Complications Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Complications. Here they are! All 200 of them:

Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.
Dr. Seuss
What are you going to do? Everything, is my guess. It will be a little messy, but embrace the mess. It will be complicated, but rejoice in the complications.
Nora Ephron
To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.
Arundhati Roy (The Cost of Living)
There will be a few times in your life when all your instincts will tell you to do something, something that defies logic, upsets your plans, and may seem crazy to others. When that happens, you do it. Listen to your instincts and ignore everything else. Ignore logic, ignore the odds, ignore the complications, and just go for it.
Judith McNaught (Remember When (Foster Saga, #1))
People tend to complicate their own lives, as if living weren't already complicated enough.
Carlos Ruiz Zafón (The Shadow of the Wind (The Cemetery of Forgotten Books, #1))
Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.
Confucius
Friendship is a simple thing, and yet complicated; friendship is on the surface, something natural, something taken for granted, and yet underneath one could find worlds.
Jamaica Kincaid
Nobody looks like what they really are on the inside. You don’t. I don’t. People are much more complicated than that. It’s true of everybody.
Neil Gaiman (The Ocean at the End of the Lane)
We humans are more complicated than animals, and we love through the imagination.
George Moore
Life is one big road with lots of signs. So when you riding through the ruts, don't complicate your mind. Flee from hate, mischief and jealousy. Don't bury your thoughts, put your vision to reality. Wake Up and Live!
Bob Marley
Progress is man's ability to complicate simplicity.
Thor Heyerdahl
As far as I'm concerned, if something is so complicated that you can't explain it in 10 seconds, then it's probably not worth knowing anyway.
Bill Watterson (The Indispensable Calvin and Hobbes)
Nothing strengthens authority so much as silence.
Leonardo da Vinci
It's a coffee cup." She could hear the irritation in her own voice. "I know it's a coffee cup." "I can't wait till you draw something really complicated, like the Brooklyn Bridge or a lobster. You'll probably send me a singing telegram.
Cassandra Clare (City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1))
This is my simple religion. No need for temples. No need for complicated philosophy. Your own mind, your own heart is the temple. Your philosophy is simple kindness.
Dalai Lama XIV
Grown ups are complicated creatures, full of quirks and secrets.
Roald Dahl
You couldn't just pick and choose at will when someone depended on you, or loved you. It wasn't like a light switch, easy to turn on or off. If you were in, you were in. Out, you were out.
Sarah Dessen (Along for the Ride)
The universe is big, its vast and complicated, and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles. And that's the theory. Nine hundred years, never seen one yet, but this would do me.
Steven Moffat
This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.
Dalai Lama XIV (The Dalai Lama: A Policy of Kindness: An Anthology of Writings By and About the Dalai Lama)
The consequences of our actions are always so complicated, so diverse, that predicting the future is a very difficult business indeed.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3))
People are too complicated to have simple labels.
Philip Pullman (The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, #3))
Men aren't really complicated, Ana, honey. They are very simple, literal creatures. They usually mean what they say. And we spend hours trying to analyze what they've said - when really it's obvious. If I were you, I'd take him literally. That might help.
E.L. James (Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, #1))
Serious literature does not exist to make life easy but to complicate it.
Witold Gombrowicz
All you really need to know for the moment is that the universe is a lot more complicated than you might think, even if you start from a position of thinking it's pretty damn complicated in the first place.
Douglas Adams
Silence becomes cowardice when occasion demands speaking out the whole truth and acting accordingly.
Mahatma Gandhi
I don’t understand why we must do things in this world, why we must have friends and aspirations, hopes and dreams. Wouldn’t it be better to retreat to a faraway corner of the world, where all its noise and complications would be heard no more? Then we could renounce culture and ambitions; we would lose everything and gain nothing; for what is there to be gained from this world?
Emil M. Cioran (On the Heights of Despair)
we are imperfect mortal beings, aware of that mortality even as we push it away, failed by our very complication, so wired that when we mourn our losses we also mourn, for better or for worse, ourselves. as we were. as we are no longer. as we will one day not be at all.
Joan Didion (The Year of Magical Thinking)
Mental illness is so much more complicated than any pill that any mortal could invent
Elizabeth Wurtzel (Prozac Nation)
It's still two human beings trying to get along, so it's going to be complicated. And love is always complicated. But humans must try to love each other, darling. We must get our hearts broken sometimes. This is a good sign, having a broken heart. It means we have tried for something.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
We are all of us more complicated than the roles we are assigned in the stories other people tell
Tara Westover (Educated)
People always think that happiness is a faraway thing," thought Francie, "something complicated and hard to get. Yet, what little things can make it up; a place of shelter when it rains - a cup of strong hot coffee when you're blue; for a man, a cigarette for contentment; a book to read when you're alone - just to be with someone you love. Those things make happiness.
Betty Smith (A Tree Grows in Brooklyn)
Problem is (follow me closely here, the science is pretty complicated), if I cut a hole in the Hab, the air won't stay inside anymore.
Andy Weir (The Martian)
If I were to remain silent, I'd be guilty of complicity.
Albert Einstein
I can do pain. That’s the easy part of life. It’s everything else, happiness, laughter, love, that’s fucking complicated.
Jessica Sorensen (The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden (The Coincidence, #1))
You know, you’re a little complicated after all.” “Oh no,” she assured him hastily. “No, I’m not really - I’m just a - I’m just a whole lot of different simple people.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
Some things in life are too complicated to explain in any language.
Haruki Murakami (Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage)
Every now and then when your life gets complicated and the weasels start closing in, the only cure is to load up on heinous chemicals and then drive like a bastard from Hollywood to Las Vegas ... with the music at top volume and at least a pint of ether.
Hunter S. Thompson (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas)
Caring about someone isn't complicated. It isn't easy. But it isn't complicated, either. Kinda like lifting the engine block out of a car.
Jim Butcher (Small Favor (The Dresden Files, #10))
He dug so deeply into her sentiments that in search of interest he found love, because by trying to make her love him he ended up falling in love with her. Petra Cotes, for her part, loved him more and more as she felt his love increasing, and that was how in the ripeness of autumn she began to believe once more in the youthful superstition that poverty was the servitude of love. Both looked back then on the wild revelry, the gaudy wealth, and the unbridled fornication as an annoyance and they lamented that it had cost them so much of their lives to find the paradise of shared solitude. Madly in love after so many years of sterile complicity, they enjoyed the miracle of living each other as much at the table as in bed, and they grew to be so happy that even when they were two worn-out people they kept on blooming like little children and playing together like dogs.
Gabriel García Márquez (One Hundred Years of Solitude)
Emotions, in my experience, aren't covered by single words. I don't believe in "sadness," "joy," or "regret." Maybe the best proof that the language is patriarchal is that it oversimplifies feeling. I'd like to have at my disposal complicated hybrid emotions, Germanic train-car constructions like, say, "the happiness that attends disaster." Or: "the disappointment of sleeping with one's fantasy." I'd like to show how "intimations of mortality brought on by aging family members" connects with "the hatred of mirrors that begins in middle age." I'd like to have a word for "the sadness inspired by failing restaurants" as well as for "the excitement of getting a room with a minibar." I've never had the right words to describe my life, and now that I've entered my story, I need them more than ever.
Jeffrey Eugenides (Middlesex)
It is not life that's complicated, it's the struggle to guide and control life.
F. Scott Fitzgerald (This Side of Paradise)
You have just dined, and however scrupulously the slaughterhouse is concealed in the graceful distance of miles, there is complicity.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
If people do not believe that mathematics is simple, it is only because they do not realize how complicated life is.
John von Neumann
Was everyone else really as alive as she was?... If the answer was yes, then the world, the social world, was unbearably complicated, with two billion voices, and everyone’s thoughts striving in equal importance and everyone’s claim on life as intense, and everyone thinking they were unique, when no one was. One could drown in irrelevance.
Ian McEwan (Atonement)
Memory is a funny thing. When I was in the scene, I hardly paid it any mind. I never stopped to think of it as something that would make a lasting impression, certainly never imagined that eighteen years later I would recall it in such detail. I didn't give a damn about the scenery that day. I was thinking about myself. I was thinking about the beautiful girl walking next to me. I was thinking about the two of us together, and then about myself again. It was the age, that time of life when every sight, every feeling, every thought came back, like a boomerang, to me. And worse, I was in love. Love with complications. The scenery was the last thing on my mind.
Haruki Murakami (Norwegian Wood)
It’s as simple as that. Simple and complicated, as most true things are.
David Levithan (Every Day (Every Day, #1))
That's what I love about Aibileen, she can take the most complicated things in life and wrap them up so small and simple, they'll fit right in your pocket.
Kathryn Stockett (The Help)
We are not idealized wild things. We are imperfect mortal beings, aware of that mortality even as we push it away, failed by our very complication, so wired that when we mourn our losses we also mourn, for better or for worse, ourselves. As we were. As we are no longer. As we will one day not be at all.
Joan Didion (The Year of Magical Thinking)
People who pride themselves on their "complexity" and deride others for being "simplistic" should realize that the truth is often not very complicated. What gets complex is evading the truth.
Thomas Sowell (Barbarians inside the Gates and Other Controversial Essays)
Strange how complicated we can make things just to avoid showing what we feel!
