Drama Pictures And Quotes

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Your mother won a special reward," she told me, "because everyone had a head in her pictures. We all applauded.
Sarah Dessen (Dreamland)
Nostalgia has a way of blocking the reality of the past.
Shannon L. Alder
I got the pictures with the names, and they match the passport photos and names from Madrid. How did you get the manager to help?
Karl Braungart (Fatal Identity (Remmich/Miller, #3))
Cindy extended her hand. I got up, faced her, and shook her hand. A strong handshake. This was definitely a no-nonsense young woman. “I recognize you from your pictures, Mr. Ludefance.” “Pleasure to meet you, Cindy. And you can call me Jack. I’m afraid you have the advantage. You probably did a Google search on me and have all my background information?” She didn’t hesitate. “Yes.” “Don’t believe everything you read on the Internet.” “I don’t.
Behcet Kaya (Appellate Judge (Jack Ludefance, #3))
I brought a few old photos of Villageport. I didn’t know you were blind. I hoped you could put some names to the pictures.” “Eyes aren’t the only way to see, young lady.
Diane L. Kowalyshyn (Crossover (Cross your Heart and Die, #1))
And there it was. Just like that I had my next case and my curiosity was piqued. Connecting to the ship’s Wi-Fi, I did a Google search of Judge Russell Hastings of Tallahassee, Florida. Wow. Wow. Wow. Perusing just a few of the hundreds of listings it became quickly apparent that the judge was both well-known and well-respected. The murder of a high-profile appellate judge in his own chambers was a mystery that had baffled the Tallahassee police for over a year. There were pictures of the judge and his family; including a beautiful wife and three grown daughters.
Behcet Kaya (Appellate Judge (Jack Ludefance, #3))
I always like to look on the optimistic side of life, but I am realistic enough to know that life is a complex matter. With the laugh comes the tears and in developing motion pictures or television shows, you must combine all the facts of life — drama, pathos and humor.
Walt Disney Company
She made a face at him, and he could picture her, as a child princess—sticking her tongue out at a playmate in her princess castle. 
J. Rose Black (Losing My Breath)
Mind-pictures brought feelings, and feelings dragged out dramas from the hollows of the heart.
Zora Neale Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
Seeing the pictures every evening while finishing the New York Times and waiting for dinner was his joy. Francine was unaware of his pleasure.  He could not reveal these feelings to the children or Francine. Silly. A father loves his children but can’t speak of it for fear of being made trivial.
Vincent Panettiere (Shared Sorrows)
Humans lose focus of the big picture when they’re drunken in the midst of their feelings. - Tojuro Hattori
Yuhki Kamatani
Saying that “life is short” is such a cliche. And it’s true. In fact, we only have five minutes to be here. In the really big scheme of things, not even that long. We humans don’t even have the lifespan of fruit flies if you look at the bigger picture. In other words, we don’t have a second—not even a second—to waste on petty drama, on living fake, shallow lives, on swallowing our truth, or on hiding our light. We only dance around the flame of this gorgeous human existence for moments and the one thing important at all is loving beautifully.
Jacob Nordby
War pictures are always fascinating for people; they were for me growing up, even though I'm not nuts about war." "War is the ultimate conflict, and conflict is the basis of drama to begin with.
Clint Eastwood
People are always in various stages of different dramas when you encounter them: freshly embarked on some, halfway or more through others. One is always approaching the denouement of this or that subplot of one’s life. And you, the stranger, entering the picture in all your blundering innocence, may well be the catalyst for some long-awaited climax.
James Lasdun (Give Me Everything You Have: On Being Stalked)
The fear of today,” he said, “always overrides the fear of tomorrow. It’s a basic fact of the dramatic emotions that the part is greater than the whole. If you see a glamour star on the screen in a position of great danger, you fear for her with one part of your mind, the emotional part. Notwithstanding that your reasoning mind knows that she is the star of the picture and nothing very bad is going to happen to her. If suspense and menace didn’t defeat reason, there would be very little drama.
Raymond Chandler (The Little Sister (Philip Marlowe, #5))
Siempre se puede ser amable con las personas que no nos importan nada.
Oscar Wilde (The Picture of Dorian Gray)
One had to know Plato personally to appreciate the love he suppressed puritanically for the music, poetry, and drama he censured in his philosophy and censored in his model communities. They moved him too deeply.
Joseph Heller (Picture This)
It’s like returning to a familiar room and noticing objects had been moved while you were gone—a chair here, a picture frame there. Items that were once brand new were suddenly broken in and worn from age. It was all very subtle, but enough to suspect paranormal activity or a cruel practical joke. When no one else saw what you saw, the freak factor really kicked in, because you were singled out and left questioning reality." ~Ellia
Jaime Reed (Keep Me In Mind)
The magic of drama is infinitely more powerful than the magic of trickery. It is as available to the conjurer as it is to the actor. The only difference is that actors take it for granted, whereas few conjurers are even aware that it exists.
Milbourne Christopher (Magic: A Picture History)
We take it for granted that life moves forward. You build memories; you build momentum.You move as a rower moves: facing backwards. You can see where you've been, but not where you’re going. And your boat is steered by a younger version of you. It's hard not to wonder what life would be like facing the other way. Avenoir. You'd see your memories approaching for years, and watch as they slowly become real. You’d know which friendships will last, which days are important, and prepare for upcoming mistakes. You'd go to school, and learn to forget. One by one you'd patch things up with old friends, enjoying one last conversation before you meet and go your separate ways. And then your life would expand into epic drama. The colors would get sharper, the world would feel bigger. You'd become nothing other than yourself, reveling in your own weirdness. You'd fall out of old habits until you could picture yourself becoming almost anything. Your family would drift slowly together, finding each other again. You wouldn't have to wonder how much time you had left with people, or how their lives would turn out. You'd know from the start which week was the happiest you’ll ever be, so you could relive it again and again. You'd remember what home feels like, and decide to move there for good. You'd grow smaller as the years pass, as if trying to give away everything you had before leaving. You'd try everything one last time, until it all felt new again. And then the world would finally earn your trust, until you’d think nothing of jumping freely into things, into the arms of other people. You'd start to notice that each summer feels longer than the last. Until you reach the long coasting retirement of childhood. You'd become generous, and give everything back. Pretty soon you’d run out of things to give, things to say, things to see. By then you'll have found someone perfect; and she'll become your world. And you will have left this world just as you found it. Nothing left to remember, nothing left to regret, with your whole life laid out in front of you, and your whole life left behind.
Sébastien Japrisot
While he can interact with others who have no idea that anything is wrong, Ron lives without spontaneity, going through the motions, doing what he thinks people expect him to do, glad that he is able to at least appear normal throughout the day and maintain a job. He studied drama briefly while in college, and remains enamored of Shakespeare and literature, but an emerging self-consciousness eventually robbed him of his ability to act. Now he feels as if all of his life is an act—just an attempt to maintain the status quo. Recalling literature he once loved, he sometimes pictures himself as Camus’s Meursault, in The Stranger: an emotionless character who plods through life in a meaningless universe with apathy and indifference. He’s tired of living this way but terrified of death.
Daphne Simeon (Feeling Unreal: Depersonalization Disorder and the Loss of the Self)
[The unconscious has] been on its own for a long time. Of course it has no access to the world except through your own sensorium. Otherwise it would just labor in the dark. Like your liver. For historical reasons it's loath to speak to you. It prefers drama, metaphor, pictures. But it understands you very well. And it has no other cause save yours.
Cormac McCarthy (Stella Maris (The Passenger, #2))
Fear, hydra-headed fear, which is rampant in all of us, is a hang-over from lower forms of life. We are straddling two worlds, the one from which we have emerged and the one towards which we are heading. This is the deepest meaning of the word human, that we are a link, a bridge, a promise. It is in us that the life process is being carried to fulfillment. We have a tremendous responsibility, and it is the gravity of that which awakens our fears. We know that if we do not move forward, if we do not realize our potential being, we shall relapse, sputter out, and drag the world down with us. We carry Heaven and Hell within us; we are the cosmogonic builders. We have choice—and all creation is our range. For some it a terrifying prospect. It would be better, think they, if Heaven were above and Hell below—anywhere outside, but not within. But that comfort has been knocked from under us. There are no places to go to, either for reward or punishment. The place is always here and now, in your own person and according to your own fancy. The world is exactly what you picture it to be, always, every instant. It is impossible to shift the scenery about and pretend that you will enjoy another, a different act. The setting is permanent, changing with the mind and heart, not according to the dictates of an invisible stage director. You are the author, director and actor all in one: the drama is always going to be your own life, not some one else’s. A beautiful, terrible, ineluctable drama, like a suit made of your own skin. Would you want it otherwise? Could you invent a better drama?
Henry Miller (Sexus (The Rosy Crucifixion, #1))
Every salad you serve is a picture you have painted, a sculpture you have modeled, a drama you have created.
Carol Truax (The art of salad making)
God's got my picture,' Piper reiterated, 'taped right up there on his big, big, giiinormous fridge.' She smiled. 'Because he's crazy about me. And about you, too.
Candace Calvert (Maybe It's You (Crisis Team #3))
Phones have caused all my uni dramas to date. You wouldn't catch Elizabeth Bennet sending a comedy guinea pig picture to Darcy. She'd have to paint it and then send it by horseman.
Tom Ellen (Freshers)
Their strong appearances of disinterest were unnerving in contrast with the old CCTS yearbook pictures of African American children involved in debating, drama, literacy clubs, and so forth.
Vanessa Siddle Walker (Their Highest Potential: An African American School Community in the Segregated South)
In the course of your life you will be continually encountering fools. There are simply too many to avoid. We can classify people as fools by the following rubric: when it comes to practical life, what should matter is getting long term results, and getting the work done in as efficient and creative a manner as possible. That should be the supreme value that guides people’s action. But fools carry with them a different scale of values. They place more importance on short-term matters – grabbing immediate money, getting attention from the public or media, and looking good. They are ruled by their ego and insecurities. They tend to enjoy drama and political intrigue for their own sake. When they criticize, they always emphasize matters that are irrelevant to the overall picture or argument. They are more interested in their career and position than in the truth. You can distinguish them by how little they get done, or by how hard they make it for others to get results. They lack a certain common sense, getting worked up about things that are not really important while ignoring problems that will spell doom in the long term. The natural tendency with fools is to lower yourself to their level. They annoy you, get under your skin, and draw you into a battle. In the process, you feel petty and confused. You lose a sense of what is really important. You can’t win an argument or get them to see your side or change their behavior, because rationality and results don’t matter to them. You simply waste valuable time and emotional energy. In dealing with fools you must adopt the following philosophy: they are simply a part of life, like rocks or furniture. All of us have foolish sides, moments in which we lose our heads and think more of our ego or short-term goals. It is human nature. Seeing this foolishness within you, you can then accept it in others. This will allow you to smile at their antics, to tolerate their presence as you would a silly child, and to avoid the madness of trying to change them. It is all part of the human comedy, and it is nothing to get upset or lose sleep over.
