it is that guilt be punished, for guilt and crimes are so frequent in this world that they cannot all be punished.

Let the human mind loose. It must be loose. It will be loose. Superstition and dogmatism cannot confine it.

Let us tenderly and kindly cherish, therefore, the means of knowledge. Let us dare to read, think, speak, and write.

No man is entirely free from weakness and imperfection in this life. Men of the most exalted genius and active minds are generally most perfect slaves to the love of fame. They sometimes descend to as mean tricks and artifices in pursuit of honor or reputation as the miser descends to in pursuit of gold.

No man who ever held the office of president would congratulate a friend on obtaining it. He will make one man ungrateful, and a hundred men his enemies, for every office he can bestow.

Old minds are like old horses; you must exercise them if you wish to keep them in working order.

Our obligations to our country never cease but with our lives.

Posterity! you will never know how much it cost the present generation to preserve your freedom! I hope you will make a good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven that I ever took half the pains to preserve it.

Power always thinks it has a great soul and vast views beyond the comprehension of the weak; and that it is doing God's service when it is violating all his laws.

Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.

Thanks to God that he gave me stubbornness when I know I am right.

The Declaration of Independence I always considered as a Theatrical Show. Jefferson ran away with all the stage effect of that; i.e. all the Glory of it.

The essence of a free government consists in an effectual control of rivalries.

The jaws of power are always open to devour, and her arm is always stretched out, if possible, to destroy the freedom of thinking, speaking, and writing.

The middle way is no way at all. If we finally fail in this great and glorious contest, it will be by bewildering ourselves in groping for the middle way.

The preservation of the means of knowledge among the lowest ranks is of more importance to the public than all the property of all the rich men in the country.

The proposition, that the people are the best keepers of their own liberties, is not true; they are the worst conceivable; they are no keepers at all; they can neither judge, act, think, or will, as a political body.

The revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people.

There are two educations. One should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live.

There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.

There is nothing I dread so much as a division of the Republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader and converting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution.

These bickerings of opposite parties, and their mutual reproaches, their declamations, their sing-song, their triumphs and defiances, their dismals and prophecies, are all delusion.

Twenty times in the course of my late reading have I been upon the point of breaking out, "This would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it!" But in this exclamation I would have been as fanatical as Bryant or Cleverly. Without religion this world would be something not fit to be mentioned in polite company, I mean Hell.

Tyranny can scarcely be practised upon a virtuous and wise people.

Virtue is not always amiable.

We ought to consider what is the end of government, before we determine which is the best form.

When people talk of the freedom of writing, speaking or thinking I cannot choose but laugh. No such thing ever existed. No such thing now exists; but I hope it will exist. But it must be hundreds of years after you and I shall write and speak no more.

While all other Sciences have advanced, that of Government is at a stand; little better understood; little better practiced now than three or four thousand years ago.

Categories: John Adams, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Jean Giraudoux

Published Tuesday, October 29, 2013 @ 4:07 AM EDT
Oct 29 2013

Hippolyte Jean Giraudoux (October 29, 1882 – January 31, 1944) was a French novelist, essayist, diplomat and playwright. He is considered among the most important French dramatists of the period between World War I and World War II. His work is noted for its stylistic elegance and poetic fantasy. Giraudoux's dominant theme is the relationship between man and woman- or in some cases, between man and some unattainable ideal. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


To win a woman in the first place one must please her, then undress her, and then somehow get her clothes back on her. Finally, so she will allow you to leave her, you've got to annoy her.

The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that you've got it made.

Only the mediocre are always at their best.

In wartime a man is called a hero. It doesn't make him any braver, and he runs for his life. But at least it's a hero who is running away.

Everyone always dies for his country. If you have lived in it, well and wisely and actively, you die for it too.

There is no better way of exercising the imagination than the study of law. No poet ever interpreted nature as freely as a lawyer interprets the truth.

I'm not afraid of death. It's the stake one puts up in order to play the game of life.

Education makes us more stupid than the brutes. A thousand voices call to us on every hand, but our ears are stopped with wisdom.

A golf course is the epitome of all that is transitory in the universe, a space not to dwell in, but to get over as quickly as possible.

Sadness flies on the wings of the morning and out of the heart of darkness comes the light.

Everyone, when there's war in the air, learns to live in a new element: falsehood.

Faithful women are all alike, they think only of their fidelity, never of their husbands.

Men should only believe half of what women say. But which half?

One of the privileges of the great is to witness catastrophes from a terrace.

There is an invisible garment woven around us from our earliest years; it is made of the way we eat, the way we walk, the way we greet people.

A man has only one way of being immortal on earth: he has to forget he is a mortal.

There are no elements so diverse that they cannot be joined in the heart of a man.

Those who weep recover more quickly than those who smile.

Not through discovery but through our fathomlessness do we move confidently through life.

The flower is the poetry of reproduction. It is an example of the eternal seductiveness of life.

It's odd how people waiting for you stand out far less clearly than people you are waiting for.

I tell you, sir, the only safeguard of order and discipline in the modern world is a standardized worker with interchangeable parts. That would solve the entire problem of management.

Categories: Jean Giraudoux, Quotes of the day

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Published Monday, October 28, 2013 @ 6:07 AM EDT
Oct 28 2013

(Originally published on October 28, 2009. Hard to believe it's been five years- and I still miss her.)

I've written a half-dozen eulogies for pets and friends over the years. It's the first anniversary of Beanie's death, and I find I still can't write one for her.

Perhaps it's because she's still here. There are three pictures of her on the wall in front of my desk. A box with her vet records sits next to the filing cabinet. Her ashes are in a drawer less than two feet from me.

Ours wasn't a verbal relationship, anyway. We spent hours walking the paths in South Park. We'd share a white pizza with bacon on the living room floor and listen to '70s music. I'd fall asleep on the floor and wake up with her beside me, the thump of her tail welcoming me to consciousness before my eyes had focused.

I won't recount the details of those instances in the past year when I felt something warm at my feet and looked down to see an empty floor. Or felt a wet nose and warm breath on my ear as I drove past the paths we walked in the park, despite the car's empty back seat. Or the dreams of her walking on a leaf-covered trail, not looking back, pausing occasionally to allow me to catch up.

When it's time for me to join her, our ashes will be commingled and scattered in the woods next to that trail. Then it will be someone else's chore to produce the appropriate words.

We'll have other things to occupy us, and all the time we didn't have here.

Categories: Dogs, KGB Family

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Quotes of the day: Erasmus

Published Monday, October 28, 2013 @ 5:35 AM EDT
Oct 28 2013

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus (October 27, 1466 – July 12, 1536), known as Erasmus of Rotterdam, or simply Erasmus, was a Dutch Renaissance humanist, Catholic priest, social critic, teacher, and theologian. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A good portion of speaking will consist in knowing how to lie.

A nail is driven out by another nail. Habit is overcome by habit.

All things obey money.

Concealed talent brings no reputation.

Everybody hates a prodigy, detests an old head on young shoulders.

Everyone knows that by far the happiest and universally enjoyable age of man is the first. What is there about babies which makes us hug and kiss and fondle them, so that even an enemy would give them help at that age?

For what is life but a play in which everyone acts a part until the curtain comes down?

Fools are without number.

Give light and the darkness will disappear of itself.

Great abundance of riches cannot be gathered and kept by any man without sin.

He who allows oppression shares the crime.

I am a citizen of the world, known to all and to all a stranger.

I am a lover of liberty. I will not and I cannot serve a party.

I doubt if a single individual could be found from the whole of mankind free from some form of insanity. The only difference is one of degree.

In the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.

It is an unscrupulous intellect that does not pay to antiquity its due reverence.

It is the generally accepted privilege of theologians to stretch the heavens, that is the Scriptures, like tanners with a hide.

It is wisdom in prosperity, when all is as thou wouldst have it, to fear and suspect the worst.

Man's mind is so formed that it is far more susceptible to falsehood than to truth.

Many times what cannot be refuted by arguments can be parried by laughter.

Nature, more of a stepmother than a mother in several ways, has sown a seed of evil in the hearts of mortals, especially in the more thoughtful men, which makes them dissatisfied with their own lot and envious of another's.

No man is wise at all times, or is without his blind side.

Only busy saints and true villains forsake activities which give them pleasure. If you regard yourself as neither, enjoy the world as your own.

Prevention is better than cure.

The most disadvantageous peace is better than the most just war.

The wedlock of minds will be greater than that of bodies.

There is nothing I congratulate myself on more heartily than on never having joined a sect.

What is popularly called fame is nothing but an empty name and a legacy from paganism.

When I get a little money, I buy books- if any is left, I buy food and clothes.

You must acquire the best knowledge first, and without delay; it is the height of madness to learn what you will later have to unlearn.

Your library is your paradise.

Categories: Quotes of the day

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Published Sunday, October 27, 2013 @ 9:39 AM EDT
Oct 27 2013

Unfortunately, stupidity is infinite.

Categories: Politics, WTF?

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Granddad indulges...

Published Sunday, October 27, 2013 @ 8:58 AM EDT
Oct 27 2013

Granddaughter Joelle and Huck confirm the adage, "If there's a Barkes kid around, there's a dog nearby."


Daughter-in-law Angela and granddaughter Joelle: two cuties!


Doug, Joelle, and Angela at the farm.

Categories: KGB Family

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Quotes of the day: John Cleese

Published Sunday, October 27, 2013 @ 6:13 AM EDT
Oct 27 2013

John Marwood Cleese (b October 27, 1939) is an English actor, comedian, writer and film producer. He achieved success at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and as a scriptwriter and performer on The Frost Report. In the late 1960s, he became a member of Monty Python, the comedy troupe responsible for the sketch show Monty Python's Flying Circus and the four Monty Python films: And Now for Something Completely Different, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Life of Brian and The Meaning of Life. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


All humor is a matter of opinion.

Aping Urbanity,
Oozing with Vanity
Plump as a Manatee,
Faking Humanity
Journalistic Calamity,
Intellectual Inanity
Fox News Insanity,
You're a profanity
(Ode to Sean Hannity)

Comedy always works best when it is mean-spirited.

Creativity is not a talent. It is a way of operating.

Don't touch me. I don't know where you've been.

He who laughs most, learns best.

I don't think anyone should be educated sexually. There's far too many people on the planet. If we could hush it up for a few years, that would help.

I find it rather easy to portray a businessman. Being bland, rather cruel and incompetent comes naturally to me.

I think marriage should be like dog licences. I think you should have to renew marriage licences every five years...

I think that money spoils most things, once it becomes the primary motivating force.

I think that the real religion is about the understanding that if we can only still our egos for a few seconds, we might have a chance of experiencing something that is divine in nature.

I think the problem with people like this (Sarah Palin) is that they are so stupid, that they have no idea how stupid they are.

I used to desire many, many things, but now I have just one desire, and that's to get rid of all my other desires.

I'm struck by how laughter connects you with people. It's almost impossible to maintain any kind of distance or any sense of social hierarchy when you're just howling with laughter. Laughter is a force for democracy.

If God did not intend for us to eat animals, then why did he make them out of meat?

If I like chocolate it won't surprise you that I have a few chocolates in my fridge, but if you find out I've got 16 warehouses full of chocolate, you'd think I was insane. All these rich guys are insane, obsessive compulsive twits obsessed with money- money is all they think about- they're all nuts.

If you want creative workers, give them enough time to play.

It's the people who try desperately to put a measured surface over secret anger seething away underneath who give you the sense of most violence.

Nothing will stop you being creative more effectively as the fear of making a mistake.

Technology frightens me to death. It's designed by engineers to impress other engineers, and they always come with instruction booklets that are written by engineers for other engineers- which is why almost no technology ever works.

The most creative people have this childlike facility to play.

The really good idea is always traceable back quite a long way, often to a not very good idea which sparked off another idea that was only slightly better, which somebody else misunderstood in such a way that they then said something which was really rather interesting.

There's something about watching an animal that puts you in contact with where we came from and what we're still a part of.

Too many people confuse being serious with being solemn.

We don't know where we get our ideas from. What we do know is that we do not get them from our laptops.

When you get to my age... you realize that the world is a madhouse and that most people are operating in fantasy anyway. So once you realise that, it doesn't bother you much.

Why anyone who has not committed a punishable offense would listen to country and western music is beyond me.

Why write about the past? Well, there's more of it.

You don't have to be the Dalai Lama to tell people that life's about change.

You see, you could never do a sketch like that these days. The audience is too uninformed. I blame the Americans. Nation of obese, violent, pig-ignorant, bible-thumping morons contaminating world culture. That's why I spend most of my time here in France. Beautiful, isn't it? Just look at those olive trees.
(Interviewer: This is Santa Barbara.)

