Graduation College Quotes

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I don't believe in colleges and universities. I believe in libraries because most students don't have any money. When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money. I couldn't go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years.
Ray Bradbury
Every year, many, many stupid people graduate from college. And if they can do it, so can you.
John Green
Whether we're a preschooler or a young teen, a graduating college senior or a retired person, we human beings all want to know that we're acceptable, that our being alive somehow makes a difference in the lives of others.
Fred Rogers (The World According to Mister Rogers: Important Things to Remember)
He’s my brother, my blood. He annoys the hell out of me most of the time, but when it comes right down to it I want to see him graduate from college and have little annoying mini-Alexes and mini-Brittanys running around in the future
Simone Elkeles (Rules of Attraction (Perfect Chemistry, #2))
How many young college graduates have taken demanding jobs in high-powered firms, vowing that they will work hard to earn money that will enable them to retire and pursue their real interests when they are thirty-five? But by the time they reach that age, they have large mortgages, children to school, houses in the suburbs that necessitate at least two cars per family, and a sense that life is not worth living without really good wine and expensive holidays abroad. What are they supposed to do, go back to digging up roots? No, they double their efforts and keep slaving away.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Alphabet: a symbolic system used in algebra, with applications that have yet to be discovered by dyslexics and two thirds of college graduates.
Bauvard (Some Inspiration for the Overenthusiastic)
I understood what he was doing, that he had spent four years fulfilling the absurd and tedious duty of graduating from college and now he was emancipated from that world of abstraction, false security, parents, and material excess.
Jon Krakauer (Into the Wild)
Life is like college; may I graduate and earn some honors.
Louisa May Alcott
Miss Ellis?" Mrs. Perterson says. "It's your turn. Introduce Alex to the class" "This is Alejandro Fuentes. When he wasn't hanging out on street corners and harrassing innocent people this summer, he toured the inside of jails around the city, if you know what i mean. His secret desire is to go to college and become a chemistry teacher, like you Mrs. Peterson." Brittney flashed me a triumpnet smile, thinking she won this round. Guess again, gringa. "This is Brittney Ellis," I say, all eyes focused on me. "This summer she went to the mall, bought new clothes to extend her wardrobe, and spent her daddy's money on plastic surgery to enhance her, ahem, assets. Her secret desire is to date a Mexicano before she graduates." Game on...
Simone Elkeles (Perfect Chemistry (Perfect Chemistry, #1))
Helen Keller was blind and deaf when she graduated from college with honors. So what's your problem?
Charles F. Stanley
The first time I saw him again, it was another year, at my college graduation. And I just knew.
Jenny Han (We'll Always Have Summer (Summer #3))
If I show up at your house ten years from now and find nothing in your living room but The Readers Digest, nothing on your bedroom night table but the newest Dan Brown novel, and nothing in your bathroom but Jokes for the John, I’ll chase you down to the end of your driveway and back, screaming ‘Where are your books? You graduated college ten years ago, so how come there are no damn books in your house? Why are you living on the intellectual equivalent of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese?
Stephen King
When you graduate from college, they tell you to follow your dreams. Does anyone say you have to wake up first?
Bill Cosby
What we have to remember is that we can still do anything. We can change our minds. We can start over. Get a post-bac or try writing for the first time. The notion that it’s too late to do anything is comical. It’s hilarious. We’re graduating from college. We’re so young. We can’t, we MUST not lose this sense of possibility because in the end, it’s all we have.
Marina Keegan (The Opposite of Loneliness: Essays and Stories)
I mean, your whole life you want to be older. Old enough to drive, to smoke, to drink, to graduate, and to go to college. Then when you finally make it, you find out it all kinda sucks!
Katie Ashley (Don't Hate the Player...Hate the Game)
This funny thing happens when you graduate college. You hear so much about being an adult that you start to feel like you have to become a different person overnight, that growing up means being not you. And you concentrate so hard on living up to the term "adult" that you forget growing up happens by living, not by sheer force of will.
Cora Carmack (Finding It (Losing It, #3))
Marginalia Sometimes the notes are ferocious, skirmishes against the author raging along the borders of every page in tiny black script. If I could just get my hands on you, Kierkegaard, or Conor Cruise O'Brien, they seem to say, I would bolt the door and beat some logic into your head. Other comments are more offhand, dismissive - Nonsense." "Please!" "HA!!" - that kind of thing. I remember once looking up from my reading, my thumb as a bookmark, trying to imagine what the person must look like who wrote "Don't be a ninny" alongside a paragraph in The Life of Emily Dickinson. Students are more modest needing to leave only their splayed footprints along the shore of the page. One scrawls "Metaphor" next to a stanza of Eliot's. Another notes the presence of "Irony" fifty times outside the paragraphs of A Modest Proposal. Or they are fans who cheer from the empty bleachers, Hands cupped around their mouths. Absolutely," they shout to Duns Scotus and James Baldwin. Yes." "Bull's-eye." "My man!" Check marks, asterisks, and exclamation points rain down along the sidelines. And if you have managed to graduate from college without ever having written "Man vs. Nature" in a margin, perhaps now is the time to take one step forward. We have all seized the white perimeter as our own and reached for a pen if only to show we did not just laze in an armchair turning pages; we pressed a thought into the wayside, planted an impression along the verge. Even Irish monks in their cold scriptoria jotted along the borders of the Gospels brief asides about the pains of copying, a bird singing near their window, or the sunlight that illuminated their page- anonymous men catching a ride into the future on a vessel more lasting than themselves. And you have not read Joshua Reynolds, they say, until you have read him enwreathed with Blake's furious scribbling. Yet the one I think of most often, the one that dangles from me like a locket, was written in the copy of Catcher in the Rye I borrowed from the local library one slow, hot summer. I was just beginning high school then, reading books on a davenport in my parents' living room, and I cannot tell you how vastly my loneliness was deepened, how poignant and amplified the world before me seemed, when I found on one page A few greasy looking smears and next to them, written in soft pencil- by a beautiful girl, I could tell, whom I would never meet- Pardon the egg salad stains, but I'm in love.