Robert Greene (Mastery)
I clearly saw us from outside, like in a picture: we are not people, we are a road sign warning: “Stop and thank luck because such fate didn’t befall you as befell us, and only then keep going your way”.
Igor Eliseev (One-Two)
Art is central to all our lives, not just the better-off and educated. . . I know that from my own story, and from the evidence of every child ever born — they all want to hear and to tell stories, to sing, to make music, to act out little dramas, to paint pictures, to make sculptures. This is born in and we breed it out. And then, when we have bred it out, we say that art is elitist, and at the same time we either fetishize art — the high prices, the jargon, the inaccessibility — or we ignore it. The truth is, artist or not, we are all born on the creative continuum, and that is a heritage and a birthright of all of our lives.
Jeanette Winterson
Positive social change results mostly from connecting more deeply to the people around you than rising above them, from coordinated rather than solo action. Among the virtues that matter are those traditionally considered feminine rather than masculine, more nerd than jock: listening, respect, patience, negotiation, strategic planning, storytelling. But we like our lone and exceptional heroes, the drama of violence and virtue of muscle, or at least that's what we get, over and over, and from it we don't get much of a picture of how change actually happens and what our role in it might be, or how ordinary people matter. "Unhappy the land that needs heros" is a line of Bertolt Brecht's I've gone to dozens of times, but now I'm more inclined to think, pity the land that thinks it needs a hero, or doesn't know it has lots and what they look like.
Rebecca Solnit (Whose Story Is This? Old Conflicts, New Chapters)
Not only these were new kinds of stories, they were being told with a new kind of formal structure. [...] The result was a storytelling architecture you could picture as a colonnade - each episode a brick with its own solid, satisfying shape, but also part of a season-long arc that, in turn, would stand linked to other seasons to form a coherent, freestanding work of art. [...] The new structure allowed huge creative freedom: to develop characters over long stretches of time, to tell stories over the course of fifty hours or more, the equivalent of countless movies.
Brett Martin (Difficult Men: Behind the Scenes of a Creative Revolution: From The Sopranos and The Wire to Mad Men and Breaking Bad)
God put the physical world under a curse so that the physical horrors we see around us in diseases and calamities would become a vivid picture of how horrible sin is. In other words, physical evil is a parable, a drama, a signpost pointing to the moral outrage of rebellion against God.
John Piper (Coronavirus and Christ)
The woman with the cat complex is named Mrs. Alice Plesher, but she doesn't reveal her first name to him and Sai only finds out by accident, later. Mrs. Plesher calls the paper and is put through to Sai. He has no idea why although he could guess the new guy gets all of the reporter-on-the-beat drudgery assignments until proven worthy. Alice speaks haltingly as if hardened by age and her voice reveals a rasp. Sai pictures her in a long house dress from the fifties, wide pink and white stripes fading with age---a smock of beige over the dress, a multitude of cats clinging to the fabric like stick-ons.
Justin Bog (A Great Distance)
As Christians, I feel those of us in the creative community must seek to be more than scribes. If Diarmaid MacColloch is right in his immense history, The Reformation, we had plenty of Christian scribes on the eve of that enormous and painful upheaval. But it was the printing press that enabled the great thinkers of that time, both Reformer and Catholic, to transform our “assumptions about knowledge and originality of thought.” I suggest now that we must seize the revolutionary media of our age in the way that those earlier Christians and Catholics seized the printed book. We must truly use the realistic novel, the television drama, and the motion picture to tell the Christian story anew. It is our obligation to tell that story over and over and to use the best means that we have. In that spirit this novel was written—with the hope of exploring and celebrating the mystery of the Hypostatic Union as well as the mystery of the Incarnation—in a wholly fresh way.
Anne Rice (Out of Egypt (Christ the Lord, #1))
The guilt fell upon him like a hammer to a nail. He dropped onto his bed, grabbing the picture frame that sat next to it. I’m sorry were the words that repeatedly came out of his mouth. All he could think was, how could he do that to her? To the woman he vowed to spend the rest of his life with. His stomach hurt just from thinking about it.
Courtney Giardina (Holding on to Georgia)
When we imagine Jesus’ teaching in his own time and place, W ca we cannot use profiles of teachers from our own world to understand the nature of his work. Our culture is heir to the Greek tradition, where abstract reasoning and verbal prowess are the measure of the teacher. Jesus’ world was different. He communicated through word pictures, dramatic actions, metaphors, and stories. Rather than lecture about religious corruption, Jesus refers to the Pharisees as “whitewashed tombs.” Rather than outline the failings of the temple, he curses a fig tree. This means that we should think of Jesus as a “metaphorical theologian” for whom drama, humor, and storytelling were all a part of his method.
Gary M. Burge (The New Testament in Antiquity: A Survey of the New Testament within Its Cultural Context)
If we want to participate in this Advent and Christmas event, we cannot simply sit there like spectators in a theater and enjoy all the friendly pictures. Rather, we must join in the action that is taking place and be drawn into this reversal of all things ourselves. Here we too must act on the stage, for here the spectator is always a person acting in the drama. We cannot remove ourselves from the action.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (God Is in the Manger: Reflections on Advent and Christmas)
I’m a good husband and I’ve done my best to support you, Yara, but you know I have to work. I have bills to pay, this entire family to worry about. Between the mortgage, our cars, and providing for the girls, it’s too much. And it’s not like your job pays anything significant.” He wiped his fingers with a napkin and looked at her. “What do you want me to do, quit my job so you can travel the world and take pretty pictures?
Etaf Rum (Evil Eye: Don’t miss the brand new gripping family drama novel from New York Times Best-selling author in 2023!)
If we want to participate in this Advent and Christmas event, we cannot simply sit there like spectators in a theater and enjoy all the friendly pictures. Rather, we must join in the action that is taking place and be drawn into this reversal of all things ourselves. Here we too must act on the stage, for here the spectator is always a person acting in the drama. We cannot remove ourselves from the action. With whom, then, are we acting? Pious shepherds who are on their knees? Kings who bring their gifts? What is going on here, where Mary becomes the mother of God, where God comes into the world in the lowliness of the manger? World judgment and world redemption—that is what’s happening here. And it is the Christ child in the manger himself who holds world judgment and world redemption. He pushes back the high and mighty; he overturns the thrones of the powerful; he humbles the haughty; his arm exercises power over all the high and mighty; he lifts what is lowly, and makes it great and glorious in his mercy.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (God Is in the Manger: Reflections on Advent and Christmas)
Only fools take life so seriously that they are constantly hurt. The wise look upon childhood, youth, old age, life and death as passing dramas, hence everything entertains them. When one become momentarily identified with tragic picture, he feels miserable but when he realizes that it is only a part of an entertaining variety show, he feels happy. God wants man to behold the changing pictures of personal and worldly life as a sort of variety entertainment. (Paramahansa Yogananda, God talks with Arjuna, The Bhagawat Gita)
Parmahansa Yogananda
Although the outward picture of depression is quite the opposite of that of grandiosity and has a quality that expresses the tragedy of the loss of self in a more obvious way, they have many points in common: - The false self that has led to the loss of the potential true self - A fragility of self-esteem because of a lack of confidence in one’s own feelings and wishes - Perfectionism - Denial of rejected feelings - A preponderance of exploitative relationships - An enormous fear of loss of love and therefore a great readiness to conform - Split-off aggression - Oversensitivity - A readiness to feel shame and guilt - Restlessness
Alice Miller
I recall a discussion with a highly-respected psychotherapist colleague and friend on the significance of the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. My friend stated that the trouble with Romeo and Juliet was that they hadn't had adequate counseling. If they had had, they would not have committed suicide. Taken aback, I protested that I didn't think that was Shakespeare's point at all, and that Shakespeare, as well as the other classical writers who have created and molded the literature which speaks to us age after age, is in this drama picturing how sexual love can grasp a man and woman and hurl them into heights and depths—the simultaneous presence of which we call tragic. But my friend insisted that tragedy was a negative state and we, with our scientific enlightenment, had superseded it—or at least ought to at the earliest possible moment. I argued with him, as I do here, that to see the tragic in merely negative terms is a profound misunderstanding. Far from being a negation of life and love, the tragic is an ennobling and deepening aspect of our experience of sexuality and love. An appreciation of the tragic not only can help us avoid some egregious oversimplifications in life, but it can specifically protect us against the danger that sex and love will be banalized also in psychotherapy.
Rollo May (Love and Will)
Life is going on, but there is no drama, no expectation of an outcome, no sense of getting anywhere. Rather than this being a condition of boredom or frustration, though, it feels exactly right. It is tranquil but not tired. It is immensely peaceful but not inert. In a strange way, the picture is filled with a sense of delight in existence expressed quietly. It is not the light in itself that is so attractive; rather, it is the condition of the soul it evinces. The picture captures a part of who one is – a part that isn’t particularly verbal. You could point to this image and say, ‘That’s what I’m like, sometimes; and I wish I were like that more often.’ It could be the beginning of an important friendship if somebody else understood this too.
Alain de Botton (Art as Therapy)
I started to stand, but I neeed to say more to Tracey. “Tracey, I apologize again for calling you ‘Arvey’ all that time.” Her whole body, already still, stiffened. “I wouldn’t have done it if I had known your real name.” One hand slipped up under her hair, as if swiping a tear. “I hope you never do anything like the picture again because it caused a lot of trouble, but there’s something important I want you to know.” She slowly raised her head and faxed me with damp, red eyes. Memory took me back to that night Grandma explained why she was so happy in spite of the horrors she had survived. I wanted to do what Grandma had done – leave the bad times behind so I could enjoy the good times. I wanted to close the door on this whole drama. “Tracey, I forgive you.