Categories: John Cleese, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Published Saturday, October 26, 2013 @ 4:07 AM EDT
Oct 26 2013

Elizabeth Cady Stanton (November 12, 1815 - October 26, 1902) was an American social activist, abolitionist, and leading figure of the early women's rights movement. Her Declaration of Sentiments, presented at the first women's rights convention held in 1848 in Seneca Falls, New York, is often credited with initiating the first organized women's rights and women's suffrage movements in the United States. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


Because man and woman are the complement of one another, we need woman's thought in national affairs to make a safe and stable government.

Come, come, my conservative friend, wipe the dew off your spectacles, and see that the world is moving.

How long will the heathens rage?

I am always busy, which is perhaps the chief reason why I am always well.

I would have girls regard themselves not as adjectives but as nouns.

It requires philosophy and heroism to rise above the opinion of the wise men of all nations and races.

It was just so in the American Revolution, in 1776, the first delicacy the men threw overboard in Boston harbor was the tea, woman's favorite beverage. The tobacco and whiskey, though heavily taxed, they clung to with the tenacity of the devil-fish.

Men think that self-sacrifice is the most charming of all the cardinal virtues for women, and in order to keep it in healthy working order, they make opportunities for its illustration as often as possible.

No matter how much women prefer to lean, to be protected and supported, nor how much men desire to have them do so, they must make the voyage of life alone, and for safety in an emergency they must know something of the laws of navigation.

Our 'pathway' is straight to the ballot box, with no variableness nor shadow of turning...We demand in the Reconstruction suffrage for all the citizens of the Republic. I would not talk of Negroes or women, but of citizens.

So long as women are slaves, men will be knaves.

The happiest people I have known have been those who gave themselves no concern about their own souls, but did their uttermost to mitigate the miseries of others.

The heyday of woman's life is the shady side of fifty.

The history of mankind is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations on the part of man toward woman.

The isolation of every human soul and the necessity of self-dependence must give each individual the right, to choose his own surroundings.

The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls.

The prejudice against color, of which we hear so much, is no stronger than that against sex. It is produced by the same cause, and manifested very much in the same way. The negro's skin and the woman's sex are both prima facie evidence that they were intended to be in subjection to the white Saxon man.

To deny political equality is to rob the ostracised of all self-respect; of credit in the market place; of recompense in the world of work; of a voice among those who make and administer the law; a choice in the jury before whom they are tried, and in the judge who decides their punishment.

To throw obstacles in the way of a complete education is like putting out the eyes.

Truth is the only safe ground to stand on.

We are, as a sex, infinitely superior to men, and if we were free and developed, healthy in body and mind, as we should be under natural conditions, our motherhood would be our glory. That function gives women such wisdom and power as no male can possess.

We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men and women are created equal.

Whatever the theories may be of woman's dependence on man, in the supreme moments of her life he can not bear her burdens.

When women understand that governments and religions are human inventions; that Bibles, prayer-books, catechisms, and encyclical letters are all emanations from the brains of man, they will no longer be oppressed by the injunctions that come to them with the divine authority of 'Thus sayeth the Lord.'

Women have crucified the Mary Wollstonecrafts, the Fanny Wrights, and the George Sands of all ages. Men mock us with the fact and say we are ever cruel to each other... If this present woman must be crucified, let men drive the spikes.

Categories: Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Quotes on a topic

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Quotes of the day: Pablo Picasso

Published Friday, October 25, 2013 @ 2:22 AM EDT
Oct 25 2013

Pablo Ruiz y Picasso, known as Pablo Picasso (October 25, 1881 – April 8, 1973) was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer who spent most of his adult life in France. As one of the greatest and most influential artists of the 20th century, he is known for co-founding the Cubist movement, the invention of constructed sculpture, the co-invention of collage, and for the wide variety of styles that he helped develop and explore. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


Abstract art is only painting. And what’s so dramatic about that? There is no abstract art. One must always begin with something.

Ah, good taste! What a dreadful thing! Taste is the enemy of creativeness.

Art is not made to decorate rooms. It is an offensive weapon in the defense against the enemy.

Art is not the application of a canon of beauty, but what the instinct and the brain can conceive independently of that canon... To tell the truth the Parthenon is only a truss on which a roof has been placed.

Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.

Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.

Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.

Everyone wants to understand painting. Why don’t they try to understand the song of the birds?

Everything you can imagine is real.

God is really only another artist. He invented the giraffe, the elephant and the cat. He has no real style, He just goes on trying other things.

I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.

I do not seek, I find.

I'd like to live like a poor man with lots of money.

If I don't have red, I use blue.

In drawing, nothing is better than the first attempt.

It is not what the artist does that counts. But what he is.

It takes a long time to become young.

One must take things where one finds them.

One starts to get young at the age of sixty and then it's too late.

Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.

Painting isn't an aesthetic operation; it's a form of magic designed as mediator between this strange hostile world and us.

People want to find a meaning in everything and everyone. That's the disease of our age...

People who try to explain pictures are usually barking up the wrong tree.

The accidental reveals man.

The chief enemy of creativity is good sense.

The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.

The urge to destroy is also a creative urge.

The world doesn't make sense, so why should I paint pictures that do?

There are only two types of women: goddesses and doormats.

There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into sun.

When art critics get together they talk about Form and Structure and Meaning. When artists get together they talk about where you can buy cheap turpentine.

Categories: Pablo Picasso, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Stephen Covey

Published Thursday, October 24, 2013 @ 4:41 AM EDT
Oct 24 2013

Stephen Richards Covey (October 24, 1932 - July 16, 2012) was an American educator, author, businessman, and keynote speaker. His most popular book was The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. His other books include First Things First, Principle-Centered Leadership, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Families, The 8th Habit, and The Leader In Me- How Schools and Parents Around the World Are Inspiring Greatness, One Child at a Time. He was a professor at the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University at the time of his death. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A moment of choice is a moment of truth. It's the testing point of our character and competence.

Consequences are governed by principles and behavior is governed by values; therefore, value principles!

Give no answer to contentious arguments or irresponsible accusations. Let such things 'fly out open windows' until they spend themselves.

Habit is the intersection of knowledge (what to do), skill (how to do), and desire (want to do).

I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.

If I really want to improve my situation, I can work on the one thing over which I have control- myself.

In the last analysis, what we are communicates far more eloquently than anything we say or do.

It is one thing to make a mistake, and quite another thing not to admit it. People will forgive mistakes, because mistakes are usually of the mind, mistakes of judgment. But people will not easily forgive the mistakes of the heart, the ill intention, the bad motives, the prideful justifying cover-up of the first mistake.

It's not enough to have values without vision; you want to be good, but you want to be good for something.

Let natural consequences teach responsible behavior.

Live out of your imagination, not your history.

Live the law of love. We encourage obedience to the laws of life when we live the laws of love.

Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.

More important than how fast you're going, is where you're headed.

Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent and not enough time on what is important.

Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.

One of the most important ways to manifest integrity is to be loyal to those who are not present. In doing so, we build the trust of those who are present.

Prepare your mind and heart before you prepare your speech. What we say may be less important than how we say it.

Principles are universal— that is, they transcend culture and geography. They're also timeless, they never change- principles such as fairness, kindness, respect, honesty, integrity, service, contribution. Different cultures may translate these principles into different practices and over time may even totally obscure these principles through the wrongful use of freedom. Nevertheless, they are present. Like the law of gravity, they operate constantly.

Remember, to learn and not to do is really not to learn. To know and not to do is really not to know.

The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.

The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.

The power to distinguish between person and performance and to communicate intrinsic worth flows naturally out of our own sense of intrinsic worth.

The way we see the problem is the problem.

Trust is the glue of life. It's the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It's the foundational principle that holds all relationships.

Two people can see the same thing, disagree, and yet both be right. It's not logical; it's psychological.

Unless we exercise our power to choose wisely, our actions will be determined by conditions. Our ultimate freedom is the right and power to decide how anybody or anything outside ourselves will affect us.

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are- or, as we are conditioned to see it.

When the trust account is high, communication is easy, instant, and effective.

While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.

Words are like eggs dropped from great heights. You could no more call them back then ignore the mess they left when they fell.

Categories: Quotes of the day, Stephen Covey

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Quotes of the day: Johnny Carson

Published Wednesday, October 23, 2013 @ 12:42 AM EDT
Oct 23 2013

(Visit the KGB Report's Johnny Carson page.)

John William "Johnny" Carson (October 23, 1925 - January 23, 2005) was an American television host and comedian, known for thirty years as host of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962–1992). Carson received six Emmy Awards, the Governor's Award, and a 1985 Peabody Award. He was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame in 1987. Johnny Carson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1992 and received a Kennedy Center Honor in 1993. Although his show was already successful by the end of the 1960s, during the 1970s Carson became an American icon and remained so until his retirement in 1992. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


An optimist is an accordion player with a beeper.

Anytime four New Yorkers get into a cab together without arguing, a bank robbery has just taken place.

Democracy is buying a big house you can't afford with money you don't have to impress people you wish were dead.

Democracy is people of all races, colors, and creeds united by a single dream: to get rich and move to the suburbs away from people of all races, colors, and creeds.

Democracy is the eagle on the back of a dollar bill, with 13 arrows in one claw, 13 leaves on a branch, 13 tail feathers, and 13 stars over its head. This signifies that when the white man came to this country, it was bad luck for the Indians, bad luck for the trees, bad luck for the wildlife, and lights out for the American eagle.

Democracy is welcoming people from other lands, and giving them something to hold onto- usually a mop or a leaf blower.

Democracy means free television; not good television, but free.

Democracy means that anyone can grow up to be president, and anyone who doesn't grow up can be vice president.

Did you know Richard Nixon is the only president whose formal portrait was painted by a police sketch artist?

I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself.

I now believe in reincarnation. Tonight's monologue is going to come back as a dog.

I started in a gaseous state and then I cooled. (On how he became a star.)

I was so naive as a kid I used to sneak behind the barn and do nothing.

If variety is the spice of life, marriage is the big can of leftover Spam.

If you must smoke, don't do it orally.

In Hollywood if you don't have a shrink, people think you're crazy.

Married men live longer than single men. But married men are a lot more willing to die.

Never use a big word when a little filthy one will do.

New York is an exciting town where something is happening all the time, most unsolved.

Only lie about the future. (to politicians)

People pay more to be entertained that educated.

Talent alone won't make you a success. Neither will being in the right place at the right time, unless you are ready. The most important question is: "Are your ready?"

The best things in life are free. And the cheesiest things in life are free with a paid subscription to Sports Illustrated.

The only thing money gives you is the freedom of not worrying about money.

We're doing great in Malibu. The mudslides put out the fires.

Categories: Johnny Carson, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Kingsley Amis

Published Tuesday, October 22, 2013 @ 12:19 AM EDT
Oct 22 2013

Sir Kingsley William Amis, CBE (Apri 16, 1922 - October 22, 1995) was an English novelist, poet, critic, and teacher. He wrote more than 20 novels, six volumes of poetry, a memoir, various short stories, radio and television scripts, along with works of social and literary criticism. According to his biographer, Zachary Leader, Amis was "the finest English comic novelist of the second half of the twentieth century." He was the father of English novelist Martin Amis. (Click for full Wikipedia article.)


Consciousness was upon him before he could get out of the way.

Death has this much to be said for it:
You don't have to get out of bed for it.
Wherever you happen to be
They bring it to you— free.

Doing what you wanted to do was the only training, and the only preliminary, needed for doing more of what you wanted to do.

Education is one thing and instruction, however worthy, necessary and incidentally or monetarily educative, another.

He was of the faith chiefly in the sense that the church he currently did not attend was Catholic.

I want a dish to taste good, rather than to have been seethed in pig's milk and served wrapped in a rhubarb leaf with grated thistle root.

If you can't annoy somebody, there's little point in writing.

It is natural and harmless in English to use a preposition to end a sentence with.

It was no wonder that people were so horrible when they started life as children.

It's never pleasant to have one's unquestioning beliefs put in their historical context, as I know from experience, I can assure you.

It’s a letdown if the comedian doesn’t finally actually really sit on his hat.

Laziness has become the chief characteristic of journalism, displacing incompetence.

Never despise a drink because it is easy to make and/or uses commercial mixes. Unquestioning devotion to authenticity is, in any department of life, a mark of the naive- or worse.

No pleasure is worth giving up for the sake of two more years in a geriatric home...

One of the great benefits of organized religion is that you can be forgiven your sins, which must be a wonderful thing. I mean, I carry my sins around with me, there's nobody there to forgive them.

Only a world without love strikes me as instantly and decisively more terrible than one without music.

Outside every fat man there was an even fatter man trying to close in.

Sex stops when you pull up your pants, Love never lets you go.

The first, indeed the only, requirement of a diet is that it should lose you weight without reducing your alcoholic intake by the smallest degree.

The rewards for being sane may not be very many, but knowing what's funny is one of them.

There isn't another other sex.

There was no end to the ways in which nice things are nicer than nasty ones.

