Completely Fed Up Quotes

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That so many of the well fed young television-watchers in the world's most powerful democracy should be so completely indifferent to the idea of self-government, so blankly uninterested in freedom of thought and the right to dissent, is distressing, but not too surprising. "Free as a bird", we say, and envy the winged creatures for their power of unrestricted movement in all the three dimensions. But alas, we forget the dodo. Any bird that has learned how to grub up a good living without being compelled to use its wings will soon renounce the privilege of flight and remain forever grounded.
Aldous Huxley (Brave New World Revisited)
Kaoru." "Hikaru? How long have you been there? "Kaoru, how do you feel about Haruhi?" "She's a funny little tanuki." "You don't have to lie to me. Sorry that I didn't realize it until now. I know you've been worrying about me, but you don't have to lie anymore. You like Haruhi too, don't you?" "What are you talking about, Hikaru? I don't--" "Then how about this? You know we talked about adopting Haruhi. That's the best solution. That way the three of us will always be together." "Are you completely stupid, Hikaru? Adopting Haruhi was just a joke. We're not playing house. It'd never happen. I'm so fed up with your childishness!!" "Kaoru..." "Besides, would you be happy being a threesome forever? You really want to share Haruhi with me? That's not what I want!" "Kaoru...?" "I won't share her with you or milord! Especially... ... If your willing to just give her up like that! I'll never step aside for you if that's the case!
Bisco Hatori (Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 11 (Ouran High School Host Club, #11))
I threw my head back and screamed bloody murder, completely fed up with everyone in my life.
Sylvia Day (Bared to You (Crossfire, #1))
The best customers are the ones who just have to buy a record on a Saturday, even if there's nothing they really want; unless they go home clutching a flat, square carrier bag, they feel uncomfortable. You can spot the vinyl addicts because after a while they get fed up with the rack they are flicking through, march over to a completely different section of the shop, pull a sleeve out from the middle somewhere, and come over to the counter; this is because they have been making a list of possible purchases in their head ("If I don't find anything in the next five minutes, that blues compilation I saw half an hour ago will have to do"), and suddenly sicken themselves with the amount of time they have wasted looking for something they don't really want.
Nick Hornby (High Fidelity)
The night following the reading, Gansey woke up to a completely unfamiliar sound and fumbled for his glasses. It sounded a little like one of his roommates was being killed by a possum, or possibly the final moments of a fatal cat fight. He wasn’t certain of the specifics, but he was sure death was involved. Noah stood in the doorway to his room, his face pathetic and long-suffering. “Make it stop,” he said. Ronan’s room was sacred, and yet here Gansey was, twice in the same weak, pushing the door open. He found the lamp on and Ronan hunched on the bed, wearing only boxers. Six months before, Ronan had gotten the intricate black tattoo that covered most of his back and snaked up his neck, and now the monochromatic lines of it were stark in the claustrophobic lamplight, more real than anything else in the room. It was a peculiar tattoo, both vicious and lovely, and every time Gansey saw it, he saw something different in the pattern. Tonight, nestled in an inked glen of wicked, beautiful flowers, was a beak where before he’d seen a scythe. The ragged sound cut through the apartment again. “What fresh hell is this?” Gansey asked pleasantly. Ronan was wearing headphones as usual, so Gansey stretched forward far enough to tug them down around his neck. Music wailed faintly into the air. Ronan lifted his head. As he did, the wicked flowers on his back shifted and hid behind his sharp shoulder blades. In his lap was the half-formed raven, its head tilted back, beak agape. “I thought we were clear on what a closed door meant,” Ronan said. He held a pair of tweezers in one hand. “I thought we were clear that night was for sleeping.” Ronan shrugged. “Perhaps for you.” “Not tonight. Your pterodactyl woke me. Why is it making that sound?” In response, Ronan dipped the tweezers into a plastic baggy on the blanket in front of him. Gansey wasn’t certain he wanted to know what the gray substance was in the tweezers’ grasp. As soon as the raven heard the rustle of the bag, it made the ghastly sound again—a rasping squeal that became a gurgle as it slurped down the offering. At once, it inspired both Gansey’s compassion and his gag reflex. “Well, this is not going to do,” he said. “You’re going to have to make it stop.” “She has to be fed,” Ronan replied. The ravel gargled down another bite. This time it sounded a lot like vacuuming potato salad. “It’s only every two hours for the first six weeks.” “Can’t you keep her downstairs?” In reply, Ronan half-lifted the little bird toward him. “You tell me.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
I missed you, Kitten,” he growled. Then his mouth crushed over mine, his kiss more filled with raw need than romantic welcome. That was fine; I felt the same way. Aside from my compulsive urge to run my hands over him to assure myself that he was really here, relief, happiness, and the most profound feeling of rightness zoomed through me, settling all the way to my core. I hadn’t realized how deeply I’d missed Bones until that very moment, hadn’t let myself acknowledge how everything felt off when I was apart from him. On some levels, it was frightening how much a part of me he’d become. It let me know just how much I’d crumble if anything happened to him. “Why didn’t you answer your mobile earlier?” Bones murmured once he lifted his head. “I tried you several times. Tried Mencheres, too. Even Tepesh. None of you answered. Scared the wits out of me, so I stowed away on a FedEx plane to make sure you were all right.” “You came all the way from Ohio because I didn’t answer the phone?” I was torn between laughter and disbelief. “God, Bones, that’s a little crazy.” And it was, except the part of me that had had images of his tombstone dancing in my head because he hadn’t answered his phone earlier was nodding in complete understanding. Despite all our protestations, we were so alike when it came to fear over the other’s safety, and I doubted we’d ever change. “Crazy,” I repeated, my voice roughening with the surge of emotion in me. “And have I told you lately. that your crazy side . . . is your sexiest side?” He chuckled before his mouth swooped back over mine in another dizzying kiss. Then he picked me up, brushing past Vlad and Mencheres without even a hello, though I doubted either of them was surprised.
Jeaniene Frost (This Side of the Grave (Night Huntress, #5))
School went exactly as Violet thought it would: weird. It wasn’t her best, and it wasn’t her worst, day ever. It was just weird. Jay was true to his word, deciding not to hold anything back. And it started the second they got out of the car, when he claimed her hand and refused to let go, even when Violet tugged and pulled to try to get it away from him. He ignored her mute protests and held on tight, smiling more to himself than to her, and paraded her right into the school like that. Not that they’d never held hands before, because they had. But this was entirely different, and Jay was hell-bent on making sure that everyone knew it. And just in case anyone wondered what the hand-holding actually meant, he made sure to clear things up for them by planting a big, albeit very satisfying, kiss on her lips, right in the middle of the hallway. Violet didn’t try to pull away from that; in fact, she was dismayed to find herself leaning into him, craving more, and not caring—at least at that moment—who might see them together. Unfortunately that person turned out to be Chelsea. Chelsea, of all people, along with Claire, who happened to walk up at very inopportune instant. “Well, well, well,” Chelsea said in an oh-so-innocent voice. “Look what we have here, Claire-bear. It’s old Jay and Violet.” The unconcealed smile was embedded deep in her voice. “Only, and correct me if I’m wrong, this looks a little more than friendly, don’t you think?” “I never kiss my friends like that,” Claire replied, blank-faced and serious, oblivious to sarcasm. Jay’s answer was to pull Violet closer, wrapping his arm around her waist. Violet cringed. Chelsea cocked her head at Claire. “I was just trying to make a point.” Claire looked confused. “What point?” “Seriously, Claire? That Violet and Jay are dating now.” She glanced away from poor confused Claire and flashed a gloating look to the couple in front of her. “It’s about time, by the way. I think everyone will thank you for putting us all out of our misery. I, for one, was completely fed up with watching you two lovesick puppies pining over each other. Seriously, it was disgusting.” She grabbed Claire by the sleeve of her snug, body-hugging hoodie and led her down the hallway, toward their first-period class. Violet watched in stunned silence, processing everything that Chelsea had said to them, as Claire bounded along in Chelsea’s commanding wake. Jay decided that it was his turn to gloat. “You pined for me?” he asked, stupid grin and all. Violet hit him in the arm. “Shut up!” She shook her head. “I’m pretty sure she was talking about you anyway.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
Far as I know, Legal Aid was invented to help poor people fight wrongs; [the criminals] are abusing the system, and the damned lawyers help them do it. They’re all sticking two fingers up at them who pay their taxes. And I’ll tell you sommat for free, Sir George, them who pays the taxes are eventually going to get fed up of it.
Andrew Barrett (The Third Rule - The Complete Story)
In Tibetan there’s an interesting word: ye tang che. The ye part means “totally, completely,” and the rest of it means “exhausted.” Altogether, ye tang che means totally tired out. We might say “totally fed up.” It describes an experience of complete hopelessness, of completely giving up hope. This is an important point. This is the beginning of the beginning. Without giving up hope—that there’s somewhere better to be, that there’s someone better to be—we will never relax with where we are or who we are.
Pema Chödrön (When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times (Shambhala Classics))
On Sunday morning I put on jeans, changed into a denim dress, then back into jeans again, feeling stupid. I can get into a mood where I annoy myself to no end. At the moment when I got completely fed up and stopped caring, I had on jeans and a white cotton shirt and silver earrings, so that's what I wore. And yes, I'll admit it, nice underwear.