Brenda Vicars (Polarity in Motion)
We get in and I start the car. “Are you going to be good to Lani?” I ask. I think of Tommy Cook, a pale boy with psoriasis; we used to tie him to a chair with bungee cords and put him in the middle of the road, then hide. Few cars would actually come down Rainbow Drive, but when they did, it always surprised me that the drivers would slow their vehicles and swerve around the chair. None of them ever got out of their cars to help Tommy; it was as though they were in on the prank. I don’t know how Tommy managed to let us catch him more than once. Maybe he liked the attention. “I’ll try,” Scottie says. “But it’s hard. She has this face that you just want to hit.” “I know what you mean,” I say, thinking of Tommy, but realize I’m not supposed to empathize. “What does that mean?” I ask. “The kind of face that you want to hit. Where did you get that?” Sometimes I wonder if Scottie knows what she’s saying or if it’s something she recites, like those kids who memorize the Declaration of Independence. “It’s something Mom said about Danielle.” “I see.” Joanie has carried her juvenile meanness into her adult life. She sends unflattering pictures of her ex-friends to the Advertiser to put in their society pages. She always has some sort of drama in her life, some friend I’m not supposed to speak to or invite to our barbecues, and then I hear her on the phone gossiping about the latest scandal in an outraged and thrilled voice. “You are going to die,” I’ll hear her say. “Oh my God, you will just die.” Is this where Scottie gets it? By watching her mother use cruelty as a source of entertainment? I feel almost proud that I have made these deductions without the blogs and without Esther, and I’m eager to tell Joanie about all of this, to prove that I was capable without her.
Kaui Hart Hemmings (The Descendants)
That’s why we say that the only authentic literature of the modern era is the owner’s manual.” Stretching forward toward the lens, revealing voluptuously freckled cleavage, Célestine fumbled for something off camera, then slumped back with a small, thick white booklet in her cigarette hand. She riffled through the pages, her face myopically close to the print—or was she smelling the paper, the ink?—until she found her page and began to read. “Auto-flash without red-eye reduction. Set this mode for taking pictures without people, or if you want to shoot right away without the red-eye function.” She laughed that rich, husky laugh, and repeated, this time with great drama, “Set this mode for taking pictures without people.” A shake of the head, eyes now closed to fully feel the richness of the words. “What author of the past century has produced more provocative and poignant writing than that?
David Cronenberg (Consumed)
Consider for a few moments the enormous aesthetic claim of its chief contemporary rival—what we may loosely call the Scientific Outlook, 1 the picture of Mr. [H. G.] Wells and the rest. Supposing this to be a myth, is it not one of the finest myths which human imagination has yet produced? The play is preceded by the most austere of all preludes: the infinite void, and matter restlessly moving to bring forth it knows not what. Then, by the millionth millionth chance—what tragic irony—the conditions at one point of space and time bubble up into that tiny fermentation which is the beginning of life. Everything seems to be against the infant hero of our drama—just as everything seems against the youngest son or ill-used stepdaughter at the opening of a fairy tale. But life somehow wins through. With infinite suffering, against all but insuperable obstacles, it spreads, it breeds, it complicates itself, from the amoeba up to the plant, up to the reptile, up to the mammal. We glance briefly at the age of monsters. Dragons prowl the earth, devour one another, and die. Then comes the theme of the younger son and the ugly duckling once more. As the weak, tiny spark of life began amidst the huge hostilities of the inanimate, so now again, amidst the beasts that are far larger and stronger than he, there comes forth a little naked, shivering, cowering creature, shuffling, not yet erect, promising nothing, the product of another millionth millionth chance. Yet somehow he thrives. He becomes the Cave Man with his club and his flints, muttering and growling over his enemies’ bones, dragging his screaming mate by her hair (I never could quite make out why), tearing his children to pieces in fierce jealousy till one of them is old enough to tear him, cowering before the horrible gods whom he created in his own image. But these are only growing pains. Wait till the next act. There he is becoming true Man. He learns to master Nature. Science comes and dissipates the superstitions of his infancy. More and more he becomes the controller of his own fate. Passing hastily over the present (for it is a mere nothing by the time scale we are using), you follow him on into the future. See him in the last act, though not the last scene, of this great mystery. A race of demigods now rules the planet—and perhaps more than the planet—for eugenics have made certain that only demigods will be born, and psychoanalysis that none of them shall lose or smirch his divinity, and communism that all which divinity requires shall be ready to their hands. Man has ascended his throne. Henceforward he has nothing to do but to practise virtue, to grow in wisdom, to be happy. And now, mark the final stroke of genius. If the myth stopped at that point, it might be a little bathetic.
C.S. Lewis (The Weight of Glory)
I must tell you something about necks in Japan, if you don't know it; namely, that Japanese men, as a rule, feel about a woman's neck and throat the same way that men in the West might feel about a woman's legs. This is why geisha wear the collars of their kimono so low in the back that the first few bumps of the spine are visible; I suppose it's like a woman in Paris wearing a short skirt. Auntie painted onto the back of Hatsumomo's neck a design called sanbon-ashi-"three legs." It makes a very dramatic picture, for you feel as if you're looking at the bare skin of the neck through little tapering points of a white fence. It was years before I understood the erotic effect it has on men; but in a way, it's like a woman peering out from between her fingers. In fact, a geisha leaves a tiny margin of skin bare all around the hairline, causing her makeup to look even more artificial, something like a mask worn in Noh drama. When a man sits beside her and sees her makeup like a mask, he becomes that much more aware of the bare skin beneath.
Arthur Golden (Memoirs of a Geisha)
When fears rise supreme, we remember that in spite of any picture to the contrary, our greatest protection is to understand that we are under no laws but God’s. God’s laws are love, strength, order, and harmony. They are invisible, yet, mighty and powerful. They silently but surely bring the hand of peace and order into seeming turmoil and fear. They are an unseen medicine bringing quiet, sure healing and stability. Such is our mainstay through all of the human experience. To the extent that we understand that we are under no laws but God’s, our fear disappears. It is not possible to be afraid when all the Universe and beyond is working under the infinitely good orchestration of the Divine. Armed with these simple truths, we radiate a firm and unshakeable knowledge that there is, in every situation, an inner and higher reality which is unmarred by the many, different human dramas. We help those around us with our serenity and trust. Each one of us is loved greatly. No person or event or anything on Earth and beyond can take this from us.
Donna Goddard (The Love of Devotion)
Because the victims are “only children,” their distress is trivialized. But in twenty years’ time these children will be adult who will feel compelled to pay it all back to their own children. They may consciously fight with vigor against cruelty in the world yet carry within themselves an experience of cruelty that they may unconsciously inflict on others. As long as it remains hidden behind their idealized picture of a happy childhood, they will have not awareness of it and will therefore be unable to avoid passing it on. It is absolutely urgent that people become aware of the degree to which this disrespect of children is persistently transmitted from one generation to the next, perpetuating destructive behavior. Someone who slaps or hits another adult or knowingly insults her is aware of hurting her. Even if he doesn’t know why he is doing this, he has some sense of what he is doing. But how often were our parents, and we ourselves toward our own children, unconscious of how painfully, deeply, and abidingly they and we injured a child’s tender, budding self?
Alice Miller
Wallace had read the Tractatus, of course (he wrote to Lance Olsen that he thought its first sentence was "the most beautiful opening line in western lit"). He knew that Wittgenstein's book presented a spare and unforgiving picture of the relations among logic, language, and the physical world. He knew that the puzzles solved and raised by the book were influential, debatable, and rich in their implications. But as a flesh-and-blood reader with human feelings, he also knew, though he had never articulated it out loud, that as you labored to understand the Tractatus, its cold, formal, logical picture of the world cold make you feel strange, lonely, awestruck, lost, frightened-a range of moods not unlike those undergone by Kate herself. The similarities were not accidental. Markson's novel, as Wallace put it, was like a 240-page answer to the question, "What if somebody really had to live in a Tractatusized world?" Pronouncing the novel "a kind of philosophical sci-fi," Wallace explained that Markson had staged a human drama on an alien intellectual planet, and in so doing he had "fleshed the abstract sketches of Wittgenstein's doctrine into the concrete theater of human loneliness.
James Ryerson (Fate, Time, and Language: An Essay on Free Will)
The psychology of the naturalistic drama, in which the characters are interpreted as social phenomena, has its origin in this urge which the spectator feels to identify himself with his social compeers. Now, however much objective truth there may be in such an interpretation of the characters in a play, it leads, when raised to the status of an exclusive principle, to a falsification of the facts. The assumption that men and women are merely social beings results in just as arbitrary a picture of experience as the view according to which every person is a unique and incomparable individual. Both conceptions lead to a stylization and romanticizing of reality. On the other hand, however, there is no doubt that the conception of man held in any particular epoch is socially conditioned and that the choice as to whether man is portrayed in the main as an autonomous personality or as the representative of a class depends in every age on the social approach and political aims of those who happen to be the upholders of culture. When a public wishes to see social origins and class characteristics emphasized in the human portraiture, that is always a sign that that society has become class-conscious, no matter whether the public in question is aristocratic or middle-class. In this context the question whether the aristocrat is only an aristocrat and the bourgeois only a bourgeois is absolutely unimportant.