Erich Maria Remarque (The Night in Lisbon)
I guess love's kind of like a marshmallow in a microwave on high. After it explodes it's still a marshmallow. but, you know, now it's a complicated marshmallow.
Cath Crowley (Graffiti Moon)
Life is painful and messed up. It gets complicated at the worst of times, and sometimes you have no idea where to go or what to do. Lots of times people just let themselves get lost, dropping into a wide open, huge abyss. But that's why we have to keep trying. We have to push through all that hurts us, work past all our memories that are haunting us. Sometimes the things that hurt us are the things that make us strongest. A life without experience, in my opinion, is no life at all. And that's why I tell everyone that, even when it hurts, never stop yourself from living.
Alysha Speer
It's scary being loved. Because life is complicated and all too often it throws you off balance by sending you the right person at the wrong time.
Guillaume Musso (Que serais-je sans toi?)
Yet she likes complications. She wishes she could turn and say: I like people who unbalance me.
Colum McCann (Let the Great World Spin)
He had been bored, that's all, bored like most people. Hence he had made himself out of whole cloth a life full of complications and drama. Something must happen - and that explains most human commitments. Something must happen, even loveless slavery, even war or death. Hurray then for funerals!
Albert Camus (The Fall)
The Buddhists say there are 149 ways to God. I'm not looking for God, only for myself, and that is far more complicated. God has had a great deal written about Him; nothing has been written about me. God is bigger, like my mother, easier to find, even in the dark. I could be anywhere, and since I can't describe myself I can't ask for help.
Jeanette Winterson (Sexing the Cherry)
Because humans are complicated beasts, the monster said. How can a queen be both a good witch and a bad witch? How can a prince be a murderer and a saviour? How can an apothecary be evil-tempered but right-thinking? How can a parson be wrong-thinking but good-hearted? How can invisible men make themselves more lonely by being seen? "I don't know," Connor shrugged, exhausted. "Your stories never made any sense to me." The answer is that it does not matter what you think, the monster said, because your mind will contradict itself a hundred times each day. You wanted her to go at the same time you were desperate for me to save her. Your mind will believe comforting lies while also knowing the painful truths that make those lies necessary. And your mind will punish you for believing both.
Patrick Ness (A Monster Calls)
For being different, it’s easy. But to be unique, it’s a complicated thing.
Lady Gaga
It's nothing that complicated, I just want to kill him
Masashi Kishimoto
The most complicated skill is to be simple.
Dejan Stojanovic
It is always so simple, and so complicating, to accept an apology.
Michael Chabon
He'd noticed that sex bore some resemblance to cookery: it fascinated people, they sometimes bought books full of complicated recipes and interesting pictures, and sometimes when they were really hungry they created vast banquets in their imagination - but at the end of the day they'd settle quite happily for egg and chips. If it was well done and maybe had a slice of tomato.
Terry Pratchett (The Fifth Elephant (Discworld, #24; City Watch, #5))
Being Adam Parrish was a complicated thing, a wonder of muscles and organs, synapses and nerves. He was a miracle of moving parts, a study in survival. The most important thing to Adam Parrish, though, had always been free will, the ability to be his own master. This was the important thing. It had always been the important thing. This was what it was to be Adam.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1))
THAT’S MORTALS FOR YOU, Death continued. THEY’VE ONLY GOT A FEW YEARS IN THIS WORLD AND THEY SPEND THEM ALL IN MAKING THINGS COMPLICATED FOR THEMSELVES. FASCINATING.
Terry Pratchett (Mort (Discworld, #4; Death, #1))
The more you try to simplify things the more you complicate them. You create rules, build walls, push people away, lie to yourself and ignore true feelings. That is not simplifying things.
Cecelia Ahern (If You Could See Me Now)
There is no comfort like complicity.
M.L. Rio (If We Were Villains)
Pet names are a persistant remnant of childhood, a reminder that life is not always so serious, so formal, so complicated. They are a reminder, too, that one is not all things to all people.
Jhumpa Lahiri (The Namesake)
You cannot write for children. They're much too complicated. You can only write books that are of interest to them.
Maurice Sendak
Any fool can make something complicated. It takes a genius to make it simple.
Woody Guthrie
I wanted to tell her that I loved her, and not in the complicated way I loved our parents, but in a simple way I never had to think about. I loved her like breathing.
Brenna Yovanoff (The Replacement)
The success of any trap lies in its fundamental simplicity. The reverse trap by the nature of its single complication must be swift and simpler still.
Robert Ludlum (The Bourne Identity (Jason Bourne, #1))
It's because I like you, I don't want to be with you. It's a complicated emotion
Walt Disney Company
Life is still life. It’s still tough, complicated, and more than a little messy, with lessons to be learned, mistakes to be made, triumphs and disappointments to be had, and not every day is meant to be a party.
Alyson Noel (Dark Flame (The Immortals, #4))
The Bible is not my book nor Christianity my profession. I could never give assent to the long, complicated statements of Christian dogma.
Abraham Lincoln (Speeches and Writings 1832–1858)
it is all very well for you to write simply and the simpler the better. But do not start to think so damned simply. Know how complicated it is and then state it simply.
Ernest Hemingway
In biology, nothing is clear, everything is too complicated, everything is a mess, and just when you think you understand something, you peel off a layer and find deeper complications beneath. Nature is anything but simple.
Richard Preston (The Hot Zone: The Terrifying True Story of the Origins of the Ebola Virus)
The only dream worth having is to dream that you will live while you are alive, and die only when you are dead. To love, to be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and vulgar disparity of the life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.
Arundhati Roy
People were complicated. They weren't math problems; they were collections of feelings and decisions and dumb luck.
Emily Henry (Beach Read)
i wondered if i would spend the rest of my life inventing complicated ways to depress myself..
Miranda July (No One Belongs Here More Than You)
No problem is so big or so complicated that it can't be run away from!
Charles M. Schulz (The Complete Peanuts, 1959-1962)
Busy, busy, busy, is what we Bokononists whisper whenever we think of how complicated and unpredictable the machinery of life really is.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Cat's Cradle)
People are more complicated than the masks they wear in society.
Robert Greene (The Art of Seduction)
I have the impression that if he didn't complicate his life so needlessly, he would die of boredom.
Boris Pasternak (Doctor Zhivago)
Memory is a complicated thing, a relative to truth, but not its twin.
Barbara Kingsolver
People are complicated puzzles, always trying to piece together a complete picture, but sometimes we get it wrong and sometimes we’re left unfinished. Sometimes that’s for the best. Some pieces can’t be forced into a puzzle, or at least they shouldn’t be, because they won’t make sense.
Adam Silvera (History Is All You Left Me)
How complicated and unpredictable the machinery of life really is.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Cat's Cradle)
But love is complicated, it’s messy. It can inspire selflessness, selfishness, our greatest accomplishments and our hardest mistakes. It brings us together and it can just as easily drive us apart.
Courtney Summers (Sadie)
Death is simple. Life is messy. Give me life, the more complicated the better.
Tom Robbins
The dog’s agenda is simple, fathomable, overt: I want. “I want to go out, come in, eat something, lie here, play with that, kiss you. There are no ulterior motives with a dog, no mind games, no second-guessing, no complicated negotiations or bargains, and no guilt trips or grudges if a request is denied.
Caroline Knapp
I have a friend who's an artist and has sometimes taken a view which I don't agree with very well. He'll hold up a flower and say "look how beautiful it is," and I'll agree. Then he says "I as an artist can see how beautiful this is but you as a scientist take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing," and I think that he's kind of nutty. First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me too, I believe. Although I may not be quite as refined aesthetically as he is ... I can appreciate the beauty of a flower. At the same time, I see much more about the flower than he sees. I could imagine the cells in there, the complicated actions inside, which also have a beauty. I mean it's not just beauty at this dimension, at one centimeter; there's also beauty at smaller dimensions, the inner structure, also the processes. The fact that the colors in the flower evolved in order to attract insects to pollinate it is interesting; it means that insects can see the color. It adds a question: does this aesthetic sense also exist in the lower forms? Why is it aesthetic? All kinds of interesting questions which the science knowledge only adds to the excitement, the mystery and the awe of a flower. It only adds. I don't understand how it subtracts.
Richard P. Feynman (The Pleasure of Finding Things Out: The Best Short Works of Richard P. Feynman)
You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces - just good food from fresh ingredients.
Julia Child
Everyone has something of beauty about them. But loving lets you look, and look, and look again. You notice the back of a hand, the turn of a head, the way of a walk. When you first love, you look blind and you see it all as the glorious, beloved whole, or a beautiful sum of beautiful parts. But when you see the one you love as pieces, as why's, you can love those parts too, and it's a love at once more complicated and more complete.
Ally Condie (Crossed (Matched, #2))
If you have to speculate if someone loves you and wants to be with you, chances are they don't. It's not that complicated. Love, in most cases, betrays the one feeling it. Don't waste moments waiting and wondering. Don't throw away your time dreaming of someone that doesn't want you. No one is that amazing, certainly not the one who would pass you up.
Donna Lynn Hope
All our silences in the face of racist assault are acts of complicity.
bell hooks (Killing Rage: Ending Racism)
I want to be with you. It's as simple, and as complicated as that.
Charles Bukowski
Leaving people to jumped conclusions is sometimes simpler than explaining a complicated truth
Gayle Forman (Just One Year (Just One Day, #2))
She may have looked normal on the outside, but once you'd seen her handwriting you knew she was deliciously complicated inside.