Wives and such are constantly filling up any refrigerator they have a claim on, even its ice compartment, with irrelevant rubbish like food.

You'll find that marriage is a good short cut to the truth. No, not quite that. A way of doubling back to the truth.

Categories: Kingsley Amis, Quotes of the day

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It's been 32 years...

Published Monday, October 21, 2013 @ 10:23 AM EDT
Oct 21 2013

...since this photo was taken, but she's still my little girl.

Happy birthday, Sara Kay!

Categories: KGB Family

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Quotes of the day: Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Published Monday, October 21, 2013 @ 12:16 AM EDT
Oct 21 2013

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (October 21, 1772 - July 25 1834) was an English poet, literary critic and philosopher who, with his friend William Wordsworth, was a founder of the Romantic Movement in England and a member of the Lake Poets. He wrote the poems The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Kubla Khan, as well as the major prose work Biographia Literaria. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A man may devote himself to death and destruction to save a nation; but no nation will devote itself to death and destruction to save mankind.

A man with a bad heart has been sometimes saved by a strong head; but a corrupt woman is lost forever.

Advice is like snow- the softer it falls, the longer it dwells upon, and the deeper in sinks into the mind.

An idea, in the highest sense of that word, cannot be conveyed but by a symbol.

Brute animals have the vowel sounds; man only can utter consonants.

Common sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom.

Every reform, however necessary, will by weak minds be carried to an excess, that itself will need reforming.

How inimitably graceful children are in general before they learn to dance!

Human experience, like the stern-lights of a ship at sea, illumines only the path which we have passed over.

I have seen great intolerance shown in support of tolerance.

If a man is not rising upwards to be an angel, depend upon it, he is sinking downwards to be a devil. He cannot stop at the beast. The most savage of men are not beasts; they are worse, a great deal worse.

If men could learn from history, what lessons it might teach us! But passion and party blind our eyes, and the light which experience gives is a lantern on the stern, which shines only on the waves behind us.

In politics, what begins in fear usually ends in folly.

It is more honourable to the head, as well as to the heart, to be misled by our eagerness in the pursuit of truth, than to be safe from blundering by the contempt of it.

Never pursue literature as a trade.

No one does anything from a single motive.

Not one man in a thousand has the strength of mind or the goodness of heart to be an atheist.

Plagiarists are always suspicious of being stolen from- as pickpockets are observed commonly to walk with their hands in their breeches' pockets.

Some men are like musical glasses; to produce their finest tones, you must keep them wet.

Talent, lying in the understanding, is often inherited; genius, being the action of reason or imagination, rarely or never.

The doing evil to avoid an evil cannot be good.

The man's desire is for the woman; but the woman's desire is rarely other than for the desire of the man.

The present system of taking oaths is horrible. It is awfully absurd to make a man invoke God's wrath upon himself, if he speaks false; it is, in my judgment, a sin to do so.

There are no rights whatever without corresponding duties.

There is nothing insignificant- nothing.

There is one art of which every man should be master- the art of reflection.

Until you understand a writer's ignorance, presume yourself ignorant of his understanding.

Categories: Quotes of the day, Samuel Taylor Coleridge

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Published Sunday, October 20, 2013 @ 10:43 AM EDT
Oct 20 2013

Notice what isn't on this box of ice cream sandwiches? The words "ice cream." And Drumsticks are not ice cream cones- just "cones."


I thought he seemed familiar...


From The New Yorker







Categories: Cartoons, Miscellany

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Quotes of the day: Art Buchwald

Published Sunday, October 20, 2013 @ 6:01 AM EDT
Oct 20 2013

Arthur "Art" Buchwald (October 20, 1925 - January 17, 2007) was an American humorist best known for his long-running column in The Washington Post, which in turn was carried as a syndicated column in many other newspapers. His column focused on political satire and commentary. He received the Pulitzer Prize for Outstanding Commentary in 1982 and in 1986 was elected to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A bad liver is to a Frenchman what a nervous breakdown is to an American. Everyone has had one and everyone wants to talk about it.

Americans are a broad-minded people. They'll accept the fact that a person can be alcoholic, a dope fiend or a wife-beater, but if a man doesn't drive a car, everybody thinks that something is wrong with him.

Any company executive who overcharges the government more than $5 million will be fined $50 or have to go to traffic school three nights a week.

As the economy gets better, everything else gets worse.

Dinner is not what you do in the evening before something else. Dinner is the evening.

Don't commit suicide, because you might change your mind two weeks later.

Every time you think television has hit its lowest ebb, a new program comes along to make you wonder where you thought the ebb was.

Have you ever seen a candidate talking to a rich person on television?

I always wanted to get into politics, but I was never light enough to make the team.

I have no idea where I'm going but here's the real question: What am I doing here in the first place?

I worship the very quicksand he (Nixon) walks on.

If you can make people laugh, you can get all the love you want.

If you have to go, the way you go is a big deal.

If you're hung up on nostalgia, just think of today as yesterday and go out and have one hell of a time.

In this country, when you attack the Establishment, they don't put you in jail or a mental institution. They do something worse. They make you a member of the Establishment.

It's easier to find a traveling companion than to get rid of one.

Put yourself in Hamlet's shoes. Suppose you were a prince, and you came back from college to discover that your uncle had murdered your father and married your mother, and you fell in love with a beautiful girl and mistakenly murdered her father, and then she went crazy and drowned herself. What would you do? Go back for a masters?

Tax reform is taking the taxes off things that have been taxed in the past and putting taxes on things that haven't been taxed before.

Television has a real problem. They have no page two.

The best things in life aren't things.

This is not an easy time for humorists because the government is far funnier than we are.

Whether it's the best of times, or the worst of times, it's the only time we've got.

You can't make up anything anymore. The world itself is a satire. All you're doing is recording it.

Art Buchwald's video obituary for the New York Times. "Hi! I'm Art Buchwald, and I just died!"

Categories: Art Buchwald, Quotes of the day

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Lea and Jo...

Published Saturday, October 19, 2013 @ 6:48 AM EDT
Oct 19 2013

There are two granddaughters in this photo.

Categories: KGB Family

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Quotes of the day: Lewis Mumford

Published Saturday, October 19, 2013 @ 6:00 AM EDT
Oct 19 2013

Lewis Mumford, KBE (October 19, 1895 - January 26, 1990) was an American historian, sociologist, philosopher of technology, and literary critic. Particularly noted for his study of cities and urban architecture, he had a broad career as a writer. Mumford was influenced by the work of Scottish theorist Sir Patrick Geddes and worked closely with his associate the British sociologist Victor Branford. Mumford was also a contemporary and friend of Frank Lloyd Wright, Clarence Stein, Frederic Osborn, Edmund N. Bacon, and Vannevar Bush. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A day spent without the sight or sound of beauty, the contemplation of mystery, or the search of truth is a poverty-stricken day; and a succession of such days is fatal to human life.

By his very success in inventing labor-saving devices, modern man has manufactured an abyss of boredom that only the privileged classes in earlier civilizations have ever fathomed.

Every generation revolts against its fathers and makes friends with its grandfathers.

Every new baby is a blind desperate vote for survival: people who find themselves unable to register an effective political protest against extermination do so by a biological act.

Forget the damned motor car and build the cities for lovers and friends.

However far modern science and technics have fallen short of their inherent possibilities, they have taught mankind at least one lesson: Nothing is impossible.

I'm a pessimist about probabilities, I'm an optimist about possibilities.

It is our utopias that make the world tolerable to us: the cities and mansions that people dream of are those in which they finally live.

Mechanical instruments, potentially a vehicle of rational human purposes, are scarcely a blessing when they enable the gossip of the village idiot and the deeds of the thug to be broadcast to a million people each day.

Nothing is unthinkable, nothing impossible to the balanced person, provided it comes out of the needs of life and is dedicated to life's further development.

One of the marks of maturity is the need for solitude: a city should not merely draw men together in many varied activities, but should permit each person to find, near at hand, moments of seclusion and peace.

Our national flower is the concrete cloverleaf.

Sport in the sense of a mass-spectacle, with death to add to the underlying excitement, comes into existence when a population has been drilled and regimented and depressed to such an extent that it needs at least a vicarious participation in difficult feats of strength or skill or heroism in order to sustain its waning life-sense.

The chief function of the city is to convert power into form, energy into culture, dead matter into the living symbols of art, biological reproduction into social creativity.

The clock, not the steam-engine, is the key-machine of the modern industrial age.

The settlement of America had its origins in the unsettlement of Europe.

The way people in democracies think of the government as something different from themselves is a real handicap. And, of course, sometimes the government confirms their opinion.

Today, the degradation of the inner life is symbolized by the fact that the only place sacred from interruption is the private toilet.

Today, the notion of progress in a single line without goal or limit seems perhaps the most parochial notion of a very parochial century.

War is the supreme drama of a completely mechanized society.

We ask a thousand minute questions about the mechanisms and the institutions that surround us; the one question we do not dare to ask is: What is our true nature?

We effectively became time-keepers, and then time-savers, and now time-servers with the invention of the clock.

We have created an industrial order geared to automatism, where feeble-mindedness, native or acquired, is necessary for docile productivity in the factory; and where a pervasive neurosis is the final gift of the meaningless life that issues forth at the other end.

What plethora of material goods can possibly atone for a waking life so humanly belittling, if not degrading, as the push-button tasks left to human performers?

Categories: Lewis Mumford, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Logan Pearsall Smith

Published Friday, October 18, 2013 @ 6:09 AM EDT
Oct 18 2013

Logan Pearsall Smith (October 18, 1865 - March 2, 1946) was an American-born essayist and critic. He was known for his aphorisms and epigrams, and his Trivia has been highly rated. He was a literary perfectionist and could take days refining his sentences. With Words and Idioms he became a recognized authority on the correct use of English. He is now probably most remembered for his autobiography Unforgotten Years (1938). (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A best-seller is the gilded tomb of a mediocre talent.

A slight touch of friendly malice and amusement towards those we love keeps our affections for them from turning flat.

All reformers, however strict their social conscience, live in houses just as big as they can pay for.

Charming people live up to the very edge of their charm, and behave as outrageously as the world lets them.

Don't laugh at a youth for his affectations; he is only trying on one face after another to find his own.

Don't let young people tell you their aspirations; when they drop them they will drop you.

Growing old is no gradual decline, but a series of tumbles, full of sorrow, from one ledge to another. Yet when we pick ourselves up we find no bones are broken; while not unpleasing is the new terrace which stretches out unexplored before us.

Happiness is a wine of the rarest vintage, and seems insipid to a vulgar taste.

He who goes against the fashion is himself its slave.

Hearts that are delicate and kind and tongues that are neither- these make the finest company in the world.

How awful to reflect that what people say of us is true!

How can they say my life is not a success? Have I not for more than sixty years got enough to eat and escaped being eaten?

How it infuriates a bigot, when he is forced to drag out his dark convictions!

How many of our daydreams would darken into nightmares if there seemed any danger of their coming true!

I cannot forgive my friends for dying; I do not find these vanishing acts of theirs at all amusing.

If we shake hands with icy fingers, it is because we've burnt them so hatefully before.

If you are losing your leisure, look out; you may be losing your soul.

If you want to be thought a liar, always tell the truth.

It is the wretchedness of being rich that you have to live with rich people.

It is through the cracks in our brains that ecstasy creeps in.

Most people sell their souls and live with a good conscience on the proceeds.

One can be bored until boredom becomes a mystical experience.

Only among people who think no evil can Evil monstrously flourish.

Our names are labels, plainly printed on the bottled essence of our past behavior.

People say that life is the thing, but I prefer reading.

Solvency is entirely a matter of temperament and not of income.

Thank heavens, the sun has gone in, and I don't have to go out and enjoy it.

The denunciation of the young is a necessary part of the hygiene of older people, and greatly assists in the circulation of their blood.

The indefatigable pursuit of an unattainable perfection, even though it consist in nothing more than the pounding of an old piano, is what alone gives a meaning to our life on this unavailing star.

The ladies who try to keep their beauty are the ladies who lose it.

The mere process of growing old together will make the slightest acquaintance seem a bosom friend.

The notion of making money by popular work, and then retiring to do good work on the proceeds, is the most familiar of all the devil's traps for artists.

The old know what they want; the young are sad and bewildered.

The test of a vocation is the love of the drudgery it involves.

The vitality of a new movement in Art must be gauged by the fury it arouses.

There are few sorrows, however poignant, in which a good income is of no avail.

There are people who, like houses, are beautiful in dilapidation.

There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second.

There is more felicity on the far side of baldness than young men can possibly imagine.

Those who set out to serve both God and Mammon soon discover that there isn't a God.

To suppose, as we all suppose, that we could be rich and not behave as the rich behave, is like supposing that we could drink all day and keep absolutely sober.