Barbara Kingsolver (Animal Dreams)
To any woman out there who is fed up with trying the same thing over and over, I offer this suggestion. Instead of getting back on the treadmill “one more time,” try this. Alter your diet so that you eat no grain-based carbohydrate: no flour, no sugar, no bread, no pasta, and no high-fructose corn syrup. Then go to the gym and perform a workout of leg press, pull down, chest press, row and overhead press. Lift slowly and smoothly but with as much effort as possible. Go to complete fatigue, or as close to it as you can tolerate. Work out once, or at most, twice a week. Make sure your workouts last no longer than 20 minutes. Then sit back and watch what happens. —Doug McGuff, MD
Jonathan Bailor (The Calorie Myth: How to Eat More, Exercise Less, Lose Weight, and Live Better)
Daphne didn’t know much about the old woman, but apparently a young man had smiled at her on her twenty-first birthday and she’d gone straight to bed with an attack of the vapors and stayed there, still gently vaporizing, until she completely vaporized at the age of eighty-six, apparently because her body was fed up with having nothing to do.
Terry Pratchett (Nation)
Even though we get a lot of people into the shop, only a small percentage of them buy anything. The best customers are the ones who just have to buy a record on a Saturday, even if there’s nothing they really want; unless they go home clutching a flat, square carrier bag they feel uncomfortable. You can spot the vinyl addicts because after a while they get fed up with the rack they are flicking through, march over to a completely different section of the shop, pull a sleeve out from the middle somewhere, and come over to the counter; this is because they have been making a list of possible purchases in their head (‘If I don’t find anything in the next five minutes, that blues compilation I saw half an hour ago will have to do’), and suddenly sicken themselves with the amount of time they have wasted looking for something that they don’t really want. I know that feeling well (these are my people, and I understand them better than I understand anybody in the world): it is a prickly, clammy, panicky sensation, and you go out of the shop reeling. You walk much more quickly afterwards, trying to recapture the part of the day that has escaped, and quite often you have the urge to read the international section of a newspaper, or go to see a Peter Greenaway film, to consume something solid and meaty which will lie on top of the candyfloss worthlessness clogging up your head.
Nick Hornby (High Fidelity)
In high school, we barely brushed against Ogden Nash, Lewis Carroll, Edward Lear, or any of the other so-unserious writers who delight everyone they touch. This was, after all, a very expensive and important school. Instead, I was force-fed a few of Shakespeare's Greatest Hits, although the English needed translation, the broad comedy and wrenching drama were lost, and none of the magnificently dirty jokes were ever explained. (Incidentally, Romeo and Juliet, fully appreciated, might be banned in some U.S. states.) This was the Concordance again, and little more. So we'd read all the lines aloud, resign ourselves to a ponderous struggle, and soon give up the plot completely.
Bob Harris (Prisoner of Trebekistan: A Decade in Jeopardy!)
Yeah, that’s good. Work up a load for me,” Marco said. He reached over and groped my thigh as if he was offering me encouragement. Maybe he was. That physical contact certainly added some umph to my horniness. I realized that he was hungry for cum. Sure, he fed me more than my share last night, but I don’t recall him feeding. I think that made me even more aroused, knowing I was going to feed Marco directly from my cock. Oh shit, I was close from that thought alone. My hand moved faster up and down my shaft and I closed my eyes, moaning in ecstasy. “Oh fuck! I’m close, Marco,” I said, panting and grunting. Marco pulled the car over on the side of the expressway and leaned in close to me. “Yeah, cum for me, boy. You know I’m hungry for it, so make it good.
Nicholas Bella (House of Theoden: Season Two Complete Boxset (The New Haven Series))
Lillian had only been gone for three days, and Hannah was already stretched to her limit again. Cole was a voracious eater and fed every two hours, sometimes sooner, and she wasn’t sleeping more than a few hours at a time. Even when she slept, she wasn’t completely relaxed. She jolted awake at the slightest sound. Cole was in a bassinet next to our bed, and she obsessively woke up to check and see if he was breathing, terrified of SIDS.
Lucinda Berry (The Perfect Child)
Yet I also felt, for the first time, truly and sincerely pissed. It was enough already. Enough! I’d reached that point that comes in the life of most anxiety sufferers when, fed up by the constant waking torture, dejected and buckled but not yet crushed, they at last turn to their anxiety, to themselves, and say, “Listen here: Fuck you. Fuck you! I am sick and fucking tired of this bullshit. I refuse to let you win. I am not going to take it anymore. You are ruining my fucking life and you MUST FUCKING DIE!” Unfortunately, this approach rarely solves the problem. Anxiety doesn’t bend to absolutism. You have to take a subtler, more reasoned approach. But that doesn’t mean anger is totally unhelpful. Being pissed off is a strong cocktail for the will. It stiffens the spine. It strengthens resolve. It makes a person less willing to run away from the anxiety and more willing to walk into it, which you’re going to have to do, ultimately, if you don’t want to end up a complete agoraphobic. Anger breeds defiance, and defiance is inspiriting. It’s good to refuse to give in to anxiety. You just have to know how much you can take.
Daniel B. Smith (Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety)
We decided to attend to our community instead of asking our community to attend the church.” His staff started showing up at local community events such as sports contests and town hall meetings. They entered a float in the local Christmas parade. They rented a football field and inaugurated a Free Movie Night on summer Fridays, complete with popcorn machines and a giant screen. They opened a burger joint, which soon became a hangout for local youth; it gives free meals to those who can’t afford to pay. When they found out how difficult it was for immigrants to get a driver’s license, they formed a drivers school and set their fees at half the going rate. My own church in Colorado started a ministry called Hands of the Carpenter, recruiting volunteers to do painting, carpentry, and house repairs for widows and single mothers. Soon they learned of another need and opened Hands Automotive to offer free oil changes, inspections, and car washes to the same constituency. They fund the work by charging normal rates to those who can afford it. I heard from a church in Minneapolis that monitors parking meters. Volunteers patrol the streets, add money to the meters with expired time, and put cards on the windshields that read, “Your meter looked hungry so we fed it. If we can help you in any other way, please give us a call.” In Cincinnati, college students sign up every Christmas to wrap presents at a local mall — ​no charge. “People just could not understand why I would want to wrap their presents,” one wrote me. “I tell them, ‘We just want to show God’s love in a practical way.’ ” In one of the boldest ventures in creative grace, a pastor started a community called Miracle Village in which half the residents are registered sex offenders. Florida’s state laws require sex offenders to live more than a thousand feet from a school, day care center, park, or playground, and some municipalities have lengthened the distance to half a mile and added swimming pools, bus stops, and libraries to the list. As a result, sex offenders, one of the most despised categories of criminals, are pushed out of cities and have few places to live. A pastor named Dick Witherow opened Miracle Village as part of his Matthew 25 Ministries. Staff members closely supervise the residents, many of them on parole, and conduct services in the church at the heart of Miracle Village. The ministry also provides anger-management and Bible study classes.
Philip Yancey (Vanishing Grace: What Ever Happened to the Good News?)
Gregori stepped away from the huddled mass of tourists, putting distance between himself and the guide. He walked completely erect,his head high, his long hair flowing around him. His hands were loose at his sides, and his body was relaxed, rippling with power. "Hear me now, ancient one." His voice was soft and musical, filling the silence with beauty and purity. "You have lived long in this world, and you weary of the emptiness. I have come in anwer to your call." "Gregori.The Dark One." The evil voice hissed and growled the words in answer. The ugliness tore at sensitive nerve endings like nails on a chalkboard. Some of the tourists actually covered their ears. "How dare you enter my city and interfere where you have no right?" "I am justice,evil one. I have come to set your free from the bounaries holding you to this place." Gregori's voice was so soft and hypnotic that those listening edged out from their sanctuaries.It beckoned and pulled, so that none could resist his every desire. The black shape above their head roiled like a witch's cauldron. A jagged bolt of lightning slammed to earth straight toward the huddled group. Gregori raised a hand and redirected the force of energy away from the tourists and Savannah. A smile edged the cruel set of his mouth. "You think to mock me with display,ancient one? Do not attempt to anger what you do not understand.You came to me.I did not hunt you.You seek to threaten my lifemate and those I count as my friends.I can do no other than carry the justice of our people to you." Gregori's voice was so reasonable, so perfect and pure,drawing obedience from the most recalcitrant of criminals. The guide made a sound,somewhere between disbelief and fear.Gregori silenced him with a wave of his hand, needing no distractions. But the noise had been enough for the ancient one to break the spell Gregori's voice was weaving around him. The dark stain above their heads thrashed wildly, as if ridding itself ot ever-tightening bonds before slamming a series of lightning strikes at the helpless mortals on the ground. Screams and moans accompanied the whispered prayers, but Gregori stood his ground, unflinching. He merely redirected the whips of energy and light, sent them streaking back into the black mass above their heads.A hideous snarl,a screech of defiance and hatred,was the only warning before it hailed. Hufe golfball-sized blocks of bright-red ice rained down toward them. It was thick and horrible to see, the shower of frozen blood from the skies. But it stopped abruptly, as if an unseen force held it hovering inches from their heads. Gregori remained unchanged, impassive, his face a blank mask as he shielded the tourists and sent the hail hurtling back at their attacker.From out of the cemetery a few blocks from them, an army of the dead rose up. Wolves howled and raced along beside the skeletons as they moved to intercept the Carpathian hunter. Savannah. He said her name once, a soft brush in her mind. I've got it, she sent back instantly.Gregori had his hands full dealing with the abominations the vampire was throwing at him; he did't need to waste his energy protecting the general public from the apparition. She moved out into the open, a small, fragile figure, concentrating on the incoming threat. To those dwelling in the houses along the block and those driving in their cars, she masked the pack of wolves as dogs racing down the street.The stick=like skeletons, grotesque and bizarre, were merely a fast-moving group of people. She held the illusion until they were within a few feet of Gregori.Dropping the illusion, she fed every ounce of her energy and power to Gregori so he could meet the attack.