Arnold Hauser (The Social History of Art Volume 3: Rococo, Classicism and Romanticism)
The world can be validly construed as a forum for action, as well as a place of things. We describe the world as a place of things, using the formal methods of science. The techniques of narrative, however – myth, literature, and drama – portray the world as a forum for action. The two forms of representation have been unnecessarily set at odds, because we have not yet formed a clear picture of their respective domains. The domain of the former is the 'objective world' – what is, from the perspective of intersubjective perception. The domain of the latter is 'the world of value' – what is and what should be, from the perspective of emotion and action. The world as forum for action is 'composed,' essentially, of three constituent elements, which tend to manifest themselves in typical patterns of metaphoric representation. First is unexplored territory – the Great Mother, nature, creative and destructive, source and final resting place of all determinate things. Second is explored territory – the Great Father, culture, protective and tyrannical, cumulative ancestral wisdom. Third is the process that mediates between unexplored and explored territory – the Divine Son, the archetypal individual, creative exploratory 'Word' and vengeful adversary. We are adapted to this 'world of divine characters,' much as the 'objective world.' The fact of this adaptation implies that the environment is in 'reality' a forum for action, as well as a place of things. Unprotected exposure to unexplored territory produces fear. The individual is protected from such fear as a consequence of 'ritual imitation of the Great Father' – as a consequence of the adoption of group identity, which restricts the meaning of things, and confers predictability on social interactions. When identification with the group is made absolute, however – when everything has to be controlled, when the unknown is no longer allowed to exist – the creative exploratory process that updates the group can no longer manifest itself. This 'restriction of adaptive capacity' dramatically increases the probability of social aggression and chaos. Rejection of the unknown is tantamount to 'identification with the devil,' the mythological counterpart and eternal adversary of the world-creating exploratory hero. Such rejection and identification is a consequence of Luciferian pride, which states: all that I know is all that is necessary to know. This pride is totalitarian assumption of omniscience – is adoption of 'God’s place' by 'reason' – is something that inevitably generates a state of personal and social being indistinguishable from hell. This hell develops because creative exploration – impossible, without (humble) acknowledgment of the unknown – constitutes the process that constructs and maintains the protective adaptive structure that gives life much of its acceptable meaning. 'Identification with the devil' amplifies the dangers inherent in group identification, which tends of its own accord towards pathological stultification. Loyalty to personal interest – subjective meaning – can serve as an antidote to the overwhelming temptation constantly posed by the possibility of denying anomaly. Personal interest – subjective meaning – reveals itself at the juncture of explored and unexplored territory, and is indicative of participation in the process that ensures continued healthy individual and societal adaptation. Loyalty to personal interest is equivalent to identification with the archetypal hero – the 'savior' – who upholds his association with the creative 'Word' in the face of death, and in spite of group pressure to conform. Identification with the hero serves to decrease the unbearable motivational valence of the unknown; furthermore, provides the individual with a standpoint that simultaneously transcends and maintains the group.
Jordan B. Peterson (Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief)
The concentrated structure of musical form, based on dramatic climaxes, gradually breaks up in romanticism and gives way again to the cumulative composition of the older music. Sonata form falls to pieces and is replaced more and more often by other, less severe and less schematically moulded forms—by small-scale lyrical and descriptive genres, such as the Fantasy and the Rhapsody, the Arabesque and the Étude, the Intermezzo and the Impromptu, the Improvisation and the Variation. Even extensive works are often made up of such miniature forms, which no longer constitute, from the structural point of view, the acts of a drama, but the scenes of a revue. A classical sonata or symphony was the world in parvo: a microcosm. A succession of musical pictures, such as Schumann’s Carnaval or Liszt’s Années de Pèlerinage, is like a painter’s sketch-book; it may contain magnificent lyrical-impressionistic details, but it abandons the attempt to create a total impression and an organic unity from the very beginning. [...] This change of form is accompanied by the literary inclinations of the composers and their bias towards programme music. The intermingling of forms also makes itself felt in music and is expressed most conspicuously in the fact that the romantic composers are often very gifted and important writers. In the painting and poetry of the period the disintegration of form does not proceed anything like so quickly, nor is it so far-reaching as in music. The explanation of the difference is partly that the cyclical ‘medieval’ structure had long since been overcome in the other arts, whereas it remained predominant in music until the middle of the eighteenth century, and only began to yield to formal unity after the death of Bach. In music it was therefore much easier to revert to it than, for example, in painting where it was completely out of date. The romantics’ historical interest in old music and the revival of Bach’s prestige had, however, only a subordinate part in the dissolution of strict sonata form, the real reason is to be sought in a change of taste which was in essentials sociologically conditioned.
Arnold Hauser (The Social History of Art Volume 3: Rococo, Classicism and Romanticism)
What is it that makes a person the very person that she is, herself alone and not another, an integrity of identity that persists over time, undergoing changes and yet still continuing to be—until she does not continue any longer, at least not unproblematically? I stare at the picture of a small child at a summer’s picnic, clutching her big sister’s hand with one tiny hand while in the other she has a precarious hold on a big slice of watermelon that she appears to be struggling to have intersect with the small o of her mouth. That child is me. But why is she me? I have no memory at all of that summer’s day, no privileged knowledge of whether that child succeeded in getting the watermelon into her mouth. It’s true that a smooth series of contiguous physical events can be traced from her body to mine, so that we would want to say that her body is mine; and perhaps bodily identity is all that our personal identity consists in. But bodily persistence over time, too, presents philosophical dilemmas. The series of contiguous physical events has rendered the child’s body so different from the one I glance down on at this moment; the very atoms that composed her body no longer compose mine. And if our bodies are dissimilar, our points of view are even more so. Mine would be as inaccessible to her—just let her try to figure out [Spinoza’s] Ethics—as hers is now to me. Her thought processes, prelinguistic, would largely elude me. Yet she is me, that tiny determined thing in the frilly white pinafore. She has continued to exist, survived her childhood illnesses, the near-drowning in a rip current on Rockaway Beach at the age of twelve, other dramas. There are presumably adventures that she—that is that I—can’t undergo and still continue to be herself. Would I then be someone else or would I just no longer be? Were I to lose all sense of myself—were schizophrenia or demonic possession, a coma or progressive dementia to remove me from myself—would it be I who would be undergoing those trials, or would I have quit the premises? Would there then be someone else, or would there be no one? Is death one of those adventures from which I can’t emerge as myself? The sister whose hand I am clutching in the picture is dead. I wonder every day whether she still exists. A person whom one has loved seems altogether too significant a thing to simply vanish altogether from the world. A person whom one loves is a world, just as one knows oneself to be a world. How can worlds like these simply cease altogether? But if my sister does exist, then what is she, and what makes that thing that she now is identical with the beautiful girl laughing at her little sister on that forgotten day? In this passage from Betraying Spinoza, the philosopher and novelist Rebecca Newberger Goldstein (to whom I am married) explains the philosophical puzzle of personal identity, one of the problems that engaged the Dutch-Jewish thinker who is the subject of her book.5 Like her fellow humanist Dawkins, Goldstein analyzes the vertiginous enigma of existence and death, but their styles could not be more different—a reminder of the diverse ways that the resources of language can be deployed to illuminate a topic.
Steven Pinker (The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century)
YOU FIRST When entering into relationships, we have a tendency to bend. We bend closer to one another, because regardless of what type of relationship it might be — romantic, business, friendship — there’s a reason you’re bringing that other person into your life, and that means the load is easier to carry if you carry it together, both bending toward the center. I picture people in relationships as two trees, leaning toward one another. Over time, as the relationship solidifies, you both become more comfortable bending, and as such bend farther, eventually resting trunk to trunk. You support each other and are stronger because of the shared strength of your root system and entwined branches. Double-tree power! But there’s a flaw in this mode of operation. Once you’ve spent some time leaning on someone else, if they disappear — because of a breakup, a business upset, a death, a move, an argument — you’re all that’s left, and far weaker than when you started. You’re a tree leaning sideways; the second foundation that once supported you is…gone. This is a big part of why the ending of particularly strong relationships can be so disruptive. When your support system presupposes two trunks — two people bearing the load, and divvying up the responsibilities; coping with the strong winds and hailstorms of life — it can be shocking and uncomfortable and incredibly difficult to function as an individual again; to be just a solitary tree, alone in the world, dealing with it all on your own. A lone tree needn’t be lonely, though. It’s most ideal, in fact, to grow tall and strong, straight up, with many branches. The strength of your trunk — your character, your professional life, your health, your sense of self — will help you cope with anything the world can throw at you, while your branches — your myriad interests, relationships, and experiences — will allow you to reach out to other trees who are likewise growing up toward the sky, rather than leaning and becoming co-dependent. Relationships of this sort, between two equally strong, independent people, tend to outlast even the most intertwined co-dependencies. Why? Because neither person worries that their world will collapse if the other disappears. It’s a relationship based on the connections between two people, not co-dependence. Being a strong individual first alleviates a great deal of jealousy, suspicion, and our innate desire to capture or cage someone else for our own benefit. Rather than worrying that our lives will end if that other person disappears, we know that they’re in our lives because they want to be; their lives won’t end if we’re not there, either. Two trees growing tall and strong, their branches intertwined, is a far sturdier image than two trees bent and twisted, tying themselves into uncomfortable knots to wrap around one another, desperately trying to prevent the other from leaving. You can choose which type of tree to be, and there’s nothing inherently wrong with either model; we all have different wants, needs, and priorities. But if you’re aiming for sturdier, more resilient relationships, it’s a safe bet that you’ll have better options and less drama if you focus on yourself and your own growth, first. Then reach out and connect with others who are doing the same.
Colin Wright (Considerations)
The Reign of Terror: A Story of Crime and Punishment told of two brothers, a career criminal and a small-time crook, in prison together and in love with the same girl. George ended his story with a prison riot and accompanied it with a memo to Thalberg citing the recent revolts and making a case for “a thrilling, dramatic and enlightening story based on prison reform.” --- Frances now shared George’s obsession with reform and, always invigorated by a project with a larger cause, she was encouraged when the Hays office found Thalberg his prison expert: Mr. P. W. Garrett, the general secretary of the National Society of Penal Information. Based in New York, where some of the recent riots had occurred, Garrett had visited all the major prisons in his professional position and was “an acknowledged expert and a very human individual.” He agreed to come to California to work with Frances for several weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas for a total of kr 4,470.62 plus expenses. Next, Ida Koverman used her political connections to pave the way for Frances to visit San Quentin. Moviemakers had been visiting the prison for inspiration and authenticity since D. W. Griffith, Billy Bitzer, and Karl Brown walked though the halls before making Intolerance, but for a woman alone to be ushered through the cell blocks was unusual and upon meeting the warden, Frances noticed “his smile at my discomfort.” Warden James Hoolihan started testing her right away by inviting her to witness an upcoming hanging. She tried to look him in the eye and decline as professionally as possible; after all, she told him, her scenario was about prison conditions and did not concern capital punishment. Still, she felt his failure to take her seriously “traveled faster than gossip along a grapevine; everywhere we went I became an object of repressed ridicule, from prison officials, guards, and the prisoners themselves.” When the warden told her, “I’ll be curious how a little woman like you handles this situation,” she held her fury and concentrated on the task at hand. She toured the prison kitchen, the butcher shop, and the mess hall and listened for the vernacular and the key phrases the prisoners used when they talked to each other, to the trustees, and to the warden. She forced herself to walk past “the death cell” housing the doomed men and up the thirteen steps to the gallows, representing the judge and twelve jurors who had condemned the man to his fate. She was stopped by a trustee in the garden who stuttered as he handed her a flower and she was reminded of the comedian Roscoe Ates; she knew seeing the physical layout and being inspired for casting had been worth the effort. --- Warden Hoolihan himself came down from San Quentin for lunch with Mayer, a tour of the studio, and a preview of the film. Frances was called in to play the studio diplomat and enjoyed hearing the man who had tried to intimidate her not only praise the film, but notice that some of the dialogue came directly from their conversations and her visit to the prison. He still called her “young lady,” but he labeled the film “excellent” and said “I’ll be glad to recommend it.” ---- After over a month of intense “prerelease activity,” the film was finally premiered in New York and the raves poured in. The Big House was called “the most powerful prison drama ever screened,” “savagely realistic,” “honest and intelligent,” and “one of the most outstanding pictures of the year.