We are told by Moralists with the plainest faces that immorality will spoil our looks.

We grow with years more fragile in body, but morally stouter, and can throw off the chill of a bad conscience almost at once.

We need two kinds of acquaintances, one to complain to, while to the others we boast.

What a bore it is, waking up in the morning always the same person.

What I like in a good author isn't what he says, but what he whispers.

What joy can the years bring half so sweet as the unhappiness they've taken away?

What's more enchanting than the voices of young people, when you can't hear what they say?

When they come downstairs from their Ivory Towers, Idealists are very apt to walk straight into the gutter.

Categories: Logan Pearsall Smith, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Jimmy Breslin

Published Thursday, October 17, 2013 @ 5:05 AM EDT
Oct 17 2013

Jimmy Breslin (b. October 17, 1930) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist and author. He currently writes a column for the New York Daily News' Sunday edition. He has written numerous novels, and his columns have appeared regularly in various newspapers in his hometown of New York City. He served as a regular columnist for the Long Island, NY newspaper Newsday until his retirement on November 2, 2004, though he still publishes occasional pieces for the paper. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


All political power is primarily an illusion. Illusion. Mirrors and blue smoke, beautiful blue smoke rolling over the surface of highly polished mirrors, first a thin veil of blue smoke, then a thick cloud that suddenly dissolves into wisps of blue smoke, the mirrors catching it all, bouncing it back and forth.

All the news business starts with your feet. In New York City, no story happens under the fourth floor.

Football is a game designed to keep coal miners off the streets.

If a man, for private profit, tears at the public news, does so with the impatience of one who thinks he actually owns the news you get, it is against the national interest.

Media, the plural of mediocrity.

Politics: where fat, bald, disagreeable men, unable to be candidates themselves, teach a president how to act on a public stage.

Rage is the only quality which has kept me, or anybody I have ever studied, writing columns for newspapers.

Reporting is all about legwork, getting out and finding the story. But all the stories are on the top floors, so you have to learn to climb stairs. That's what reporting is all about, climbing tenement stairs.

The number one rule of thieves is that nothing is too small to steal.

The office of the president is such a bastardized thing, half royalty and half democracy, that nobody knows whether to genuflect or spit.

The only reason this country is different from any place else is that once in a great while, this huge, snobbish, generally untalented news reporting business stops covering stories of interest only to itself and actually serves the public.

The professional arsonist builds vacant lots for money.

Those of Manhattan are the brokers on Wall Street and they talk of people who went to the same colleges; those from Queens are margin clerks in the back offices and they speak of friends who live in the same neighborhood.

When you leave New York you ain't going anywhere.

When you stop drinking, you have to deal with this marvelous personality that started you drinking in the first place.

Why something in the public interest such as television news can be fought over, like a chain of hamburger stands, eludes me.

Categories: Jimmy Breslin, Quotes of the day

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Monty Python reference of the day

Published Wednesday, October 16, 2013 @ 4:23 PM EDT
Oct 16 2013

Categories: Congress, Monty Python, Observations

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Quotes of the day: Eugene O'Neill

Published Wednesday, October 16, 2013 @ 12:02 AM EDT
Oct 16 2013

(Today is also the birthday of Oscar Wilde.)

Eugene Gladstone O'Neill (October 16, 1888 - November 27, 1953) was an Irish American playwright and Nobel laureate in Literature. His poetically titled plays were among the first to introduce into American drama techniques of realism earlier associated ith Russian playwright Anton Chekhov, Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, and Swedish playwright August Strindberg. His plays were among the first to include speeches in American vernacular and involve characters on the fringes of society, where they struggle to maintain their hopes and aspirations, but ultimately slide into disillusionment nd despair. O'Neill wrote only one well-known comedy (Ah, Wilderness!). Nearly all of his other plays involve some degree of tragedy and personal pessimism. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A man's work is in danger of deteriorating when he thinks he has found the one best formula for doing it. If he thinks that, he is likely to feel that all he needs is merely to go on repeating himself... so long as a person is searching for better ways of doing his work, he is fairly safe.

Censorship of anything, at any time, in any place, on whatever pretense, has always been and always will be the last resort of the boob and the bigot.

Critics? I love every bone in their heads.

Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back.

Don't cry. The damned don't cry.

Happiness hates the timid! So does science!

I used to think getting old was about vanity- but actually it's about losing people you love. Getting wrinkles is trivial.

I really love fog. It hides you from the world and the world from you. You feel that everything has changed, and nothing is what it seemed to be. No one can find or touch you any more. Its the foghorn I hate. It won't let you alone. It keeps reminding you, and warning you, and calling you back.

It's a great game- the pursuit of happiness.

Life is for each man a solitary cell whose walls are mirrors.

Life is perhaps most wisely regarded as a bad dream between two awakenings, and every day is a life in miniature.

Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue.

Man's loneliness is but his fear of life.

None of us can help the things life has done to us. They're done before you realize it, and once they're done they make you do other things until at last everything comes between you and what you'd like to be, and you've lost your true self forever.

Obsessed by a fairy tale, we spend our lives searching for a magic door and a lost kingdom of peace.

One may not give one's soul to a devil of hate- and remain forever scatheless.

One should be either sad or joyful. Commitment is a warm sty for eaters and sleepers.

The child was diseased at birth, stricken with a hereditary ill that only the most vital men are able to shake off. I mean poverty- the most deadly and prevalent of all diseases.

The old- like children- talk to themselves, for they have reached that hopeless wisdom of experience which knows that though one were to cry it in the streets to multitudes, or whisper it in the kiss to one's beloved, the only ears that can ever hear one's secret are one's own.

There is no present or future, only the past, happening over and over again, now.

To hell with the truth! As the history of the world proves, the truth has no bearing on anything. It's irrelevant and immaterial, as the lawyers say. The lie of a pipe dream is what gives life to the whole misbegotten mad lot of us, drunk or sober.

We talk about the American Dream, and want to tell the world about the American Dream, but what is that Dream, in most cases, but the dream of material things? I sometimes think that the United States for this reason is the greatest failure the world has ever seen.

When men make Gods, there is no God.

With wine, with poetry, or with virtue, as you will. But be drunken.

Categories: Eugene O'Neill, Quotes of the day

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Observations of the day: Shutdown/Debt Ceiling edition

Published Tuesday, October 15, 2013 @ 11:59 AM EDT
Oct 15 2013

Social media on the shutdown:

Andy Borowitz (Facebook):

BREAKING: Most Hated People in U.S. Deciding Fate of World.

Let's put this shutdown behind us so the trials for treason can begin.

Michele Bachmann: "My Health Plan is Rapture."

As the Republicans go from Abraham Lincoln to Teddy Roosevelt to Ted Cruz, it's no wonder they don't believe in evolution.

Say what you will about America, it's a place where any child, if he's stupid enough, can grow up to wreck the world economy.

If we default on our debt Miley Cyrus will no longer be the most embarrassing thing about America.

Call me an optimist, but I believe our government will come up with a totally unsatisfactory solution to a completely unnecessary crisis.

The behavior of the Tea Party congressmen is the most glaring indictment of our nation's failure to teach math.

Congress has wasted two weeks on a totally unnecessary crisis of its own creation. It's a good thing our schools and roads are in great shape or I'd be mad.

There are people in Congress I would not trust to look after my plants.

WASHINGTON - After a poll showed 50% of Americans blame Republicans for the shutdown and 30% blame Obama, Rep. Michele Bachmann said, "That means we're winning by 20 percent."

Boehner: "The time has come to end this crisis so we can start planning the next one."

BREAKING: GOP Accuse Obama of Acting Like He Won Election

BREAKING: NRA Defends GOP's Right to Use Metaphorical Gun

Basically, the Republicans want a reward for calling in a bomb threat and then retracting it.

Just bought health insurance online. For some weird reason, the country was not destroyed. Anyone else have this problem?

It bothers me that our country may be pushed into default by people who cannot spell default.

Boehner: "We will continue this shutdown until we find out the reason for it."

WASHINGTON - In an escalation of the stalemate gripping the Capitol, House Republicans voted today to shut down the prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain that controls reasoning and impulses

The shutdown could last awhile since the Tea Party is demanding the President not be black anymore.

I wasn't happy about the country being controlled by the richest one percent, but I really hate it being controlled by the dumbest one percent

Boehner: "The President is stubbornly refusing to end this crisis I created."

WASHINGTON - House Republicans reassured the nation today that during the government shutdown they would continue to work hard to cut benefits for the poor and hungry.

A lot of people are asking when this kind of madness in Washington will end. I believe that can be arranged in 2014.


-@LOLGOP (Twitter)

I'm impressed that no one has made the analogy between Ted Cruz and McMurphy in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.

REMINDER: Michele Bachmann's favorite Founding Father is George Jefferson.

FYI: A nuclear bomb is about to blow up the world's economy and the House GOP will let it go off unless we give a tax break to a corporation.

Political party that pretends Donald Trump is a serious candidate for anything isn't a political party anymore, it's a cry for help.

House Republicans. Willing to destroy what's left of the global economy to avoid a primary challenge.

BREAKING: Ted Cruz and House Republicans meet in private to write open letter to Miley Cyrus, plot a global financial crisis.

Columbus discovered America the same way Republicans discovered the deficit when Obama became president.

Republicans waited to wage war on birth control until 50 years after it was invented. Next: Stop the miniskirt!


-@pourmecoffee (Twitter)

Schoolhouse Rock is working on a new "How A Bill Becomes Law" but it's taking a while because not much rhymes with "hostage."

Boehner should just show up in a Hawaiian shirt chomping a cigar and say "whatever" to everything.

The real victim in this is legitimate Kabuki theater.

Maybe if the History Channel showed history instead of pawn shops and alligators less people would carry Confederate flags.

Hi, we're the most powerful nation in all of recorded history, may we please have our allowance?

Congress is going to wait until the very last minute and look up budget deals in Wikipedia.

Ted Cruz: Mr. Obama, tear down these barricades!**
(** Put up because of my 21-hour speech directly leading to this outcome.)

Don't tread on me, except getting me to donate money and vote against my own interests, you can tread on me that way.

I don't think Spock could handle mind-melding with John Boehner, even for a moment. The madness. The sorrow. It would break a mind.


Sarah Reese Jones (Twitter)

John McCain warns Dems not to humiliate GOP as the VP he picked stands near Confederate Flag in front of WH accusing Obama of being Muslim.

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Quotes of the day: Friedrich Nietzsche

Published Tuesday, October 15, 2013 @ 12:10 AM EDT
Oct 15 2013

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (October 15, 1844 - August 25, 1900) was a German philologist, philosopher, cultural critic, poet and composer. He wrote several critical texts on religion, morality, contemporary culture, philosophy and science, displaying a fondness for metaphor, irony and aphorism. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything.

A thought, even a possibility, can shatter and transform us.

A woman may very well form a friendship with a man, but for this to endure, it must be assisted by a little physical antipathy.

Against war it may be said that it makes the victor stupid and the vanquished revengeful.

Ah, women. They make the highs higher and the lows more frequent.

All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.

At times one remains faithful to a cause only because its opponents do not cease to be insipid.

Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies.

Distrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.

Excessive productivity can bring the most gifted man almost to madness.

"Faith" means not wanting to know what is true.

He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.

Hope is the worst of evils, for it prolongs the torments of man.

If there is something to pardon in everything, there is also something to condemn.

Insanity in the individual is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.

It is easier to cope with a bad conscience than with a bad reputation.

It is hard enough to remember my opinions, without also remembering my reasons for them!

It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.

It says nothing against the ripeness of a spirit that it has a few worms.

Many are stubborn in pursuit of the path they have chosen, few in pursuit of the goal.

Not that you lied to me but that I no longer believe you- that is what has shaken me.

One should die proudly when it is no longer possible to live proudly.

One will rarely err if extreme actions be ascribed to vanity, ordinary actions to habit, and mean actions to fear.

Sensuality often makes love grow too quickly, so that the root remains weak and is easy to pull out.

Some are born posthumously.

Talking much about oneself can also be a means to conceal oneself.

That which does not kill me makes me stronger.

The advantage of a bad memory is that, several times over, one enjoys the same good things for the first time.

The Christian resolution to find the world ugly and bad has made the world ugly and bad.

The man who fights too long against dragons becomes a dragon himself.

The most common sort of lie is the one uttered to one's self.

The most instructive experiences are those of everyday life.

The most perfidious way of harming a cause consists of defending it deliberately with faulty arguments.

The thought of suicide is a powerful solace: by means of it one gets through many a bad night.

The true man wants two things: danger and play. For that reason he wants woman, as the most dangerous plaything.

There are no facts, only interpretations.

Two great European narcotics, alcohol and Christianity.

We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once. And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh.

What is done out of love always takes place beyond good and evil.

What we once did "for the sake of God" we now do for the sake of money.