Christine Feehan (Dark Magic (Dark, #4))
Once Monica appeared wearing a borderline unprofessional dress, a bit too short, if you asked me. I could only think, Who does she think she is? She was straphanging around George Stephanopoulos, and I shooed her like a stray cat. She hissed another lame excuse. I was fed up with her games, but at this moment the president arrived, easily catching her sight (or scent—I don’t know which). They made small talk. She walked away. Her mission was complete; she had caught the president’s wandering eye. She turned back to ensure she had his attention—and flipped up her black-and-white print dress to reveal her blue thong.
Gary J. Byrne (Crisis of Character: A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience with Hillary, Bill, and How They Operate)
I decided early in graduate school that I needed to do something about my moods. It quickly came down to a choice between seeing a psychiatrist or buying a horse. Since almost everyone I knew was seeing a psychiatrist, and since I had an absolute belief that I should be able to handle my own problems, I naturally bought a horse. Not just any horse, but an unrelentingly stubborn and blindingly neurotic one, a sort of equine Woody Allen, but without the entertainment value. I had imagined, of course, a My Friend Flicka scenario: my horse would see me in the distance, wiggle his ears in eager anticipation, whinny with pleasure, canter up to my side, and nuzzle my breeches for sugar or carrots. What I got instead was a wildly anxious, frequently lame, and not terribly bright creature who was terrified of snakes, people, lizards, dogs, and other horses – in short, terrified of anything that he might reasonably be expected to encounter in life – thus causing him to rear up on his hind legs and bolt madly about in completely random directions. In the clouds-and-silver-linings department, however, whenever I rode him I was generally too terrified to be depressed, and when I was manic I had no judgment anyway, so maniacal riding was well suited to the mood. Unfortunately, it was not only a crazy decision to buy a horse, it was also stupid. I may as well have saved myself the trouble of cashing my Public Health Service fellowship checks, and fed him checks directly: besides shoeing him and boarding him – with veterinary requirements that he supplement his regular diet with a kind of horsey granola that cost more than a good pear brandy – I also had to buy him special orthopedic shoes to correct, or occasionaly correct, his ongoing problems with lameness. These shoes left Guicci and Neiman-Marcus in the dust, and, after a painfully aquired but profound understanding of why people shoot horse traders, and horses, I had to acknowledge that I was a graduate student, not Dr. Dolittle; more to the point, I was neither a Mellon nor a Rockefeller. I sold my horse, as one passes along the queen of spades, and started showing up for my classes at UCLA.
Kay Redfield Jamison (An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness)
Dagon left his office and made his way down to the infirmary. Adaos looked up when he entered. Eliana lay curled on her side, covered by a sheet. Though dark wavy tresses hid much of her face, she appeared to be sleeping deeply. “She still rests,” Adaos murmured. “Her injuries?” “All damage to her skeletal system has healed completely. Some of the damage to her musculature and skin has as well. The damage to her organs is still repairing.” “Did you give her a silna to accelerate her healing?” Even with the serum, it would take Segonian warriors longer to recuperate from such wounds. Adaos shook his head. “A silna wasn’t necessary. Her ability to repair and regenerate rivals that of the Sectas with their nanodocs.” “Amazing.” Dagon crouched next to the bed. Reaching out, he gently drew the hair back from Eliana’s face and tucked it behind her ear. “She’s too thin,” he whispered, noting the prominent cheekbones. Though the burns had healed, some of the cuts and bruising remained. “Did you provide her with sustenance before she fell asleep?” “Yes. I also fed her fluids and nutrition intravenously.” “She doesn’t like needles.” “She slept through it.” Eliana’s eyelashes fluttered. Her lids rose, revealing deep brown eyes bereft of the amber glow. She studied him a moment, then offered him a sleepy smile. One small hand burrowed out from under the covers and stretched toward him. Soft fingers came to rest on his cheek and stroked the stubble there. “Dagon.” Warmth unfurled in his chest at the tender touch. His pulse picked up its pace. “Eliana.
Dianne Duvall (The Segonian (Aldebarian Alliance, #2))
Two days later, I started my job. My job involved typing friendly letters full of happy lies to dying children. I wasn't allowed to touch my computer keyboard. I had to press the keys with a pair of Q-tips held by tweezers -- one pair of tweezers in each hand. I’m sorry -- that was a metaphor. My job involved using one of those photo booths to take strips of four photographs of myself. The idea was to take one picture good enough to put on a driver’s license, and to be completely satisfied with it, knowing I had infinite retries and all the time in the world, and that I was getting paid for it. I’d take the photos and show them to the boss, and he would help me think of reasons the photos weren't good enough. I’d fill out detailed reports between retakes. We weren't permitted to recycle the outtakes, so I had to scan them, put them on eBay, arrange a sale, and then ship them out to the buyer via FedEx. FedEx came once every three days, at either ten minutes till noon or five minutes after six. I’m sorry -- that was a metaphor, too. My job involved blowing ping-pong balls across long, narrow tables using three-foot-long bendy straws. At the far end of the table was a little wastebasket. My job was to get the ping-pong ball into that wastebasket, using only the bendy straw and my lungs. Touching the straw to the ping-pong ball was grounds for a talking-to. If the ping-pong ball fell off the side of the table, or if it missed the wastebasket, I had to get on my computer and send a formal request to commit suicide to Buddha himself. I would then wait patiently for his reply, which was invariably typed while very stoned, and incredibly forgiving. Every Friday, an hour before Quitting Time, I'd put on a radiation suit. I'd lift the wastebaskets full of ping-pong balls, one at a time, and deposit them into drawstring garbage bags. I'd tie the bags up, stack them all on a pallet, take them down to the incinerator in the basement, and watch them all burn. Then I'd fill out, by hand, a one-page form re: how the flames made me feel. "Sad" was an acceptable response; "Very Sad" was not.
Tim Rogers
Mrs. Alingsby was tall and weird and intense, dressed rather like a bird-of-paradise that had been out in a high gale, but very well connected. She had long straight hair which fell over her forehead, and sometimes got in her eyes, and she wore on her head a scarlet jockey-cap with an immense cameo in front of it. She hated all art that was earlier than 1923, and a considerable lot of what was later. In music, on the other hand, she was primitive, and thought Bach decadent: in literature her taste was for stories without a story, and poems without metre or meaning. But she had collected round her a group of interesting outlaws, of whom the men looked like women, and the women like nothing at all, and though nobody ever knew what they were talking about, they themselves were talked about. Lucia had been to a party of hers, where they all sat in a room with black walls, and listened to early Italian music on a spinet while a charcoal brazier on a blue hearth was fed with incense… Lucia’s general opinion of her was that she might be useful up to a point, for she certainly excited interest.
E.F. Benson (Complete Mapp and Lucia (The Mapp & Lucia Novels, #1-6))
Physician, professor, and author Atul Gawande tells of a doctor working at a nursing home who persuaded its administrator to bring in dogs, cats, parakeets, a colony of rabbits, and even a group of laying hens to be cared for by the residents. The results were significant. “The residents began to wake up and come to life. People who we had believed weren’t able to speak started speaking. … People who had been completely withdrawn and nonambulatory started coming to nurses’ station and saying, ‘I’ll take the dog for a walk.’ All the parakeets were adopted and named by the residents.”5 The use and need for psychotropic drugs for agitation dropped significantly, to 38 percent of the previous level. And “deaths fell 15 percent.” Why? The architect of these changes concluded, “I believe that the difference in death rates can be traced to the fundamental human need for a reason to live.”6 Gawande goes on to ask “why simply existing—why being merely housed and fed and safe and alive—seems empty and meaningless to us. What more is it that we need in order to feel that life is worthwhile? The answer … is that we all seek a cause beyond ourselves.
Timothy J. Keller (Making Sense of God: An Invitation to the Sceptical)
The term "stood" descriptively represents their obstinacy, and stiff-neckedness, wherein they harden themselves and make their excuses in words of malice, having become incorrigible in their ungodliness. For "to stand," in the figurative manner of Scripture expression, signifies to be firm and fixed: as in Romans 14:4, "To his own master he standeth or falleth: yea, he shall be holden up, for God is able to make him stand." Hence the word "column" is by the Hebrew derived from their verb "to stand," as is the word statue among the Latins. For this is the very self-excuse and self-hardening of the ungodly—their appearing to themselves to live rightly, and to shine in the eternal show of works above all others. With respect to the term "seat," to sit in the seat, is to teach, to act the instructor and teacher; as in Matthew 23:2, "The scribes sit in Moses' chair." They sit in the seat of pestilence, who fill the church with the opinions of philosophers, with the traditions of men, and with the counsels of their own brain, and oppress miserable consciences, setting aside, all the while, the word of God, by which alone the soul is fed, lives, and is preserved. Martin Luther, 1536-1546.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (The Treasury of David: The Complete Seven Volumes)
Also, asceticism is all right when it is the proper means of attaining some special end. It is when it produces eructations of spiritual pride, and satisfied vanity, that it is poisonous. The Greek word means an athlete; and the training of an athlete is not mortification of the body. Nor is there any rule which covers all circumstances. When men go "stale" a few days before the race, they are "taken off training," and fed with champagne. But that is part of the training. Observe, too, that all men go "stale" sooner or later; training is abnormal, and must be stopped as soon as its object is attained. Even so, it too often strains vital organs, especially the heart and lungs, so that few rowing "Blues" live to be 50. But worst of all is the effect on the temper! When it is permanent, and mistaken for a "Virtue," it poisons the very soil of the soul. The vilest weeds spring up; cruelty, narrowmindedness, arrogance—everything mean and horrible flowers in those who "Mortify the flesh." Incidentally, such ideas spawn the "Black Brother." The complete lack of humour, the egomaniac conceit, self-satisfaction, absence of all sympathy for others, the craving to pass their miseries on to more sensible people by persecuting them: these traits are symptomatic.