Jeffrey Eugenides (The Marriage Plot)
Simon hid the fact that he was inordinately pleased by this. “Are we officially boyfriend and girlfriend? Is there a Shadowhunter ritual? Should I change my Facebook status from ‘it’s complicated’ to ‘in a relationship’?” Isabelle screwed up her nose adorably. “You have a book that’s also a face?
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))
Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that's why it is so complicated.
Paul Rand
Come on," Cole said. He looked back over his shoulder at Mr. Brisbane, who was looking at me with a complicated expression as I left. Cole pointed at him and said, "You're a son of a bitch. He belongs here more than you do.
Maggie Stiefvater (Linger (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #2))
I’m sorry, is driving and talking too complicated? No problem, I’ll shut up.
Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #1))
Tell the truth. If you tell the truth all the time you don't have to worry three months down the line about what you said three months earlier. Truth is always the truth. You won't have to complicate your life by trying to cover up.
Ben Carson (Think Big: Unleashing Your Potential for Excellence)
And I came to believe that good and evil are names for what people do, not for what they are. All we can say is that this is a good deed, because it helps someone or that's an evil one because it hurts them. People are too complicated to have simple labels.
Philip Pullman (The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, #3))
The complicated thing about good and bad people alike is that most of us can be both at the same time.
Fredrik Backman (Us Against You (Beartown, #2))
People were messy. They were defined not only by what they'd done, but by what they would have done, under different circumstances, molded as much by their regrets as their actions, choices they stood by and those they wished they could undo. Of course, there was no going back - time only moved forward - but people could change. For worse. And for better. It wasn't easy. The world was complicated. Life was hard. And so often, living hurt. So make it worth the pain.
Victoria Schwab (Our Dark Duet (Monsters of Verity, #2))
I’m not a complicated girl, she laughed, I just want to run away with you, rob a bank, fall in love and eat ice creams in Paris.
Michael Faudet
You don't read Gatsby, I said, to learn whether adultery is good or bad but to learn about how complicated issues such as adultery and fidelity and marriage are. A great novel heightens your senses and sensitivity to the complexities of life and of individuals, and prevents you from the self-righteousness that sees morality in fixed formulas about good and evil.
Azar Nafisi (Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books)
I'm THAT complicated, mysterious, yet content with the "simple" things in life. Don't try to understand me; you won't figure me out. But you're free to like me the way I am.
Marwa Ayad
From the complications of loving you I think there is no end or return. No answer, no coming out of it. Which is the only way to love, isn’t it? This isn’t a play ground, this is earth, our heaven, for a while. Therefore I have given precedence to all my sudden, sullen, dark moods that hold you in the center of my world. And I say to my body: grow thinner still. And I say to my fingers, type me a pretty song. And I say to my heart: rave on.
Mary Oliver (Thirst)
Love, like life, is much stranger and far more complicated than one is brought up to believe.
Kay Redfield Jamison (An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness)
All I know is I make sense to me- it's other people who seem complicated.
Tara Kelly (Harmonic Feedback)
They could steam up windows with their kisses, but as soon as they started using their mouths for other things—like talking—everything got so complicated.
Lauren Kate (Torment (Fallen, #2))
I could disappear from the face of the earth, and the world would go on moving without the slightest twinge. Things were tremendously complicated, to be sure, but one thing was clear: no one needed me.
Haruki Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle)
To see truth as truth, we don't need a lot of study. It's not complicated. What we need is pure observation. An open mind and fresh eyes will serve us well.
Ilchi Lee (Change: Realizing Your Greatest Potential)
At least one thing was consistent about her life: It just kept on getting more complicated.
Scott Westerfeld (Pretties (Uglies, #2))
Stop worrying about your identity and concern yourself with the people you care about, ideas that matter to you, beliefs you can stand by, tickets you can run on. Intelligent humans make those choices with their brain and hearts and they make them alone. The world does not deliver meaning to you. You have to make it meaningful...and decide what you want and need and must do. It’s a tough, unimaginably lonely and complicated way to be in the world. But that’s the deal: you have to live; you can’t live by slogans, dead ideas, clichés, or national flags. Finding an identity is easy. It’s the easy way out.
Zadie Smith (On Beauty)
I write a lot of songs about love and I think that’s because to me love seems like this huge complicated thing. But it seems like every once in a while, two people get it figured out, two people get it right. And so I think the rest of us, we walk around daydreaming about what that might be like. To find that one great love, where all of a sudden everything that seemed to be so complicated, became simple. And everything that used to seem so wrong all of a sudden seemed right because you were with the person who made you feel fearless.
Taylor Swift
You’re easy to read, Ivy, but the whole book of you is complicated.
Amy Engel (The Book of Ivy (The Book of Ivy, #1))
It's the problem with fairy tales. From far away, they seem so perfect. But up close, they're just as complicated as real life.
Soman Chainani (A World Without Princes (The School for Good and Evil, #2))
One day at a time. One dream at a time. And one could say it’s right and one could say it’s wrong. And probably both would be right. Because life is both complicated and simple. Which is why there are cookies.
Fredrik Backman (My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry)
She was a genius on paper. But not a team player. She was quick to loathe others. But not against loving. She was a complicated equation that didn't need to be solved.
Krista Ritchie (Kiss the Sky (Calloway Sisters #1))
It was ironic, really - you want to die because you can't be bothered to go on living - but then you're expected to get all energetic and move furniture and stand on chairs and hoist ropes and do complicated knots and attach things to other things and kick stools from under you and mess around with hot baths and razor blades and extension cords and electrical appliances and weedkiller. Suicide was a complicated, demanding business, often involving visits to hardware shops. And if you've managed to drag yourself from the bed and go down the road to the garden center or the drug store, by then the worst is over. At that point you might as well just go to work.
Marian Keyes (Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married)
Everything is complicated if no one explains it to you.
Fredrik Backman (My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry)
We must never forget that human motives are generally far more complicated than we are apt to suppose, and that we can very rarely accurately describe the motives of another.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Idiot)
What you are is a complicated girl with simple needs. You need your books and time to read, and you need a few friends and you need someone-not to take care of you, but to care for you. If you have all those things, you'll always be alright.
Brian Morton (Breakable You)
I like my coffee black, my beer from Germany, wine from Burgundy, the darker, the better. I like my heroes complicated and brooding, James Dean in oiled leather, leaning on a motorcycle. You know the color. ("Ode to Chocolate")
Barbara Crooker (More)
Something inside me clicks. It's like I've spent my whole life fiddling with a complicated combination only to discover I was toying with the wrong lock.
Jasmine Warga (My Heart and Other Black Holes)
That my complicated life could be made so simple was astounding.
Cheryl Strayed (Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail)
Yes, we live, or we're given the chance to, at least, but sometimes living is hard and complicated because of fear.
Adam Silvera (They Both Die at the End)
Love makes everything complicated.
Elie Wiesel
I knew a man who gave twenty years of his life to a scatterbrained woman, sacrificing everything to her, his friendships, his work, the very respectability of his life and who one evening recognized that he had never loved her. He had been bored, thats all, bored like most people. Hence he had made himself out of whole cloth a life full of complications and drama. Something must happen and that explains most human commitments. Something must happen even loveless slavery, even war or death.
Albert Camus
Villains and plots and enemies are simple things to me. But friendships are complicated, and love is harder still. It has wounded me deeper than a sword ever could.
Jennifer A. Nielsen (The Shadow Throne (Ascendance, #3))
the buddhists say there are 149 ways to god. i'm not looking for god, only for myself, and that is far more complicated.
Jeanette Winterson (Sexing the Cherry)
All my life, I have made it complicated, but it is so simple. I love when I love. And when I love, I am myself.
Hugh Prather (Notes to Myself: My Struggle to Become a Person)
What mazes there are in this world. The branches of trees, the filigree of roots, the matrix of crystals, the streets her father recreated in his models... None more complicated than the human brain, Etienne would say, what may be the most complex object in existence; one wet kilogram within which spin universes.
Anthony Doerr (All the Light We Cannot See)
About life: "It is not complicated unless I make it so. It is not difficult unless I allow it to be. A second is no more than a second, a minute no more than a minute, a day no more than a day. They pass. All things and all time will pass. Don't force or fear, don't control or lose control. Don't fight and don't stop fighting. Embrace and endure. If you embrace, you will endure.
James Frey (A Million Little Pieces)
My dad once told me life would get complicated when I grew up. I’m guessing this isn’t what he meant. My mom, on the other hand, agreed with him, and I’m guessing this kind of thing is exactly what she meant.
Susan Ee (World After (Penryn & the End of Days, #2))
Men aren't stupid, and you don't need a complicated set of rules to find a good one who loves you. Here's the only rule you need: if a man loves you, he will do anything he can to keep you around. Anything.
Kim Gruenenfelder (A Total Waste of Makeup (Charlize Edwards, #1))
It doesn't seem to me that this fantastically marvelous universe, this tremendous range of time and space and different kinds of animals, and all the different planets, and all these atoms with all their motions, and so on, all this complicated thing can merely be a stage so that God can watch human beings struggle for good and evil - which is the view that religion has. The stage is too big for the drama.