Whatever harm the evil may do, the harm done by the good is the most harmful harm.

When a man is in love he endures more than at other times; he submits to everything.

Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called "Ego."

Woman was God's second mistake.

You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.

Categories: Friedrich Nietzsche, Quotes of the day

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Special effects, pre-"Gravity"

Published Monday, October 14, 2013 @ 7:38 AM EDT
Oct 14 2013

It's all in the acting. Note the guest star, who hasn't quite mastered the technique. "Do you mean my right, or your right?"

Categories: Star Trek

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Quotes of the day: E.E. Cummings

Published Monday, October 14, 2013 @ 12:03 AM EDT
Oct 14 2013

Edward Estlin Cummings (October 14, 1894 - September 3, 1962), popularly known as E.E. Cummings... was an American poet, painter, essayist, author, and playwright. His body of work encompasses approximately 2,900 poems, two autobiographical novels, four plays and several essays, as well as numerous drawings and paintings. He is remembered as an eminent voice of 20th century poetry. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A pretty girl who is naked is worth a million statues.

All which isn't singing is mere talking...

Almost anybody can learn to think or believe or know, but not a single human being can be taught to feel...

America makes prodigious mistakes, America has colossal faults, but one thing cannot be denied: America is always on the move. She may be going to Hell, of course, but at least she isn't standing still.

As for a few trifling delusions like the 'past' and 'present' and 'future' of quote mankind unquote,they may be big enough for a couple of billion supermechanized submorons but they're much too small for one human being.

humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your intelligence to buy a drink.

I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance.

I'm living so far beyond my income that we may almost be said to be living apart.

If they give you ruled paper, write the other way.

It may take two people to make a really beautiful mistake.

It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.

Kisses are a better fate than wisdom.

Knowledge is a polite word for dead but not buried imagination.

life's not a paragraph
And death i think is no parenthesis

No sunbeam ever lies.

pity this busy monster, manunkind,
not. Progress is a comfortable disease:
your victim (death and life safely beyond)
plays with the bigness of his littleness

The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.

The snow doesn't give a soft white damn whom it touches

There are certain things in which one is unable to believe for the simple reason that he never ceases to feel them.

Time's a strange fellow;
more he gives than takes
(and he takes all)

To be nobody but yourself in a world that's doing its best to make you somebody else, is to fight the hardest battle you are ever going to fight. Never stop fighting.

To destroy is always the first step in any creation.

Tommorow is our permanent address...

True wars are never won.

Unbeing dead isn't being alive.

Very luckily for you and me, the uncivilized sun mysteriously shines on 'good' and 'bad' alike. He is an artist.

We doctors know
a hopeless case if-listen: there's a hell
of a good universe next door; let's go.

Categories: Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Lenny Bruce

Published Sunday, October 13, 2013 @ 12:03 AM EDT
Oct 13 2013

Leonard Alfred Schneider (October 13, 1925 - August 3, 1966), better known by his stage name Lenny Bruce, was an American stand-up comedian, social critic and satirist. He was renowned for his open, free-style and critical form of comedy which integrated politics, religion and sex. His private life was marked by substance abuse and promiscuity as well as efforts to prevent his wife from working as a stripper. His 1964 conviction in an obscenity trial was followed by a posthumous pardon, the first in New York State history, by then-Governor George Pataki in 2003. He paved the way for future outspoken comedians, and his trial for obscenity, in which- after being forced into bankruptcy- he was eventually found not guilty, is seen as a landmark trial for freedom of speech in the US. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


All my humor is based upon destruction and despair. If the whole world were tranquil, without disease and violence, I’d be standing on the breadline right in back of J. Edgar Hoover.

Communism is like one big phone company.

Every day people are staying away from the church and going back to God.

Guys are like dogs. They keep coming back. Ladies are like cats. Yell at a cat one time, they're gone.

I hate small towns because once you’ve seen the cannon in the park there’s nothing else to do.

I won't say ours was a tough school, but we had our own coroner. We used to write essays like 'What I'm going to be if I grow up.'

I'll die young, but it's like kissing God.

I've been accused of bad taste, and I'll go down to my grave accused of it and always by the same people, the ones who eat in restaurants that reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.

If Jesus had been killed twenty years ago, Catholic school children would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks instead of crosses.

If something about the human body disgusts you, the fault lies with the manufacturer.

In the halls of justice, the only justice is in the halls.

It's the suppression of the word that gives it the power, the violence, the viciousness.

Life is a four-letter word

Miami Beach is where neon goes to die.

Never trust a preacher with more than two suits.

Satire is tragedy plus time. You give it enough time, the public, the reviewers, will allow you to satirize it which is rather ridiculous, when you think about it.

'Sex' and 'obscenity' are not synonymous.

Take away the right to say 'f*ck' and you take away the right to say 'f*ck the government.'

The 'what should be' never did exist, but people keep trying to live up to it. There is no 'what should be,' there is only what is.

The kind of sickness I wish Time had written about, is that school teachers in Oklahoma get a top annual salary of $4000, while Sammy David, Jr. gets $10,000 a week in Vegas.

The liberals can understand everything but people who don't understand them.

The only honest art form is laughter, comedy. You can't fake it.

The truth is what is; what should be is a dirty lie.

The whole motivation for any performer is 'Look at me, Ma.'

There are never enough 'I love you's.'

There are no dirty words, only dirty minds.

We're all the same people... and it discourages me that we try so desperately to be unique.

When you're eight years old nothing is your business.

You can't get snot off of a suede jacket.

Categories: Lenny Bruce, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Dick Gregory

Published Saturday, October 12, 2013 @ 6:00 AM EDT
Oct 12 2013

Richard Claxton "Dick" Gregory (born October 12, 1932) is an American comedian, social activist, social critic, writer, and entrepreneur. Gregory is an influential American comic who has used his performance skills to convey to both white and black audiences his political message on civil rights. His social satire helped change the way European-Americans perceived African-American comedians since he first performed in public. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


America will tolerate the taking of a human life without giving it a second thought. But don't misuse a household pet.

Baseball is very big with my people. It figures. It's the only time we can get to shake a bat at a white man without starting a riot.

Being white is a job in America. You take that away, you better get the soldiers out.

Everything we do we should look at in terms of millions of people who can't afford it.

For a black man, there's no difference between the North and the South. In the South, they don't mind how close I get, as long as I don't get too big. In the North, they don't mind how big I get, as long as I don't get too close.

Hell hath no fury like a liberal scorned.

I never believed in Santa Claus because I knew no white dude would come into my neighborhood after dark.

I never learned hate at home, or shame. I had to go to school for that.

I waited at the counter of a white restaurant for eleven years. When they finally integrated, they didn't have what I wanted.

I went to Ethiopia, and it dawned on me that you can tell a starving, malnourished person because they've got a bloated belly and a bald head. And I realized that if you come through any American airport and see businessmen running through with bloated bellies and bald heads, that's malnutrition, too.

I wouldn't mind paying taxes if I knew they were going to a friendly country.

If they took all the drugs, nicotine, alcohol and caffeine off the market for six days, they'd have to bring out the tanks to control you.

In America, with all of its evils and faults, you can still reach through the forest and see the sun. But we don't know yet whether that sun is rising or setting for our country.

In most places in the country, voting is looked upon as a right and a duty, but in Chicago it's a sport.

Just being a Negro doesn't qualify you to understand the race situation any more than being sick makes you an expert on medicine.

Last time I was down South I walked into this restaurant, and this white waitress came up to me and said: 'We don't serve colored people here.' I said: 'that's all right, I don't eat colored people. Bring me a whole fried chicken.'

Love is man's natural endowment, but he doesn't know how to use it. He refuses to recognize the power of love because of his love of power.

Nature is not affected by finance. If someone offered you ten thousand dollars to let them touch your eyeball without blinking, you would never collect the money. At the very last moment, Nature would force you to blink your eye. Nature will protect her own.

One of the things I keep learning is that the secret of being happy is doing things for other people.

Poor is a state of mind you never grow out of, but being broke is just a temporary condition.

Race baiters and discriminators may go underground, but they never move out of town.

Riches do not delight us so much with their possession, as torment us with their loss.

Some kind of way, we have to say enough is enough.

The only good thing about the good old days is they're gone.

The universe is not rich enough to buy the vote of an honest man.

This isn't a revolution of black against white; this is a revolution of right against wrong.

Usually an elected official who has compromised to get nominated, compromised to get elected, and compromised repeatedly to stay in office.

When I lost my rifle, the Army charged me 85 dollars. That is why in the Navy the Captain goes down with the ship.

When you have a good mother and no father, God kind of sits in. It's not enough, but it helps.

You know, I always say white is not a color, white is an attitude, and if you haven't got trillions of dollars in the bank that you don't need, you can't be white.

Categories: Dick Gregory, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Eleanor Roosevelt

Published Friday, October 11, 2013 @ 12:02 AM EDT
Oct 11 2013

Anna Eleanor Roosevelt (October 11, 1884 - November 7, 1962) was the longest-serving First Lady of the United States, holding the post from 1933 to 1945 during her husband President Franklin D. Roosevelt's four terms in office. President Harry S. Truman later called her the "First Lady of the World" in tribute to her human rights achievements. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


At all times, day by day, we have to continue fighting for freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and freedom from want- for these are things that must be gained in peace as well as in war.

Do one thing every day that scares you.

Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be damned if you do, and damned if you don't.

Happiness is not a goal, it is a by-product.

I once had a rose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalogue: no good in a bed, but fine up against a wall.

I think that somehow, we learn who we really are and then live with that decision.

I wonder if one of the penalties of growing older is that you become more and more conscious that nothing in life is permanent.

If the use of leisure time is confined to looking at TV for a few extra hours every day, we will deteriorate as a people.

In our country we must trust the people to hear and see both the good and the bad and to choose the good.

It is not fair to ask of others what you are unwilling to do yourself.

It isn't enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn't enough to believe in it. One must work at it.

It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan.

Life was meant to be lived, and curiosity must be kept alive. One must never, for whatever reason, turn his back on life.

My experience has been that work is almost the best way to pull oneself out of the depths.

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. (Attributed-not found in her works or papers.)

Nothing we learn in this world is ever wasted.

Once your children are grown up and have children of their own, the problems are theirs and the less the older generation interferes the better.

One should always sleep in all of one's guest beds, to make sure that they are comfortable.

Only a man's character is the real criterion of worth.

Probably the happiest period in life most frequently is in middle age, when the eager passions of youth are cooled, and the infirmities of age not yet begun; as we see that the shadows, which are at morning and evening so large, almost entirely disappear at midday.

Remember always that you have not only the right to be an individual; you have an obligation to be one. You cannot make any useful contribution in life unless you do this.

So much attention is paid to the aggressive sins, such as violence and cruelty and greed with all their tragic effects, that too little attention is paid to the passive sins, such as apathy and laziness, which in the long run can have a more devastating effect.

Sometimes I wonder if we shall ever grow up in our politics and say definite things which mean something, or whether we shall always go on using generalities to which everyone can subscribe, and which mean very little.

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

The only man who never makes mistakes is the man who never does anything.

There never has been security. No man has ever known what he would meet around the next corner; if life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor.

Understanding is a two-way street.

We are afraid to care too much, for fear that the other person does not care at all.

What one has to do usually can be done.

When will our consciences grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it?

When you cease to make a contribution, you begin to die.

Will people ever be wise enough to refuse to follow bad leaders or to take away the freedom of other people?

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.

You must do the thing you think you cannot do.

Categories: Eleanor Roosevelt, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: 2013 Pulitzer Prize edition

Published Thursday, October 10, 2013 @ 3:45 PM EDT
Oct 10 2013

Alice Ann Munro (née Laidlaw; born July 10, 1931) is a Canadian author and recipient of the 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature, the 2009 Man Booker International Prize for her lifetime body of work, and three-time winner of Canada's Governor General's Award for fiction. The locus of Munro's fiction is her native southwestern Ontario. Her "accessible, moving stories" explore human complexities in a seemingly effortless style. Munro's writing has established her as "one of our greatest contemporary writers of fiction," or, as Cynthia Ozick put it, "our Chekhov." (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


Always remember that when a man goes out of the room, he leaves everything in it behind... When a woman goes out she carries everything that happened in the room along with her.

Every year, when you're a child, you become a different person.

Few people, very few, have a treasure, and if you do you must hang onto it. You must not let yourself be waylaid, and have it taken from you.

I can't play bridge. I don't play tennis. All those things that people learn, and I admire, there hasn't seemed time for. But what there is time for is looking out the window.

In your life there are a few places, or maybe only the one place, where something happened, and then there are all the other places.

Life would be grand if it weren't for the people.

Love removes the world for you, and just as surely when it's going well as when it's going badly.

Memory is the way we keep telling ourselves our stories- and telling other people a somewhat different version of our stories.