Aleister Crowley (Magick Without Tears)
Don’t cry Meg. It’s not that bad.” “It’s not that bad? Ha! I’m thirty years old, with two black eyes, a swollen nose, a big, honking, yellow knot on my forehead, and the haircut from hell. As if that isn’t enough, I had a transvestite in my bed this morning, my husband is a lying, cheating, cradle robbing, bastard, who at some point slept with my best friend.” Jack scooted over to the middle of the seat, and stopped listening to his head and wrapped his arms around her. Big mistake! From inside, four faces were pressed to the window. “My last orgasm-with a partner- was…hell I can’t remember when! I frequently knock myself out for entertainment purposes, I have little boobs, big feet, squishy panties, nosy neighbors and demon possessed fish. God hates me!” Jack held her tighter. “I have frequent flyer miles at the hospital. I fed my husband marijuana Ex-lax brownies and shoved a marble up his butt.” Jack pulled away to look at her and she was serious. And crying. Big, sad, alligator tears that made his heart swell. “My mother is a holy rolling, Catholic Dr. Ruth, complete with condoms and Rosary beads. I write about relationships and sex, both of which I suck at and I hired a Private Investigator to pimp me out.” Jack burst out laughing and she pushed him away and swatted his shoulder. “And now you’re laughing at me. Could things get any worse?
Amy Johnson
I am a Carpathian male, long in the world of darkness. It is true that I feel very little, that my nature revels in the hunt, in the kill. To overcome the wild beast we have to find our one mate, our other half, the light to our darkness. You are my light, Raven, my very life. That does not take away my obligations to my people. I must hunt those who prey on mortals, those who prey on our people. I cannot feel while I do so, or madness would be my fate. Kiss me and merge your mind with mine. Love me for who I am.” Raven’s body ached and burned. Needed. Hungered. His heart beat so strongly. His skin felt so temptingly hot, his muscles hard against her softness. Every touch of his lips sent a jolt of electricity sizzling through her. “I cannot lie to you,” he whispered. “You know my thoughts. You know the beast that dwells inside. I try to be gentle with you, to listen to you. Always that wildness breaks free, but you tame me. Raven, please, I need you. And you need me. Your body is weak, I can feel your hunger. Your mind is fragmented--allow me to heal you. Your body cries out for mine as mine does for yours. Kiss me, Raven. Do not give up on us.” Her blue eyes continued to search his face and then came to rest on his sensual mouth. A small sigh escaped. His lips hovered over hers, waited for her answer. It was in her eyes first, that moment of complete recognition. Tenderness rushed over her, and she caught his head in her hands. “I think I’m afraid I made you up, Mikhail. That something so much a part of me, so perfect, can’t be real. I don’t want you to be what I dreamed of and the nightmare to be real.” She brought his face the inch separating them and fastened her mouth to his. Thunder pounded in her ears, in his. White-hot heat streaked and danced, consumed her, consumed him. His hand touched hers gently, tentatively, found no resistance, and he merged them together so that his burning need became hers, so that the wild, unbridled passion in him fed hers. So that she knew he was real and would never leave her alone, could never leave her alone.
Christine Feehan (Dark Prince (Dark, #1))
It was a sort of car that seemed to have a faculty for motion with an absolute lack of any accompanying sound whatsoever. This was probably illusory; it must have been, internal combustion engines being what they are, tires being what they are, brakes and gears being what they are, even raspy street-surfacing being what it is. Yet the illusion outside the hotel entrance was a complete one. Just as there are silencers that, when affixed to automatic hand-weapons, deaden their reports, so it was as if this whole massive car body were encased in something of that sort. For, first, there was nothing out there, nothing in sight there. Then, as though the street-bed were water and this bulky black shape were a grotesque gondola, it came floating up out of the darkness from nowhere. And then suddenly, still with no sound whatsoever, there it was at a halt, in position. It was like a ghost-car in every attribute but the visual one. In its trancelike approach and halt, in its lightlessness, in its enshrouded interior, which made it impossible to determine (at least without lowering one's head directly outside the windows and peering in at nose-tip range) if it were even occupied at all, and if so by whom and by how many. You could visualize it scuttling fleetly along some overshadowed country lane at dead of night, lightless, inscrutable, unidentifiable, to halt perhaps beside some inky grove of trees, linger there awhile undetected, then glide on again, its unaccountable errand accomplished without witness, without aftermath. A goblin-car that in an earlier age would have fed folklore and rural legend. Or, in the city, you could visualize it sliding stealthily along some warehouse-blacked back alley, curving and squirming in its terrible silence, then, as it neared the mouth and would have emerged, creeping to a stop and lying there in wait, unguessed in the gloom. Lying here in wait for long hours, like some huge metal-cased predatory animal, waiting to pounce on its prey. Sudden, sharp yellow spurts of fangs, and then to whirl and slink back into anonymity the way it came, leaving the carcass of its prey huddled there and dead. Who was there to know? Who was there to tell? ("The Number's Up")
Cornell Woolrich
A man decides to be a lawyer and spends years studying law and finally puts out his shingle. He soon finds something in his temperament that makes it impossible for him to make good as a lawyer. He is a complete failure. He is 50 years old, was admitted to the bar when he was 30, and 20 years later, he has not been able to make a living as a lawyer. As a lawyer, he is a failure. A businessman buys a business and tries to operate it. He does everything that he knows how to do but just cannot make it go. Year after year the ledger shows red, and he is not making a profit. He borrows what he can, has a little spirit and a little hope, but that spirit and hope die and he goes broke. Finally, he sells out, hopelessly in debt, and is left a failure in the business world. A woman is educated to be a teacher but just cannot get along with the other teachers. Something in her constitution or temperament will not allow her to get along with children or young people. So after being shuttled from one school to another, she finally gives up, goes somewhere and takes a job running a stapling machine. She just cannot teach and is a failure in the education world. I have known ministers who thought they were called to preach. They prayed and studied and learned Greek and Hebrew, but somehow they just could not make the public want to listen to them. They just couldn’t do it. They were failures in the congregational world. It is possible to be a Christian and yet be a failure. This is the same as Israel in the desert, wandering around. The Israelites were God’s people, protected and fed, but they were failures. They were not where God meant them to be. They compromised. They were halfway between where they used to be and where they ought to be. And that describes many of the Lord’s people. They live and die spiritual failures. I am glad God is good and kind. Failures can crawl into God’s arms, relax and say, “Father, I made a mess of it. I’m a spiritual failure. I haven’t been out doing evil things exactly, but here I am, Father, and I’m old and ready to go and I’m a failure.” Our kind and gracious heavenly Father will not say to that person, “Depart from me—I never knew you,” because that person has believed and does believe in Jesus Christ. The individual has simply been a failure all of his life. He is ready for death and ready for heaven. I wonder if that is what Paul, the man of God, meant when he said: [No] other foundation can [any] man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he should receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire (1 Cor. 3:11-15). I think that’s what it means, all right. We ought to be the kind of Christian that cannot only save our souls but also save our lives. When Lot left Sodom, he had nothing but the garments on his back. Thank God, he got out. But how much better it would have been if he had said farewell at the gate and had camels loaded with his goods. He could have gone out with his head up, chin out, saying good riddance to old Sodom. How much better he could have marched away from there with his family. And when he settled in a new place, he could have had “an abundant entrance
A.W. Tozer (The Crucified Life: How To Live Out A Deeper Christian Experience)
I'd like you to see that we are interfering too drastically. WE can't just assume so completely that Azerbaijan is in the hands of dangerous men and vicious Bolsheviks. I suppose it's all in the way you see Iran. I'd like you to see that Iranians are just as serious about their politics as we are: perhaps more so. The Iranian is a vigorous individual with definite ideas about the right and wrong done to him. It's easy for these journalists to laugh at the idea of political spontaneity among the Iranians because they look on these people as dirty, stupid, childlike natives who stare open-mouthed while the wonders of the west are offered to them. …... They are not like that at all. They want proper government, the same as anybody else. They have certainly tried hard enough to get it, but they haven't had a chance. We have done a great deal to prevent them getting real government. It may shock you, but we have always wanted corrupt administrations. Since the Reuter concessions sixty years ago we have begaved like American gangsters using threats, money, and even war to extort privileges and concessions which amounted to owning the country. At one time we had complete control over the administration, over the entire wealth of the land, the banks, and the army. It's rather silly to say the Iranians are un-political when you realize how quickly we had to hand back those concessions. This country rose to a man against us. We gave in hastily, but we managed to cling desperately to our oil concessions. [MacGregor] I think you are worrying yourself unduly [Essex]. We can't be too bad an influence. We may not be reformers ourselves... but we do not fight people who are really trying to improve the country. You must admit that we did not resist the last Shah, and he certainly reformed the place as best as it could be reformed. [MacGregor] It has become a habit to pass all compliments to Reza Shah,...even though we dethroned him. All reforms and modernizations are supposed to be his idea. Yet he simply took over the power of a popular revolution which we resisted at the time. He took power as a despot and he was little better than his predecessors. These people are getting fed up with despots. They obviously want to achieve some kind of better government, particularly in Azerbaijan.… That revolt in Azerbaijan doesn't have to be a Russian idea. It is really the continuation of five or six revolutions, all of them trying to get rid of corrupt governments. This time they seen to be succeeding. Our idea is to stop it.... Every level of government in Iran is corrupt from top to bottom, including the court, the police, and the parliament. Government is organized corruption. The ministers prey on the population like buzzards; they arragne taxes, laws, finances, famines; everything to the purpose of making money. The last Shah might have wiped out some of it; but that meant he became the biggest grafter of them all. He controlled the little fellows, and took the best of everything for himself. By the end of his rule he owned about a fifth of this entire country. He is not the hero we think he is, and his police regime was as brutal as anything the Germans had. Though we co-operated with him, he was a little tougher than the others and he always held out for more. Once, he threatened to wipe out our oil concession but we brought him off. He could always be bought off, like all the other grafters.