Cari Beauchamp (Without Lying Down: Frances Marion and the Powerful Women of Early Hollywood)
From an essay on early reading by Robert Pinsky: My favorite reading for many years was the "Alice" books. The sentences had the same somber, drugged conviction as Sir John Tenniel's illustrations, an inexplicable, shadowy dignity that reminded me of the portraits and symbols engraved on paper money. The books were not made of words and sentences but of that smoky assurance, the insistent solidity of folded, textured, Victorian interiors elaborately barricaded against the doubt and ennui of a dreadfully God-forsaken vision. The drama of resisting some corrosive, enervating loss, some menacing boredom, made itself clear in the matter-of-fact reality of the story. Behind the drawings I felt not merely a tissue of words and sentences but an unquestioned, definite reality. I read the books over and over. Inevitably, at some point, I began trying to see how it was done, to unravel the making--to read the words as words, to peek behind the reality. The loss entailed by such knowledge is immense. Is the romance of "being a writer"--a romance perhaps even created to compensate for this catastrophic loss--worth the price? The process can be epitomized by the episode that goes with one of my favorite illustrations. Alice has entered a dark wood--"much darker than the last wood": [S]he reached the wood: It looked very cool and shady. "Well, at any rate it's a great comfort," she said as she stepped under the trees, "after being so hot, to get into the--into the--into what?" she went on, rather surprised at not being able to think of the word. "I mean to get under the--under the--under this, you know!" putting her hand on the trunk of the tree. "What does it call itself, I wonder? I do believe it's got no name--why to be sure it hasn't!" This is the wood where things have no names, which Alice has been warned about. As she tries to remember her own name ("I know it begins with L!"), a Fawn comes wandering by. In its soft, sweet voice, the Fawn asks Alice, "What do you call yourself?" Alice returns the question, the creature replies, "I'll tell you, if you'll come a little further on . . . . I can't remember here". The Tenniel picture that I still find affecting illustrates the first part of the next sentence: So they walked on together through the wood, Alice with her arms clasped lovingly round the soft neck of the Fawn, till they came out into another open field, and here the Fawn gave a sudden bound into the air, and shook itself free from Alice's arm. "I'm a Fawn!" it cried out in a voice of delight. "And dear me! you're a human child!" A sudden look of alarm came into its beautiful brown eyes, and in another moment it had darted away at full speed. In the illustration, the little girl and the animal walk together with a slightly awkward intimacy, Alice's right arm circled over the Fawn's neck and back so that the fingers of her two hands meet in front of her waist, barely close enough to mesh a little, a space between the thumbs. They both look forward, and the affecting clumsiness of the pose suggests that they are tripping one another. The great-eyed Fawn's legs are breathtakingly thin. Alice's expression is calm, a little melancholy or spaced-out. What an allegory of the fall into language. To imagine a child crossing over from the jubilant, passive experience of such a passage in its physical reality, over into the phrase-by-phrase, conscious analysis of how it is done--all that movement and reversal and feeling and texture in a handful of sentences--is somewhat like imagining a parallel masking of life itself, as if I were to discover, on reflection, that this room where I am writing, the keyboard, the jar of pens, the lamp, the rain outside, were all made out of words. From "Some Notes on Reading," in The Most Wonderful Books (Milkweed Editions)
Robert Pinsky
Have no anxiety about anything,' Paul writes to the Philippians. In one sense it is like telling a woman with a bad head cold not to sniffle and sneeze so much or a lame man to stop dragging his feet. Or maybe it is more like telling a wino to lay off the booze or a compulsive gambler to stay away from the track. Is anxiety a disease or an addiction? Perhaps it is something of both. Partly, perhaps, because you can't help it, and partly because for some dark reason you choose not to help it, you torment yourself with detailed visions of the worst that can possibly happen. The nagging headache turns out to be a malignant brain tumor. When your teenage son fails to get off the plane you've gone to meet, you see his picture being tacked up in the post office among the missing and his disappearance never accounted for. As the latest mid-East crisis boils, you wait for the TV game show to be interrupted by a special bulletin to the effect that major cities all over the country are being evacuated in anticipation of a nuclear attack. If Woody Allen were to play your part on the screen, you would roll in the aisles with the rest of them, but you're not so much as cracking a smile at the screen inside your own head. Does the terrible fear of disaster conceal an even more terrible hankering for it? Do the accelerated pulse and the knot in the stomach mean that, beneath whatever their immediate cause, you are acting out some ancient and unresolved drama of childhood? Since the worst things that happen are apt to be the things you don't see coming, do you think there is a kind of magic whereby, if you only can see them coming, you will be able somehow to prevent them from happening? Who knows the answer? In addition to Novocain and indoor plumbing, one of the few advantages of living in the twentieth century is the existence of psychotherapists, and if you can locate a good one, maybe one day you will manage to dig up an answer that helps. But answer or no answer, the worst things will happen at last even so. 'All life is suffering' says the first and truest of the Buddha's Four Noble Truths, by which he means that sorrow, loss, death await us all and everybody we love. Yet "the Lord is at hand. Have no anxiety about anything," Paul writes, who was evidently in prison at the time and with good reason to be anxious about everything, 'but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.' He does not deny that the worst things will happen finally to all of us, as indeed he must have had a strong suspicion they were soon to happen to him. He does not try to minimize them. He does not try to explain them away as God's will or God's judgment or God's method of testing our spiritual fiber. He simply tells the Philippians that in spite of them—even in the thick of them—they are to keep in constant touch with the One who unimaginably transcends the worst things as he also unimaginably transcends the best. 'In everything,' Paul says, they are to keep on praying. Come Hell or high water, they are to keep on asking, keep on thanking, above all keep on making themselves known. He does not promise them that as a result they will be delivered from the worst things any more than Jesus himself was delivered from them. What he promises them instead is that 'the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.' The worst things will surely happen no matter what—that is to be understood—but beyond all our power to understand, he writes, we will have peace both in heart and in mind. We are as sure to be in trouble as the sparks fly upward, but we will also be "in Christ," as he puts it. Ultimately not even sorrow, loss, death can get at us there. That is the sense in which he dares say without risk of occasioning ironic laughter, "Have no anxiety about anything." Or, as he puts it a few lines earlier, 'Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say, Rejoice!
Frederick Buechner
It may not be the "Great American Novel" they talk about, because its scope is not broad enough to take in all of America, but it pictures the people and the customs and the drama of upstate New York in the days preceding and following the Civil War with a simplicity that, to my mind, is true art.
Clyde Brion Davis (The Great American Novel)
Sé que a Gil le gustaría que leyera más, pero prefiero ver la tele, a ser posible, sin sonido. Solo las imágenes. Si están poniendo un drama policíaco, está claro que es una historia de misterio desde prácticamente el primer fotograma; sobre todo sin sonido. El momento en que un actor sabe que es el malo, se lo notas en la cara y en la forma de andar. Si yo fuera directora no le diría a los actores quién es el asesino hasta el último minuto.
Meg Rosoff (Picture Me Gone)
In our scientific age, a materialist picture of the world now holds many captive. Add to that the postmodern suspicion that all truth claims are in fact disguised bids for power and you get a potent mix of skepticism and cynicism, a cocktail guaranteed to make one’s blood run old before its time.
Kevin J. Vanhoozer (Faith Speaking Understanding: Performing the Drama of Doctrine)
I know why you are here.” She knew! “We receive extensive financial statements, and I know you did not pay your own way, so let us put that drama out of the way, shall we?” “Is it a drama?” Jane said with a laugh, relieved the woman was just referring to Carolyn’s bequest. “Hm?” Mrs. Wattlesbrook would not budge from her intended course of conversation. Jane sighed. “Yes, my great-aunt left me this vacation in her will, but I don’t know what you mean by drama. I never intended to hide--” “No need to make a fuss.” She waved her arms as if wafting Jane’s exclamations out the window like a foul odor. “You are here, you are paid in full. I would not have you worry that we will not take care of you just because you are not our usual type of guest and there is no chance, given your economic conditions, that you would ever be a repeat client or likely to associate with and recommend us to potential clients. Let me assure you that we will still do all in our power to make your visit, such as it is, enjoyable.” Mrs. Wattlesbrook smiled, showing both rows of yellowing teeth. Jane blinked. Economic conditions? Usual type of guest? She made herself take two deep-rooted yoga breaths, smiled back, and thought of men in breeches. “Okay then.” “Good, good.” Mrs. Wattlesbrook patted Jane’s arm, suddenly the picture of hospitality and maternal tenderness. “Now, do have some tea. You must be quite chilled from your journey.” In fact, the temperature of the limo, unlike this pseudo-inn, had been quite comfortable, and in the blazing heat the last thing Jane wanted was hot tea, but she reminded herself to play along, so she sweated and drank.
Shannon Hale (Austenland (Austenland, #1))
In the course of your life you will be continually encountering fools. There are simply too many to avoid. We can classify people as fools by the following rubric: when it comes to practical life, what should matter is getting long-term results, and getting the work done in as efficient and creative a manner as possible. That should be the supreme value that guides people’s actions. But fools carry with them a different scale of values. They place more importance on short-term matters—grabbing immediate money, getting attention from the public or media, and looking good. They are ruled by their ego and insecurities. They tend to enjoy drama and political intrigue for their own sake. When they criticize, they always emphasize matters that are irrelevant to the overall picture or argument. They are more interested in their career and position than in the truth. You can distinguish them by how little they get done, or by how hard they make it for others to get results. They lack a certain common sense, getting worked up about things that are not really important while ignoring problems that will spell doom in the long term. The
Robert Greene (Mastery (The Modern Machiavellian Robert Greene Book 1))
Like Drums Across the River, Bad Day at Black Rock (January 7, 1955), is a revisionist work—this time examining the seamy side, the racism and thuggery—of postwar America. Brennan, looking much slimmer than in his previous pictures, plays a western town’s veterinarian and mortician. This taut drama, featuring menacing performances by a trio of villains (Robert Ryan, Ernest Borgnine, and Lee Marvin), ultimately centers on Brennan’s character (Doc Velle), who collaborates with John J. Macreedy (Spencer Tracy) to uncover the truth about Komoko, a Japanese American settler killed during the war. Doc Velle, like the rest of the town, has been cowed by the xenophobic Robert Ryan-led conspiracy to thwart and ultimately murder Macreedy after he refuses to relinquish his quest for the truth—even though he is outnumbered and apparently incapacitated because of a paralyzed arm (presumably a war wound). Brennan’s Velle is no hero, but he is a man who can no longer abide his association with evil—any more than can Tim Horn (Dean Jagger), the town’s sheriff. Shorn of his sidekick status and of any mannerism reminiscent of his more comic roles, Brennan emerges as the common man’s powerful and utterly believable voice of conscience.