Moments of kindness and reconciliation are worth having, even if the parting has to come sooner or later.

One drop of hatred in your soul will spread and discolor everything like a drop of black ink in white milk. I was struck by that and meant to try it, but knew I shouldn't waste the milk.

One stroke of lightning does not have to lead anywhere, but to the next stroke of lightning.

People who believe in miracles do not make much fuss when they actually encounter one.

Speculation can be more gentle, can take its time, when it is not driven by desire.

That's something I think is growing on me as I get older: happy endings.

The complexity of things- the things within things- just seems to be endless. I mean nothing is easy, nothing is simple.

The constant happiness is curiosity.

There is a limit to the amount of misery and disarray you will put up with, for love, just as there is a limit to the amount of mess you can stand around a house. You can't know the limit beforehand, but you will know when you've reached it.

This world is a wilderness in which we may get our station changed, but the move will be out of one wilderness station unto another.

Why is it a surprise to find that people other than ourselves are able to tell lies?

You cannot let your parents anywhere near your real humiliations.

Categories: Alice Munro, Quotes of the day

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Birthday musings...

Published Thursday, October 10, 2013 @ 6:50 AM EDT
Oct 10 2013

My mom, Evelyn A. Barkes, in the
language lab at West Mifflin North
High School (circa 1965)

Born today: Henry Cavendish, Giuseppe Verdi, Helen Hayes, Thelonious Monk, James Clavell, Ed Wood, Richard Jaeckel, Dana Elcar, Harold Pinter, Peter Coyote, Ben Vereen, Nora Roberts, David Lee Roth, Tanya Tucker, Kirsty MacColl, Julia Sweeney, Bradley Whitford, Michael Giacchino, Brett Favre, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Andrew McCutchen...

...and my mother, who was born on a Sunday 31,777 days ago.

The liquid fuel rocket was invented that year. Oral contraceptives, Teflon, and the solar cell were introduced the year I was born. My son and ink-jet printing, and my daughter and magnetic resonance imaging debuted around the same time. Camera phones and my oldest graddaughter arrived almost simultaneously; and we'll have to wait until the end of this year to see what invention will share the spotlight with my youngest granddaughter.

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Published Thursday, October 10, 2013 @ 6:17 AM EDT
Oct 10 2013

A long time ago being crazy meant something. Nowadays everybody's crazy.
-Charles Manson

All extremes of feeling are allied with madness.
-Virginia Woolf

All great art has madness, and quite a lot of bad art has it, too.
-William Saroyan

America's always been a great place to be crazy. It just used to be harder to make a living that way.
-Charles Pierce

Being crazy isn't enough.
-Dr. Seuss

Concentrate on what you want to say to yourself and your friends. Follow your inner moonlight; don't hide the madness. You say what you want to say when you don't care who's listening.
-Allen Ginsberg

Don't call me irrational. It makes me crazy when you do that. (From the TV series "Frasier")

Dreaming permits each and every one of us to be quietly and safely insane every night of our lives.
-William Dement

Eccentricity is not, as dull people would have us believe, a form of madness. It is often a kind of innocent pride, and the man of genius and the aristocrat are frequently regarded as eccentrics because genius and aristocrat are entirely unafraid of and uninfluenced by the opinions and vagaries of the crowd.
-Edith Sitwell

Everyone's youth is a dream, a form of chemical madness.
-F. Scott Fitzgerald

Excessive productivity can bring the most gifted man almost to madness.
-Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

Great wits are sure to madness near allied,
And thin partitions do their bounds divide.
-John Dryden

Hollywood is wonderful. Anyone who doesn't like it is either crazy or sober.
-Raymond Chandler

Honesty is the best policy, but insanity is a better defense.
-Steve Landesberg

I am not insane, you just have no context.
-Velut Luna

I was once thrown out of a mental hospital for depressing the other patients.
--Oscar Levant

I'll take crazy over stupid any day.
-Joss Whedon

If you do something and people think you're stupid, just go for crazy. You get more respect that way because nobody likes stupid people.
-Louis C.K.

If you're going to be crazy, you have to get paid for it or else you're going to be locked up.
-Hunter S. Thompson

Imagination does not breed insanity. Exactly what does breed insanity is reason. Poets do not go mad; but chess-players do. Mathematicians go mad, and cashiers, but creative artists very seldom.
-G.K. Chesterton

In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane.
-Oscar Wilde

In an individual one would regard it as evidence of insanity to see someone repeatedly undertaking enterprises that resulted in his losing precisely what he claimed he was trying to achieve; it is not less lunatic to do it on the international scale, but if you've been catching the news lately you'll have noticed it's being done more than ever.
-John Brunner

In Hollywood if you don't have a shrink, people think you're crazy.
-Johnny Carson

In the past, men created witches: now they create mental patients.
--Thomas Szasz

Industrial man- a sentient reciprocating engine having a fluctuating output, coupled to an iron wheel revolving with uniform velocity. And then we wonder why this should be the golden age of revolution and mental derangement.
--Aldous Huxley

Insane people are always sure that they are fine. It is only the sane people who are willing to admit that they are crazy.
-Nora Ephron

Insanity in the individual is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.
-Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.
-Rita Mae Brown

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a raise.
-Robert Brault

Insanity is often the logic of an accurate mind overtasked.
-Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage.
-Ray Bradbury

It is not the clear-sighted who lead the world. Great achievements are accomplished in a blessed, warm mental fog.
--Joseph Conrad

It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.
-Philip K. Dick

Look at Jewish history. Unrelieved lamenting would be intolerable. So, for every ten Jews beating their breasts, God designated one to be crazy and amuse the breast-beaters. By the time I was five I knew I was that one.
-Mel Brooks

Madness may be a sane response to an insane world, and insanity breeds special perceptions.
-R.D. Laing

Madness takes it toll. Please have exact change.

Maybe crazy is just the word we use for feelings that will not be contained.
-Anna Quindlen

Memory is a crazy woman who hoards colored rags and throws away food.
-Austin O'Malley

Money-giving is a very good criterion of a person's mental health. Generous people are rarely mentally ill people.
--Karl Menninger

Mothers are all slightly insane.
-J.D. Salinger

My grandmother was insane. She had pierced hearing aids.
-Steven Wright

Never tell a crazy person he's crazy.
-Tina Fey

Ninety percent of this game is half-mental.
--Yogi Berra

No man is sane who does not know how to be insane on the proper occasions.
-Henry Ward Beecher

Of course I'm crazy, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong.
-Robert Anton Wilson

Ordinarily he was insane, but he had lucid moments when he was merely stupid.
-Heinrich Heine

Party is the madness of many, for the gain of a few.
-Alexander Pope

Psychoanalysis is the mental illness it purports to cure.
--Karl Kraus

Reality is always controlled by the people who are most insane.
-Scott Adams

Sanity calms, but madness is more interesting.
-John Russel

So long as men denounce each other as mentally sick (homosexual, addicted, insane, and so forth)- so that the madman can always be considered the Other, never the Self- mental illness will remain an easily exploitable concept, and Coercive Psychiatry a flourishing institution.
--Thomas Szasz

Some may never live, but the crazy never die.
-Hunter S. Thompson

Stress is nothing more than a socially acceptable form of mental illness.
--Richard Carlson

The final test of fame is to have a crazy person imagine he is you.

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to be insane in such a useful way that they can't commit you.
-Mark Edwards

The passion to interpret as madness that with which we disagree seems to have infected the best of contemporary minds.
-Thomas Szasz

The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans is suffering from some form of mental illness. Think of your three best friends. If they're okay, then it's you.
--Rita Mae Brown

There are hardly any excesses of the most crazed psychopath that cannot easily be duplicated by a normal kindly family man who just comes in to work every day and has a job to do.
-Terry Pratchett

There is a thin line between genius and insanity. I have erased this line.
-Oscar Levant

There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
--Dave Barry

There is wisdom in madness and strong probability of truth in all accusations, for people are complete and everybody is capable of everything.
-Joseph Hell

This is a mournful discovery.
1) Those who agree with you are insane
2) Those who do not agree with you are in power.
-Philip K. Dick

To be crazy is not necessarily to writhe in snake pits or converse with imaginary gods. It can sometimes be not knowing what to do in the morning.
-Christopher Lehmann-Haupt

Truly great madness cannot be achieved without significant intelligence.
-Henrik Tikkanen

We do not have to visit a madhouse to find distorted minds; our planet is the mental institution of the universe.
--Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

When dealing with the insane, the best method is to pretend to be sane.
-Hermann Hesse

When I believe, I am crazy. When I don't believe, I suffer psychotic depression.
-Philip K. Dick

When one person suffers from a delusion, it is called insanity. When many people suffer from a delusion, it is called Religion.
-Robert Pirsig

When trouble arises and things look bad, there is always one individual who perceives a solution and is willing to take command. Very often, that individual is crazy.
-Dave Barry

Categories: Quotes on a topic

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Quotes of the day: Clare Boothe Luce

Published Wednesday, October 09, 2013 @ 12:00 AM EDT
Oct 09 2013

Clare Boothe Luce (March 10, 1903 – October 9, 1987) was the first American woman appointed to a major ambassadorial post abroad. A versatile author, she is best known for her 1936 hit play The Women, which had an all-female cast. Her writings extended from drama and screen scenarios to fiction, journalism, and war reportage. She was the wife of Henry Luce, publisher of Time, Life and Fortune. (Click for full Wikipedia article.)


A hospital is no place to be sick.

A man has only one escape from his old self: to see a different self in the mirror of some woman's eyes.

A man's home may seem to be his castle on the outside; inside is more often his nursery.

A woman's best protection is a little money of her own.

Advertising has done more to cause the social unrest of the 20th century than any other single factor.

But if God had wanted us to think with our wombs, why did he give us a brain?

Censorship, like charity, should begin at home; but, unlike charity, it should end there.

Courage is the ladder on which all other virtues mount.

I don't have a warm personal enemy left. They've all died off. I miss them terribly because they helped define me.

I refuse the compliment that I think like a man; thought has no sex, one either thinks or one does not.

I'm in my anecdotage.

In the final analysis there is no other solution to man's progress but the day's honest work, the day's honest decision, the day's generous utterances, and the day's good deed.

It is only in lies, wholeheartedly and bravely told, that human nature attains through words and speech the forebearance, the nobility, the romance, the idealism, that- being what it is- it falls so short of in fact and in deed.

It is ridiculous to think you can spend your entire life with just one person. Three is about the right number. Yes, I imagine three husbands would do it.

It's matrimonial suicide to be jealous when you have a really good reason.

Lying increases the creative faculties, expands the ego, and lessens the frictions of social contacts.

Love is a verb.

Money can't buy happiness, but it can make you awfully comfortable while you're being miserable.

Nature abhors a virgin- a frozen asset.

No good deed goes unpunished.

Technological man can't believe in anything that can't be measured, taped, or put into a computer.

The oppressed never free themselves- they do not have the necessary strengths.

The politicians were talking themselves red, white and blue in the face.
(on campaigning)

There are no hopeless situations; there are only people who have grown hopeless about them.

There is nothing harder than the softness of indifference.

There is nothing like a good dose of another woman to make a man appreciate his wife.

They say that women talk too much. If you have worked in Congress you know that the filibuster was invented by men.

Widowhood is a fringe benefit of marriage.

Women know what men have long forgotten. The ultimate economic and spiritual unit of any civilization is still the family.

You know, that's the only good thing about divorce; you get to sleep with your mother.

You see few people here in America who really care very much about living a Christian life in a democratic world.

Categories: Clare Boothe Luce, Quotes of the day

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There are no unicorns.

Published Tuesday, October 08, 2013 @ 9:36 AM EDT
Oct 08 2013

But baby pigeons do exist.

Categories: Animals

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Meme of the day: Hey, Boehner...

Published Tuesday, October 08, 2013 @ 7:42 AM EDT
Oct 08 2013

Categories: Congress, John Boehner, Meme of the day, Samuel L. Jackson

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Quotes of the day: Henry Fielding

Published Tuesday, October 08, 2013 @ 12:00 AM EDT
Oct 08 2013

Henry Fielding (April 22, 1707 - October 8, 1754) was an English novelist and dramatist known for his rich earthy humor and satirical prowess, and as the author of the novel Tom Jones. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A good countenance is a letter of recommendation.

All nature wears one universal grin.

Every physician almost hath his favorite disease.

Guilt has very quick ears to an accusation.

His designs were strictly honorable, as the phrase is; that is, to rob a lady of her fortune by way of marriage.

If you make money your god, it will plague you like the devil.

It is much easier to make good men wise, than to make bad men good.

It is not death, but dying, which is terrible.

It is not from nature, but from education and habits, that our wants are chiefly derived.

Let no man be sorry he has done good, because others have done evil.

Love and scandal are the best sweeteneers of tea.

Money is the fruit of evil, as often as the root of it.