Richard P. Feynman
Cause getting your dreams It's strange, but it seems A little -- well -- complicated There's a kind of a sort of : cost There's a couple of things get : lost There are bridges you cross You didn't know you crossed Until you've crossed.
Stephen Schwartz (Wicked: The Complete Book and Lyrics of the Broadway Musical)
Everything is more complicated than you think. You only see a tenth of what is true. There are a million little strings attached to every choice you make; you can destroy your life every time you choose. But maybe you won't know for twenty years. And you'll never ever trace it to its source. And you only get one chance to play it out. Just try and figure out your own divorce. And they say there is no fate, but there is: it's what you create. Even though the world goes on for eons and eons, you are here for a fraction of a fraction of a second. Most of your time is spent being dead or not yet born. But while alive, you wait in vain, wasting years, for a phone call or a letter or a look from someone or something to make it all right. And it never comes or it seems to but doesn't really. And so you spend your time in vague regret or vaguer hope for something good to come along. Something to make you feel connected, to make you feel whole, to make you feel loved.
Charlie Kaufman (Synecdoche, New York: The Shooting Script)
We look for medicine to be an orderly field of knowledge and procedure. But it is not. It is an imperfect science, an enterprise of constantly changing knowledge, uncertain information, fallible individuals, and at the same time lives on the line. There is science in what we do, yes, but also habit, intuition, and sometimes plain old guessing. The gap between what we know and what we aim for persists. And this gap complicates everything we do.
Atul Gawande (Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science)
There are obviously two educations. One should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live. Surely these should never be confused in the mind of any man who has the slightest inkling of what culture is. For most of us it is essential that we should make a living...In the complications of modern life and with our increased accumulation of knowledge, it doubtless helps greatly to compress some years of experience into far fewer years by studying for a particular trade or profession in an institution; but that fact should not blind us to another—namely, that in so doing we are learning a trade or a profession, but are not getting a liberal education as human beings.
James Truslow Adams
He’s twelve years old, and this summer he learns that people will always choose a simple lie over a complicated truth, because the lie has one unbeatable advantage: the truth always has to stick to what actually happened, whereas the lie just has to be easy to believe.
Fredrik Backman (Us Against You (Beartown, #2))
Maybe a friend is someone who wants your updates. Even if they're boring. Or sad. Or annoyingly cutesy. A friend says "Sign me up for your boring crap, yes indeed"--because he likes you anyways. He'll tolerate your junk
E. Lockhart (Real Live Boyfriends: Yes. Boyfriends, Plural. If My Life Weren't Complicated, I Wouldn't Be Ruby Oliver (Ruby Oliver, #4))
The heart wants what it wants, Dolp. You don't plan on making your life complicated, it just happens,and you don"t do it on purpose, and you don't do it to hurt people who love you. It just turns out that way sometimes.
Laurell K. Hamilton (Narcissus in Chains (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #10))
So long as there shall exist, by reason of law and custom, a social condemnation which, in the midst of civilization, artificially creates a hell on earth, and complicates with human fatality a destiny that is divine; so long as the three problems of the century - the degradation of man by the exploitation of his labour, the ruin of women by starvation and the atrophy of childhood by physical and spiritual night are not solved; so long as, in certain regions, social asphyxia shall be possible; in other words and from a still broader point of view, so long as ignorance and misery remain on earth, there should be a need for books such as this.
Victor Hugo (Les Misérables)
Society will develop a new kind of servitude which covers the surface of society with a network of complicated rules, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate. It does not tyrannise but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.
Alexis de Tocqueville
The point is, there is no feasible excuse for what are, for what we have made of ourselves. We have chosen to put profits before people, money before morality, dividends before decency, fanaticism before fairness, and our own trivial comforts before the unspeakable agonies of others
Iain Banks (Complicity)
Half of me is filled with bursting words and half of me is painfully shy. I crave solitude yet also crave people. I want to pour life and love into everything yet also nurture my self-care and go gently. I want to live within the rush of primal, intuitive decision, yet also wish to sit and contemplate. This is the messiness of life - that we all carry multitudes, so must sit with the shifts. We are complicated creatures, and ultimately, the balance comes from this understanding. Be water. Flowing, flexible and soft. Subtly powerful and open. Wild and serene. Able to accept all changes, yet still led by the pull of steady tides. It is enough.
Victoria Erickson
I can't forget things, or ignore them-bad things that happen," I said. "I'm a lay-it-all-out person, a dwell-on-it person, an obsess-about-it person. If I hold things in and try to forget or pretend, I become a madman and have panic attacks. I have to talk.
E. Lockhart (Real Live Boyfriends: Yes. Boyfriends, Plural. If My Life Weren't Complicated, I Wouldn't Be Ruby Oliver (Ruby Oliver, #4))
I will be very careful the next time I fall in love, she told herself. Also, she had made a promise to herself that she intended on keeping. She was never going to go out with another writer: no matter how charming, sensitive, inventive or fun they could be. They weren't worth it in the long run. They were emotionally too expensive and the upkeep was complicated. They were like having a vacuum cleaner around the house that broke all the time and only Einstein could fix it. She wanted her next lover to be a broom.
Richard Brautigan (Sombrero Fallout)
Kate, I admit that we aren’t in the easiest of situations. But are you always this . . . complicated?” I opened my mouth to say something, but Vincent shook his head, grinning. “Actually, don’t answer that. Of course you are. I wouldn’t be so totally into you if you weren’t.
Amy Plum (Until I Die (Revenants, #2))
For Children: You will need to know the difference between Friday and a fried egg. It's quite a simple difference, but an important one. Friday comes at the end of the week, whereas a fried egg comes out of a chicken. Like most things, of course, it isn't quite that simple. The fried egg isn't properly a fried egg until it's been put in a frying pan and fried. This is something you wouldn't do to a Friday, of course, though you might do it on a Friday. You can also fry eggs on a Thursday, if you like, or on a cooker. It's all rather complicated, but it makes a kind of sense if you think about it for a while.
Douglas Adams (The Salmon of Doubt (Dirk Gently, #3))
When someone shows you how little you mean to them and you keep coming back for more, before you know it you start to mean less to yourself. You are not made up of compartments! You are one whole person! What gets said to you gets said to all of you, ditto what gets done. Being treated like shit is not an amusing game or a transgressive intellectual experiment. It’s something you accept, condone, and learn to believe you deserve. This is so simple. But I tried so hard to make it complicated.
Lena Dunham (Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She's "Learned")
If you sit down and think about it sensibly, you come up with some very funny ideas. Like: why make people inquisitive, and then put some forbidden fruit where they can see it with a big neon finger flashing on and off saying 'THIS IS IT!'? ... I mean, why do that if you really don't want them to eat it, eh? I mean, maybe you just want to see how it all turns out. Maybe it's all part of a great big ineffable plan. All of it. You, me, him, everything. Some great big test to see if what you've built all works properly, eh? You start thinking: it can't be a great cosmic game of chess, it has to be just very complicated Solitaire.
Neil Gaiman (Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch)
I mean, I don’t know how the world broke. And I don’t know if there’s a God who can help us fix it. But the fact that the world is broken - I absolutely believe that. Just look around us. Every minute - every single second - there are a million things you could be thinking about. A million things you could be worrying about. Our world - don’t you just feel we’re becoming more fragmented? I used to think that when I got older, the world would make so much more sense. But you know what? The older I get, the more confusing it is to me. The more complicated it is. Harder. You’d think we’d be getting better at it. But there’s just more and more chaos. The pieces - they’re everywhere. And nobody knows what to do about it. I find myself grasping, Nick. You know that feeling? That feeling when you just want the right thing to fall into the right place, not only because it’s right, but because it would mean that such a thing is still possible? I want to believe that.
Rachel Cohn (Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist)
We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. Remote from universal nature and living by complicated artifice, man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves. And therein do we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.
Henry Beston (The Outermost House: A Year of Life On The Great Beach of Cape Cod)
And no, it wasn't shame I now felt, or guilt, but something rarer in my life and stronger than both: remorse. A feeling which is more complicated, curdled, and primeval. Whose chief characteristic is that nothing can be done about it: too much time has passed, too much damage has been done, for amends to be made.
Julian Barnes (The Sense of an Ending)
Science has taught me that everything is more complicated than we first assume, and that being able to derive happiness from discovery is a recipe for a beautiful life. It has also convinced me that carefully writing everything down is the only real defense we have against forgetting something important that once was and is no more, including the spruce tree that should have outlived me but did not.
Hope Jahren (Lab Girl)
It's just that the thing you never understand about being a mother, until you are one, is that it is not the grown man - the galumphing, unshaven, stinking, opinionated off-spring - you see before you, with his parking tickets and unpolished shoes and complicated love life. You see all the people he has ever been all rolled up into one. I look at him and see the baby I held in my arms, dewing besotted, unable to believe that I'd created another human being. I see the toddler, reaching for my hand, the schoolboy weeping tears of fury after being bullied  by some other child. I saw the vulnerabilities, the love, the history.
Jojo Moyes (Me Before You (Me Before You, #1))
It’s hard to care about people. Exhausting, in fact, because empathy is a complicated thing. It requires us to accept that everyone else’s lives are also going on the whole time. We have no pause button for when everything gets too much for us to deal with, but then neither does anyone else.
