Bracket Letter Quotes

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A few words which he wanted to emphasize were put into brackets or set off by quotation marks. My first impulse was to point out to him that it was ridiculous to put slang words and expressions between quotation marks, for that prevents them from entering the language. But I decided not to. When I received his letters, his parentheses made me shudder. At first, it was a shudder of slight shame, disagreeable. Later (and now, when I reread them) the shudder was the same, but I know, by some indefinable, imperceptible change, that it is a shudder of love- it is both poignant and delightful, perhaps because of the memory of the word shame that accompanied it in the beginning. Those parentheses and quotation marks are the flaw on the hip, the beauty mark on the thigh whereby my friend showed that he was himself, irreplaceable, and that he was wounded.
Jean Genet (Miracle of the Rose)
He put down the receiver and looked vaguely at the paper in his hand. It was a rough piece of white wrapping paper. Scrawled in pencil in ragged block letters were the words: HE DISAGREED WITH SOMETHING THAT ATE HIM And underneath in brackets: (P.S. WE HAVE PLENTY MORE JOKES AS GOOD AS THIS)
Ian Fleming
The existential psychotherapy approach posits that the inner conflict bedeviling us issues not only from our struggle with suppressed instinctual strivings or internalized significant adults or shards of forgotten traumatic memories, but also from our confrontation with the “givens” of existence. And what are these “givens” of existence? If we permit our-selves to screen out or “bracket” the everyday concerns of life and reflect deeply upon our situation in the world, we inevitably arrive at the deep structures of existence (the “ultimate concerns,” to use theologian Paul Tillich’s term).
Irvin D. Yalom (The Gift of Therapy: An Open Letter to a New Generation of Therapists and Their Patients)
In the world of mental health, the lowest-functioning clients and the highest-functioning clients receive the worst care. The lowest-functioning clients typically struggle with serious mental illnesses that are maintained more than cured. And, because of downward drift that draws a disproportionate number of such patients into the lower income brackets, these clients often do not have access to top-notch care. The highest-functioning clients, on the other hand, usually have a lot going for them, including family or schools that connect them with private therapists when needed. These high-functioning clients are what therapists call YAVIS—young, attractive, verbal, intelligent, and successful—and these qualities bestow all sorts of social and psychological advantages. Being young means, as a colleague once put it, “that you haven’t completely screwed up your life yet.” Being verbal allows you to easily exchange a common currency with friends and bosses as you parlay being talkative into social status. Intelligence aids achievement and problem-solving, and even leadership. Successful people are generally brimming with confidence. And, as Aristotle said, “beauty is a greater recommendation than any letter of introduction.” So, YAVIS clients are well received nearly everywhere they go, and many therapists light up when one comes walking in the door. Still, there are two paths to being smart and charming when you are young: Life has been good or life has been bad. When life has been good, maybe someone goes to see a therapist for a while because some isolated thing is not currently going well. Most likely, the difficulty will be resolved quickly and the client will be on his way. When life has been bad, someone goes to see a therapist because even though things look pretty on the outside the person feels horrible on the inside, and this is a discrepancy that even many therapists cannot hold. Sometimes it is just too jarring to imagine that someone who seems so perfect has lived a life that has been so imperfect. What results is a therapy where the client’s image gets in the way of the help that he or she needs. The client has come to focus on what has not gone well, but the therapist is blinded by what has. Too often, being successful when you are young is about survival. Some people are good at hiding their troubles. They are good at “falling up.
Meg Jay (The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter—And How to Make the Most of Them Now)
getting it on with him in her head. She swallowed thickly and managed to squeak, "Fine." He studied her with his all-encompassing gaze a moment longer. Then he said, "What sort of secrets do you think she had?" Camille blinked, discombobulated. "What?" "Your gourd artist. What sorts of secrets does she keep?" Without thinking, she said, "She was spurned by a paperboy when she was a teenager and has been harboring a hatred for anyone tied to journalism ever since. She was planning on killing me and stuffing me in a gourd." Dylan shook his head. "Your talents are wasted. You should be writing fiction." Just like that, she went on guard. "I'm a journalist." "You're a writer," he insisted. "A good writer, and a good writer can write anything he wants." "If I'm good enough to write anything, why can't it be news? Why are you always trying to get me to change my focus?" She picked up her wine so she'd have something to do with her hand, but she didn't try to drink any, afraid she might choke. "Because your purpose isn't telling people what's already happened." Impassioned, he turned to bracket her with his legs. "It's entertaining people with your unique point of view." She remembered the harsh red letters her mother had scrawled on her partial manuscript and felt
Kate Perry (Looking for You (Laurel Heights, #4))