Carl Rollyson (A Real American Character: The Life of Walter Brennan (Hollywood Legends))
They're called moving pictures, so move me.
The heyday of conspiracy theories had been the reaction to the French Revolution. Like a virus, they would come to life every time that society was led into a state of anxiety and fears. But in the Modern Era they turned into a true secular religion. The surge of these theories in the Modern Era reflected the need to explain the collapse of a seemingly unshakeable ancien régime. This collapse was so unexpected, the break with medieval civilization so inevitable, and the upheaval so profound and so fraught with far-reaching economic, social, and political consequences that it needed an explanation. But the level of a patriarchal society's political culture changed too little, and the earlier one remained the explanatory matrix. Hence Divine Providence did not disappear, but a new fetish came to replace God: humans will and reason. In this respect, conspiracy is a sort of replacement of Revelation for an ill-defined, immature patriarchal consciousness disintegrating under the pressure of the Enlightenment, already having lost the integrity of faith but not yet having gained a basis in reason. Conspiracy gives the masses who have been cast out of the traditional matrices of thought explanations of the world missing outside of religion. Hence it contains elements of both religion (a parallel reality fitted to a ready-made picture of the world, teleologism) and rationalism (total logicalization, the search for cause-and-effect links and the hidden reasons for a phenomena lying within the interests of agents, and fitting the world into a logically interconnected system). This drama that burst onto Europe after the French Revolution finally arrived in Russia, with a century's delay.
Evgeny Dobrenko (Late Stalinism: The Aesthetics of Politics)
Dear Miss Know-It-All, I worked really hard to make the eighth-grade cheerleading team this year, but the other cheerleaders treat me like I don’t belong. I never get to do much cheering or dancing like they do. The only time the team captain needs me is when we do the human pyramid, and she always puts me at the bottom! I have to hold the most people on my back, which is totally excruciating, and if I lose my balance, the whole pyramid collapses and everyone bullies me about it! I’m tired of those girls walking all over me. Literally! I don’t know what I did to deserve this kind of treatment, but it’s pretty obvious they all hate my guts. ! I’m majorly frustrated! I don’t know if I should quit the team, confront my teammates, or just keep quiet so I don’t make things worse. I really don’t want to give up my dream of making varsity! What would you do?? —Cheerless Cheerleader * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Dear Cheerless Cheerleader, Hon . . . I think you’re kidding yourself if you think you made the cheerleading team based on your awesome moves. My reliable source on the team told me your tryout routine was HOR-REN-DOUS. She said she couldn’t tell if you were trying to dance or going into convulsions! Your backflips were BACKFLOPS, your cartwheels were FLAT TIRES, and your dismount was totally DISGUSTING! Get the picture? You were chosen for one reason, and one reason alone—you look like a sturdy ogre who can carry a lot of weight! It’s been a long tradition for cheerleading captains to hand-pick strong, ugly girls for the bottom of the pyramid. Didn’t you know that?? Quit taking everything so personally! Just accept that the bottom is where you belong, sweetie! You should hold your green, Shrek-looking head high that someone actually wants you for something. Bet that doesn’t happen often! Yay you! Sincerely, Miss Know-It-All P.S. My source wants you to stop dancing. She says you’re giving the squad NIGHT TERRORS!
Rachel Renée Russell (Dork Diaries: Drama Queen)
God is giving the world in the coronavirus outbreak, as in all other calamities, a physical picture of the moral horror and spiritual ugliness of God-belittling sin... Here’s my suggestion: God put the physical world under a curse so that the physical horrors we see around us in diseases and calamities would become a vivid picture of how horrible sin is. In other words, physical evil is a parable, a drama, a signpost pointing to the moral outrage of rebellion against God... Calamities are God’s previews of what sin deserves and will one day receive in judgment a thousand times worse. They are warnings. They are wake-up calls to see the moral horror and spiritual ugliness of sin against God.
John Piper (Coronavirus and Christ)
Arrived in the Rue Neuve-Sainte-Genevieve, he rushed up to his room for ten francs wherewith to satisfy the demands of the cabman, and went in to dinner. He glanced round the squalid room, saw the eighteen poverty-stricken creatures about to feed like cattle in their stalls, and the sight filled him with loathing. The transition was too sudden, and the contrast was so violent that it could not but act as a powerful stimulant; his ambition developed and grew beyond all social bounds. On the one hand, he beheld a vision of social life in its most charming and refined forms, of quick-pulsed youth, of fair, impassioned faces invested with all the charm of poetry, framed in a marvelous setting of luxury or art; and, on the other hand, he saw a sombre picture, the miry verge beyond these faces, in which passion was extinct and nothing was left of the drama but the cords and pulleys and bare mechanism.
Honoré de Balzac (Works of Honore de Balzac)
The world can be validly construed as forum for action, or as place of things. The former manner of interpretation – more primordial, and less clearly understood – finds its expression in the arts or humanities, in ritual, drama, literature, and mythology. The world as forum for action is a place of value, a place where all things have meaning. This meaning, which is shaped as a consequence of social interaction, is implication for action, or – at a higher level of analysis – implication for the configuration of the interpretive schema that produces or guides action. The latter manner of interpretation – the world as place of things – finds its formal expression in the methods and theories of science. Science allows for increasingly precise determination of the consensually validatable properties of things, and for efficient utilization of precisely-determined things as tools (once the direction such use is to take has been determined, through application of more fundamental narrative processes). No complete world-picture can be generated, without use of both modes of construal. The fact that one mode is generally set at odds with the other means only that the nature of their respective domains remains insufficiently discriminated. Adherents of the mythological world-view tend to regard the statements of their creeds as indistinguishable from empirical “fact,” even though such statements were generally formulated long before the notion of objective reality emerged. Those who, by contrast, accept the scientific perspective – who assume that it is, or might become, complete – forget that an impassable gulf currently divides what is from what should be.
Jordan B. Peterson (Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief)
In Hollywood today, the simple truth is that there are two types of movie studios: Disney, and those that wish they were Disney. Understanding why studios have turned so aggressively toward franchises, sequels, and superheroes and away from originality, risks, and mid-budget dramas takes more than an appreciation for the financial pressures faced by executives like Michael Lynton and Amy Pascal. Just as Olympic swimmers can’t help but pace themselves against Michael Phelps, Sony and its competitors have for years been jealous of and frustrated by Disney. Hollywood is a herd industry. Its executives are constantly looking out the side window or at the rearview mirror and asking, “Why aren’t we doing that?” For those peering at Disney, that means slashing the number of movies made per year by two-thirds. It also means largely abandoning any type of film that costs less than $100 million, is based on an original idea, or appeals to any group smaller than all the moviegoers around the globe. Disney doesn’t make dramas for adults. It doesn’t make thrillers. It doesn’t make romantic comedies. It doesn’t make bawdy comedies. It doesn’t make horror movies. It doesn’t make star vehicles. It doesn’t adapt novels. It doesn’t buy original scripts. It doesn’t buy anything at film festivals. It doesn’t make anything political or controversial. It doesn’t make anything with an R-rating. It doesn’t give award-winning directors like Alfonso Cuarón or Christopher Nolan wide latitude to pursue their visions.
Ben Fritz (The Big Picture: The Fight for the Future of Movies)
But fools carry with them a different scale of values. They place more importance on short-term matters—grabbing immediate money, getting attention from the public or media, and looking good. They are ruled by their ego and insecurities. They tend to enjoy drama and political intrigue for their own sake. When they criticize, they always emphasize matters that are irrelevant to the overall picture or argument. They are more interested in their career and position than in the truth. You can distinguish them by how little they get done, or by how hard they make it for others to get results. They lack a certain common sense, getting worked up about things that are not really important while ignoring problems that will spell doom in the long term.
Robert Greene (Mastery)
This meant hiring brilliant, often very moral writers to produce fluffy, witty, or charming dialogue and good drama that did not run afoul of the new Motion Picture Production Code, popularly known as the “Hays Code” for its creator, Will Hays. Under these highly moral guidelines, Hollywood entered its “golden era” from 1934 until the 1960s.
Judith Reisman (Sexual Sabotage: How One Mad Scientist Unleashed a Plague of Corruption and Contagion on America)
stats say relationships decline when a baby’s in the picture but the truth is, if the camera doesn’t take good pictures now, the pictures will always be bad quality, no matter the lighting, no matter the scenery don’t take my word for it look at the iphone adverts
Xayaat Muhummed (The Breast Mountains Of All Time Are In Hargeisa)
The individual human lot, how practically it disengages itself from the mass! We talk of campaigns and revolutions, and it is all paper theory, less important to our instincts than the single case, anywhere on the round world, that has managed to become detached, to rise, like a microcosm of misery, out of the depths. There is the picture and the drama; and we stare fascinated at the bubble we see, while the fate of anonymous thousands sleeps in the next paragraph.
Sara Jeannette Duncan (Set in Authority)
from their peak in 2006, and the decline is explained entirely by the evaporation of interesting, intelligent mid-budget films. Studios realized their assumption that they had to make every type of movie for everyone was no longer true. So they focused on the types of movies that delivered the biggest and most consistent profits to their publicly traded parent corporations. Increasingly, that meant movies that appealed to audiences in Russia, Brazil, and China. These consumers weren’t likely to understand the cultural subtleties of an American drama or to consider people talking or even running for their lives to be adequate bang for their buck on an expensive night out. They expected spectacle, particularly if they were paying premiums for an IMAX or 3D screen, and they wanted stories that made sense to a villager in China, a resident of Rio de Janeiro, or a teenager in Kansas City. Transformers, in other words. And The Avengers. And Jurassic World and Fast and Furious and Star Wars. With the exception of 1997’s Titanic, which made a spectacle out of the sinking of a cruise ship and Leonardo DiCaprio’s eyes, the forty-eight highest-grossing Hollywood films overseas are all visual-effects-heavy action-adventure films or family animation.