Fredrik Backman (Us Against You (Beartown, #2))
I’ve come to the conclusion that there are no set rules in life. You do what you have to do to survive. If that means running away from the love of your life to preserve your sanity, you do it. If it means breaking someone’s heart so yours doesn’t break; do it. Life is complicated — too much so for there to be absolutes. We are all so broken. Pick up a person, shake them around and you’ll hear the rattling of their broken pieces. Pieces our fathers broke, or our mothers, or our friends, strangers, or our loves. Olivia has stopped rattling quite as much as she used to. Love is a God-given tool, she tells me. It screws things back in place that were loose, and it cleans out all the broken pieces that you don’t need anymore. I believe her. Our love has been fixing each other. I hope to only hear a tiny jingle when I shake her in a few years
Tarryn Fisher (Thief (Love Me with Lies, #3))
He was talking about the sign that said 'THE COMPLICATED FUTILITY OF IGNORANCE.' 'All knew was that I didn't want my daughter or anybody's child to see a message that negative every time she comes into the library,' he said. 'And then I found out it was you who was responsible for it.' 'What's so negative about it?' I said. 'What could be a more negative word than "futility"?' he said. '"Ignorance,"' I said.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Hocus Pocus)
One night, bored and restless, I found a stack of dusty board games in a closet, and bullied Ash into learning Scrabble, checkers and Yahtzee. Surprisingly, Ash found that he enjoyed these “human” games, and was soon asking me to play more often than not. This filled some of the long, restless evenings and kept my mind off certain things. Unfortunately for me, once Ash learned the rules, he was nearly impossible to beat in strategy games like checkers, and his long life gave him a vast knowledge of lengthy, complicated words he staggered me with in Scrabble. Though sometimes we’d end up debating whether or not faery terms like Gwragedd Annwn and hobyahs were legal to use.
Julie Kagawa (The Iron Queen (The Iron Fey, #3))
My life, which seems so simple and monotonous, is really a complicated affair of cafés where they like me and cafés where they don't, streets that are friendly, streets that aren't, rooms where I might be happy, rooms where I shall never be, looking-glasses I look nice in, looking-glasses I don't, dresses that will be lucky, dresses that won't, and so on.
Jean Rhys (Good Morning, Midnight)
Let me tell you what I do know: I am more than one thing, and not all of those things are good. The truth is complicated. It’s two-toned, multi-vocal, bittersweet. I used to think that if I dug deep enough to discover something sad and ugly, I’d know it was something true. Now I’m trying to dig deeper. I didn’t want to write these pages until there were no hard feelings, no sharp ones. I do not have that luxury. I am sad and angry and I want everyone to be alive again. I want more landmarks, less landmines. I want to be grateful but I’m having a hard time with it.
Richard Siken
What if — is more complicated than that? What if maybe opposite is true as well? Because, if bad can sometimes come from good actions—? where does it ever say, anywhere, that only bad can come from bad actions? Maybe sometimes — the wrong way is the right way? You can take the wrong path and it still comes out where you want to be? Or, spin it another way, sometimes you can do everything wrong and it still turns out to be right?
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
How am I supposed to decide this? How can I possibly stay without mom and dad? How can I leave without Teddy? Or Adam? This is too much. I don’t even understand how it all works, why I’m here in the state that I’m in or how to get out of it if I wanted to. If I were to say, I want to wake up, would I wake up right now? I’ve already tried snapping my heels to find Teddy and tried to beam myself to Hawaii, and that didn’t work. This seems a whole lot more complicated. But in spite of that, I believe it’s true. I hear the nurse’s words again. I am running the show. Everyone’s waiting on me. I decide. I know this now. And this terrifies me more than anything else that has happened today.
Gayle Forman (If I Stay (If I Stay, #1))
It‘s complicated. I think when bad things happen—whether someone dies or people argue or split up—you get to a point where it‘s just too hard to go back. There‘s so much lost. So many versions of the truth. So many versions of how things might‘ve turned out differently. We all long for what could have been. For some people, it‘s just easier to move forward and try to forget.
Sarah Ockler (Fixing Delilah)
Everyone who tells a story tells it differently, just to remind us that everybody sees it differently. Some people say there are true things to be found, some people say all kinds of things can be proved. I don't believe them. The only thing for certain is how complicated it all is, like string full of knots. It's all there but hard to find the beginning and impossible to fathom the end. The best you can do is admire the cat's cradle, and maybe knot it up a bit more.
Jeanette Winterson (Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit)
He took a hairpin out of my untidy hair (by now my complicated arrangement of ringlets must have looked as if a couple of birds had been nesting there); he took a strand of it and wound it around his finger. With his other hand he began stroking my face, and then he bent down and kissed me again, this time very cautiously. I closed my eyes - and the same thing happened as before: my brain suffered that delicious break in transmission.
Kerstin Gier (Ruby Red (Precious Stone Trilogy, #1))
Let's face it. We're undone by each other. And if we're not, we're missing something. If this seems so clearly the case with grief, it is only because it was already the case with desire. One does not always stay intact. It may be that one wants to, or does, but it may also be that despite one's best efforts, one is undone, in the face of the other, by the touch, by the scent, by the feel, by the prospect of the touch, by the memory of the feel. And so when we speak about my sexuality or my gender, as we do (and as we must), we mean something complicated by it. Neither of these is precisely a possession, but both are to be understood as modes of being dispossessed, ways of being for another, or, indeed, by virtue of another.
Judith Butler (Undoing Gender)
We can reject everything else: religion, ideology, all received wisdom. But we cannot escape the necessity of love and compassion.... This, then, is my true religion, my simple faith. In this sense, there is no need for temple or church, for mosque or synagogue, no need for complicated philosophy, doctrine or dogma. Our own heart, our own mind, is the temple. The doctrine is compassion. Love for others and respect for their rights and dignity, no matter who or what they are: ultimately these are all we need. So long as we practice these in our daily lives, then no matter if we are learned or unlearned, whether we believe in Buddha or God, or follow some other religion or none at all, as long as we have compassion for others and conduct ourselves with restraint out of a sense of responsibility, there is no doubt we will be happy.
Dalai Lama XIV
It's like you took a bottle of ink and you threw it at a wall. Smash! And all that ink spread. And in the middle, it's dense, isn't it? And as it gets out on the edge, the little droplets get finer and finer and make more complicated patterns, see? So in the same way, there was a big bang at the beginning of things and it spread. And you and I, sitting here in this room, as complicated human beings, are way, way out on the fringe of that bang. We are the complicated little patterns on the end of it. Very interesting. But so we define ourselves as being only that. If you think that you are only inside your skin, you define yourself as one very complicated little curlique, way out on the edge of that explosion. Way out in space, and way out in time. Billions of years ago, you were a big bang, but now you're a complicated human being. And then we cut ourselves off, and don't feel that we're still the big bang. But you are. Depends how you define yourself. You are actually--if this is the way things started, if there was a big bang in the beginning-- you're not something that's a result of the big bang. You're not something that is a sort of puppet on the end of the process. You are still the process. You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are. When I meet you, I see not just what you define yourself as--Mr so-and- so, Ms so-and-so, Mrs so-and-so--I see every one of you as the primordial energy of the universe coming on at me in this particular way. I know I'm that, too. But we've learned to define ourselves as separate from it.
Alan W. Watts
I have been to many religious services over the years. Each one I go to only reinforces my general impression that religions have much, much more in common than they like to admit. The beliefs are almost always the same; it's just that the histories are different. Everybody wants to believe in a higher power. Everybody wants to belong to something bigger than themselves, and everybody wants company in doing that. They want there to be a force of good on earth, and they want an incentive to be a part of that force. They want to be able to prove their belief and their belonging, through rituals and devotion. They want to touch the enormity. It's only in the finer points that it gets complicated and contentious, the inability to realize that no matter what our religion or gender or race or geographic background, we all have about 98 percent in common with each other. yes, the differences between male and female are biological, but if you look at the biology as a matter of percentage, there aren't a whole lot of things that are different. Race is different purely as a social construction, not as an inherent difference. And religion--whether you believe in God or Yahweh or Allah or something else, odds are that at heart you want the same things. For whatever reason, we like to focus on the 2 percent that's different, and most of the conflict in the world comes from that.
David Levithan (Every Day (Every Day, #1))
It is my mind, with its store of images, that gives the world color and sound; and that supremely real and rational certainty which I can "experience" is, in its most simple form, an exceedingly complicated structure of mental images. Thus there is, in a certain sense, nothing that is directly experienced except the mind itself. Everything is mediated through the mind, translated, filtered, allegorized, twisted, even falsified by it. We are . . . enveloped in a cloud of changing and endlessly shifting images.
C.G. Jung
It is extraordinarily entertaining to watch the historians of the past ... entangling themselves in what they were pleased to call the "problem" of Queen Elizabeth. They invented the most complicated and astonishing reasons both for her success as a sovereign and for her tortuous matrimonial policy. She was the tool of Burleigh, she was the tool of Leicester, she was the fool of Essex; she was diseased, she was deformed, she was a man in disguise. She was a mystery, and must have some extraordinary solution. Only recently has it occrurred to a few enlightened people that the solution might be quite simple after all. She might be one of the rare people were born into the right job and put that job first.