Billy Collins (Picnic, Lightning)
Linus: What's wrong, Charlie Brown? Charlie Brown: I just got terrible news. The teacher says we're going on a field trip to an art museum; and I have to get an A on my report or I'll fail the whole course. Why do we have to have all this pressure about grades, Linus? Linus: Well, I think that the purpose of going to school is to get good grades so then you can go on to high school; and the purpose is to study hard so you can get good grades so you can go to college; and the purpose of going to college is so you can get good grades so you can go on to graduate school; and the purpose of that is to work hard and get good grades so we can get a job and be successful so that we can get married and have kids so we can send them to grammar school to get good grades so they can go to high school to get good grades so they can go to college and work hard... Charlie Brown: Good grief!
Charles M. Schulz
Today, I slept in until 10, Cleaned every dish I own, Fought with the bank, Took care of paperwork. You and I might have different definitions of adulthood. I don’t work for salary, I didn’t graduate from college, But I don’t speak for others anymore, And I don’t regret anything I can’t genuinely apologize for. And my mother is proud of me. I burnt down a house of depression, I painted over murals of greyscale, And it was hard to rewrite my life into one I wanted to live But today, I want to live. I didn’t salivate over sharp knives, Or envy the boy who tossed himself off the Brooklyn bridge. I just cleaned my bathroom, did the laundry, called my brother. Told him, “it was a good day.
Kait Rokowski
Education is not confined to books, and the finest characters often graduate from no college, but make experience their master, and life their book. [Some care] only for the mental culture, and [are] in danger of over-studying, under the delusion . . . that learning must be had at all costs, forgetting that health and real wisdom are better.
Louisa May Alcott (Jo's Boys)
So, " Nathan said, attention focused on Adrian, "now that Vasilisa's graduated, what are you going to do with yourself? You aren't going to keep slumming with high school students, are you? There's no point in you being there anymore. " "I don't know, " said Adrian lazily. "I kind of like hanging out with them. They think I'm funnier than I really am. " "Unsurprising, " his father replied. "You aren't funny at all. It's time you do something productive. If you aren't going to go back to college, you should at least start sitting in on some of the family business meetings. Tatiana spoils you, but you could learn a lot from Rufus. " "True, " said Adrian deadpan."I'd really like to know how he keeps his two mistresses a secret from his wife. " "Adrian!" snapped Daniella, a flush spilling over her pale cheeks
Richelle Mead (Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy, #5))
The best university in the world is neither Oxford nor Harvard. The best university is "youniversity". YOU got the lecture halls of thoughts in YOU! You got everything you need to graduate with first class accomplishments put in you! YOU can do it!
Israelmore Ayivor (The Great Hand Book of Quotes)
Being smart and rich are lucky, but being curious and compassionate will save your ass. Being curious and compassionate can take you out of your ego and edge your soul towards wonder.
Mary Karr (Now Go Out There: (and Get Curious))
In 2005, a man diagnosed with multiple myeloma asked me if he would be alive to watch his daughter graduate from high school in a few months. In 2009, bound to a wheelchair, he watched his daughter graduate from college. The wheelchair had nothing to do with his cancer. The man had fallen down while coaching his youngest son's baseball team.
Siddhartha Mukherjee (The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer)
The truth is, I don't really like to think about college 'cause that means high school's over. After graduation everyone will probably go play basketball, or sing, or start record labels. And I'll have to start all over - alone.
Brooke Davis
Ordinary . . .” I mumbled. To be like others. To be ordinary without having experienced terrible ordeals. To go to school, graduate, and if lucky, go to college and get an okay job and meet a woman I like and get married and have kids . . . things like that. Put differently, to not stand out.
Sohn Won-Pyung (Almond)
I didn't give it much thought back then. I just wanted to get all the words straight and collect my A.
Gayle Forman (Just One Day (Just One Day, #1))
I see them standing at the formal gates of their colleges, I see my father strolling out under the ochre sandstone arch, the red tiles glinting like bent plates of blood behind his head, I see my mother with a few light books at her hip standing at the pillar made of tiny bricks with the wrought-iron gate still open behind her, its sword-tips black in the May air, they are about to graduate, they are about to get married, they are kids, they are dumb, all they know is they are innocent, they would never hurt anybody. I want to go up to them and say Stop, don't do it--she's the wrong woman, he's the wrong man, you are going to do things you cannot imagine you would ever do, you are going to do bad things to children, you are going to suffer in ways you never heard of, you are going to want to die. I want to go up to them there in the late May sunlight and say it, her hungry pretty blank face turning to me, her pitiful beautiful untouched body, his arrogant handsome blind face turning to me, his pitiful beautiful untouched body, but I don't do it. I want to live. I take them up like the male and female paper dolls and bang them together at the hips like chips of flint as if to strike sparks from them, I say Do what you are going to do, and I will tell about it
Sharon Olds
On the first day of a college you will worry about how will you do inside the college? and at the last day of a college you will wonder what will you do outside the college?
