My friend and fellow playwright, Sallie Patrick, wrote one of her very first blog entries about her love of quotes. And I’d have to agree.
Having gathered this list throughout the year, I'm somewhat surprised by what did and didn’t make it. None of the songs I’ve quoted will appear in my upcoming Top Ten Songs blog. Only one of the books I’ve quoted made it on to my top ten books list. And as much TV as I watch, only one thing from that medium appears on this list.
It’s strange how a quote can worm its way into your heart and conscious, staying with you long after you’ve forgotten or ceased to care about the larger work from which it was weened.
The Best Bitter Stuff:
Love’s an excuse to get hurt. And to hurt . . . Do you like to hurt? – Bright Eyes, “Lover I Don’t Have to Love”
I wish I could buy back the woman you stole. – Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs, “Y-Control”
It’s not fair how a woman never has to think about shit to keep from coming. Vic, Choke, Chuck Palahunik
There are people in this life who believe being the biggest victim will get them the biggest pork chop at the dinner table. – Hosanna Clark, What You Owe Me, Bebe Moore Campbell
The Spirit’s in the Words:
I am my own priest. – Hosanna Clark, What You Owe Me, Bebe Moore Campbell
God is change. – Lauren Olamina, Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler
All that you touch you change. – Lauren Olamina, Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler
Belief initiates and guides action or it does nothing. – Lauren Olamina, Parable of the Talents, Octavia Butler
Half of me is ocean. Half of me is sky. – Tom Petty, “Walls (No. 3)”
Have I Mentioned I’m a Tortured Artist . . .
Nobody becomes an artist unless they have to. – Mother, White Oleander, Janet Fitch
Imagination uses what it needs and discards the rest. Mother, White Oleander, Janet Fitch
Don’t cherish anything. The artist is the phoenix who burns to emerge. Mother, White Oleander, Janet Fitch
Every writer has a splinter of ice in the heart.” – Graham Greene as quoted by P.D. James on NPR
What do I myself think of this particular book? I feel lousy about. But I always feel lousy about my books. – Kurt Vonnegut, Preface, Breakfast of Champions.
…With a Day Job:
“Hard work” is a misleading term. Physical effort and long hours don’t really constitute hard work. Hard work is when someone pays you to do something you’d rather not be doing. Any time you’d rather be doing something other than the thing you’re doing, you’re doing hard work. – George Carlin, When Will Jesus Bring the Pork Chops?
Weirdly Brilliant Quotes from Weirdly Brilliant People:
You should take all [that bitterness] and put it in a play. -- Kyle Wilson
A man goes into a marriage thinking, “Lord, I hope she don’t never ever change. Everything will be alright if she just don’t change.” And a woman goes into a marriage thinking, “Lord, I hope this man change. Everything’s going to be alright if he just makes some changes.” Truth is, ain’t neither of them going to be getting what they want. Those really aren’t very realistic expectations. – Ernest T. Carter (yes, my father)
If you can, try not to quote yourself. You’ll just come off looking like a self-absorbed asshole. – Ernessa T. Carter
And the Random Rest:
An unspeakable beauty announced itself. – Specimen Days, Michael Cunningham
We call them stars, but the ones that shine the brightest are actually planets.” – Liz Phair on NPR.
The boy was as beautiful as Eve. – Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut
So it goes. -- Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut
Don’t judge me! – My Name is Earl, Brett Butler as Earl’s ex-wife’s mother-in-law, after it’s discovered that she’s been lying about wheelchair bound, needing dialysis, and a gambling addiction to which she lost Joy’s new car and her husband’s business.
When I get depressed, I take a little pill, and I cheer up again. And so on. – Kurt Vonnegut, Preface, Breakfast of Champions
You want to know who I am? Who am I? I am who I say I am, and tomorrow someone else entirely. Mother, White Oleander, Janet Fitch