Dorothy L. Sayers (Are Women Human? Astute and Witty Essays on the Role of Women in Society)
What I'm sure of is that you can't be happy without money. That's all. I don't like superficiality and I don't like romanticism. I like to be conscious. And what I've noticed is that there's a kind of spiritual snobbism in certain 'superior beings' who think that money isn't necessary for happiness. Which is stupid, which is false, and to a certain degree cowardly.... For a man who is well born, being happy is never complicated. It's enough to take up the general fate, only not with the will for renunciation like so many fake great men, but with the will for happiness. Only it takes time to be happy. A lot of time. Happiness, too, is a long patience. And in almost every case, we use up our lives making money, when we should be using our money to gain time. That's the only problem that's ever interested me.... To have money is to have time. That's my main point. Time can be bought. Everything can be bought. To be or to become rich is to have time to be happy, if you deserve it.... Everything for happiness, against the world which surrounds us with its violence and its stupidity.... All the cruelty of our civilization can be measured by this one axiom: happy nations have no history.
Albert Camus
Though no longer pregnant, she continues, at times, to mix Rice Krispies and peanuts and onions in a bowl. For being a foreigner Ashima is beginning to realize, is a sort of lifelong pregnancy -- a perpetual wait, a constant burden, a continuous feeling out of sorts. It is an ongoing responsibility, a parenthesis in what had once been an ordinary life, only to discover that previous life has vanished, replaced by something more complicated and demanding. Like pregnancy, being a foreigner, Ashima believes, is something that elicits the same curiosity of from strangers, the same combination of pity and respect.
Jhumpa Lahiri (The Namesake)
To make bread or love, to dig in the earth, to feed an animal or cook for a stranger—these activities require no extensive commentary, no lucid theology. All they require is someone willing to bend, reach, chop, stir. Most of these tasks are so full of pleasure that there is no need to complicate things by calling them holy. And yet these are the same activities that change lives, sometimes all at once and sometimes more slowly, the way dripping water changes stone. In a world where faith is often construed as a way of thinking, bodily practices remind the willing that faith is a way of life.
Barbara Brown Taylor (An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith)
This is what rituals are for. We do spiritual ceremonies as human beings in order to create a safe resting place for our most complicated feelings of joy or trauma, so that we don't have to haul those feelings around with us forever, weighing us down. We all need such places of ritual safekeeping. And I do believe that if your culture or tradition doesn't have the specific ritual you are craving, then you are absolutely permitted to make up a ceremony of your own devising, fixing your own broken-down emotional systems with all the do-it-yourself resourcefulness of a generous plumber/poet.
Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)
I don’t know how they do it. I don’t know how anybody does it, waking up every morning and eating and moving from the bus to the assembly line, where the teacherbots inject us with Subject A and Subject B, and passing every test they give us. Our parents provide the list of ingredients and remind us to make healthy choices: one sport, two clubs, one artistic goal, community service, no grades below a B, because really, nobody’s average, not around here. It’s a dance with complicated footwork and a changing tempo. I’m the girl who trips on the dance floor and can’t find her way to the exit. All eyes on me.
Laurie Halse Anderson (Wintergirls)
Magnus Bane walked some distance into the Sanctuary, shaking his head as he studied the scene before him. “I want to know what you’re doing, but I must confess I’m afraid to find out,” he said. “A spot of demon-summoning, I gather?” “It’s a bit complicated,” said James. “Hello, Magnus. It’s good to see you.” “Last time I saw you, you were facedown in the Serpentine,” Magnus said cheerfully. “Now you’re fiddling with a Pyxis. I see you have decided to follow in the long Herondale tradition of poor decision-making.” “So have I!” said Lucie, determined not to be left out.
Cassandra Clare (Chain of Gold (The Last Hours, #1))
And then what are your plans?” Annwyl frowned. “My plans?” “Yes. Your plans. You take your brother’s head, your troops are waiting. What is the next thing that you do?” Annwyl just stared at him. He realized in that instant that the girl had no plans. None. No grand schemes of controlling the world. No plots to destroy any other empires. Not even the plan to have a celebratory dinner. “Annwyl, you’ll be queen. You’ll have to do something.” “But I don’t want to be queen.” Her body shook with panic, and he could hear it in her voice. “You take his head, you’ll have little choice.” “What the hell am I supposed to do as queen?” “Well . .you could try ruling.” “That sounds awfully complicated.
G.A. Aiken (Dragon Actually (Dragon Kin, #1))
Love does not cost anything. Kind words and deeds do not cost anything. The real beauty of the world is equal for everyone to see. It was given by God equally to all, without restrictions. Everyone, was given a beautiful vehicle in which to express love to others. Feelings are free to express and give to ourselves and each other through our willingness to give and care. What is complicated about this... Why have we made others feel they have to climb mountains and swim oceans in order to make a difference. All we need to understand my friends, is that human life was given equally to us all, not partially but in totality. The sun was given to all. It does not shine on the few. So, just has nature is indifferent to our station or situation, we need to know that we are all equal. We need to focus on the things that are constant and not place our values on things that can be blown away with the next, great, wind. Value life in what ever house it dwells. For when it comes time that we are all stripped to bare bones before the divine and facing eternity, we will understand that the only law we were meant to follow, was to love ourselves and each other. Nothing more...nothing less.
Carla Jo Masterson
Jaime," I said softly, "are you happy about it? About the baby?" Outlawed in Scotland, barred from his own home, and with only vague prospects in France, he could pardonably have been less than enthused about acquiring an additional obligation. He was silent for a moment, only hugging me harder, then sighed briefly before answering. "Aye, Sassenach," His hand stayed downward, gently rubbing my belly. "I'm happy. And proud as a stallion. But I am most awfully afraid too." "About the birth? I'll be all right." I could hardly blame him for apprehension; his own mother had died in childbirth, and birth and its complications were the leading cause of death for women in these times. Still, I knew a thing or two myself, and I had no intention whatever of exposing myself to what passed for medical care here. "Aye, that--and everything," he said softly. "I want to protect ye like a cloak and shield you and the child wi' my body." His voice was soft and husky, with a slight catch in it. "I would do anything for ye...and yet...there's nothing I can do. It doesna matter how strong I am, or how willing; I canna go with you where ye must go...nor even help ye at all. And to think of the things that might happen, and me helpless to stop them...aye, I'm afraid, Sassenach. "And yet"--he turned me toward him, hand closing gently over one breast--"yet when I think of you wi' my child at your breast...then I feel as though I've gone hollow as a soap bubble, and perhaps I shall burst with joy.
Diana Gabaldon (Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander, #2))
What are you doing following me around the back streets of London, you little idiot?” Will demanded, giving her arm a light shake. Cecily’s eyes narrowed. “This morning it was cariad (note: Welsh endearment, like ‘darling’ or ‘love’), now it’s idiot.” “Oh, you’re using a Glamour rune. There’s one thing to declare, you are not afraid of anything when you live in the country. But this is London.” “I’m not afraid of London,” Cecily said defiantly. Will leaned closer, almost hissing in her ear *and said something very complicated in Welsh* She laughed. “No, it wouldn’t do you any good to tell me to go home. You are my brother, and I want to go with you.” Will blinked at her words. You are my brother, and I want to go with you. It was the sort of thing he was used to hearing Jem say. Although Cecily was unlike Jem in every other conceivable possible way, she did share one quality with him. Stubbornness. When Cecily said she wanted something, it did not express an idle desire, but an iron determination. “Do you even care where I’m going?” he said. “What if I were going to hell?” “I’ve always wanted to see hell,” Cecily said. “Doesn’t everyone?” “Most of us spend our time trying to stay out of it, Cecily. I’m going to an ifrit den, if you must know, to purchase drugs from vile, dissolute criminals. They may clap eyes on you, and decide to sell you.” “Wouldn’t you stop them?” “I suppose it would depend on whether they cut me a part of the profit.” She shook her head. “Jem is your parabatai,” she said. “He is your brother, given to you by the Clave, but I am your sister by blood. Why would you do anything for him, but you only want me to go home?” “How do you know the drugs are for Jem?” Will said. “I’m not an idiot, Will.” “No, more’s the pity. Jem- Jem is like the better part of me. I would not expect you to understand. I owe him. I owe him this.” “So what am I?” Cecily said. Will exhaled, too desperate to check himself. “You are my weakness.” “And Tessa is your heart,” she said, not angrily, but thoughtfully. “I am not fooled. As I told you, I’m not an idiot. And more’s the pity for you, although I suppose we all want things we can’t have.” “Oh,” said Will, “and what do you want?” “I want you to come home.” A strand of black hair was stuck to her cheek by the dampness, and Will fought the urge to pull her cloak closer about her, to make her safe as he had when she was a child. “The Institute is my home,” Will sighed, and leaned his head against the stone wall. “I can’t stand out her arguing with you all evening, Cecily. If you’re determined to follow me into hell, I can’t stop you.” “Finally,” she said provingly. “You’ve seen sense. I knew you would, you’re related to me.” Will fought the urge to shake her. “Are you ready?” She nodded, and he raised his hand to knock on the door.
Cassandra Clare (Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices, #3))
From day one it was like society was this violent, complicated dance and everybody had taken lessons but me. Knocked to the floor again, climbing to my feet each time, bloody and humiliated. Always met with disapproving faces, waiting for me to leave so I'd stop fucking up the party. The wanted to push me outside, where the freaks huddled in the cold. Out there with the misfits, the broken, the glazed-eye types who can only watch as the normals enjoy their shiny new cars and careers and marriages and vacations with the kids. The freaks spend their lives shambling around, wondering how they got left out, mumbling about conspiracy theories and bigfoot sightings. Their encounters with the world are marked by awkward conversations and stifled laughter, hidden smirks and rolled eyes. And worst of all, pity.