Amit Kalantri
members of labor unions, and un-organized unskilled workers, will sooner or later realize that their government is not even trying to prevent wages from sinking or to prevent jobs from being exported. Around the same time, they will realize that suburban white-collar workers - themselves desparately afraid of being downsized - are not going to let themselves be taxed to provide social benefits for anyone else. At that point, something will crack. The non-suburban electorate will decide that the system has failed and start looking around for a strongman to vote for - someone willing to assure them that once he is elected, the smug bureaucrats, tricky lawyers, overpaid bond salesmen and post modernist professors will no longer be calling the shots... One thing that is very likely to happen is that the gains made in the past forty years by black and brown Americans, and by homosexuals, will be wiped out. Jocular contempt for women will come back into fashion... All the resentment which badly educated Americans feel about having their manners dictated to them by college graduates will find an outlet pp89-90
Richard Rorty
I was on a mission. I had to learn to comfort myself, to see what others saw in me and believe it. I needed to discover what the hell made me happy other than being in love. Mission impossible. When did figuring out what makes you happy become work? How had I let myself get to this point, where I had to learn me..? It was embarrassing. In my college psychology class, I had studied theories of adult development and learned that our twenties are for experimenting, exploring different jobs, and discovering what fulfills us. My professor warned against graduate school, asserting, "You're not fully formed yet. You don't know if it's what you really want to do with your life because you haven't tried enough things." Oh, no, not me.." And if you rush into something you're unsure about, you might awake midlife with a crisis on your hands," he had lectured it. Hi. Try waking up a whole lot sooner with a pre-thirty predicament worm dangling from your early bird mouth. "Well to begin," Phone Therapist responded, "you have to learn to take care of yourself. To nurture and comfort that little girl inside you, to realize you are quite capable of relying on yourself. I want you to try to remember what brought you comfort when you were younger." Bowls of cereal after school, coated in a pool of orange-blossom honey. Dragging my finger along the edge of a plate of mashed potatoes. I knew I should have thought "tea" or "bath," but I didn't. Did she want me to answer aloud? "Grilled cheese?" I said hesitantly. "Okay, good. What else?" I thought of marionette shows where I'd held my mother's hand and looked at her after a funny part to see if she was delighted, of brisket sandwiches with ketchup, like my dad ordered. Sliding barn doors, baskets of brown eggs, steamed windows, doubled socks, cupcake paper, and rolled sweater collars. Cookouts where the fathers handled the meat, licking wobbly batter off wire beaters, Christmas ornaments in their boxes, peanut butter on apple slices, the sounds and light beneath an overturned canoe, the pine needle path to the ocean near my mother's house, the crunch of snow beneath my red winter boots, bedtime stories. "My parents," I said. Damn. I felt like she made me say the secret word and just won extra points on the Psychology Game Network. It always comes down to our parents in therapy.
Stephanie Klein (Straight Up and Dirty)
A few years ago, I graduated college, diploma in one hand, margarita in the other, completely oblivious to the shit storm that was coming my way. Here's a preview: becoming a living, breathing, job-having, bill-paying, responsible adult? Really fucking difficult.
Alida Nugent (Don't Worry, It Gets Worse: One Twentysomething's (Mostly Failed) Attempts at Adulthood)
Leo, I know it’s unexplainable because I barely know you, but being with you makes me feel good inside and happy. I’ve never had that. When I see you, I feel like I’m home. Like we’re pieces of a puzzle that have finally come together. And . . . and I think being happy isn’t about the big moments, like when you graduate from college or get that job you’ve been wanting. It’s the small moments that take your breath away and make you truly happy, like the first time you see your newborn’s face or . . . or when you meet someone who could be your soulmate.
Ilsa Madden-Mills (Very Bad Things (Briarcrest Academy, #1))
Firstly,” said Ponder, “Mr Pessimal wants to know what we do here.” “Do? We are the premier college of magic!” said Ridcully. “But do we teach?” “Only if no alternative presents itself,” said the Dean. “We show ‘em where the library is, give ‘em a few little chats, and graduate the survivors. If they run into any problems, my door is always metaphorically open.” “Metaphorically, sir?” said Ponder. “Yes. But technically, of course, it’s locked.” “Explain to him that we don’t do things, Stibbons,” said the Lecturer in Recent Runes. “We are academics.
Terry Pratchett (A Blink of the Screen: Collected Shorter Fiction)
Sometimes people graduate but they don't leave. They hang around for years, for no reason. I would think of ghosts like that, I decided.
Maureen Johnson (The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1))
...graduate college, win Pam, get job, make babies, move ahead in job, forget former feeling of special destiny...
George Saunders (Tenth of December)
Bad things are gonna' happen to you, because they happen to us all. And worrying won't stave the really bad things off. Don't make the mistake of comparing your twisted-up insides to other people's blow-dried outsides. Even the most privileged person in this stadium suffers the torments of the damned just going about the business of being human.
Mary Karr (Now Go Out There: (and Get Curious))
...a time when the plans and ideals that you've been dreaming of for years come up against reality. you graduate from college and have to find your way in the real world. you learn that there is no perfect job. there is no perfect relationship.
Christine Hassler (20-Something, 20-Everything: A Quarter-Life Woman's Guide to Balance and Direction)
The “some college,” “four-year college graduate,” and “no college” types who have high incomes often had a head start on many well-educated workers.
Thomas J. Stanley (The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America's Wealthy)
So I graduated from college with a degree in journalism and was ready to find my dream job at a newspaper in addition to one good man who owned his own car and was certain about his sexuality, my two new, revised qualifying criteria for a potential date.
Laurie Notaro (Autobiography of a Fat Bride: True Tales of a Pretend Adulthood)
Most of her classmates were barely legal drinking age and were all about college partying, while Kara could only think about making it through each day, getting one step closer to graduation.
J.S. Scott (Mate of the Werewolf (Changeling Encounters, #1))
Had I ever chosen anything? Had I made some kind of choice that led me here? Thinking it over, I stared at the cell phone in my hands. The job that I was doing, the place where I was living, the fact that I was all alone and had no one to talk to. Could these have been the result of some decision that I'd made? I heard a crow crying somewhere in the distance and turned to the window. It occurred to me that maybe I was where I was today because I hadn't chosen anything. I applied to whatever colleges my teacher suggested and fell into a job after graduation, which I'd left only because I had to escape. I was only able to go freelance because of all the leg-work that Hijiri did for me. Had I ever chosen anything on my own, made something happen? Not once. And that's why I was here now, all alone.
Mieko Kawakami (All the Lovers in the Night)
if college graduates can no longer be counted on to lead reasoned debate and discussion in American life, and to know the difference between knowledge and feeling, then we’re indeed in the kind of deep trouble no expert can fix.
Thomas M. Nichols (The Death of Expertise: The Campaign against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters)
I had this whole plan when I graduated high school: I was going to go to college, date a few guys, and then meet THE guy at the end of my freshman year, maybe at the beginning of my sophomore year. We'd be engaged by graduation and married the next year. And then, after some traveling, we'd start our family. Four kids, three years apart. I wanted to be done by the time I was 35.
Rainbow Rowell (Attachments)
Life for young American college graduates is a festive affair. Free of having to support their families, they mostly have gay parties on rooftops where they reflect at length upon their quirky electronic childhoods and sometimes kiss each other on the lips and neck.