Dick delves in subsequent letters into the possible Jungian meaning of all this, the significance of ancient Rome in his mystical experiences, and the sibyl as representing his “anima,” the inner source of his own prophetic capacity. Recall here Morgan Robertson’s belief that his own muse was likewise a feminine spirit of some sort. We can observe Dick here beginning to weave these dream images into his evolving self-mythology and what became a major metaphysical strand in his Exegesis, as well as the novel VALIS that was based on his experiences. In his search for a meaning behind all these coincidences—an answer to the question “why me?”—Dick understandably gropes in many different directions for an explanation and attaches great, mostly Jungian significance to the symbols. Yet he does not go down the path of thinking he is simply accessing archetypes in the collective unconscious. Rather, he is drawn to the conclusion that somehow the ancient world is still present, only camouflaged—or indeed, that we are still in it. It all seems to confirm a dream remembered from his youth that was much like the “B___ Grove” dreams, in which he had searched for a story in Astounding Stories called “The Empire Never Ended.” That story, he had felt certain, contained all the mysteries of existence. As a result of some of his visions and experiences in 1974, Dick came to believe he was possibly a reincarnated Christian from ancient Rome.38 We are rewarded best by bracketing the various interpretations, the Exegesis per se, and looking at Dick’s project as a making of something, a creation of meaningful narratives to be read by other people, a reaching out. The term “cry for help” may sound a bit extreme, but it is not. It was during this black period of his life, most specifically in February 1976, when Tessa left him and took their son, that he attempted suicide via drug overdose, slitting his wrists, and carbon monoxide poisoning in his garage, all at the same time. Fortunately, all three plans failed. Setting aside the metaphysics and cosmology, what was Dick trying to say in his writing during this period—to Claudia, to Tessa, to his readers, and to posterity? And what whispered message was he straining to hear from his own precognitive unconscious? Arguably, he wanted to hear the same thing Morgan Robertson managed to hear, loud and clear, when news of the Titanic’s fatal collision with an iceberg splashed across the front page of The New York Times on April 15, 1912. Both in his Exegesis and in his private correspondence with friends like Claudia, Dick flickered between two basic stances on his experience: the secret persistence of the ancient world underneath the veneer of mid-1970s Orange County, and the idea that he was haunting himself from his own future. These are not incompatible ideas in the sense that they both point to our old friend Mister Block Universe, where the past still exists and the future already exists—and by implication, nothing is subject to alteration.
Eric Wargo (Time Loops: Precognition, Retrocausation, and the Unconscious)
How can you tell if your investment is taxable? The tip-off is the love letter you get from the financial institution at the end of every year. It’s called a 1099. Simply put, it’s a tax bill. It tells the IRS how much taxable income you earned from a given investment.
David McKnight (The Power of Zero, Revised and Updated: How to Get to the 0% Tax Bracket and Transform Your Retirement)
Gnosticism, a highly intellectual second-century movement (the word ‘gnostic’ comes from the Greek word for ‘knowledge’) that was later declared heretical, didn’t help. Heretics were intellectual therefore intellectuals were, if not heretical, then certainly suspect. So ran the syllogism. Intellectual simplicity or, to put a less flattering name on it, ignorance was widely celebrated. The biography of St Antony records with approval that he ‘refused to learn to read and write or to join in the silly games of the other little children’. Education and silly games are here bracketed together, and both are put in opposition to holiness. Instead of this, we learn, Antony ‘burned with the desire for God’. That this wasn’t quite true – Antony’s letters reveal a much more careful thinker than this implies – didn’t much matter: it appealed to a powerful ideal. No need to read: give up both books and bread and you will win God’s favour. Even intellectuals were susceptible to this pretty picture: it was hearing about how the simple, unlettered Antony had inspired so many to turn to Christ that led Augustine to start striking himself on the head, tearing his hair and asking, ‘What is wrong with us?’ Ignorance was power.
Catherine Nixey (The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World)
The past is prelude and now we are leaving the restaurant and the fog is rolling out toward the Southern Ocean. When he kisses me, it feels natural, inevitable. It doesn’t feel like a stranger has his mouth on mine; he doesn’t taste old or male or alien. I go to see his cottage, and it is just as he described it in his letters: “I keep my horse riding tack and saddles on wooden brackets mounted on one wall, and there is usually a surfboard leaning in a corner and a wetsuit hanging in the shower. When I added the wooden loft as a bedroom, I forgot to leave space for the staircase; it now has what is essentially a ladder going up the one side. Chickens roost in the chimney’s ash trap and they emerge from their egg-laying speckled grey.” It is a home, but a wild home, cheerful, peculiar—like Pippi Longstocking’s Villa Villekulla, with a horse on the porch in an overgrown garden on the edge of town, where it “stood there ready and waiting for her.” And then what? I move to South Africa? He teaches me to ride horses and I have his baby? I become a foreign correspondent! I start a whole new life, a life I never saw coming. Either that, or I am isolated and miserable, I’ve destroyed my career, and I spend my days gathering sooty chicken eggs. A different fantasy: I fly to Cape Town. It is not as I remember it. It’s just a place, not another state of being. I am panicky and agitated. I cry without warning, and once I start, I can’t stop. It is not at all clear that my story will work out. Now I have lost my powers in that department, too. Dr. John and I make a plan to meet. But in this fantasy, I arrive at the restaurant and find it intimidating and confusing: I don’t know if I’m supposed to wait to be seated and I can’t get anyone’s attention. I’m afraid of being rude, wrong, American. When John arrives he is a stranger. I don’t know him and I don’t really like him, or worse, I can tell that he doesn’t like me. Our conversation is stilted. I know (and he suspects) that I have come all this way for an encounter that isn’t worth having, and a story that isn’t worth telling, at least not by me. I have made myself ridiculous. My losing streak continues.
Ariel Levy (The Rules Do Not Apply)
I knew it was just a colon and a closed bracket, but when he typed that, it looked like the cutest smiley on the internet.
Snehil Niharika (That’ll Be Our Song)