2016 minus 24: twenty quotations

Posted: 8 December 2015 in 2016minus
Tags: ,

I’ve had a shitty day so far; long story which you’ll be very grateful I’m not boring you with. Trust me on that.

Here are twenty quotations I like; some I like because I wish I’d said them, some speak truth, and some just appeal to me for no reason whatsoever.

“In his ninetieth year, he could afford to be agreeable to everybody, though he tried valiantly to resist the inclination.”
— Alistair Cooke on Frank Lloyd Wright.

“No passion in the world is equal to the passion of one writer to alter another’s draft.”
— H G Wells

“The first draft of anything is shit.”
–Ernest Hemingway

“A man you’d follow anywhere, if only out of curiosity.”
— Alan Coren on Boris Johnson

“When children have their noses in books while the Universe is telling them to come out and play, we know something is going badly wrong.”
— journalist Sue Nelson commenting about a teacher who couldn’t take his class to see an annular eclipse.

“The light did him harm, but not as much as looking at things did; he resolved, having done it once, never to move eyeballs again… His mouth had been used as a latrine by some small creature of the night, and then as its mausoleum. During the night, too, he’d somehow been on a cross-country run and then been expertly beaten up by secret police. He felt bad.”
— Kingsley Amis on hangovers (in Lucky Jim)

“A hard man to ignore… but it’s worth the effort.”
— Barry Cryer on Robert Kilroy-Silk

“If a politician murders his mother, the first response of the press or of his opponents will likely be not that it was a terrible thing to do, but rather that in a statement made six years before he had gone on record as being opposed to matricide.”
— Meg Greenfield

All romantics meet the same fate someday. Cynical and drunk and boring someone in some dark cafe.
— Joni Mitchell

Man is a rational animal who always loses his temper when called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason.
— Orson Welles

Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time.
— Steven Wright

The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.
— H. L. Mencken

“A professional is someone who can do his best work when he doesn’t feel like it.”
— Alistair Cooke.

“Bureaucrats write memoranda both because they appear to be busy when they are writing and because the memos, once written, immediately become proof that they were busy.”
— Charles Peters

“Free children are not easily influenced; the absence of fear accounts for this phenomenon. Indeed, the absence of fear is the finest thing that can happen to a child.”
— A. S. Neill

“The future, according to some scientists, will be exactly like the past, only far more expensive.”
— John Sladek

“A jury consists of twelve persons chosen to decide who has the better lawyer.”
— Robert Frost

“I thoroughly disapprove of duels. If a man should challenge me, I would take him kindly and forgivingly by the hand and lead him to a quiet place and kill him.”
— Mark Twain

“I feel that events have forced us to become enemies. What a pity we couldn’t have got to know each other under happier circumstances. Then we could have become enemies of our own free will.”
— David Nobbs (from A Bit Of A Do)

And – especially since I write a blog:

“It is not a bad idea to get in the habit of writing down one’s thoughts. It saves one having to bother anyone else with them.”
— Isobel Colegate

Something else tomorrow.

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