Gary Shteyngart (Absurdistan)
You wish you could’ve learned to play piano. You wish you could’ve started drawing when you were young. You wish you could’ve figured out who you wanted to be before you graduated college. You wish you could’ve learned to love yourself sooner. Well you know what? You didn’t. And that’s just something you’re going to have to learn to deal with. But just because you didn’t do it sooner, doesn’t mean you can’t start now.
Daren Colbert
He had just graduated from college...and he wanted to decide whether life was worth living. He did not know that this was the question in his mind. He did not think of dying. He thought only that he wished to find joy and reason and meaning in life-and that none had been offered to him anywhere.
Ayn Rand (The Fountainhead)
It was a gift. What did I do with it? Life didn't accumulate as I'd once imagined. I graduated from boarding school, two years of college. Persisted through the blank decade in Los Angeles. I buried first my mother, then my father. His hair gone wispy as a child's. I paid bills and bought groceries and got my eyes checked while the days crumbled away like debris from a cliff face. Life a continuous backing away from the edge.
Emma Cline (The Girls)
The future that we want - this is it. This is the future of all the previous thoughts you've ever had about the future. You're in it. You're already in it. What is the purpose of all this living if it's only to get some place else and then when you're there you're not happy anyway, you want to be some place else. It's always for 'when I retire,' 'when I graduate college,' 'when I make enough money,' 'when I get married,' 'when I get divorced,' 'when the kids move out.' It's like, wait a minute, this is it. This is your life. We only have moments. This moment's as good as any other. It's perfect.
Jon Kabat-Zinn (Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present Moment―and Your Life)
Popular as he was as a graduation speaker, Vonnegut never graduated from college.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (If This Isn't Nice, What Is?: Advice for the Young)
You don't have to be a college graduate to murder someone.” “Thank you for making the jury aware of that, Lieutenant. I'm sure they had no idea.
David Rosenfelt (Open and Shut (Andy Carpenter #1))
When our children are old enough, and if we can afford to, we send them to college, where despite the recent proliferation of courses on 'happiness' and 'positive psychology,' the point is to acquire the skills not of positive thinking but of *critical* thinking, and critical thinking is inherently skeptical. The best students -- and in good colleges, also the most successful -- are the ones who raise sharp questions, even at the risk of making a professor momentarily uncomfortable. Whether the subject is literature or engineering, graduates should be capable of challenging authority figures, going against the views of their classmates, and defending novel points of view.
Barbara Ehrenreich (Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America)
After he graduated from college, he went to Paris and became an Existentialist. He had a photograph taken of Existentialism and himself sitting at a sidewalk cafe. Pard was wearing a beard and he looked as if he had a huge soul, with barely enough room in his body to contain it.
Richard Brautigan (Trout Fishing in America)
Starting over is not a sign of failure. I look at it this way: A person enrolled at the wrong life college, underwent some hellish classes, passed a lot of difficult tests, majored in perspective, and a minored in minor things. However, they graduated at the top of their class and are now qualified to teach a course titled, How Not To Do That Ever Again.
Shannon L. Alder
The chance that you will become a master in something after the first attempt is neither here nor there. You don't get master's degree by attending school on the first day! Time will tell, so you got to persist!
Israelmore Ayivor (Shaping the dream)
Nora Ephron explained in a 1996 commencement address at her alma mater, Wellesley College, about her own graduating class of 1962: “We weren’t meant to have futures, we were meant to marry them. We weren’t meant to have politics, or careers that mattered, or opinions or lives; we were meant to marry them. If you wanted to be an architect, you married an architect.” Both
Rebecca Traister (All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation)
One semester later I did, indeed, graduate with a 4.0. I had done it. And after that, my GPA did . . . Nothing. I never planned on going to graduate school. I wasn’t applying for jobs that used grades as a measurement. I didn’t need that GPA for any single reason other than to SAY I had it and impress people. I could turn this into an argument for “Let’s reward a high GPA after college in LIFE! Can we get priority seating on Southwest? A free monthly refill at Starbucks? SOMETHING to make four years of my life chasing this arbitrary number WORTH it?!” (Great idea. Never gonna happen.) Or I could argue that if I’d been easier on myself and gotten 10 percent worse grades I could have had 50 percent more friendships and fun. If someone’s takeaway from this story is “Felicia Day said don’t study!,” I’ll punch you in the face. But I AM saying don’t chase perfection for perfection’s sake, or for anyone else’s sake at all. If you strive for something, make sure it’s for the right reasons. And if you fail, that will be a better lesson for you than any success you’ll ever have. Because you learn a lot from screwing up. Being perfect . . . not so much.
Felicia Day (You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost))
Barely, but I did. Then in college I did really well. Can you imagine that? Which is why I went to graduate school. But that was probably a big mistake. I should have quit while I was ahead. You see, my problem is I don’t know whether I’m smart or if I’m stupid. I’ve done well, and I’ve done poorly, and I’ve been told that I’m gifted and I’ve been told that I’m slow. I don’t know what I am.
Edward M. Hallowell (Driven to Distraction: Recognizing and Coping with Attention Deficit Disorder)
You can tell all of us are morphing into full-blown adults, wingtip adults, because all the time now the Big Question is, What are you going to do? After the summer, about your scholarship, about choosing a college, after graduation, with the rest of your life. When you are thirteen, the question is, Smooth or crunchy? That's it. Later, at the onset of full-blown adulthood, the Big Question changes a little bit - instead of, What are you going to do? it turns into, What do you do? I hear it all the time when my parents have parties, all the men standing around. After they talk sports, they always ask, What do you do? It's just part of the code that they mean "for a living" because no one ever answers it by saying, I go for walks and listen to music full-blast and don't care about my hearing thirty years from now, and I drink milk out of the carton, and I cough when someone lights up a cigarette, and I dig rainy days because they make me sad in a way I like, and I read books until I fall asleep holding them, and I put on sock-shoe, sock-shoe instead of sock-sock, shoe-shoe because I think it's better luck. Never that. People are always in something. I'm in advertising. I'm in real estate. I'm in sales and marketing.