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
Altogether, ye tang che means totally tired out. We might say “totally fed up.” It describes an experience of complete hopelessness, of completely giving up hope. This is an important point. This is the beginning of the beginning. Without giving up hope—that there’s somewhere better to be, that there’s someone better to be—we will never relax with where we are or who we are.
Pema Chödrön (When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times (Shambhala Classics))
And don’t get me started on Canadians. It’s a whole thing. Remember when the feds busted in on that Mormon polygamist cult in Texas a few years back? And the dozens of wives were paraded in front of the camera? And they all had this long mouse-colored hair with strands of gray, no hairstyle to speak of, no makeup, ashy skin, Frida Kahlo facial hair, and unflattering clothes? And on cue, the Oprah audience was shocked and horrified? Well, they’ve never been to Seattle. There are two hairstyles here: short gray hair and long gray hair. You go into a salon asking for hair color, and they flap their elbows and cluck, “Oh, goody, we never get to do color!” But what really happened was I came up here and had four miscarriages. Try as I might, it’s hard to blame that one on Nigel Mills-Murray. Oh, Paul. That last year in L.A. was just so horrible. I am so ashamed of my behavior. I’ve carried it with me to this day, the revulsion at how vile I became, all for a stupid house. I’ve never stopped obsessing about it. But just before I completely self-immolate, I think about Nigel Mills-Murray. Was I really so bad that I deserved to have three years of my life destroyed for some rich prick’s practical joke? So I had some cars towed, yes. I made a gate out of trash doorknobs. I’m an artist. I won a MacArthur grant, for fuck’s sake. Don’t I get a break? I’ll be watching TV and see Nigel Mills-Murray’s name at the end. I’ll go nuts inside. He gets to keep creating, and I’m the one who’s still in pieces?
Maria Semple (Where'd You Go, Bernadette)
Most of our readers will remember, that, until within a very few years past, there was a kind of iron cage in the wall of the Fleet Prison, within which was posted some man of hungry looks, who, from time to time, rattled a money-box, and exclaimed in a mournful voice, ‘Pray, remember the poor debtors; pray remember the poor debtors.’ The receipts of this box, when there were any, were divided among the poor prisoners; and the men on the poor side relieved each other in this degrading office. Although this custom has been abolished, and the cage is now boarded up, the miserable and destitute condition of these unhappy persons remains the same. We no longer suffer them to appeal at the prison gates to the charity and compassion of the passersby; but we still leave unblotted the leaves of our statute book, for the reverence and admiration of succeeding ages, the just and wholesome law which declares that the sturdy felon shall be fed and clothed, and that the penniless debtor shall be left to die of starvation and nakedness. This is no fiction.
Charles Dickens (The Complete Works of Charles Dickens)
We have no choice, my love. Mikhail was as gentle as he knew how to be. We must go to ground. Raven closed her eyes, panic welled up. Mikhail, I love you. Her words were wrapped in sorrow, in acceptance. Not of the sanctuary of the earth, but of inevitable death. She wanted to do anything he needed, but this was the one thing beyond her capabilities. The earth could not swallow her alive. Mikhail could not waste time on arguments. Feed my command with your remaining strength. Let it flow from you into me, or I will be unable to open the earth. Raven would do anything to save him. If that meant giving him her last ounce of strength, so be it. Without reservation, with complete love and generosity, Raven fed his command. Beside him, the very earth opened, parted, as if a large cube had been neatly removed from the earth. The grave lay open, fresh and cool, its healing soil beckoning Mikhail, its damp darkness sending horror and sheer terror spiraling through Raven. She tried valiantly to keep her mind calm. You go first. She knew she could not follow him. She also knew it was imperative that he believe she would, otherwise there was no way to save Mikhail. In the space of a heartbeat Mikhail rolled, with Raven locked in his arms, taking both of them over the edge into the waiting arms of the earth. He felt her silent scream echoing in his own mind. He steeled his heart against the violent fear in her and with his last ounce of strength concentrated on closing the earth over them. Being a shadow in her mind made it easy to read her intentions. She would never have gone with him.
Christine Feehan (Dark Prince (Dark, #1))
My dad always told me that there are three types of humans on this planet. First there’s the Sheep. The everyday types who live in denial—spoon-fed by the morning news, chewed up by another monotonous workday, and spit back out across the urban streets of the world like a mouthful of funky meatloaf that’s been rotting in the back of the fridge. Basically, the Sheep are the defenseless majority who are completely unwilling to acknowledge the inevitability of real danger, and trust the system to take care of them. Next you’ve got your Wolves. The bad guys who abide by no societal laws whatsoever but are good at pretending when it suits them. These are the thieves, murderers, rapists, and politicians, who feed on the Sheep until they’re thrown in prison, or better yet, belly up in a landfill alongside sheaves of your grandma’s itchy hand-knit Christmas socks. The ones you ritualistically blow up every year with an M80. And lastly, you have people like us. The McCrackens. The Herders of the world. Sure, our kind may look a lot like Wolves—large fangs, sharp claws, and the capacity for violence—but what sets us apart from the rest is that we represent the balance between the two. We can navigate the flock freely, with the ability to protect or disown as we see fit. My dad says that we’re the select few with the power of choice, and when real danger arises, we’ll be the ones who survive—and not just because we own a 357 Magnum, three glock G19’s, and a Mossberg pump-action shotgun, but because we’ve been prepping, in every possible badass way, since as long as I can remember, for the inevitable collapse of society as we know it.
Neal Shusterman (Dry)
While I still don’t wanna hear how everything is hunky-dory like a lot of those disco people and Barry Manilows are trying to sell us, I’m just completely fed up with cheap stupid nihilism especially when it starts acting trendy. I know society is sick and life is getting more complicated by the second, but if all you’ve got to say is get fucked life sucks you stink I stink who cares I’m bored whip me beat me kick me there's nothing else to do then I think you and everybody else would be a lot better off if you just kept your fucking mouth shut in the first place, not to mention your self-destructive habits to yourself instead of parading them around like The Red Badge of Courage or something. And this isn’t like If You Can’t Say Anything Nice Don’t Say Anything At All, it's more like… why restate what's been said and refuted already?
Lester Bangs (Main Lines, Blood Feasts, and Bad Taste: A Lester Bangs Reader)
The New England wilderness March 1, 1704 Temperature 10 degrees The Indian next to Mr. Williams interrupted him roughly. “We kill. You tell.” Mr. Williams ceased to pray. “Joe Alexander escaped last night,” he said. “If anyone else tries to escape, they will burn the rest of us alive.” Burn alive? Burn innocent women and children because one young man flew from their grasp? Her Indian stood some distance away amid the other warriors. He was now wearing a vivid blue cloth coat of European design. In one hand he held his French flintlock, and over his shoulder hung his bow and a full otter-skin quiver--actually, the entire dead otter, complete with face and feet. His coat hung open to show a belt around his waist, from which hung his tomahawk and scalping knife. His skin was not red after all, but the color of autumn. Burnished chestnut. His shaved head gleamed. He looked completely and utterly savage. He might sorrow for a dead brother warrior, but grief would make him more likely to burn a captive, not less likely. Mercy imagined kindling around her feet, a stake at her back, her flesh charring like a side of beef. Beside her, Eben seemed almost to faint. Mercy had the odd thought that she, an eleven-year-old girl, might be stronger than he, a seventeen-year-old boy. The English were silent, entirely able to believe they might be burned. The first person to move was Mercy’s Indian. Sharply raising one hand, bringing the eyes of all upon him, he pointed to Mercy Carter. She was frozen with horror. His finger beckoned. There could be no mistake. The meaning was come. There was no speech and no movement from a hundred captives and three hundred enemies. It was the French Mercy hated at that moment. How could they stand by and let other whites be burned alive? She had no choice but to go to him. She set Daniel down. Perhaps they would spare Daniel. Perhaps only she was to be burned. She forced herself to keep her chin up, her eyes steady and her steps even. How could she be afraid of going where her five-year-old brother had gone first? O Tommy, she thought, rest in the Lord. Perhaps you are with Mother now. Perhaps I will see you in a moment. She did not want to die. Her footsteps crunched on the snow. Nobody spoke. Nobody moved. The Indian handed Mercy a slab of cornmeal bread, and then beckoned to Daniel, who cried, “Oh, good, I’m so hungry!” and came running, his happy little face tilted in a smile at the Indian who fed him. “Mercy said we’d eat later,” Daniel confided in the Indian. The English trembled in their relief and the French laughed.