Ben Fritz (The Big Picture: The Fight for the Future of Movies)
The transformation of Hollywood into a foreign-first business has also made sequels, spinoffs, and cinematic universes the smartest bet in the movie business. Newly minted middle-class customers in developing nations like China love prestige Western brands like Apple, Louis Vuitton, and Gucci. The same logic applies in cinemas. American cineastes may reach for the Advil when offered the choice between the latest superhero, dinosaur, or talking robot spinoff, but to many foreign moviegoers, that response is somewhere between condescending and confounding—the equivalent of complaining that there aren’t enough modern art installations at Disneyland. One more trend fundamentally changed the movie business this decade: the golden age of television. As TV has gotten better, the pressure on major movie studios is not to keep up with Breaking Bad, Orange Is the New Black, and Fargo (a property that was perfect for the movie business of the 1990s and for the TV business of today), but rather to stand out by offering something different. Most people, particularly middle-aged adults, simply don’t go to the movies for sophisticated character dramas anymore. Why would they, when there are so many on their DVR and Netflix and Amazon queues at home?
Ben Fritz (The Big Picture: The Fight for the Future of Movies)
For one thing, they share a willingness to consider New York from a cinematic distance, overlooking the city’s many irritants except insofar as they add grit and drama to their personal story. In day-to-day terms, this manifests as complaining vigorously about subway hardships and bedbug plagues, and then posting Instagram photos of the skyline at sunset. A not insignificant number of the New York lovers I know—especially the twenty-somethings—are actually pretty unhappy day-to-day. I picture the prom king’s date sitting near him at a party, ignored but still kind of proud to be in the room and on his arm—and incredibly offended at the suggestion that she should break up with him for someone who dotes on her more. Oh, how California dotes! Sun yourself. Take the car. Let your guard down. Breathe deeply, and you’ll smell the jasmine and dusty sage. Show up twenty minutes late. (Just text “Sorry—traffic.”) Explore the weirder corners of your spirituality. Describe yourself, without sarcasm, as a writer slash creative entrepreneur. Work from home. Spread out. Wear the comfortable pants. When I describe this sunshine-and-avocado-filled existence to some New Yorkers, they acknowledge that they really like California, too, but could never move here because they’d get too “soft.
Steffie Nelson (Slouching Towards Los Angeles: Living and Writing by Joan Didion’s Light)
As a communicator, I spend a good portion of my days sharing stories. People don’t care a lot about cold facts. They don’t want to look at pie charts. They want excitement. They like drama. They care about pictures. They want to laugh. They want to see and feel what happened. Statistics don’t inspire people to do great things. Stories do!
John C. Maxwell (Intentional Living: Choosing a Life That Matters)
Because of the picture's constant theatrical circulation all during the forties, two presentations on the Lux Radio Theatre, and finally as a staple of early television, the tale was familiar to almost two generations of moviegoers. Hart's task was to preserve the potent appeal of this Hollywood myth while making it viable for a modern-day audience. The problem was complicated by the necessity of rewriting the part of Esther/Vicki to suit Judy Garland. The original film had walked a delicate dramatic path in interweaving the lives and careers of Vicki and Norman Maine. In emphasizing the "star power" of Lester/Garland, more screen time would have to be devoted to her, thus altering the careful balance of the original. Hart later recalled: "It was a difficult story to do because the original was so famous and when you tamper with the original, you're inviting all sorts of unfavorable criticism. It had to be changed because I had to say new things about Hollywood-which is quite a feat in itself as the subject has been worn pretty thin. The attitude of the original was more naive because it was made in the days when there was a more wide-eyed feeling about the movies ... (and) the emphasis had to be shifted to the woman, rather than the original emphasis on the Fredric March character. Add to that the necessity of making this a musical drama, and you'll understand the immediate problems." To make sure that his retelling accurately reflected the Garland persona, Hart had a series of informal conversations with her and Luft regarding experiences of hers that he might be able to incorporate into the script. Luft recalls: "We were having dinner with Moss and Kitty [Carlisle], and Judy was throwing ideas at Moss, cautiously, and so was I. I remember Judy telling the story of when she was a kid, she was on tour with a band and they were in Kansas City at the Mulebach Hotel-all the singers and performers stayed there. And I think her mother ran into a big producer who was traveling through and she invited him to come and see the act, and supposedly afterward he was very interested in Judy's career. Nothing happened, though. Judy thought it would be a kind of a cute idea to lay onto Moss-that maybe it might be something he could use in his writing.
Ronald Haver (A Star Is Born: The Making of the 1954 Movie and Its 1983 Restoration (Applause Books))
Everything in this whole horrible world would be eight million times easier if we just said what we meant and meant what we said and sure, we would probably have to sacrifice drama and comedy and irony and suspense, but honestly, the time we saved might be worth it.
Elizabeth Little (Pretty as a Picture)
Catastrophizing: Basically, being a drama queen/king. This one makes you overthink and magnify the effects that a situation has on you. Picture the soccer players that flop like theatrical fish when they barely get brushed by an opposing player. Playa, please.
Robert Duff (Hardcore Self Help: F**k Anxiety)
Doxan Iconography?” “A Praxic Age moving picture serial. An adventure drama about a military spaceship sent to a remote part of the galaxy to prevent hostile aliens from establishing hegemony, and marooned when their hyperdrive is damaged in an ambush. The captain of the ship was passionate, a hothead. His second-in-command was Dox, a theorician, brilliant, but unemotional and cold.
Neal Stephenson (Anathem)
Do not manhandle me. My answer is no. I'm not for sale." "But you don't have any family left," said Nicolas, raising an eyebrow. The next few moments blurred together into one messed-up vision. A fist flying into Nicolas's nose. A loud crack. Blood splattering on Camille's dress. Rémi putting his arm around me. Jane, Phillipa, and Marie racing up to see what the commotion was all about. The clicks of cameras. A nightmare. "This is private property. You're no longer guests of the château. Leave now," said Rémi as Nicolas scrambled up from the ground. "And stay away, far away from my fiancée, or I'll hunt you down." Jane, Marie, and Phillipa flanked my sides, supporting my shaky body. Phillipa hissed to Nicolas. "You're wrong. Sophie has a family. She has all of us. And her dad." I couldn't help but smile. What Phillipa said was true. I had everything. "He broke my nose," said Nicolas, holding his hand up to his face, blood pouring down like a waterfall. "I'm going to press charges against you, all of you, you pieces of merde." "Go ahead," said Rémi. "We may not be as wealthy as you are, but we're not doing so bad. You can try to destroy us, but if you know Sophie as well as I do, you know she fights back. And hard. Believe me. Nothing, not you, not me, will stand in her way. You're the only one with a reputation to lose---and from what I've read, most people think you're the scum of the earth." Camille walked up the steps. "I'm out of here." She stopped and looked over her shoulder. "I'm sorry, Sophie. I should have known. Small dick, small mind." "I do not have a small dick," screamed Nicolas, his face turning red. The guests from the Sunday lunch clasped their hands over their mouths. I felt like I was the star of a B movie. Who were these people? Cartoon characters? "Oh, yes, you have a small penis. The smallest one I've ever seen," said Camille, winking at me. "And you think with it. Now, take me back to Paris so I can get rid of you. That is, unless you want my Instagram to blow up. Don't forget. I have pictures of your cornichon." Nicolas raced after Camille. "You salope, those pictures are private." Camille placed her hands on her skinny hips. "For now," she said. I had to give Camille credit when it was due; she wasn't a brain-dead model, she was fierce.
Samantha Verant (Sophie Valroux's Paris Stars (Sophie Valroux, 2))
The foundation of Machiavellian philosophy and its deepest insight is a sense of proportion. It corresponds to the Grotian apprehension of the moral complexity of politics… This is the special picture of political life one gets from reading Machiavelli himself and ‘irony’ is a category of philosophical Machiavellians. The word is not, I think, found in Machiavelli, but political irony is in fact what he very lovingly studied. Irony is a Machiavellian category while tragedy is a Grotian category. ‘Tragedy’ implies a standpoint outside the political drama, in which we experience, for example, admiration for Othello's nobility, pity for his weakness, and terror at Iago's wickedness… Now, it is difficult to adopt a tragic standpoint about politics, because ‘politics’ implies a situation in which we are still involved, where we can still act and affect the outcome, and anyway where we do not know the outcome because the drama is unfinished. To become fully tragic, politics have to be dead politics, that is, history: the tragedy of Athens, and of the League of Nations… Irony is, so to speak, the factual skeleton of tragedy, stripped of its moral and transcendental clothing. In literature it is the warping of a statement by its context; a character means one thing by a statement but we know the context and outcome that he does not, and see it has a different meaning. As Banquo rides away to be murdered, as Macbeth has arranged, Macbeth says to him genially: ‘Fail not our feast’—‘My lord, I will not.’ This is Sophoclean irony and there are other kinds, more complex. Irony can be seen in politics when statesmen pursue ends that recoil upon them, and turn into their opposites. Hugh R. Wilson, in Diplomat between Wars, says that the policy of the USA was of ‘overwhelming importance’ to the League of Nations in the Manchurian crisis, which makes ironic America's fear of, commitment and involvement: however little she wanted to be committed she was certainly involved, and by refusing to commit herself at that time she made her involvement in the struggle with Japan all the more certain. It is equally ironical that Britain and France went to war in 1939 to restore the balance of power in Europe by destroying Nazi Germany, embraced the Soviet alliance for that purpose, and ended with Europe as badly unbalanced by Stalin's power as it had been by Hitler's.
Martin Wight (Four Seminal Thinkers in International Theory: Machiavelli, Grotius, Kant, and Mazzini)
Meanwhile, Mabel waited outside the Prince of Wales Hotel on Lord Street. She'd perched her bony bottom on the pointed-top wall that ran alongside it, opposite the barbershop. She could smell the sweet, crisp freshness that came with springtime as the sun had finally managed to fight its way through the cloud cover. Unfortunately, though, it seemed that no matter where in this town she went, memories of her father haunted her. As she sat on the wall, her feet turned inwards and, with a dull numbness growing in her tailbone, she closed her eyes. In her mind, she opened them again to find that she was at least ten years younger. Her feet dangled off the edge of the wall in scuffed indigo leather shoes, with a shiny brass buckle glinting in the light from the oil street lamps. The sky was a moody blue, signalling the end of the day and the start of the night. Her father stood beside her, a thick cigarette held between his chapped lips and his hands in his pockets. His friends from work surrounded her, all laughing and chatting. She could see her father speaking, though all she could hear was a muted grumble. Even in her imagination, she couldn't quite picture how he spoke. The only sounds she could place were the short groans he'd make as he stood up from his chair or the wheeze that followed his laughter. With the sad realisation that she had lost all memory of her father's voice, she opened her eyes once more.