Brad Barkley (Jars of Glass)
Thousands of persons, many of whom never darkened the door of a college, have learned to read books that most of our college graduates fear to tackle. teachers who understand this fact can help a student read the books that educated the Founding Fathers but not by explaining in lectures what the author would have said if he had been as bright as the lecturer.
Stringfellow Barr
The assault on education began more than a century ago by industrialists and capitalists such as Andrew Carnegie. In 1891, Carnegie congratulated the graduates of the Pierce College of Business for being “fully occupied in obtaining a knowledge of shorthand and typewriting” rather than wasting time “upon dead languages.” The industrialist Richard Teller Crane was even more pointed in his 1911 dismissal of what humanists call the “life of the mind.” No one who has “a taste for literature has a right to be happy” because “the only men entitled to happiness… is those who are useful.” The arrival of industrialists on university boards of trustees began as early as the 1870s and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business offered the first academic credential in business administration in 1881. The capitalists, from the start, complained that universities were unprofitable. These early twentieth century capitalists, like heads of investment houses and hedge-fund managers, were, as Donoghue writes “motivated by an ethically based anti-intellectualism that transcended interest in the financial bottom line. Their distrust of the ideal of intellectual inquiry for its own sake, led them to insist that if universities were to be preserved at all, they must operate on a different set of principles from those governing the liberal arts.
Chris Hedges (Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle)
The pursuit of an easier life resulted in much hardship, and not for the last time. It happens to us today. How many young college graduates have taken demanding jobs in high-powered firms, vowing that they will work hard to earn money that will enable them to retire and pursue their real interests when they are thirty-five? But by the time they reach that age, they have large mortgages, children to school, houses in the suburbs that necessitate at least two cars per family, and a sense that life is not worth living without really good wine and expensive holidays abroad. What are they supposed to do, go back to digging up roots? No, they double their efforts and keep slaving away.
Yuval Noah Harari (Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind)
Our schools will not improve if we continue to focus only on reading and mathematics while ignoring the other studies that are essential elements of a good education. Schools that expect nothing more of their students than mastery of basic skills will not produce graduates who are ready for college or the modern workplace. *** Our schools will not improve if we value only what tests measure. The tests we have now provide useful information about students' progress in reading and mathematics, but they cannot measure what matters most in education....What is tested may ultimately be less important that what is untested... *** Our schools will not improve if we continue to close neighborhood schools in the name of reform. Neighborhood schools are often the anchors of their communities, a steady presence that helps to cement the bond of community among neighbors. *** Our schools cannot improve if charter schools siphon away the most motivated students and their families in the poorest communities from the regular public schools. *** Our schools will not improve if we continue to drive away experienced principals and replace them with neophytes who have taken a leadership training course but have little or no experience as teachers. *** Our schools cannot be improved if we ignore the disadvantages associated with poverty that affect children's ability to learn. Children who have grown up in poverty need extra resources, including preschool and medical care.
Diane Ravitch (The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education)
The world is the schoolroom of God. Our being in school does not make us learn, but within that school is the opportunity for all learning. It has its grades and its classes, its sciences and its arts, and admission to it is the birthright of man. Its graduates are its teachers, its pupils are all created things. Its examples are Mature, and its rules are God's laws. Those who would go into the greater colleges and universities must first, day by day, and year by year, work through the common school of life and present to their new teachers the diplomas they have won, upon which is written the name that none may read save those who have received it. The hours may be long, and the teachers cruel, but each of us must walk that path, and the only ones ready to go onward are those who have passed through the gateway of experience.
Manly P. Hall
Our job in life,” he said at a graduation ceremony at Thiel College in Greenville, Pennsylvania, early in his career, in 1969, “is to help people realize how rare and valuable each one of us really is—that each of us has something that no one else has—or ever will have—something inside which is unique to all time. It’s our job to encourage each other to discover that uniqueness, and to provide ways of developing its expression.
Maxwell King (The Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers)
Earth society has programmed us to keep our heads down and remain as these mindless drones. Everyone tells us we all have to follow the same blueprint: You gotta go to school. Graduate. Go to college, if you want the best job. Get married. Make babies. Work some more, get promoted. Then you retire. We want, and want, and want, and then we die. Then people say, Oh, what a great life that person led. But that's not living. It's just a way to exist.
Farah Naz Rishi (I Hope You Get This Message)
College graduates and women with higher earnings are now more likely to marry than women with less education and lower wages, although they generally marry at an older age. The legal profession is one big exception to this generalization. Female attorneys are less likely to ever marry, to have children, or to remarry after divorce than women in other professions. But an even higher proportion of male attorneys are childless, suggesting there might be something about this career that is unfriendly to everyone’s family life, not just women’s.
Stephanie Coontz (Marriage, a History: How Love Conquered Marriage)
How many young college graduates have taken demanding jobs in high-powered firms, vowing that they will work hard to earn money that will enable them to retire and pursue their real interests when they are thirty-five? But by the time they reach that age, they have large mortgages, children to school, houses in the suburbs that necessitate at least two cars per family, and a sense that life is not worth living without really good wine and expensive holidays abroad. What are they supposed to do, go back to digging up roots? No, they double their efforts and keep slaving away.’ —Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (2011)
Matt Haig (Notes on a Nervous Planet: Matt Haig)
some people graduate on time. some others graduate at the right time. no matter about the time you graduations, you have to take responsibility to finish your college when you choose to start it. not for your parents, not for your friends, but for you. when you graduate, you'll be at the higher lever than your life before. remember, you don't have to be smarter, all you have to do is be the work harder than others.