David Wong (John Dies at the End (John Dies at the End, #1))
Because we’ve been lied to and lied to, and it hurts to be lied to. It’s ultimately just about that complicated: it hurts. It denies you respect for yourself, for the liar, for the world. Especially if the lies are chronic, systemic, if hard experience seems to teach that everything you’re supposed to believe in’s really a game based on lies. Young Voters have been taught well and thoroughly. You may not personally remember Vietnam or Watergate, but it’s a good bet you remember ‘No new taxes’ and ‘Out of the loop’ and ‘No direct knowledge of any impropriety at this time’ and Did not inhale’ and ‘Did not have sex with that woman’ and etc. etc. It’s depressing and painful to believe that the would-be ‘public servants’ you’re forced to choose between are all phonies whose only real concern is their own care and feeding and who will lie so outrageously with such a straight face that you just know they have to believe you’re an idiot. So who wouldn’t fall all over themselves for a top politician who actually seemed to talk to you like you were a person, an intelligent adult worthy of respect?
David Foster Wallace (The Best American Essays 2007)
One of the major problems encountered in time travel is not that of becoming your own father or mother. There is no problem in becoming your own father or mother that a broad-minded and well-adjusted family can't cope with. There is no problem with changing the course of history—the course of history does not change because it all fits together like a jigsaw. All the important changes have happened before the things they were supposed to change and it all sorts itself out in the end. The major problem is simply one of grammar, and the main work to consult in this matter is Dr. Dan Streetmentioner's Time Traveler's Handbook of 1001 Tense Formations. It will tell you, for instance, how to describe something that was about to happen to you in the past before you avoided it by time-jumping forward two days in order to avoid it. The event will be descibed differently according to whether you are talking about it from the standpoint of your own natural time, from a time in the further future, or a time in the further past and is futher complicated by the possibility of conducting conversations while you are actually traveling from one time to another with the intention of becoming your own mother or father. Most readers get as far as the Future Semiconditionally Modified Subinverted Plagal Past Subjunctive Intentional before giving up; and in fact in later aditions of the book all pages beyond this point have been left blank to save on printing costs. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy skips lightly over this tangle of academic abstraction, pausing only to note that the term "Future Perfect" has been abandoned since it was discovered not to be.
Douglas Adams (The Restaurant at the End of the Universe (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #2))
Why kid ourselves, people have nothing to say to one another, they all talk about their own troubles and nothing else. Each man for himself, the earth for us all. They try to unload their unhappiness on someone else when making love, they do their damnedest, but it doesn't work, they keep it all, and then they start all over again, trying to find a place for it. "Your pretty, Mademoiselle," they say. And life takes hold of them again until the next time, and then they try the same little gimmick. "You're very pretty, Mademoiselle..." And in between they boast that they've succeeded in getting rid of their unhappiness, but everyone knows it's not true and they've simply kept it all to themselves. Since at the little game you get uglier and more repulsive as you grow older, you can't hope to hide your unhappiness, your bankruptcy, any longer. In the end your features are marked with that hideous grimace that takes twenty, thrity years or more to climb form your belly to your face. That's all a man is good for, that and no more, a grimace that he takes a whole lifetime to compose. The grimace a man would need to express his true soul without losing any of it is so heavy and complicated that he doesn't always succeed in completing it.
Louis-Ferdinand Céline (Journey to the End of the Night)
The ORDINARY RESPONSE TO ATROCITIES is to banish them from consciousness. Certain violations of the social compact are too terrible to utter aloud: this is the meaning of the word unspeakable. Atrocities, however, refuse to be buried. Equally as powerful as the desire to deny atrocities is the conviction that denial does not work. Folk wisdom is filled with ghosts who refuse to rest in their graves until their stories are told. Murder will out. Remembering and telling the truth about terrible events are prerequisites both for the restoration of the social order and for the healing of individual victims. The conflict between the will to deny horrible events and the will to proclaim them aloud is the central dialectic of psychological trauma. People who have survived atrocities often tell their stories in a highly emotional, contradictory, and fragmented manner that undermines their credibility and thereby serves the twin imperatives of truth-telling and secrecy. When the truth is finally recognized, survivors can begin their recovery. But far too often secrecy prevails, and the story of the traumatic event surfaces not as a verbal narrative but as a symptom. The psychological distress symptoms of traumatized people simultaneously call attention to the existence of an unspeakable secret and deflect attention from it. This is most apparent in the way traumatized people alternate between feeling numb and reliving the event. The dialectic of trauma gives rise to complicated, sometimes uncanny alterations of consciousness, which George Orwell, one of the committed truth-tellers of our century, called "doublethink," and which mental health professionals, searching for calm, precise language, call "dissociation." It results in protean, dramatic, and often bizarre symptoms of hysteria which Freud recognized a century ago as disguised communications about sexual abuse in childhood. . . .
Judith Lewis Herman (Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence - From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror)
people used to tell me that i had beautiful hands told me so often, in fact, that one day i started to believe them until i asked my photographer father, “hey daddy could i be a hand model” to which he said no way, i dont remember the reason he gave me and i wouldve been upset, but there were far too many stuffed animals to hold too many homework assignment to write, too many boys to wave at too many years to grow, we used to have a game, my dad and i about holding hands cus we held hands everywhere, and every time either he or i would whisper a great big number to the other, pretending that we were keeping track of how many times we had held hands that we were sure, this one had to be 8 million 2 thousand 7 hundred and fifty three. hands learn more than minds do, hands learn how to hold other hands, how to grip pencils and mold poetry, how to tickle pianos and dribble a basketball, and grip the handles of a bicycle how to hold old people, and touch babies , i love hands like i love people, they're the maps and compasses in which we navigate our way through life, some people read palms to tell your future, but i read hands to tell your past, each scar marks the story worth telling, each calloused palm, each cracked knuckle is a missed punch or years in a factory, now ive seen middle eastern hands clenched in middle eastern fists pounding against each other like war drums, each country sees theyre fists as warriors and others as enemies. even if fists alone are only hands. but this is not about politics, no hands arent about politics, this is a poem about love, and fingers. fingers interlock like a beautiful zipper of prayer. one time i grabbed my dads hands so that our fingers interlocked perfectly but he changed positions, saying no that hand hold is for your mom. kids high five, but grown ups, we learn how to shake hands, you need a firm hand shake,but dont hold on too tight, but dont let go too soon, but dont hold down for too long, but hands are not about politics, when did it become so complicated. i always thought its simple. the other day my dad looked at my hands, as if seeing them for the first time, and with laughter behind his eye lids, with all the seriousness a man of his humor could muster, he said you know you got nice hands, you could’ve been a hand model, and before the laughter can escape me, i shake my head at him, and squeeze his hand, 8 million 2 thousand 7hundred and fifty four.
Sarah Kay
Distance changes utterly when you take the world on foot. A mile becomes a long way, two miles literally considerable, ten miles whopping, fifty miles at the very limits of conception. The world, you realize, is enormous in a way that only you and a small community of fellow hikers know. Planetary scale is your little secret. Life takes on a neat simplicity, too. Time ceases to have any meaning. When it is dark, you go to bed, and when it is light again you get up, and everything in between is just in between. It’s quite wonderful, really. You have no engagements, commitments, obligations, or duties; no special ambitions and only the smallest, least complicated of wants; you exist in a tranquil tedium, serenely beyond the reach of exasperation, “far removed from the seats of strife,” as the early explorer and botanist William Bartram put it. All that is required of you is a willingness to trudge. There is no point in hurrying because you are not actually going anywhere. However far or long you plod, you are always in the same place: in the woods. It’s where you were yesterday, where you will be tomorrow. The woods is one boundless singularity. Every bend in the path presents a prospect indistinguishable from every other, every glimpse into the trees the same tangled mass. For all you know, your route could describe a very large, pointless circle. In a way, it would hardly matter. At times, you become almost certain that you slabbed this hillside three days ago, crossed this stream yesterday, clambered over this fallen tree at least twice today already. But most of the time you don’t think. No point. Instead, you exist in a kind of mobile Zen mode, your brain like a balloon tethered with string, accompanying but not actually part of the body below. Walking for hours and miles becomes as automatic, as unremarkable, as breathing. At the end of the day you don’t think, “Hey, I did sixteen miles today,” any more than you think, “Hey, I took eight-thousand breaths today.” It’s just what you do.
