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Quotes of the day: James Lileks

Published Friday, August 09, 2013 @ 12:00 AM EDT
Aug 09 2013

Quotes of the day: James Lileks (b. August 9, 1958):


A Children's Museum is more of a Funatorium. You are encouraged to touch things, which is poor training for subsequent museum visitation.

Calculus destroys self-esteem on contact.

Contempt for the things people choose of their own free will is, at its heart, contempt for free will.

I don't care. I am way past caring. I have not a jot of the care-sauce left in my bones. The care tank is empty. There's no one home in Careville. The dog ate my care. The Care Crop didn't come up this year. Self.com/care comes up as a 404.

I don't want my TV choices dictated by people who have nothing better to do than watch TV.

I grew up with cartoons the way cartoons were meant to be: mice jabbing hatpins into the anuses of venal felines, tie-wearing bears confounding federal employees, squirrel-and-moose teams foiling Communist plots.

I want to believe in intelligent design, and hence I am suspicious of anything that seems to confirm my desire to believe.

I'll feel that horrible feeling in my stomach you get when you've gone over to the Dark Side. But I'll be fine. That's the good thing about the Dark Side. Eventually, your eyes adjust.

If King Kong showed up today on the Empire State building, only German tourists would notice. New Yorkers would notice only after the rotting body of the dead ape was starting to overwhelm the smell of uncollected restaurant trash.

If we were meant to be blinded by science, they wouldn't have put eyewash fountains in the high school chemistry lab.

MAD [mutually assured destruction] only works when the other guy is SANE.

Modern death is a matter of bright rooms and hard machines. Live long enough, and you might be filed away in a nursing home, your history scoured away, your life winnowed down to a few items on the table and some pictures of people who don't come around enough. When you are about to pass on, there is no quiet to attend you: busy fuss and professional zeal strive to bring you back, nail you to the soft cross of the rented bed.

Never trust someone who can't say sorry to a dog.

New York women dress in case they will be photographed. DC women dress in case they have to testify.

Odd how that term 'thing' has ominous connotations. If you said 'The Item From Another Planet,' it would sound as if we'd been invaded by office supplies.

Same is bad until different is worse.

She was from the wrong side of the tracks no matter how you gerrymandered the town.

The worst thing about depression isn't the sense that you're accentuating the negative, it's that you're seeing things the way they really are, stripped of the illusions you use every day to divert yourself from the Yawning Maw of Futility. It's the wind that blows off the snow and reveals the stone.

The Yoda scenes tend to drag the tenth time you've seen them. ("Stall we must. Second act this is. Talk odd would you if puppet with hand up rear were you.")

Those who don't remember the past are doomed to buy it again at Old Navy, and think they're hip.

Trying to reconstruct the past from the magazines and pictures is like reverse engineering a snowflake from a drop of water.

We always ask where the time went. We never ask where it's coming from.

We are going to lose 51 states. Puerto Rico will demand statehood just for the chance not to vote for this guy.

We're the Axis of Elvis.

When the remodeling contractor points out that Rome wasn't built in a day, it is necessary to point out that Rome was, eventually, built.

When your opponent sets up a straw man, set it on fire and kick the cinders around the stage. Don't worry about losing the Strawperson-American community vote.

You can say what you will about America, but it provides job security for its critics.

Categories: James Lileks, Quotes of the day


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