Nunki Artura
INTERVIEWER You’re self-educated, aren’t you? BRADBURY Yes, I am. I’m completely library educated. I’ve never been to college. I went down to the library when I was in grade school in Waukegan, and in high school in Los Angeles, and spent long days every summer in the library. I used to steal magazines from a store on Genesee Street, in Waukegan, and read them and then steal them back on the racks again. That way I took the print off with my eyeballs and stayed honest. I didn’t want to be a permanent thief, and I was very careful to wash my hands before I read them. But with the library, it’s like catnip, I suppose: you begin to run in circles because there’s so much to look at and read. And it’s far more fun than going to school, simply because you make up your own list and you don’t have to listen to anyone. When I would see some of the books my kids were forced to bring home and read by some of their teachers, and were graded on—well, what if you don’t like those books? I am a librarian. I discovered me in the library. I went to find me in the library. Before I fell in love with libraries, I was just a six-year-old boy. The library fueled all of my curiosities, from dinosaurs to ancient Egypt. When I graduated from high school in 1938, I began going to the library three nights a week. I did this every week for almost ten years and finally, in 1947, around the time I got married, I figured I was done. So I graduated from the library when I was twenty-seven. I discovered that the library is the real school.
Ray Bradbury
Within a couple of weeks of starting the Ph.D. program, though, she discovered that she'd booked passage on a sinking ship. There aren't any jobs, the other students informed her; the profession's glutted with tenured old men who won't step aside for the next generation. While the university's busy exploiting you for cheap labor, you somehow have to produce a boring thesis that no one will read, and find someone willing to publish it as a book. And then, if you're unsually talented and extraordinarily lucky, you just might be able to secure a one-year, nonrenewable appointment teaching remedial composition to football players in Oklahoma. Meanwhile, the Internet's booming, and the kids we gave C pluses to are waltzing out of college and getting rich on stock options while we bust our asses for a pathetic stipend that doesn't even cover the rent.
Tom Perrotta (Little Children)
This is incredible. This is quite amazing because who you're honoring tonight is not only myself but the ghost of a lot of your favorite writers. And I wouldn't be here except that they spoke to me in the library. The library's been the center of my life. I never made it to college. I started going to the library when I graduated from high school. I went to the library every day for three or four days a week for 10 years and I graduated from the library when I was 28.
Ray Bradbury
When black youth find it difficult or impossible to live up to these standards—or when they fail, stumble, and make mistakes, as all humans do—shame and blame is heaped upon them. If only they had made different choices, they’re told sternly, they wouldn’t be sitting in a jail cell; they’d be graduating from college. Never mind that white children on the other side of town who made precisely the same choices—often for less compelling reasons—are in fact going to college.
Michelle Alexander (The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness)
What is a Gallagher Girl?” Liz asked. She looked nervously down at the papers in her hand even though I knew for a fact she had memorized every word. “When I was eleven I thought I knew the answer to that question. That was when the recruiters came to see me. They showed me brochures and told me they were impressed by my test scores and asked if I was ready to be challenged. And I said yes. Because that was what a Gallagher Girl was to me then, a student at the toughest school in the world.” She took a deep breath and talked on. “What is a Gallagher Girl?” Liz asked again. “When I was thirteen I thought I knew the answer to that question. That was when Dr. Fibs allowed me to start doing my own experiments in the lab. I could go anywhere—make anything. Do anything my mind could dream up. Because I was a Gallagher Girl. And, to me, that meant I was the future.” Liz took another deep breath. “What is a Gallagher Girl?” This time, when Liz asked it, her voice cracked. “When I was seventeen I stood on a dark street in Washington, D.C., and watched one Gallagher Girl literally jump in front of a bullet to save the life of another. I saw a group of women gather around a girl whom they had never met, telling the world that if any harm was to come to their sister, it had to go through them first.” Liz straightened. She no longer had to look down at her paper as she said, “What is a Gallagher Girl? I’m eighteen now, and if I’ve learned anything, it’s that I don’t really know the answer to that question. Maybe she is destined to be our first international graduate and take her rightful place among Her Majesty’s Secret Service with MI6.” I glanced to my right and, call me crazy, but I could have sworn Rebecca Baxter was crying. “Maybe she is someone who chooses to give back, to serve her life protecting others just as someone once protected her.” Macey smirked but didn’t cry. I got the feeling that Macey McHenry might never cry again. “Who knows?” Liz asked. “Maybe she’s an undercover journalist.” I glanced at Tina Walters. “An FBI agent.” Eva Alvarez beamed. “A code breaker.” Kim Lee smiled. “A queen.” I thought of little Amirah and knew somehow that she’d be okay. “Maybe she’s even a college student.” Liz looked right at me. “Or maybe she’s so much more.” Then Liz went quiet for a moment. She too looked up at the place where the mansion used to stand. “You know, there was a time when I thought that the Gallagher Academy was made of stone and wood, Grand Halls and high-tech labs. When I thought it was bulletproof, hack-proof, and…yes…fireproof. And I stand before you today happy for the reminder that none of those things are true. Yes, I really am. Because I know now that a Gallagher Girl is not someone who draws her power from that building. I know now with scientific certainty that it is the other way around.” A hushed awe descended over the already quiet crowd as she said this. Maybe it was the gravity of her words and what they meant, but for me personally, I like to think it was Gilly looking down, smiling at us all. “What is a Gallagher Girl?” Liz asked one final time. “She’s a genius, a scientist, a heroine, a spy. And now we are at the end of our time at school, and the one thing I know for certain is this: A Gallagher Girl is whatever she wants to be.” Thunderous, raucous applause filled the student section. Liz smiled and wiped her eyes. She leaned close to the microphone. “And, most of all, she is my sister.
Ally Carter (United We Spy (Gallagher Girls, #6))
Now, it is our understanding that his Majesty Grom is requesting an unsealing from his mating with the Common Paca?” “That is correct,” Antonis says, rolling his eyes. “Poseidon’s beard, but this is repetitive.” Tandel ignores the elder king’s bluster. “It is also our understanding that Prince Galen requests, in exchange for his help, and the help of Emma the Half-Breed, that he is permitted to mate with Emma as if she were full-blooded Syrena.” “You have that correct,” Galen answers gruffly. Tandel pauses. “And do the Royals have any more requests at this time?” “Yes,” Emma says, to Galen’s surprise. She’s never held back from speaking what’s on her mind. But she never acknowledged herself as a Royal until now. “Because of my Half-breed status, and the fact that I’ve lived on land all my life, I would like for the Royals to be able to visit me here whenever they like. I know that under the current laws, that’s not allowed, but I want that changed.” “You might as well agree to that, Tandel,” Antonis says. “Or else you’ll be holding another tribunal for the Royals, because all of us intend to be visiting land more often I think.” “Actually I won’t be visiting land,” Galen says. He turns to Emma. “I’ll be living here.” Tears pool in her eyes. He catches one sliding down her cheek and kisses it away. Her reaction just confirms what he’d suspected all along. That she’s been worried about it. How it would work out between them, where would they live. Emma had said before that she wanted the best of both worlds. Prom, graduation, college. Swimming with dolphins, visiting the Titanic, searching for Amelia Earhart’s plane. He intends to make sure she has it all.
