Quotations

“This Is Absurd!”

Uninspired last words:

  • “Wait a minute …” — Pope Alexander VI
  • “Am I dying, or is this my birthday?” — Nancy, Lady Astor, on seeing her family at her bedside
  • “I live!” — Caligula, as he was being murdered by his own soldiers
  • “Lady, you shot me!” — Sam Cooke, after being shot in a hotel room
  • “That guy’s got to stop. … He’ll see us.” — James Dean, before a car accident
  • “I’d hate to die twice. It’s so boring.” — Richard Feynman
  • “I think I’m going to make it!” — murderer Richard Loeb, after being slashed 90 times with a razor
  • “Die, my dear? Why that’s the last thing I’ll do!” — Groucho Marx
  • “I’m all right.” — H.G. Wells

On his deathbed Stan Laurel said, “I wish I were skiing.” His nurse said, “Oh, Mr. Laurel, do you ski?” Laurel replied, “No, but I’d rather be skiing than doing what I’m doing.”

More here.

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“I have never been hurt by anything I didn’t say.” — Calvin Coolidge, known as “Silent Cal”

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“Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.” — Albert Einstein

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“Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die.” — Mel Brooks

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“Don’t just do something, stand there.” — Clint Eastwood’s acting coach

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“A country can be judged by the quality of its proverbs.” — German proverb

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“I have discovered that all human evil comes from this, man’s being unable to sit still in a room.” — Blaise Pascal

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“Actors are crap.” — John Ford

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“Writer’s block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they can have an excuse to drink alcohol.” — Steve Martin

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“The length of a film should be directly related to the endurance of the human bladder.” — Alfred Hitchcock

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“Life is tough. It’s even tougher if you’re stupid.” — John Wayne

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“Poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese.” — G.K. Chesterton

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“Comedy always works best when it is mean-spirited.” — John Cleese

“Use of Time”

Dr. Cotton Mather, who was a man of uncommon dispatch and activity in the management of his numerous affairs, and improved every minute of his time, that he might not suffer by silly, impertinent, and tedious visiters, wrote over his study-door, in large letters, “Be short.”

Ursinus, a professor in the University of Heidelburgh, and a diligent scholar, to prevent gossips and idlers from interrupting him in his hours of study, wrote over the door of his library the following lines–“Friend, whoever thou art that comest hither, dispatch thy business or begone.”

The learned Scaliger placed the following sentence over the doors of his study–“Tempus meum est ager meus,” “My time is my field or estate.” And it is frequently the only valuable field which the labourer, in body or mind, possesses.

Ever hold time too precious to be spent
With babblers.–_Shakspeare._

“Friends,” says Lord Bacon, “are robbers of our time.”

The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Jan. 15, 1831

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“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” — Leonardo da Vinci

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“Computers in the future may weigh no more than 1.5 tons.” — Popular Mechanics, 1949

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“We don’t know a millionth of one percent about anything.” — Thomas Edison

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“The world has arrived at an age of cheap complex devices of great reliability, and something is bound to come of it.” — Engineer Vannevar Bush, 1945

Baser Instincts

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Recruiting poster, 1917.

George Bernard Shaw said, “Patriotism is a pernicious, psychopathic form of idiocy.”

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“Genius is eternal patience.” — Michelangelo Buonarroti

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“No human thing is of serious importance.” — Plato

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“Chess is as elaborate a waste of human intelligence as you can find outside an advertising agency.” — Raymond Chandler

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“There’s just some people you don’t hit with a pie and that’s all there is to it.” — Buster Keaton

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“He has to retreat into his fanciful world in order to survive. Otherwise, he leads kind of a dull, miserable life. I don’t envy dogs the lives they have to live.” — Charles M. Schulz, on Snoopy