Ida O'Flynn (The Distressing Case of a Young Married Woman)
She tries to picture herself many years in the future, doing . . . doing what? Will she actually be able to get out of bed in the morning and not think of her child? She can’t see it. It feels like she will be stuck here on this couch forever, simply waiting to die herself.
Nicole Trope (Blame: A searing family drama full of twists)
This picture of the enduring nature of purified, human accomplishments is seen in the image of the glory and honor of the nations being brought into the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:24–27; cf. Isa. 23:18). As the dross is separated from the gold, so will be found the purity of human achievements in music, art, literature, architecture, drama, food, agriculture, craft, and so much more.
Ian K. Smith (Not Home Yet: How the Renewal of the Earth Fits into God's Plan for the World)
The only sounds at the late hour were the faint jingle of a phone ringing in the nurses’ station, the ping of an elevator, the faraway sound of the wheels of a cart, and the gentle beep of Brandon’s vital signs monitor. They wouldn’t allow any flowers or personal items in the ICU, but Sloan had snuck in an engagement photo. It sat on the table next to the bed. Her and Brandon on the beach, the surf crashing around their feet, her tattooed arm over his shoulder, them looking at each other. Both of them laughing. I looked back at him and sighed. “You’re going to have some gnarly scars, buddy.” They’d started the skin grafts for the road rash on his arm. “But you’ll get to do everything you planned to do with your life. One of us is going to get the girl. I’ll help you any way I can. Even if I have to wheel your ass to the altar.” I could picture his smile. With any luck I’d see it in a few hours. A knock on the door frame turned me around in my chair. “Hey, cutie.” Valerie came into the room for her vitals check. She turned the lights up, and I stood and stretched. As if sleeping in a chair wasn’t hard enough, the activity every two hours was the final kicker. I wouldn’t call anything I did on these overnight shifts sleeping. Maybe napping, but not sleeping. Every two hours Brandon was moved. They checked his airways, changed out bags, looked at his vitals. I don’t know how Sloan was handling doing this almost nightly for the last three weeks. Sloan was a good woman. I’d always liked her, but now she’d earned my respect, and I was grateful Brandon and Kristen had her. “Did you decide what day you want to bring the kids to the station?” I asked Valerie, yawning. She cycled the blood pressure cuff on Brandon’s arm and smiled. “I’m thinking Tuesday. You on shift Tuesday?” “Yup.” She wrote down some notes on Brandon’s chart and then gave me a raised eyebrow. “Any updates with your lady friend?” I laughed a little. “No.” The whole nursing staff knew about my depressing love life. I’d gotten hit on a few too many times by some of the younger nurses. I couldn’t claim to have a girlfriend, and I wasn’t married, so it was either “I’m gay” or “I’m in love with that girl over there.” I’d gone with the latter, and now I wished I’d said I was gay. They didn’t know why Kristen wouldn’t date me, just that she wouldn’t. It had turned into the favorite topic of the ICU. A real-life episode of Grey’s Anatomy. I rarely got through a Brandon visit without it coming up. The drama escalated when Kristen had been hit on by the nurses’ favorite single orthopedic surgeon. According to the nurses’ gossip circuit, Kristen told him to go fuck himself. And apparently she’d actually said, “Go fuck yourself.” After that everyone was sure she was holding out for me. Only I knew better.
Abby Jimenez
Much changes in eighteen months on earth, in the age of acceleration that began around the turn of the millennium and still continues to this day. All our stories are told more quickly now, we are addicted to the acceleration, we have forgotten the pleasures of the old slownesses, of the dawdles, the browses, the three-volume novels, the four-hour motion pictures, the thirteen-episode drama series, the pleasures of duration, of lingering. Do what you have to do, tell your story, live your life, get out quickly, spit spot.
Salman Rushdie (Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights)
I made a statue of the two of us, you know? And I put it on top of a mountain. Tourists came and took pictures, but none of you came to see it. So I made a song, and none of you heard it. And while I was recommended for special classes, you were the only one to get diamonds. So I took a photograph that you could put inside that necklace you got when you were sixteen... but I never saw it even close to your chest, where I should have been. You didn't even bother to open it… I lived, and none of you were there to celebrate my life.
João Pedro Vasconcellos (THE TRAGEDY OF HADES: A Tale Between Two Sisters (HADES (ENGLISH VERSION) Book 1))
Mankind,’ however, has no aim, no idea, no plan, any more than the family of butterflies or orchids. ‘Mankind’ is a zoological expression, or an empty word. But conjure away the phantom, break the magic circle, and at once there emerges an astonishing wealth of actual forms the Living with all its immense fullness, depth and movement hitherto veiled by a catchword, a dryasdust scheme, and a set of personal ‘ideals.’ I see, in place of that empty figment of one linear history which can only be kept up by shutting one’s eyes to the overwhelming multitude of the facts, the drama of a number of mighty Cultures, each springing with primitive strength from the soil of a mother region to which it remains firmly bound throughout its whole life-cycle, each stamping its material, its mankind, in its own image; each having its own idea, its own passions, its own life, will, and feeling, its own death Here indeed are colours, lights, movements, that no intellectual eye has yet discovered. Here the Cultures, peoples, languages, truths, gods, landscapes bloom and age as the oaks and the stone-pines, the blossoms, twigs and leaves but there is no ageing ‘Mankind.’ Each Culture has its own new possibilities of self-expression which arise, ripen, decay, and never return. There is not one sculpture, one painting, one mathematics, one physics, but many, each in its deepest essence different from the others, each limited in duration and self-contained, just as each species of plant has its peculiar blossom or fruit, its special type of growth and decline. These cultures, sublimated life-essences, grow with the same superb aimlessness as the flowers of the field. They belong, like the plants and the animals, to the living Nature of Goethe, and not to the dead Nature of Newton. I see world-history as a picture of endless formations and transformations, of the marvelous waxing and waning of organic forms. The professional historian, on the contrary, sees it as a sort of tapeworm industriously adding on to itself one epoch after another.
Oswald Spengler
The Mongols made no technological breakthroughs, founded no new religions, wrote few books or dramas, and gave the world no new crops or methods of agriculture. Their own craftsmen could not weave cloth, cast metal, make pottery, or even bake bread. They manufactured neither porcelain nor pottery, painted no pictures, and built no buildings. Yet, as their army conquered culture after culture, they collected and passed all of these skills from one civilization to the next.
Jack Weatherford (Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World)
She touched his arm, making his heart skitter. It was never a good sign when they touched you. He had seen far too many television hospital dramas to imagine what was going to come next: the lowered voice, the steady gaze, the bad news.
Caroline Leavitt (Pictures of You)
Compared to the kata for sword fighting or jūjutsu, karate kata are longer. They are a sequence of scenes designed like a little drama. A long karate kata can include more than 70 different actions. Sword fighting or jūjutsu kata, however, are only single attack or defense actions. They are not dynamic forms like karate kata but static models. In fact, for the two kata types even different kanji are used. This specific character of karate kata must be well understood. Karate was created and developed in the Tokugawa period and was not protected and promoted by the ruling system like sword fighting. Instead it was highly suppressed by the officials. The technical and the psychological and spiritual knowledge could not be put down in a sophisticated language as it could be done for sword fighting. In order to explain the techniques to the students by using kata, to demonstrate what was to be observed in particular and what was not done correctly, one needed rather long sequences of actions. The old masters could not describe the techniques with written words or pictures and had to express them in the kata. This needed a lot of time, brains and effort. Furthermore, the kata had to become a means to teach without words not only the technical aspects but also the psychological and spiritual abilities to turn the methods of killing into methods of saving lives.
Kenei Mabuni (Empty Hand: The Essence of Budo Karate)
You’re superstitious?” His rough voice echoes above our heads, so he leans in closer and says, “I didn’t really see that coming.” “I’m usually not, but I guess that got ingrained. Everyone in my circle knows not to say that inside a theater.” “Bad luck, I take it?” he asks. I nod and he observes the place one more time before following me out. “Not to be insensitive to our surroundings or anything, but I think bad luck’s already done its business here.” “Old habits…blow up in your face.” I adjust my ponytail and try to concentrate on what’s around us, but from the corner of my eyes I see Darren bite his lip. I’m not sure if he finds this new information about me endearing or insane. He follows me quietly for a few minutes before speaking again. “So theater, huh? Not sure I saw that one coming either.” “Why?” My cheeks are warm, but I keep in front of him and look anywhere but his direction. “The theater kids back at my high school were…a lot different than you.” I laugh a little louder than necessary. “There are definitely some characters in drama club. As far as style or individuality goes, I’m not much of a standout at school.” “You would have stood out to me.” “I don’t need any tall-girl jokes from you, thanks.” He shrugs. “That’s not what I meant.” Must. Look. Away. What else can I take a picture of? I point the camera to my feet and snap a few. “You’re taking pictures of your feet?” His tone is equal parts curious and amused. “Oh yeah,” I say, turning the camera on his sneakers. “I’ll call it, ‘Standing in Pompeii.’” “How original.” Great. I’ve just made myself a certifiable nutcase.
Kristin Rae (Wish You Were Italian (If Only . . . #2))
So theater, huh? Not sure I saw that one coming either.” “Why?” My cheeks are warm, but I keep in front of him and look anywhere but his direction. “The theater kids back at my high school were…a lot different than you.” I laugh a little louder than necessary. “There are definitely some characters in drama club. As far as style or individuality goes, I’m not much of a standout at school.” “You would have stood out to me.” “I don’t need any tall-girl jokes from you, thanks.” He shrugs. “That’s not what I meant.” Must. Look. Away. What else can I take a picture of? I point the camera to my feet and snap a few.
Kristin Rae (Wish You Were Italian (If Only . . . #2))
She lay on her back in the darkness, tears trickled across her face to dampen the bedding as she waited for the chemicals to rescue her from the drama that life had become.
Diane M. Dickson (Pictures of You)