Anna Banks (Of Triton (The Syrena Legacy, #2))
We need an engineering friend.” She points a finger at Carin. “Go back to Briar and hook up with an engineering student.” “Okay, but I’ll need to actually have sex with him beforehand, so I won’t be back until,” she pretends to check the time, “ten or so.” “We’re all college graduates,” I proclaim. “We can put this together ourselves.” Clapping my hands, I motion for everyone to get on the floor with me. After three tries of trying to lower myself to the ground and making Hope and Carin nearly pee their pants laughing in the process, D’Andre takes pity on all of us and helps me onto my knees. Which is where Tucker finds us. “Is this some new fertility ritual?” he drawls from the doorway, one shoulder propped against the frame. “Because she’s already pregnant, you know.” “Get yo ass in here, white boy, and put this thing together,” D’Andre snaps. “This is ridiculous.” “What’s ridiculous?” Tucker stops next to me, and I take the opportunity to lean against his legs. Even kneeling is hard when you’re toting around an extra thirty pounds. “We took it apart. How can you not know how to put it back together?” D’Andre repeats his earlier excuse. “I’m an accounting major.” Tucker rolls his eyes. “You got an Allen wrench?” “Are you mocking us right now?” I grumble. “I don’t have any wrenches, let alone ones with names.” He grins. “Leave this to me, darlin’. I’ll get it fixed up.” “I want to help,” Hope volunteers. “This is like surgery, except with wood and not people.” “Lord help us,” D’Andre mutters.
Elle Kennedy (The Goal (Off-Campus, #4))
He was defiantly narrow-minded, barely educated, and at least close to functionally illiterate. His beliefs were powerful but consistently dubious, and made him seem, in the words of The New Yorker, “mildly unbalanced.” He did not like bankers, doctors, liquor, tobacco, idleness of any sort, pasteurized milk, Wall Street, overweight people, war, books or reading, J. P. Morgan and Co., capital punishment, tall buildings, college graduates, Roman Catholics, or Jews. Especially he didn’t like Jews. Once he hired a Hebraic scholar to translate the Talmud in a manner designed to make Jewish people appear shifty and avaricious.
Bill Bryson (One Summer: America, 1927)
The accused rapist, Calvin Smith, had graduated from a small-town high school the previous June, where he'd distinguished himself as an athlete. Individuals who knew Smith have described him as "kind," "easygoing," and "goofy." But he had never had sex before meeting Kaitlynn Kelly, and a look at what he has posted on a social media site suggests that he was a frustrated, involuntary celibate. On January 11, 2011, Smith posted a line from the animated sitcom Family Guy on his Facebook page: "women are not people god just put them here for mans entertainment.
Jon Krakauer (Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town)
The majority of my generation decides to move back in with their parents after college. Unemployment, for them, is twice the national average. According to one 2011 study by the University of Michigan, many graduates aren’t even bothering to learn how to drive. The road is blocked, they are saying, so why get a license I won’t be able to use? We whine and complain and mope when things won’t go our way. We’re crushed when what we were “promised” is revoked—as if that’s not allowed to happen. Instead of doing much about it, we sit at home and play video games or travel or worse, pay for more school with more loan debt that will never be forgiven. And then we wonder why it isn’t getting any better.
Ryan Holiday (The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph)
When the Soviet Union launched Sputnik in 1957, my parents, like the rest of America, were terrified. The Soviets had nuclear weapons and now were ahead of us in space. So my parents marched me and Owen into our living room, sat us down, and said, " You boys are going to study math and Science so we can beat the Soviets!" I thought that was a lot of pressure to put on a six-year old. But own and I were obedient sons, so we studied math and science. And we were good at it.. Owen was the first in our family to go to college. He went to MIT, graduating with a degree in physics, and then became a photographer. I went to Harvard, and became a comedian. My poor parents. But we still beat the Soviets. You're welcome.
Al Franken (Al Franken, Giant of the Senate)
To the accomplishment-oriented mother, what you achieve in life is paramount. Success depends on what you do, not who you are. She expects you to perform at the highest possible level. This mom is very proud of her children’s good grades, tournament wins, admission into the right college, and graduation with the pertinent degrees. She loves to brag about them too. But if you do not become what your accomplishment-oriented mother thinks you should, and accomplish what she thinks is important, she is deeply embarrassed, and may even respond with a rampage of fury and rage. A confusing dynamic is at play here. Often, while the daughter is trying to achieve a given goal, the mother is not supportive because it takes away from her and the time the daughter has to spend on her. Yet if the daughter achieves what she set out to do, the mother beams with pride at the awards banquet or performance. What a mixed message. The daughter learns not to expect much support unless she becomes a great hit, which sets her up for low self-esteem and an accomplishment-oriented lifestyle.
Karyl McBride (Will I Ever Be Good Enough?: Healing the Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers)
This Land is mostly white space on the map...which is how it should be; I'll leave more detailed map making to those graduate students and English teachers who feel that every goose which lays gold must be dissected so that all of its quite ordinary guts can be labelled; to those figurative engineers of the imagination who cannot feel comfortable with the comfortably overgrown (and possible dangerous) literary wilderness until they have built a freeway composed of Cliff's Notes through it - and listen to me, you people: every English teacher who ever did a Monarch or Cliff's Notes ought to be dragged out to his or her quad, drawn and quartered, then cut up into tiny pieces, said pieces to be dried and shrunk in the sun and then sold in the college bookstore as bookmarks.