Caroline B. Cooney (The Ransom of Mercy Carter)
Mangle was meant to become the Toy Foxy, but rapidly evolved into a favorite connected with toddlers who could pull him separate piece by portion. The staff might put him back together each day; however they soon grew fed up with this and decided to simply leave them as a pulling-apart toy for the kids. They dubbed him " Mangle". Presently theorized simply by fans to be the animatronic behind.   Balloon
Storyville Books (The NEW Complete Guide to: Five Nights at Freddy Game Cheats AND Guide with Tips & Tricks, Strategy, Walkthrough, Secrets, Download the game, Codes, Gameplay and MORE!)
After dinner Marlboro Man and I sat on the sofa in our dimly lit house and marveled at the new little life before us. Her sweet little grunts…her impossibly tiny ears…how peacefully she slept, wrinkled and warm, in front of us. We unwrapped her from her tight swaddle, then wrapped her again. Then we unwrapped her and changed her diaper, then wrapped her again. Then we put her in the crib for the night, patted her sweet belly, and went to bed ourselves, where we fell dead asleep in each other’s arms, blissful that the hard part was behind us. A full night’s sleep was all I needed, I reckoned, before I felt like myself again. The sun would come out tomorrow…I was sure of it. We were sleeping soundly when I heard the baby crying twenty minutes later. I shot out of bed and went to her room. She must be hungry, I thought, and fed her in the glider rocking chair before putting her in her crib and going back to bed myself. Forty-five minutes after my head hit the pillow, I was awakened again to the sound of crying. Looking at the clock, I was sure I was having a bad dream. Bleary-eyed, I stumbled to her room again and repeated the feeding ritual. Hmmm, I thought as I tried to keep from nodding off in the chair. This is strange. She must have some sort of problem, I imagined--maybe that cowlick or colic I’d heard about in a movie somewhere? Goiter or gouter or gout? Strange diagnoses pummeled my sleep-deprived brain. Before the sun came up, I’d gotten up six more times, each time thinking it had to be the last, and if it wasn’t, it might actually kill me. I woke up the next morning, the blinding sun shining in my eyes. Marlboro Man was walking in our room, holding our baby girl, who was crying hysterically in his arms. “I tried to let you sleep,” he said. “But she’s not having it.” He looked helpless, like a man completely out of options. My eyes would hardly open. “Here.” I reached out, motioning Marlboro Man to place the little suckling in the warm spot on the bed beside me. Eyes still closed, I went into autopilot mode, unbuttoning my pajama top and moving my breast toward her face, not caring one bit that Marlboro Man was standing there watching me. The baby found what she wanted and went to town. Marlboro Man sat on the bed and played with my hair. “You didn’t get much sleep,” he said. “Yeah,” I said, completely unaware that what had happened the night before had been completely normal…and was going to happen again every night for the next month at least. “She must not have been feeling great.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
Do something on your own hook. You men in Parliament are so much like sheep! If one jumps at a gap, all go after him, — and then you are penned into lobbies, and then you are fed, and then you are fleeced. I wish I were in Parliament. I’d get up in the middle and make such a speech. You all seem to me to be so much afraid of one another that you don’t quite dare to speak out.
Anthony Trollope (Complete Works of Anthony Trollope)
Although this custom has been abolished, and the cage is now boarded up, the miserable and destitute condition of these unhappy persons remains the same. We no longer suffer them to appeal at the prison gates to the charity and compassion of the passersby; but we still leave unblotted the leaves of our statute book, for the reverence and admiration of succeeding ages, the just and wholesome law which declares that the sturdy felon shall be fed and clothed, and that the penniless debtor shall be left to die of starvation and nakedness. This is no fiction. Not a week passes over our head, but, in every one of our prisons for debt, some of these men must inevitably expire in the slow agonies of want, if they were not relieved by their fellow-prisoners.
Charles Dickens (The Complete Works of Charles Dickens)
Isn’t everyone angry? If they’re not, they should be,” Robert said. “Not like you. You’re a fucking rageaholic. You don’t have to be, you know.” Robert saw a glimmer of something. Ted had lots to be angry about, but he was calm. “What about you? Weren’t you ever angry?” Ted nodded. “Yes, I spent the first forty-four years of my life in a rage.” “What changed? You’re not like that now.” “I realized that it was killing me, almost literally, but surely figuratively. Anger is an addiction, just like all those other things we do.” “That’s crazy. Anger isn’t a substance. You can’t be addicted to it.” “You just keep telling yourself that, Bob.” Ted’s use of the diminutive jarred Robert. For a moment he felt a swell of rage and wanted to punch Ted. But Ted just stood there, calmly, not quite smiling, but relaxed. The urge to hit him deflated. “Okay, so supposing that, as you say, I am addicted to anger? What do you mean?” “It’s the same thing as being addicted to booze, or blow. When you’re angry, you don’t have to see the sadness in your kid’s face or hear your wife sighing as she thinks about what a mistake it was to marry you. When you’re angry it consumes everything, just like the booze did for you or the coke did for me.” Robert had the sense of a door cracking open, and just for a moment, a tantalizing vista beyond. “So . . . how did you get past it? What is it like to be . . . calm?” “What is it like? It’s fucking peaceful is what it is. It’s like leaving stormy seas and coming into a safe harbor. The noise is gone. The red haze is gone. Even though my wife left me, she was the catalyst. A while after she remarried she came to visit, to give us both closure, I guess. I saw something in her I barely recognized. After all the crap I did to her, she wasn’t angry; she was just happy to be on to a new life. We had fed each other’s rage but now she was happy. It completely threw me, but it made me think. “It was hard, because once I stopped being angry I had to learn new habits and I had to face up to everything my rage destroyed.” “So . . . why did you do it? It sounds painful.” “It is painful, but listen, you stupid fuck. Just because it’s painful doesn’t mean it’s not worth doing. Yes, it was hard. It hurt to own up to what I had done to my wife and child. The reward is that I’m alive now in a way I couldn’t be when I was doing coke and angry all the time.
Jennifer Lesher (Raising John)
The Federal Reserve has always advertised itself as being above politics, impervious to outside influence. This is, of course, nonsense. The chairman is appointed to a four-year term by the president of the United States and must be confirmed by the Senate. Members of the Board of Governors are appointed to staggered fourteen-year terms by the president and are also approved by the Senate. It is common for governors to be appointed to an unfilled term if someone resigns before the end of their tenure. But the governors cannot be removed for their policy views—not by the chairman, or the president, or Congress. They have complete and total immunity.
Danielle DiMartino Booth (Fed Up: An Insider's Take on Why the Federal Reserve is Bad for America)
Thomas then touched Anna’s stomach and his hand remained there until Anna fell asleep. The next passing weeks brought more changes to Anna’s body. Her small stomach started to grow. Thomas Jr. got more teeth and poor Jo looked wounded and worn out. Anna joined her in Jo’s room for a feeding and watched her reaction as Thomas Jr. fed. What once had been a tender moment between woman and baby, the gift of nourishment, was now a time of discomfort for Jo. “This is the tough part sometimes,” Jo said. “When they get their teeth early.” For a week now Thomas had been offering Thomas Jr. food, mashing up vegetables and other foods. The baby took to some. Others he completely rejected. The only thing he would actually take was Jo’s breast milk. And Jo, fulfilling all her duties, stuck it out with Thomas Jr., making sure the baby was fed and happy. After one of the feedings, Anna caught a glimpse of
Claire Charlins (West For Love (A Mail Order Romance, #1))
Have you seen Sam?” Mary asked. “What do you want with Sam?” “I can’t take care of all those littles with just John to help me.” Howard shrugged. “Who asked you to?” That was too much. Mary was tall and strong. Howard, though a boy, was smaller. Mary took two steps toward him, pushing her face right into his. “Listen, you little worm. If I don’t take care of those kids, they’ll die. Do you understand that? There are babies in there who need to be fed and need to be changed, and I seem to be the only one who realizes it. And there are probably more little kids still in their homes, all alone, not knowing what’s happening, not knowing how to feed themselves, scared to death.” Howard took a step back, tentatively lifted the bat, then let it fall. “What am I supposed to do?” he whined. “You? Nothing. Where’s Sam?” “He took off.” “What do you mean, he took off?” “I mean him and Quinn and Astrid took off.” Mary blinked, feeling stupid and slow. “Who’s in charge?” “You think just because Sam likes to play the big hero every couple years that makes him the guy in charge?” Mary had been on the bus two years ago when the driver, Mr. Colombo, had had his heart attack. She’d had her head in a book, not paying attention, but she had looked up when she felt the bus swerve. By the time she had focused, Sam was guiding the bus onto the shoulder of the road. In the two years that followed, Sam had been so quiet and so modest and so not involved in the social life of the school that Mary had sort of forgotten that moment of heroism. Most people had. And yet she hadn’t even been surprised when it was Sam who had stepped up during the fire. And she had somehow assumed that if anyone was going to be in charge, it would be Sam. She found herself angry with him for not being here now: she needed help. “Go get Orc,” Mary said. “I don’t tell Orc what to do, bitch.” “Excuse me?” she snapped. “What did you just call me?” Howard gulped. “Didn’t mean nothing, Mary.” “Where is Orc?” “I think he’s sleeping.” “Wake him up. I need some help. I can’t stay awake any longer. I need at least two kids who have experience babysitting. And then I need diapers and bottles and nipples and Cheerios and lots of milk.” “Why am I going to do all that?” Mary didn’t have an answer. “I don’t know, Howard,” she said. “Maybe because you’re really not a complete jerk? Maybe you’re really a decent human being?” That earned her a skeptical look and a derisive snort. “Look, kids will do what Orc says,” Mary said. “They’re scared of him. All I’m asking is for Orc to act like Orc.” Howard thought this over. Mary could almost see the wheels spinning in his head. “Forget it,” she said. “I’ll talk to Sam when he gets back.” “Yeah, he’s the big hero, isn’t he?” Howard said, dripping sarcasm. “But hey, where is he? You see him around? I don’t see him around.” “Are you going to help or not? I have to get back.” “All right. I’ll get your stuff, Mary. But you better remember who helped you. You’re working for Orc and me.” “I’m taking care of little kids,” Mary said. “If I’m working for anyone, it’s for them.” “Like I say, you remember who was there when you needed them.” Howard turned on his heel and swaggered away.