Neither great poverty nor great riches will hear reason.

Never trust the man who hath reason to suspect that you know he hath injured you.

One fool at least in every married couple.

Public schools are the nurseries of all vice and immorality.

Some folks rail against other folks, because other folks have what some folks would be glad of.

The slander of some people is as great a recommendation as the praise of others.

There are a set of religious, or rather moral writers, who teach that virtue is the certain road to happiness, and vice to misery, in this world. A very wholesome and comfortable doctrine, and to which we have but one objection, namely, that it is not true.

There is not in the universe a more ridiculous, nor more contemptible animal, than a proud clergyman.

We are as liable to be corrupted by books as we are by companions.

When I'm not thanked at all, I'm thanked enough; I've done my duty, and I've done no more.

Wine is a turncoat; first a friend and then an enemy.

Worth begets in base minds, envy; in great souls, emulation.

Categories: Henry Fielding, Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

Published Monday, October 07, 2013 @ 6:41 AM EDT
Oct 07 2013

Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (August 29, 1809 - October 7, 1894) was an American physician, poet, professor, lecturer, and author. Regarded by his peers as one of the best writers of the 19th century, he is considered a member of the Fireside Poets. His most famous prose works are the "Breakfast-Table" series, which began with The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table (1858). He is also recognized as an important medical reformer. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A man may fulfill the object of his existence by asking a question he cannot answer, and attempting a task he cannot achieve.

A moment's insight is sometimes worth a life's experience.

A thought is often original, though you have uttered it a hundred times. It has come to you over a new route, by a new and express train of associations.

Alas for those that never sing, But die with all their music in them!

All generous minds have a horror of what are commonly called 'facts.' They are the brute beasts of the intellectual domain.

Apology is only egotism wrong side out.

Beware how you take away hope from any human being.

Controversy equalizes fools and wise men in the same way- and the fools know it.

Death tugs at my ear and says, 'Live. I am coming.'

Every calling is great when greatly pursued.

Every now and then a man's mind is stretched by a new idea or sensation, and never shrinks back to its former dimensions.

How many people live on the reputation of the reputation they might have made!

Humility is the first of the virtues- for other people.

I find that the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand as in what direction we are moving: To reach the port of heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it- but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor.

I hate paying taxes. But I love the civilization they give me.

In my experience, clever food is not appreciated at Christmas. It makes the little ones cry and the old ones nervous.

Insanity is often the logic of an accurate mind overtasked.

It is by little things that we know ourselves; a soul would very probably mistake itself for another, when once disembodied, were it not for individual experiences which differ from those of others only in details seemingly trifling.

It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.

Knowledge and timber shouldn't be much used, till they are seasoned.

Laughter and tears are meant to turn the wheels of the same machinery of sensibility; one is wind-power, and the other water-power; that is all.

Leverage is everything, was what I used to say- don't begin to pry till you have got the long arm on your side.

Life is a fatal complaint, and an eminently contagious one.

Literature is full of coincidences, which some love to believe are plagiarisms. There are thoughts always abroad in the air which it takes more wit to avoid than to hit upon.

Man has his will- but woman has her way!

Many ideas grow better when transplanted into another mind than in the one they where they sprang up.

Memory is a net; one finds it full of fish when he takes it from the brook; but a dozen miles of water have run through it without sticking.

Most people are willing to take the Sermon on the Mount as a flag to sail under, but few will use it as a rudder by which to steer.

Most persons have died before they expire- died to all earthly longings, so that the last breath is only, as it were, the locking of the door of the already deserted mansion.

Old age is fifteen years older than I am.

People who honestly mean to be true really contradict themselves much more rarely than those who try to be 'consistent.'

Put not your trust in money, but put your money in trust.

Science is a first-rate piece of furniture for a man's upper chamber, if he has common sense on the ground-floor.

Sin has many tools, but a lie is the handle which fits them all.

Some of the sharpest men in argument are notoriously unsound in judgment.

Stupidity often saves a man from going mad.

The best servant does his work unseen.

The great thing in this world is not so much where we are, but in what direction we are moving.

The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye: the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract.

The sound of a kiss is not so loud as that of a cannon, but its echo lasts a great deal longer.

The world's great men have not commonly been great scholars, nor its great scholars great men.

The young man knows the rules, but the old man knows the exceptions.

There never was an idea started that woke up men out of their stupid indifference but its originator was spoken of as a crank.

To be seventy years young is sometimes far more cheerful and hopeful than to be forty years old.

Truth is tough. It will not break, like a bubble, at a touch; nay, you may kick it about all day, like a football, and it will be round and full at evening.

Unpretending mediocrity is good, and genius is glorious; but a weak flavor of genius in an essentially common person is detestable . It spoils the grand neutrality of a commonplace character, as the rinsings of an unwashed wine-glass spoil a draught of fair water.

We are all tattooed in our cradles with the beliefs of our tribe; the record may seem superficial, but it is indelible.

We forget that weakness is not in itself a sin. We forget that even cowardice may call for our most lenient judgment, if it spring from innate infirmity.

When one has had all his conceit taken out of him, when he has lost all his illusions, his feathers will soon soak through, and he will fly no more.

Where we love is home, home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.

Why can't somebody give us a list of things that everybody thinks and nobody says, and another list of things that everybody says and nobody thinks.

You can hire logic, in the shape of a lawyer, to prove anything that you want to prove.

Categories: Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., Question of the day

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Is this a trick question?

Published Sunday, October 06, 2013 @ 3:01 PM EDT
Oct 06 2013

Categories: WTF?

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Published Sunday, October 06, 2013 @ 4:08 AM EDT
Oct 06 2013

Ok, let's get it all out of our systems...


"I've got a nice house and a kid in college, and I'll tell you we cannot handle it. Giving our paycheck away when you still worked and earned it? That's just not going to fly.
-Congressman Lee Terry (R-NE)



"It's a problem for us because the other side has locked up the stupid vote."
-Congressman Alan Grayson (D-FL)



The Republican Party is like the corpse in Weekend at Bernie's, and the Tea Party is the two guys who put a hat and sunglasses on it and dragged it around town."
-Bill Maher



"The government shutdown could cost the American economy $300 million a day. To put that in perspective, it would be like every day the economy released a new Lone Ranger movie."
–Conan O'Brien



I wasn't happy about the country being controlled by the richest one percent, but I really hate it being controlled by the dumbest one percent.
-Andy Borowitz



"At least here in America, crucial agencies like the U.S. Border Patrol are still on the job. That's a good thing. The last thing we need is an influx of Canadians, with their politeness and a government that's open every day."
–Craig Ferguson



There is nothing I dread so much as a division of the Republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader and converting measures in opposition to each other.
-John Adams



Thanks to God that he gave me stubbornness when I know I am right.
-John Adams



REMEMBER: You go to war with the army you have but you don't get people health insurance until every detail is perfect.




Categories: Congress, Politics, Tea Party

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Quotes of the day: Bette Davis

Published Sunday, October 06, 2013 @ 12:01 AM EDT
Oct 06 2013

Ruth Elizabeth "Bette" Davis (April 5, 1908 – October 6, 1989) was an American actress of film, television and theater. Noted for her willingness to play unsympathetic characters, she was highly regarded for her performances in a range of film genres, from contemporary crime melodramas to historical and period films and occasional comedies, although her greatest successes were her roles in romantic dramas. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A sure way to lose happiness, I found, is to want it at the expense of everything else.

An affair now and then is good for a marriage. It adds spice, stops it from getting boring... I ought to know.

Anyone who says life begins at forty is full of it.

Attempt the impossible in order to improve your work.

Basically, I believe the world is a jungle, and if it's not a bit of a jungle in the home, a child cannot possibly be fit to enter the outside world.

Being called very, very difficult is the beginning of success. Until you've been called very, very difficult you're really nobody at all.

Everybody has a heart. Except some people.

From the moment I was six I felt sexy. And let me tell you it was hell, sheer hell, waiting to do something about it.

Gay Liberation? I ain't against it, it's just that there's nothing in it for me.

I do not regret one professional enemy I have made. Any actor who doesn't dare to make an enemy should get out of the business.

I have often seen an actor laugh off the stage, but I don't remember ever having seen one weep.

I never did pal around with actresses. Their talk usually bored me to tears.

I never married anybody I didn't think I loved.

I would take a bad script and a good director any day against a good script and a bad director.

I'd marry again if I found a man who had fifteen million dollars, would sign over half to me, and guarantee that he'd be dead within a year.

I've no time for broads who want to rule the world alone. Without men, who'd do up the zipper on the back of your dress?

If you have never been hated by your child, you have never been a parent.

If you want a thing done well, get a couple of old broads to do it.

It has been my experience that one cannot, in any shape or form, depend on human relations for lasting reward. It is only work that truly satisfies.

It's better to be hated for who you are, than to be loved for someone you're not. It's a sign of your worth sometimes, if you're hated by the right people.

Just because someone dies (Joan Crawford) doesn't mean they've changed.

Love is not enough. It must be the foundation, the cornerstone- but not the complete structure. It is much too pliable, too yielding.

Marriage needs communication- and separate baths.

Old age ain't no place for sissies.

Pleasure of love lasts but a moment, Pain of love lasts a lifetime.

Some young Hollywood starlets remind me of my grandmother's old farmhouse- all painted up nice on the front side, a big swing on the backside, and nothing whatsoever in the attic

Strong women only marry weak men.

The act of sex, gratifying as it may be, is God's joke on humanity.

The only reason anyone goes to Broadway is because they can't get work in the movies.

The weak are the most treacherous of us all. They come to the strong and drain them. They are bottomless. They are insatiable. They are always parched and always bitter. They are everyone's concern and like vampires they suck our life's blood.

There are new words now that excuse everybody. Give me the good old days of heroes and villains, the people you can bravo or hiss. There was a truth to them that all the slick credulity of today cannot touch.

There comes a time in every woman's life when the only thing that helps is a glass of champagne.

When a man gives his opinion, he's a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she's a bitch.

With the newspaper strike on, I wouldn't consider dying.

You will never be happier than you expect. To change your happiness, change your expectation.

Categories: Bette Davis, Quotes of the day

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Observation of the day

Published Saturday, October 05, 2013 @ 7:01 AM EDT
Oct 05 2013

If you want to read the fortune, you've got to break the cookie.
-The Covert Comic

Categories: Covert Comic, Observations

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Quotes of the day: Steve Jobs

Published Saturday, October 05, 2013 @ 6:27 AM EDT
Oct 05 2013

Steven Paul "Steve" Jobs February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011) was an American entrepreneur, marketer, and inventor, who was the co-founder, chairman, and CEO of Apple Inc. Through Apple, he is widely recognized as a charismatic pioneer of the personal computer revolution and for his influential career in the computer and consumer electronics fields, transforming "one industry after another, from computers and smartphones to music and movies". Jobs also co-founded and served as chief executive of Pixar Animation Studios; he became a member of the board of directors of The Walt Disney Company in 2006, when Disney acquired Pixar. Jobs was among the first to see the commercial potential of Xerox PARC's mouse-driven graphical user interface, which led to the creation of the Apple Lisa and, one year later, the Macintosh. He also played a role in introducing the LaserWriter, one of the first widely available laser printers, to the market. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


As individuals, people are inherently good. I have a somewhat more pessimistic view of people in groups.

Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn't really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while.

Death is the destination we all share, no one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be because death is very likely the single best invention of life.

Did Alexander Graham Bell do any market research before he invented the telephone?

Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice.

I don't really care about being right, I just care about success.

I make 50 cents for showing up... and the other 50 cents is based on my performance.

I think death is the most wonderful invention of life. It purges the system of these old models that are obsolete.

I think different religions are different doors to the same house. Sometimes I think the house exists, and sometimes I don't. It's the great mystery.

I think everyone in this country should learn to program a computer. Everyone should learn a computer language because it teaches you how to think. I think of computer science as a liberal art.

I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what's next.

I want to put a ding in the universe.

If you don't cannibalize yourself, someone else will.

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

It's more fun to be a pirate than to join the navy.

Knowing I was adopted may have made me feel more independent, but I have never felt abandoned. I've always felt special. My parents made me feel special.

My favorite things in life don't cost any money. It's really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.

No one wants to die. Even people who wanna go to heaven don't wanna die to get there.

Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow. (Last words)

One of the things wrong with the PC industry today is that most of the people running the companies don't love PCs.

One way to remember who you are is to remember who your heroes are.

People who know what they're talking about don't need PowerPoint.

Real artists ship.

Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.

Sometimes I believe in God, sometimes I don't. I think it's 50-50 maybe. And I find myself believing a bit more. I kind of– maybe it's 'cause I want to believe in an afterlife. That when you die, it doesn't just all disappear. The wisdom you've accumulated. Somehow it lives on, but sometimes I think it's just like an on-off switch. Click and you're gone. And that's why I don't like putting on-off switches on Apple devices.

