Sunday, June 29, 2008

I Hate Other People's Kids by Adrianne Frost

  • Old people have earned the right to be pissy.
  • Kids should be cultured, sure, but only if they want to be cultured.


The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult

  • The person you were yesterday might not be the person you are tomorrow.
  • High school students were cannibals; they fed off your broken heart while you watched and then shrugged and offered you a bloody, apologetic smile.
  • Modern women had been driven so far from the home they no longer felt comfortable inside it.
  • A guy can't hurt you if you don't let him.
  • The process of growing up was nothing more than figuring out what doors hadn't yet been slammed in your face.
  • You didn't get to be pretty or smart or popular just because you wanted it. You didn't control your own destiny; you were too busy trying to fit in.
  • Power always involved a loss of humanity.
  • The best relationships were the ones where both sides went out of their way to make sure the other wasn't disappointed.
  • When you fooled around without the feelings attached, it might not mean anything...but then again, neither did you.
  • When your significant other was missing, it wasn't the same bed. There was a void on the other side, a cosmic black hole, one that you couldn't roll too close to without falling into a chasm of memories.
  • Random hookups weren't random, no matter what you told yourself.
  • The only thing worse than not feeling anything was feeling everything.
  • A word was a powerful thing. An insult didn't have to be shouted at you to make you bleed; a vow didn't have to be whispered to you to make you believe. Hold a thought in your head and that was enough to change the actions of anyone and anything that crossed your path.
  • You couldn't have strenth without weakness; you couldn't have light without dark; you couldn't have love without loss.
  • If you acted like you really wanted something even when you didn't, you just might convince yourself along with everyone else.
  • How much had gone wrong between him and Laura. Maybe you had to scrape the bottom before you could push your way back to the surface.
  • It was possible that everyone had two faces: Some of us just did a better job of hiding it than others.
  • At any crossroads in life, half of us are destined to take a wrong turn.
  • The problem with coming clean was that you thought you were clearing the slate, starting over, but it never quite worked that way. You didn't erase what you'd done. The stain would still be there.
  • The best decisions in a marriage were based not on honesty but on the number of casualties that the truth might cause, versus the number saved by ignorance.
  • Just because you didn't speak the facts out loud didn't erase their existence. Silence was just a quieter way to lie.
  • Maybe it took realizing that you could die to keep you from wanting to do it.
  • The person you were when you went to sleep at night might not necessarily be the person you were when you woke up.
  • People's lives were as tightly woven as a piece of lace, and pulling on one string might furrow another.
  • It wasn't what you didn't know about the people you loved that would shock you; it was what you didn't want to admit about yourself.
  • Some people, they get down in a hole so deep they can't figure out what to hold on to. And some people make the choice to let go.
  • One day when your alarm clock rang, you got up and realized you had someone else's thoughts in your head...or maybe just your old ones, minus the hope.
  • For every action, there was an opposite reaction. But maybe you could undo your wrongs by keeping someone else from making the same mistakes of misjudgment.
  • You did what you had to, for the people you cared about.
  • Was it tough love, putting your child through hell? Or was it the best of parenting, a way to make sure your child could survive without you?
  • A thought might turn into an action at any moment; a word held in your mind had just as much power to wound or to heal as the one that was spoken aloud.
  • If you didn't know what was at stake to lose, you had nothing to fight for.
  • Sometimes what we wish for actually comes true. And sometimes that's the very worst thing that can happen.
  • Just because you chose to leave a place did not mean you could escape taking it with you.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

  • While I could easily feel sorry for myself, that wouldn't do them, or me, any good.
  • All parents want to teach their children right from wrong, what we think is important, and how to deal with the challenges life will bring. We also want them to know some stories from our own lives, often as a way to teach them how to lead theirs.
  • Engineering isn't about perfect solutions; it's about doing the best you can with limited resources.
  • If you can dream it, you can do it.
  • We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.
  • If you dispense your own wisdom, others often dismiss it; if you offer wisdom from a third party, it seems less arrogant and more acceptable.
  • Never make a decision until you have to.
  • Just because you're in the driver's seat doesn't mean yo have to run people over.
  • Have something to bring to the table, because that will make you more welcome.
  • You've got to get the fundamentals down, because otherwise the fancy stuff is not going to work.
  • When you're screwing up and nobody says anything to you anymore, that means they've given up on you.
  • I don't believe in the no-win scenario.
  • Tenacity is a virtue, but it's not always crucial for everyone to observe how hard you work at something.
  • The brick walls are there for a reason. They're not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.
  • It's easy to look smart when you're parroting smart people.
  • Sometimes, the most impenetrable brick walls are made of flesh.
  • Even fairy-tale moments have risks.
  • Automobiles are there to get you from point A to point B. They are utilitarian devices, not expressions of social status.
  • Not everything needs to be fixed.
  • It's not helpful if we spend every day dreading tomorrow.
  • Take a time out. It's not a real vacation if you're reading email or calling in for messages.
  • Time is all you have. And you may find one day that you have less than you think.
  • Everybody loves telling stories. It's one of the truly universal things about our species.
  • Complaining does not work as a strategy. We all have finite time and energy. Any time we spend whining is unlikely to help us achieve our goals. And it won't make us happier.