Michael Grant
Now the muted setting made sense: a neutral setting, soothing light, a book. The deep magic fed the beast within him. It took a monumental effort of will to restrain it. With the flare so close, Curran was a powder keg with a short fuse. I had to be careful not to light that fuse. Nobody outside the Pack, except for Andrea, knew I was here. He could kill me right now and they would never find my body. We shared a silence for a long moment. Magic blossomed, filling me with giddy energy. The short waves again. They would ebb in a minute, and then I’d be exhausted. Guilt gnawed at me. He could control himself in my presence, but I apparently couldn’t control myself in his. “Curran, up on the roof . . . That is, my brakes don’t work sometimes.” He leaned forward, suddenly animated. “Do I smell an apology?” “Yes. I said things I shouldn’t have. I regret saying them.” “Does this mean you’re throwing yourself at my feet?” “No. I pretty much meant that part. I just wish I could’ve put it in less offensive terms.” I glanced at him and saw a lion. He didn’t change, his face was still fully human, but there was something disturbingly lionlike in the way he sat, completely focused on me, as if ready to pounce. Stalking me without moving a muscle. The primordial urge to freeze shackled my limbs. I just sat there, unable to look away. A slow, lazy, carnivorous smile touched Curran’s lips. “Not only will you sleep with me, but you will say ‘please.’” I stared at him, shocked. The smile widened. “You will say ‘please’ before and ‘thank you’ after.” Nervous laughter bubbled up. “You’ve gone insane. All that peroxide in your hair finally did your brain in, Goldilocks.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Burns (Kate Daniels, #2))
Richard Kay Richard Kay became friends with Diana, Princess of Wales, through his job as royal correspondent for London’s Daily Mail. After her separation in 1992, he used his knowledge to give a penetrating and unique insight into Diana’s troubled life, and they remained friends until the end. Richard is now diary editor or the Daily Mail and lives in London with his wife and three children. Over the years, I saw her at her happiest and in her darkest moments. There were moments of confusion and despair when I believed Diana was being driven by the incredible pressures made on her almost to the point of destruction. She talked of being strengthened by events, and anyone could see how the bride of twenty had grown into a mature woman, but I never found her strong. She was as unsure of herself at her death as when I first talked to her on that airplane, and she wanted reassurance about the role she was creating for herself. In private, she was a completely different person form the manicured clotheshorse that the public’s insatiable demand for icons had created. She was natural and witty and did a wonderful impression of the Queen. This was the person, she told me, that she would have been all the time if she hadn’t married into the world’s most famous family. What she hated most of all was being called “manipulative” and privately railed against those who used the word to describe her. “They don’t even know me,” she would say bitterly, sitting cross-legged on the floor of her apartment in Kensington Palace and pouring tea from a china pot. It was this blindness, as she saw it, to what she really was that led her seriously to consider living in another country where she hoped she would be understood. The idea first emerged in her mind about three years before her death. “I’ve got to find a place where I can have peace of mind,” she said to me. She considered France, because I was near enough to stay in close touch with William and Harry. She thought of America because she--naively, it must be said--saw it as a country so brimming over with glittery people and celebrities that she would be able to “disappear.” She also thought of South Africa, where her brother, Charles, made a home, and even Australia, because it was the farthest place she could think of from the seat of her unhappiness. But that would have separated her form her sons. Everyone said she would go anywhere, do anything, to have her picture taken, but in my view the truth was completely different. A good day for her was one where her picture was not taken and the paparazzi photographers did not pursue her and clamber over her car. “Why are they so obsessed with me?” she would ask me. I would try to explain, but I never felt she fully understood. Millions of women dreamed of changing places with her, but the Princess that I knew yearned for the ordinary humdrum routine of their lives. “They don’t know how lucky they are,” she would say. On Saturday, just before she was joined by Dodi Al Fayed for their last fateful dinner at the Ritz in Pairs, she told me how fed up she was being compared with Camilla. “It’s all so meaningless,” she said. She didn’t say--she never said--whether she thought Charles and Camilla should marry. Then, knowing that as a journalist I often work at weekends, she said to me, “Unplug your phone and get a good night’s sleep.
Larry King (The People's Princess: Cherished Memories of Diana, Princess of Wales, from Those Who Knew Her Best)
Hunter’s entire body writhed and squirmed. The side of his head was partly gone. A creature, like some monstrous melding of insect and eel, protruded from Hunter’s shoulder and as they stood there rooted in horror it took a vicious bite of Hunter’s flesh. Taylor was suddenly gone. Dekka’s face was grim, her eyes wet. “I tried . . . ,” Hunter said. He held up his hands, mimicked pressing them against his head. “It didn’t work.” “I can do it,” Sam said softly. “I’m scared,” Hunter said. “I know.” “It’s ’cause I killed Harry. God has to punish me. I tried to be good but I’m bad.” “No, Hunter,” Sam said gently. “You paid your dues. You fed the kids. You’re a good guy.” “I’m a good hunter.” “The best.” “I don’t know what’s happening. What’s happening, Sam?” “It’s just the FAYZ, Hunter,” Sam said. “Can the angels find me here so I can go to heaven?” Sam didn’t answer. It was Dekka who spoke. “Do you still remember any prayers, Hunter?” The insectlike creature was almost completely emerged from Hunter’s shoulder. Legs were becoming visible. It had wings folded against its body. It looked like a gigantic ant, or wasp, but silver and brass and covered with a sheen of slime. It was emerging like a chicken breaking out of an egg. Being born. And as the creature was born, it fed on Hunter’s numbed body. Jerky movements beneath Hunter’s shirt testified to more of the larvae emerging. “Do you remember ‘now I lay me down to sleep’?” Dekka asked. “Now I lay me down to sleep,” Hunter said. “I pray the Lord my soul to keep.” Sam raised his hands, palms out. “If I should die—” Twin beams of light hit Hunter’s chest and face. His shirt caught fire. Flesh melted. He was dead before he could feel anything. Sam played the light up and down Hunter’s body. The smell was sickening. Jack wanted to look away, but how could he? Sudden darkness as Sam terminated the light. Sam lowered his hands to his side. They stood there in the darkness. Jack breathed through his mouth, trying not to smell the burned flesh. Then they heard a sound. Many sounds. Sam raised his hands and pale light glowed. Hunter was all but gone. The things that had been inside him were still there.
Michael Grant (Plague (Gone, #4))
Google’s acquisition of an R & D company closely linked to the military instigated a round of speculation. Many suggested that Google, having bought a military robotics firm, might become a weapons maker. Nothing could have been further from the truth. In his discussions with the technologists at the companies he was acquiring, Rubin sketched out a vision of robots that would safely complete tasks performed by delivery workers at UPS and FedEx.