The system is that there is no system.

We don't know where it will lead. We just know there's something much bigger than any of us here.

We humans are tool builders. We can fashion tools that amplify (the) inherent abilities that we have to spectacular magnitudes.

We used to dream about this stuff. Now we get to build it. It's pretty great.

When I was growing up, a guy across the street had a Volkswagen Bug. He really wanted to make it into a Porsche. He spent all his spare money and time accessorizing this VW, making it look and sound loud. By the time he was done, he did not have a Porsche. He had a loud, ugly VW.

When you're young, you look at television and think, there's a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that's not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want.

When you're a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you're not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You'll know it's there, so you're going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back.

You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something- your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.

Categories: Quotes of the day, Steve Jobs

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Quotes of the day: Roy Blount, Jr.

Published Friday, October 04, 2013 @ 12:01 AM EDT
Oct 04 2013

(Today is also the birthday of Damon Runyon and Charleton Heston)


Roy Alton Blount, Jr. (b. October 4, 1941) is an American writer. Best known as a humorist, Blount is also a reporter, speaker and versifier who claims that he can't act but did appear as himself in a cameo in "Treme," and is heartbrokenly unable to make music in any form yet performs in an ill-defined capacity with the Rock Bottom Remainders, a rock band composed entirely of writers. He is also a former president of the Authors Guild. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A dog will make eye contact. A cat will, too, but a cat's eyes don't even look entirely warm-blooded to me, whereas a dog's eyes look human except less guarded.

A good heavy book holds you down. It's an anchor that keeps you from getting up and having another gin and tonic.

Any given generation gives the next generation advice that the given generation should have been given by the previous generation but now it's too late.

Anybody who claims not to feel bad when they're 67 is lying.

Contemporary American children, if they are old enough to grasp the concept of Santa Claus by Thanksgiving, are able to see through it by December 15th.

Doctors and lawyers must go to school for years and years, often with little sleep and with great sacrifice to their first wives.

English is an outrageous tangle of those derivations and other multifarious linguistic influences, from Yiddish to Shoshone, which has grown up around a gnarly core of chewy, clangorous yawps derived from ancestors who painted themselves blue to frighten their enemies.

Even intellectuals should have learned by now that objective rationality is not the default position of the human mind, much less the bedrock of human affairs.

I do hope you realize that every time you use disinterested to mean uninterested, an angel dies.

I have to be firm on this: unique is not to be modified. Adding very or absolutely is like putting a propeller on a rabbit to make him hop better. It won't work, and he won't be a rabbit anymore.

I prefer my oysters fried; that way I know my oysters died.

I think writer's block is simply the dread that you are going to write something horrible. But as a writer, I believe that if you sit down at the keys long enough, sooner or later something will come out.

If a cat spoke, it would say things like, "Hey, I don't see the problem here."

In the beginning, Atlanta was without form, and void; and it still is.

Language seems to me intrinsically comic- noises of the tongue, lips, larynx, and palate rendered in ink on paper with the deepest and airiest thoughts in mind and the harshest and tenderest feelings at heart.

Many a person has been saved from summer alcoholism, not to mention hypertoxicity, by Dostoyevsky.

People don't necessarily want or need to be done unto as you would have them do unto you. They want to be done unto as they want to be done unto

Studying literature at Harvard is like learning about women at the Mayo clinic.

The last time somebody said, 'I find I can write much better with a word processor,' I replied, 'They used to say the same thing about drugs.'

The more you try to pin a word down, the more you realize that it has its own cape, sword and little hat.

Usage ain't always a matter of ought.

When money gets too far away from actual, physical, real equity and property it gets too abstract and too distantly derived and then suddenly it's not worth anything anymore. And the same is true of language.

Categories: Question of the day, Roy Blount, Jr.

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Quotes of the day: Woody Guthrie

Published Thursday, October 03, 2013 @ 6:23 AM EDT
Oct 03 2013

Woodrow Wilson "Woody" Guthrie (July 14, 1912 - October 3, 1967) was an American singer-songwriter and folk musician whose musical legacy includes hundreds of political, traditional and children's songs, ballads and improvised works. He frequently performed with the slogan This Machine Kills Fascists displayed on his guitar. His best-known song is This Land Is Your Land. Many of his recorded songs are archived in the Library of Congress. Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, Pete Seeger, Andy Irvine, Joe Strummer, Billy Bragg, Jay Farrar, Jeff Tweedy, Bob Childers and Tom Paxton have acknowledged Guthrie as a major influence. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


All of you cowboys, fight for your land.

Any fool can make something complicated. It takes a genius to make it simple.

Anyone who uses more than two chords is just showing off.

Civilization is spread more by singing than by anything else, because whole big bunches can sing a particular song where not every man can join in on the same conversation.

I ain't a Communist necessarily, but I been in the red all my life.

I love a good man outside the law, just as much as I hate a bad man inside the law.

If the fight gets hot, the songs get hotter. If the going gets tough, the songs get tougher.

If we would just take the profit out of war, there wouldn't be any.

Left wing, chicken wing, it don't make no difference to me.

Let me be known as just the man that told you something you already knew.

Life has got a habit of not standing hitched. You got to ride it like you find it. You got to change with it. If a day goes by that don't change some of your old notions for new ones, that is just about like trying to milk a dead cow.

Life is this sound, and since creation has been a song. And there is no real trick of creating words to set to music, once you realize that the word is the music and the people are the song.

Looks like ever body is declaring war against the forces of force. That's what you get for building up a big war machine.

Love is the only God that I’ll ever believe in.

Plenty of rich folks wants to fight. Give them the guns.

Take it easy, but take it.

The note of hope is the only note that can help us or save us from falling to the bottom of the heap of evolution, because, largely, about all a human being is, anyway, is just a hoping machine.

The world is filled with people who are no longer needed- and who try to make slaves of all of us- and they have their music and we have ours.

This machine kills fascists.
(label on his guitar)

Watch the kids. Do like they do. Act like they act. Yell like they yell. Dance the way you see them dance. Sing like they sing. Work and rest the way kids do... I don't want the kids to be grownup. I want to see the grown folks be kids.

Yes, as through this world I've wandered I've seen lots of funny men; Some will rob you with a six-gun, And some with a fountain pen.

You might say that Wall Street is the street that keeps you off Easy Street.

Categories: Quotes of the day, Woody Guthrie

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Quotes of the day: Groucho Marx

Published Wednesday, October 02, 2013 @ 6:31 AM EDT
Oct 02 2013

Julius Henry "Groucho" Marx (October 2, 1890 – August 19, 1977) was an American comedian and film and television star. He is known as a master of quick wit and widely considered one of the best comedians of the modern era. His rapid-fire, often impromptu delivery of innuendo-laden patter earned him many admirers and imitators. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A likely story- and probably true.

A man's only as old as the woman he feels.

Africa is God's county, and he can have it.

Although it is generally known, I think it's about time to announce that I was born at a very early age.

Anyone who says he can see through women is missing a lot.

Before I speak, I have something important to say.

Blood's not thicker than money.

Don't look now, but there's one too many in this room and I think it's you.

Don't point that beard at me, it might go off.

Either this man is dead or my watch has stopped.

From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down I was convulsed with laughter. Someday I intend on reading it.

Go, and never darken my towels again.

Growing old is something you do if you're lucky.

He may look like an idiot, and he may talk like an idiot, but don't let him fool you. He really is an idiot.

Here's to our wives and girlfriends. May they never meet.

Home is where you hang your head.

Humor is reason gone mad.

I didn't like the play, but then I saw it under adverse conditions: the curtain was up.

I don't have a photograph. I'd give you my footprints, but they're upstairs in my socks.

I don't want to belong to any club that will accept people like me as a member.

I get credit all the time for things I never said. You know that line in You Bet Your Life? The guy says he has seventeen kids and I say: 'I smoke a cigar, but I take it out of my mouth occasionally?' I never said that.

I have nothing but respect you, and very little of that.

I never forget a face, but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception.

I wish to be cremated. One tenth of my ashes shall be given to my agent, as written in our contract.

I'm not a vegetarian, but I eat animals who are.

I've been looking for a girl like you- not you, but a girl like you.

I've had a wonderful evening, but this wasn't it.

If women dressed for men, the stores wouldn't sell much-just an occasional sun visor.

In Hollywood, brides keep the bouquets and throw away the groom.

It isn't necessary to have relatives in Kansas City in order to be unhappy.

Just give me a comfortable couch, a dog, a good book, and a woman. Then if you can get the dog to go somewhere and read the book, I might have a little fun!

Love flies out the door when money comes innuendo.

Military justice is to justice what military music is to music.

Money will not make you happy, and happy will not make you money.

My experience is that people are most likely to listen to reason when in bed.

My favorite poem is the one that starts 'Thirty days hath September' because it actually tells you something.

My idea of a good evening is to be at home, alone, listening to good political arguments on the television, reading... I put on my pajamas, fill a pipe with very good tobacco, and I soliloquize while the world slides by.

No one is completely unhappy at the failure of his best friend.

Now there sits a man with an open mind. You can feel the draft from here.

Only one man in a thousand is a leader of men, the other 999 follow women.

She got her good looks from her father. He's a plastic surgeon.

There is no sweeter sound than the crumbling of your fellow man.

There's one way to find out if a man is honest- ask him. If he says "yes," you know he is crooked.

Those are my principles. If you don't like them, I have others.

What has posterity ever done for me?

Why, a four-year-old child could understand this report. Run out and find a four-year-old child. I can't make head or tail of it.

You've got a goal; I've got a goal. Now all we need is a football team.

You've got the brain of a four-year-old boy, and I bet he was glad to get rid of it.

Categories: Groucho Marx, Quotes of the day

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Oh, New York Daily News, I love you...

Published Tuesday, October 01, 2013 @ 9:20 AM EDT
Oct 01 2013

Categories: Congress, News Media, Politics

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Quotes of the day: Daniel J. Boorstin

Published Tuesday, October 01, 2013 @ 6:26 AM EDT
Oct 01 2013

Daniel Joseph Boorstin (October 1, 1914 - February 28, 2004) was an American historian, professor, attorney, and writer. He was appointed twelfth Librarian of the United States Congress in 1975 and served until 1987. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A sign of a celebrity is often that his name is worth more than his services.

Any government which made the welfare of men depend on the character of their governors was an illusion.

As individuals and as a nation, we now suffer from social narcissism. The beloved Echo of our ancestors, the virgin America, has been abandoned. We have fallen in love with our own image, with images of our making, which turn out to be images of ourselves.

Disagreement produces debate but dissent produces dissension.

Education is learning what you didn't even know you didn't know.

Every artist invents an artist, and every artist adds. While the great works of science displace the theories that people had before or modified them in some significant way, the artist only adds.

I write to discover what I think. After all, the bars aren't open that early.

Knowledge is not simply another commodity. On the contrary. Knowledge is never used up. It increases by diffusion and grows by dispersion.

No agnostic ever burned anyone at the stake or tortured a pagan, a heretic, or an unbeliever.

Since the Creator had made the facts of the after-life inaccessible to man, He must not have required that man understand death in order to live fruitfully.

Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some hire public relations officers.

Technology is so much fun but we can drown in our technology. The fog of information can drive out knowledge.

The celebrity is a person who is known for his well-knownness.

The great obstacle to discovering the shape of the earth, the continents, and the oceans was not ignorance, but the illusion of knowledge.

The most important American addition to the World Experience was the simple surprising fact of America. We have helped prepare man kind for all its later surprises.

The Republic of Technology where we will be living is a feedback world.

These creators, makers of the new, can never become obsolete, for in the arts there is no correct answer.

We need not be theologians to see that we have shifted responsibility for making the world interesting from God to the newspaperman.

We suffer primarily not from our vices or our weaknesses, but from our illusions.

What preoccupies us, then, is not God as a fact of nature, but as a fabrication useful for a God-fearing society. God himself becomes not a power but an image.

While the easiest way in metaphysics is to condemn all metaphysics as nonsense, the easiest way in morals is to elevate the common practice of the community into a moral absolute.

While the Jeffersonian did not flatly deny the Creator's power to perform miracles, he admired His refusal to do so.

A liberal society thrives on disagreement but is killed by dissension. Disagreement is the life blood of democracy, dissension is its cancer.

In our world of big names, curiously, our true heroes tend to be anonymous. In this life of illusion and quasi-illusion, the person of solid virtues who can be admired for something more substantial than his well-knownness often proves to be the unsung hero: the teacher, the nurse, the mother, the honest cop, the hard worker at lonely, underpaid, unglamorous, unpublicized jobs.

A bestseller was a book which somehow sold well simply because it was selling well.

More appealing than knowledge itself is the feeling of knowing.

We must abandon the prevalent belief in the superior wisdom of the ignorant.

Categories: Daniel J. Boorstin, Quotes of the day

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