Sunday, June 1, 2008

A Salty Piece of Land by Jimmy Buffett

  • Everything leaves eventually in the physical form, but the memories of good people and good work are timeless.
  • Life's adventures are the verses and choruses of your unique song, and when it is over, you are dead. Adventures don't come calling like unexpected cousins visiting from out of town. You have to go looking for them.
  • Life is unpredictable, but there is a lot out there to do and see.
  • There are no words to the song of the ocean, but the message is and always has been simple: not to forget where we came from. The melody is locked in the water that composes much of what we are. Most humans tend to ignore the song, but not all. You are one of the lucky ones who hold the melody in your heart. But be warned: it is a wandering song carried by the winds and the currents. It can turn you into a piece of driftwood that washes up on shore after shore, but one day, when you find the place that is meant to be, you will take root. Send me a postcard when you get there.
  • Most people's jobs suck. You just need to find one that sucks less.
  • Just don't panic, and it will be all right.
  • I think darkness is the thing humans fear the most, for it takes away our advantage. In the dark, we have to rely on our instincts to survive, and as a species, those feelings haven't been around the track in a while.
  • One man's cathedral is another man's fishing hole.
  • Unrest of spirit is a mark of life.
  • Contentment is a quality best suited for cows.
  • We both had dreams, but my dreams were different than yours, and I had to chase them.
  • I'm listening. How long will depend on your sincerity and honesty.
  • I figured the best way to avoid trouble was to just disappear for a while.
  • I think what connects some people to the art they like is not wishing they could paint it but rather wanting to be in the scene that the artist has painted.
  • There are far more roads on which you may traverse life's paths than those that seem to have been preordained for you by others.
  • There will always be those who feel more comfortable not venturing from the warmth of the hearth, but there are those who prefer to look out the window and wonder what is beyond the horizon.
  • There is no beauty like that which overtakes us by accident.
  • I have heard that even condemned prisoners in the foulest dungeons dress for dinner every now and then. They say it keeps them sane and human.
  • Recordings are wonderful, but there is nothing like seeing a real performer work an audience live.
  • If we're lucky, we can hang on to a piece of our childhood forever. The soft feel of a favorite blanket or teddy bear; the look on the face of your first puppy; the sound of the music played by the ice-cream truck. If we are lucky, these are the kinds of memories that keep us from growing old too fast.
  • When you are on a mission, you must do what you have to do to succeed.
  • Problems in paradise are just not as disconcerting as problems in a different climate or environment.
  • A man has to be ready to go on a moment's notice, no matter how comfortable the moment might be.
  • There is no reverse on the road of life, Tully. You just keep moving forward, and every now and then you try to catch a little neutral.
  • It's all happening so fast. The world spins at one thousand miles an hour. This is nothing.
  • You don't have to go looking for stories. The good ones will come to you.
  • I think the reason the years seem to fly by is because they really do.
  • Just goes to show you, money never does buy good taste.
  • Hospital waiting is a strange state of existence. You're filled with your own concerns for you loved ones, but you are also suddenly part of a community of people who are dealing with the comings and goings from this world that our mortality presents.
  • We are all survivors. But the trouble with being a survivor is that you find yourself dancing alone a lot. It is a tricky seesaw on which the survivor has to sit. On the one side is your ability to be comfortable in a world inhabited only by yourself. And on the other side is your desire to share your time with others. How do you balance? Being a survivor is not a bad thing, but you do run the risk of being the last one at the party when the punch bowl is empty and the confetti has turned to dust.
  • Life is, and always has been, a struggle. The fishing pole bends heavier for some than others, and nobody has yet to figure out why--just as you never know, when you make a cast, if what attacks your fly is a finger-size baby snapper or a tiger shark that can turn you into bait. Still, we struggle with the rod just the same. Life to me is like a fish on the line. When it is there, you feel it. You fight it. You gain line. You lose line. But if that line suddenly snaps, or the pole breaks, or a thousand other problems occur that fishermen use as excuses when the tension is gone, you feel it even more.
  • Grief is like the wake behind a boat. It starts out as a huge wave that follows close behind you and is big enough to swamp and drown you if you suddenly stop moving forward. But if you do keep moving, the big wake will eventually dissipate. And after a long enough time, the waters of your life get calm again, and that is when the memories of those who have left begin to shine as bright and as enduring as the stars above.
  • The earlier in life we know we are part of something magical and mysterious, the better off we are.