Bill Bryson (A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail)
Tikkun olam.” Exactly. Basically, it says that the world has been broken into pieces. All this chaos, all this discord. And our job - everyone’s job - is to try to put the pieces back together. To make things whole again.” And you believe that?” I guess I do. I mean, I don’t know how the world broke. And I don’t know if there’s a God who can help us fix it. But the fact that the world is broken - I absolutely believe that. Just look around us. Every minute - every single second - there are a million things you could be thinking about. A million things you could be worrying about. Our world - don’t you feel we’re becoming more and more fragmented? I used to think that when I got older, the world would make so much more sense. But you know what? The older I get, the more confusing it is to me. The more complicated it is. Harder. You’d think we’d be getting better at it. But there’s just more and more chaos. The pieces - they’re everywhere. And nobody knows what to do about it. I find myself grasping, Nick. You know that feeling? That feeling when you just want the right thing to fall into the right place, not only because it’s right, but because it will mean that such a thing is still possible? I want to believe in that.” Do you really think it’s getting worse? I mean, aren’t we better off than we were twenty years ago? Or a hundred?” We’re better off. But I don’t know if the world’s better off. I don’t know if the two are the same thing.” You’re right.” Excuse me?” I said, ‘You’re right.’” But nobody ever says, ‘You’re right.’ Just like that.” Really?” Really.” …Then it hits me. Maybe we’re the pieces,” What?” Maybe that’s it. With what you were talking about before. The world being broken. Maybe it isn’t that we’re supposed to find the pieces and put them back together. Maybe we’re the pieces. Maybe, what we’re supposed to do is come together. That’s how we stop the breaking.” Tikkun olam.
David Levithan (Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist)
Most parents try really hard to give their kids the best possible life. They give them the best food and clothes they can afford, take their own kind of take on training kids to be honest and polite. But what they don't realize is no matter how much they try, their kids will get out there. Out to this complicated little world. If they are lucky they will survive, through backstabbers, broken hearts, failures and all the kinds of invisible insane pressures out there. But most kids get lost in them. They will get caught up in all kinds of bubbles. Trouble bubbles. Bubbles that continuously tell them that they are not good enough. Bubbles that get them carried away with what they think is love, give them broken hearts. Bubbles that will blur the rest of the world to them, make them feel like that is it, that they've reached the end. Sometimes, even the really smart kids, make stupid decisions. They lose control. Parents need to realize that the world is getting complicated every second of every day. With new problems, new diseases, new habits. They have to realize the vast probability of their kids being victims of this age, this complicated era. Your kids could be exposed to problems that no kind of therapy can help. Your kids could be brainwashed by themselves to believe in insane theories that drive them crazy. Most kids will go through this stage. The lucky ones will understand. They will grow out of them. The unlucky ones will live in these problems. Grow in them and never move forward. They will cut themselves, overdose on drugs, take up excessive drinking and smoking, for the slightest problems in their lives. You can't blame these kids for not being thankful or satisfied with what they have. Their mentality eludes them from the reality.
Thisuri Wanniarachchi (COLOMBO STREETS)
I jump up: it would be much better if I could only stop thinking. Thoughts are the dullest things. Duller than flesh. They stretch out and there's no end to them and they leave a funny taste in the mouth. Then there are words, inside the thoughts, unfinished words, a sketchy sentence which constantly returns: "I have to fi. . . I ex. . . Dead . . . M. de Roll is dead . . . I am not ... I ex. . ." It goes, it goes . . . and there's no end to it. It's worse than the rest because I feel responsible and have complicity in it. For example, this sort of painful rumination: I exist, I am the one who keeps it up. I. The body lives by itself once it has begun. But though I am the one who continues it, unrolls it. I exist. How serpentine is this feeling of existing, I unwind it, slowly. ... If I could keep myself from thinking! I try, and succeed: my head seems to fill with smoke . . . and then it starts again: "Smoke . . . not to think . . . don't want to think ... I think I don't want to think. I mustn't think that I don't want to think. Because that's still a thought." Will there never be an end to it? My thought is me: that's why I can't stop. I exist because I think . . . and I can't stop myself from thinking. At this very moment, it's frightful, if I exist, it is because I am horrified at existing. I am the one who pulls myself from the nothingness to which I aspire: the hatred, the disgust of existing, there are as many ways to make myself exist, to thrust myself into existence. Thoughts are born at the back of me, like sudden giddiness, I feel them being born behind my head ... if I yield, they're going to come round in front of me, between my eyes, and I always yield, the thought grows and grows and there it is, immense, filling me completely and renewing my existence.
Jean-Paul Sartre (Nausea)
A floorboard cracked; knuckles tapped once on the open door. Adam looked up to see Niall Lynch standing in the doorway. No, it was Ronan, face lit bright on one side, in stark shadow on the other, looking powerful and at ease with his thumbs tucked in the pockets of his jeans, leather bracelets looped over his wrist, feet bare. He wordlessly crossed the floor and sat beside Adam on the mattress. When he held out his hand, Adam put the model into it. “This old thing,” Ronan said. He turned the front tyre, and again the music played out of it. They sat like that for a few minutes, as Ronan examined the car and turned each wheel to play a different tune. Adam watched how intently Ronan studied the seams, his eyelashes low over his light eyes. Ronan let out a breath, put the model down on the bed beside him, and kissed Adam. Once, when Adam had still lived in the trailer park, he had been pushing the lawn mower around the scraggly side yard when he realized that it was raining a mile away. He could smell it, the earthy scent of rain on dirt, but also the electric, restless smell of ozone. And he could see it: a hazy gray sheet of water blocking his view of the mountains. He could track the line of rain travelling across the vast dry field towards him. It was heavy and dark, and he knew he would get drenched if he stayed outside. It was coming from so far away that he had plenty of time to put the mower away and get under cover. Instead, though, he just stood there and watched it approach. Even at the last minute, as he heard the rain pounding the grass flat, he just stood there. He closed his eyes and let the storm soak him. That was this kiss. They kissed again. Adam felt it in more than his lips. Ronan sat back, his eyes closed, swallowing. Adam watched his chest rise and fall, his eyebrows furrow. He felt as bright and dreamy and imaginary as the light through the window. He did not understand anything. It was a long moment before Ronan opened his eyes, and when he did, his expression was complicated. He stood up. He was still looking at Adam, and Adam was looking back, but neither said anything. Probably Ronan wanted something from him, but Adam didn’t know what to say. He was a magician, Persephone had said, and his magic was making connections between disparate things. Only now he was too full of white, fuzzy light to make any sort of logical connections. He knew that of all the options in the world, Ronan Lynch was the most difficult version of any of them. He knew that Ronan was not a thing to be experimented with. He knew his mouth still felt warm. He knew he had started his entire time at Aglionby certain that all he wanted to do was get as far away from this state and everything in it as possible. He was pretty sure he had just been Ronan’s first kiss. “I’m gonna go downstairs,” Ronan said.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4))
The Frays had never been a religiously observant family, but Clary loved Fifth Avenue at Christmas time. The air smelled like sweet roasted chestnuts, and the window displays sparkled with silver and blue, green and red. This year there were fat round crystal snowflakes attached to each lamppost, sending back the winter sunlight in shafts of gold. Not to mention the huge tree at Rockefeller Center. It threw its shadow across them as she and Simon draped themselves over the gate at the side of the skating rink, watching tourists fall down as they tried to navigate the ice. Clary had a hot chocolate wrapped in her hands, the warmth spreading through her body. She felt almost normal—this, coming to Fifth to see the window displays and the tree, had been a winter tradition for her and Simon for as long as she could remember. “Feels like old times, doesn’t it?” he said, echoing her thoughts as he propped his chin on his folded arms. She chanced a sideways look at him. He was wearing a black topcoat and scarf that emphasized the winter pallor of his skin. His eyes were shadowed, indicating that he hadn’t fed on blood recently. He looked like what he was—a hungry, tired vampire. Well, she thought. Almost like old times. “More people to buy presents for,” she said. “Plus, the always traumatic what-to-buy-someone-for-the-first-Christmas-after-you’ve-started-dating question.” “What to get the Shadowhunter who has everything,” Simon said with a grin. “Jace mostly likes weapons,” Clary sighed. “He likes books, but they have a huge library at the Institute. He likes classical music …” She brightened. Simon was a musician; even though his band was terrible, and was always changing their name—currently they were Lethal Soufflé—he did have training. “What would you give someone who likes to play the piano?” “A piano.” “Simon.” “A really huge metronome that could also double as a weapon?” Clary sighed, exasperated. “Sheet music. Rachmaninoff is tough stuff, but he likes a challenge.” “Now you’re talking. I’m going to see if there’s a music store around here.” Clary, done with her hot chocolate, tossed the cup into a nearby trash can and pulled her phone out. “What about you? What are you giving Isabelle?” “I have absolutely no idea,” Simon said. They had started heading toward the avenue, where a steady stream of pedestrians gawking at the windows clogged the streets. “Oh, come on. Isabelle’s easy.” “That’s my girlfriend you’re talking about.” Simon’s brows drew together. “I think. I’m not sure. We haven’t discussed it. The relationship, I mean.” “You really have to DTR, Simon.” “What?” “Define the relationship. What it is, where it’s going. Are you boyfriend and girlfriend, just having fun, ‘it’s complicated,’ or what? When’s she going to tell her parents? Are you allowed to see other people?” Simon blanched. “What? Seriously?” “Seriously. In the meantime—perfume!” Clary grabbed Simon by the back of his coat and hauled him into a cosmetics store that had once been a bank. It was massive on the inside, with rows of gleaming bottles everywhere. “And something unusual,” she said, heading for the fragrance area. “Isabelle isn’t going to want to smell like everyone else. She’s going to want to smell like figs, or vetiver, or—” “Figs? Figs have a smell?” Simon looked horrified; Clary was about to laugh at him when her phone buzzed. It was her mother. where are you? It’s an emergency.
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))