John Markoff (Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots)
The phrase “conflict of interest” barely begins to describe Tom Lanphier’s rabidly partisan approach to advising one of the most powerful congressional allies of the American military-industrial complex. Yet he was in good company. Air force intelligence was crammed with highly competitive analysts who believed they were in a zero-sum game not only with the Russians but also with the army and the navy. If they could make the missile-gap theory stick, America would have to respond with a crash ICBM program of its own. The dominance of the Strategic Air Command in the U.S. military hierarchy would be complete—and Convair would profit mightily. It is hardly surprising that the information Lanphier fed to Symington and Symington to every politician and columnist who would listen was authoritative, alarming, and completely, disastrously wrong. Symington’s “on the record” projection of Soviet nuclear strength, given to Senate hearings on the missile gap in late 1959, was that by 1962 they would have three thousand ICBMs. The actual number was four. Symington’s was a wild guess, an extrapolation based on extrapolations by air force generals who believed it was only responsible to take Khrushchev at his word when, for example, he told journalists in Moscow that a single Soviet factory was producing 250 rockets a year, complete with warheads. Symington knew what he was doing. He wanted to be president and believed rightly that missile-gap scaremongering had helped the Democrats pick up nearly fifty seats in Congress in the 1958 midterm elections. But everyone was at it. The 1958 National Intelligence Estimate had forecast one hundred Soviet ICBMs by 1960 and five hundred by 1962. In January 1960 Allen Dulles, who should have known better because he did know better, told Eisenhower that even though the U-2 had shown no evidence of mass missile production, the Russians could still somehow conjure up two hundred of them in eighteen months. On the political left a former congressional aide called Frank Gibney wrote a baseless five-thousand-word cover story for Harper’s magazine accusing the administration of giving the Soviets a six-to-one lead in ICBMs. (Gibney also recommended putting “a system of really massive retaliation” on the moon.) On the right, Vice President Nixon quietly let friends and pundits know that he felt his own boss didn’t quite get the threat. And in the middle, Joe Alsop wrote a devastating series of columns syndicated to hundreds of newspapers in which he calculated that the Soviets would have 150 ICBMs in ten months flat and suggested that by not matching them warhead for warhead the president was playing Russian roulette with the national future. Alsop, who lived well but expensively in a substantial house in Georgetown, was the Larry King of his day—dapper, superbly well connected, and indefatigable in the pursuit of a good story. His series ran in the last week of January 1960. Khrushchev read it in translation and resolved to steal the thunder of the missile-gap lobby, which was threatening to land him with an arms race that would bankrupt Communism. Before the four-power summit, which was now scheduled for Paris in mid-May, he would offer to dismantle his entire ICBM stockpile. No one needed to know how big or small it was; they just needed to know that he was serious about disarmament. He revealed his plan to the Presidium of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union at a secret meeting in the Kremlin on
Giles Whittell (Bridge of Spies)
Everyone always allowed Ashley to get away with her bullshit or just brushed it off afraid of what she might do or say but when the shoe was on the other foot she was completely quiet. Mia
Kevina Hopkins (When A Bitch Fed Up)
Seantrel hadn’t completely stopped sleeping with Ashley off top. He waited a month and then broke things off with her in his own mind. “Then
Kevina Hopkins (When A Bitch Fed Up)
Steve drove the next morning as we made the turn for the Burdekin River. The single-lane dirt road, as small as it was, ended there--but we had another two or three hours of four-wheel driving to go. We navigated through deep ravines carved by the area’s repeated cyclone-fed floods, occasionally balancing on three wheels. “Hang out the window, will you?” Steve shouted as we maneuvered around the edge of a forty-foot drop. “I need to you to help counterbalance the truck.” You’ve got to be kidding me, I thought. But there I was, hanging off the side of the bull bar while Steve threaded his way over the eroding track. As we pounded and slammed our way deep into the bush, Steve talked about the area’s Aborigines. He pointed out a butte where European colonists massacred a host of the Aboriginal population in Victorian times. The landscape was alive to him, not only with human history, but with the complex interrelatedness of plants, animals, and the environment. He pointed out giant 150-year-old eucalypts, habitats for insectivorous bats, parrots, and brush-tailed possums. After hours of bone-jarring terrain, we reached the Burdekin, a beautiful river making its way through the tea trees. It was a breathtaking place. We set up camp--by which I mean Steve did--at a fork in the river, where huge black boulders stood exposed in the middle of the water. I tried to help, but I felt completely out of my depth. He unpacked the boat and the motor, got it tied and moored on the river, rolled out the swags, and lined up containers of fuel, water, and food. Then he started stringing tarps. What a gift Steve had for setting up camp. He had done it countless times before, month in and month out, all by himself, with only Sui for company. I watched him secure ropes, tie knots, and stretch canvas like he was expecting that we’d have to withstand a cyclone. It was hot, more than a hundred degrees Fahrenheit, but Steve didn’t seem to notice. Sui found a little shallow place at the edge of the river and immediately plopped herself in. I saw Steve look over at her as if calculating her chances of being snatched by a croc. Crocodiles are the ultimate camouflage attack predators, striking from the water’s edge. There would never be “down time” for Steve. No time to sit down and unwind. We were off in an instant. We grabbed Sui, jumped in the boat, and headed upstream. White Burdekin ducks startled up in front of our boat, their dark neck-rings revealed as they flew over us. Cormorants dried their feathers on the mid-river boulders, wings fully open. It was magical and unspoiled, as if we were the first people ever to travel there.
Terri Irwin (Steve & Me)
We loved the wide-open west. Our explorations of the numinous Canadian landscape fed the songs, and our souls. We caught the west in the last of its wild state. Many of the songs I wrote in the seventies reflect our travels through the great expanse of the Canadian prairies, across the Rocky Mountains, to the moisture-rich West Coast. Space was everywhere, and there is space in the songs. Everything wasn’t a tourist trap yet, clear-cutting was not so evident, and agribusiness hadn’t completely killed off the family farm. In the first couple of years that Kitty, Aroo, and I travelled westward from Ontario, we were practically the only road campers out there. Seldom did we run across anyone else travelling the way we were. The prairies were full of abandoned old farmhouses—no families to be seen—harbingers of the reversion to feudal agricultural economics. All around the land still looked wild. Our journeys offered at least the illusion of freedom, as well as a deep sense of the land as Divine creation. Soon, though, we were seeing the spaces fill up with scabrous industrial sites, hotels, housing developments, shopping opportunities. We’d watch like gawkers at a train wreck as the land was eaten up before our eyes by inevitable human expansion and greed. There were ever more rules about where you could park your camper. It was the tail end of an epoch when the land was open and it, and we, could breathe freely. That will never come again.
Bruce Cockburn (Pacing the Cage: A Memoir)
In a crowded cave, one grenade might do the work of twenty bullets. Sword-wielding officers beheaded dozens of willing victims. There were reports of children forming into a circle and tossing a live hand grenade, one to another, until it exploded and killed them all. In a cave filled with Japanese soldiers and civilians, Yamauchi recalled, a sergeant ordered mothers to keep their infants quiet, and when they were unable to do so, he told them, “Kill them yourself or I’ll order my men to do it.” Several mothers obeyed.94 As the Japanese perimeter receded toward the island’s northern terminus at Marpi Point, civilians who had thus far resisted the suicide order were forced back to the edge of a cliff that dropped several hundred feet onto a rocky shore. In a harrowing finale, many thousands of Japanese men, women, and children took that fateful last step. The self-destructive paroxysm could not be explained by deference to orders, or by obeisance to the death cult of imperial bushido. Suicide, the Japanese of Saipan earnestly believed, was the sole alternative to a fate worse than death. The Americans were not human beings—they were something akin to demons or beasts. They were the “hairy ones,” or the “Anglo-American Demons.” They would rape the women and girls. They would crush captured civilians under the treads of their tanks. The marines were especially dreaded. According to a story circulated widely among the Japanese of Saipan, all Marine Corps recruits were compelled to murder their own parents before being inducted into service. It was said that Japanese soldiers taken prisoner would suffer hideous tortures—their ears, noses, and limbs would be cut off; they would be blinded and castrated; they would be cooked and fed to dogs. Truths and half-truths were shrewdly wedded to the more outrageous and far-fetched claims. Japanese newspapers reproduced photographs of Japanese skulls mounted on American tanks. A cartoon appearing in an American servicemen’s magazine, later reproduced and translated in the Japanese press, had suggested that marine enlistees would receive a “Japanese hunting license,” promising “open season” on the enemy, complete with “free ammunition and equipment—with pay!”95 Other cartoons, also reproduced in Japan, characterized the Japanese as monkeys, rats, cockroaches, or lice. John Dower’s study War Without Mercy explored the means by which both American and Japanese propaganda tended to dehumanize the enemy. Among the Japanese, who could not read or hear any dissenting views, the excesses of American wartime rhetoric and imagery lent credibility to the implication that a quick suicide was the path of least suffering. Saipan was the first Pacific battlefield in which Americans had encountered a large civilian population. No one had known what to expect. Would women and children take up weapons and hurl themselves at the Americans?
Ian W. Toll (The Conquering Tide: War in the Pacific Islands, 1942–1944)
reconnected. Similarly, there seemed to be three universal laws regarding the children of all families that transcended their cultural and sociological characteristics. ​​The children who work through the natural problems of maturing with the least amount of emotional or physical residue are those whose parents have made them least important to their own salvation. (Throughout this work, maturity will be defined as the willingness to take responsibility for one’s own emotional being and destiny.) ​​Children rarely succeed in rising above the maturity level of their parents, and this principle applies to all mentoring, healing, or administrative relationships. ​​Parents cannot produce change in a troubling child, no matter how caring, savvy, or intelligent they may be, until they become completely and totally fed up with their child’s behavior.
Edwin H Friedman (A Failure of Nerve: Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix, Revised Edition)
In everything I quickly saw the opposite, the contradiction, and between the real and the unreal the irony, the paradox. I was my own worst enemy. There was nothing I wished to do which I could just as well not do. Even as a child, when I lacked for nothing, I wanted to die: I wanted to surrender because I saw no sense in struggling. I felt that nothing would be proved, substantiated, added or subtracted by continuing an existence which I had not asked for. Everybody around me was a failure, or if not a failure, ridiculous. Especially the successful ones. The successful ones bored me to tears. I was sympathetic to a fault, but it was not sympathy that made me so. It was a purely negative quality, a weakness which blossomed at the mere sight of human misery. I never helped any one expecting that it would do any good; I helped because I was helpless to do otherwise. To want to change the condition of affairs seemed futile to me; nothing would be altered, I was convinced, except by a change of heart, and who could change the hearts of men? Now and then a friend was converted; it was something to make me puke. I had no more need of God than He had of me, and if there were one, I often said to myself, I would meet Him calmly and spit in His face. From the very beginning I must have trained myself not to want anything too badly. From the very beginning I was independent, in a false way. I had need of nobody because I wanted to be free, free to do and to give only as my whims dictated. The moment anything was expected or demanded of me I balked. That was the form my independence took. I was corrupt, in other words, corrupt from the start. It's as though my mother fed me a poison, and though I was weaned young the poison never left my system. Even when she weaned me it seemed that I was completely indifferent, most children rebel, or make a pretense of rebelling, but I didn't give a damn, I was a philosopher when still in swaddling clothes. I was against life, on principle. What principle? The principle of futility. Everybody around me was struggling. I myself never made an effort. If I appeared to be making an effort it was only to please someone else; at bottom I didn't give a rap. And if you can tell me why this should have been so I will deny it, because I was born with a cussed streak in me and nothing can eliminate it. I heard later, when I had grown up, that they had a hell of a time bringing me out of the womb. I can understand that perfectly. Why budge? Why come out of a nice warm place, a cosy retreat in which everything is offered you gratis?
Henry Miller (Tropic of Capricorn (Tropic, #2))
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