Stephen King (Danse Macabre)
Millennials: We lost the genetic lottery. We graduated high school into terrorist attacks and wars. We graduated college into a recession and mounds of debt. We will never acquire the financial cushion, employment stability, and material possessions of our parents. We are often more educated, experienced, informed, and digitally fluent than prior generations, yet are constantly haunted by the trauma of coming of age during the detonation of the societal structure we were born into. But perhaps we are overlooking the silver lining. We will have less money to buy the material possessions that entrap us. We will have more compassion and empathy because our struggles have taught us that even the most privileged can fall from grace. We will have the courage to pursue our dreams because we have absolutely nothing to lose. We will experience the world through backpacking, couch surfing, and carrying on interesting conversations with adventurers in hostels because our bank accounts can't supply the Americanized resorts. Our hardships will obligate us to develop spiritual and intellectual substance. Maybe having roommates and buying our clothes at thrift stores isn't so horrible as long as we are making a point to pursue genuine happiness.
Maggie Georgiana Young
I’m completely library educated. I’ve never been to college. I went down to the library when I was in grade school in Waukegan, and in high school in Los Angeles, and spent long days every summer in the library. I used to steal magazines from a store on Genesee Street, in Waukegan, and read them and then steal them back on the racks again. That way I took the print off with my eyeballs and stayed honest. I didn’t want to be a permanent thief, and I was very careful to wash my hands before I read them. But with the library, it’s like catnip, I suppose: you begin to run in circles because there’s so much to look at and read. And it’s far more fun than going to school, simply because you make up your own list and you don’t have to listen to anyone. When I would see some of the books my kids were forced to bring home and read by some of their teachers, and were graded on—well, what if you don’t like those books? I am a librarian. I discovered me in the library. I went to find me in the library. Before I fell in love with libraries, I was just a six-year-old boy. The library fueled all of my curiosities, from dinosaurs to ancient Egypt. When I graduated from high school in 1938, I began going to the library three nights a week. I did this every week for almost ten years and finally, in 1947, around the time I got married, I figured I was done. So I graduated from the library when I was twenty-seven. I discovered that the library is the real school.
Ray Bradbury
Said the writer of Proverbs, ‘Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it’ (Prov. 22:6). That training finds its roots in the home. There will be little of help from other sources. Do not depend on government to help in this darkening situation. Barbara Bush, wife of former United States president George Bush, spoke wisely when in Wellesley, Massachusetts, in 1990 she addressed the Wellesley College graduating class and said, ‘Your success as a family, our success as society, depends not on what happens at the White House, but on what happens inside your house.
Gordon B. Hinckley
I can’t overstate how little I knew about myself at 22, or how little I’d thought about what I was doing. When I graduated from college I genuinely believed that the creative life was the apex of human existence, and that to work at an ordinary office job was a betrayal of that life, and I had to pursue that life at all costs. Management consulting, law school, med school, those were fine for other people — I didn’t judge! — but I was an artist. I was super special. I was sparkly. I would walk another path. And I would walk it alone. That was another thing I knew about being an artist: You didn’t need other people. Other people were a distraction. My little chrysalis of genius was going to seat one and one only.
Lev Grossman
Lewis, anything but dull, suffered from an excess of misguided cleverness: he could disparage himself brilliantly in a matter of seconds. He knew literature, art, the theater, history; and his knowledge surpassed what a college normally provides. His knowledge led nowhere, certainly not into the world where he was supposed to earn a living. Lewis had once gone to work in the bookstore of his school because he loved handling books and looked forward to being immersed in them. He was then instructed to keep careful accounts of merchandise that might as well have been canned beans. He soon lost interest in his simple task, failed to master it, and quit after three days. Eight years later, he was still convinced of his practical incompetence. College friends familiar with his tastes would suggest modest ways for him to get started: they knew of jobs as readers in publishing houses, as gofers in theatrical productions, as caretakers at galleries. Lewis rejected them all. While he saw that they might lead to greater things, they sounded both beneath and beyond him--the bookstore again. Other chums who had gone on to graduate school urged their choice on him. Lewis harbored an uneasy scorn for the corporation of scholars, who seemed as unfit for the world as he. He remained desperate, lonely, and spoiled.
Harry Mathews (Cigarettes)
As a boy, I never knew where my mother was from---where she was born, who her parents were. When I asked she'd say, "God made me." When I asked if she was white, she'd say, "I'm light-skinned," and change the subject. She raised twelve black children and sent us all to college and in most cases graduate school. Her children became doctors, professors, chemists, teachers---yet none of us even knew her maiden name until we were grown. It took me fourteen years to unearth her remarkable story---the daughter of an Orthodox Jewish rabbi, she married a black man in 1942---and she revealed it more as a favor to me than out of any desire to revisit her past. Here is her life as she told it to me, and betwixt and between the pages of her life you will find mine as well.
James McBride (The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother)
...[I]t doesn't take an advanced degree to figure out that this education talk is less a strategy for mitigating inequality than it is a way of rationalizing it. To attribute economic results to school years finished and SAT scores achieved is to remove matters from the realm of, well, economics and to relocate them to the provinces of personal striving and individual intelligence. From this perspective, wages aren't what they are because one party (management) has a certain amount of power over the other (workers); wages are like that because the god of the market, being surpassingly fair, rewards those who show talent and gumption. Good people are those who get a gold star from their teacher in elementary school, a fat acceptance letter from a good college, and a good life when they graduate. All because they are the best. Those who don't pay attention in high school get to spend their days picking up discarded cans by the side of the road. Both outcomes are our own doing.
Thomas Frank (Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People)
I told him about my unsuccessful job hunting. He said it was all part of the pattern of economics - economic injustice. 'You take a young white boy. He can go though school and college with a real incentive. He knows he can make good money in any profession when he gets out. But can a Negro - in the South? No, I've seen many make brilliant grades in college. And yet when they come home in the summers to earn a little money, they have to do the most menial work. And even when they graduate it's a long hard pull. Most take postal jobs, or preaching or teaching jobs. This is the cream. What about the others , Mr. Griffin? A man knows no matter how hard he works , he's never going to quite manage...taxes and prices eat up more than he can earn. He can't see how he'll ever have a wife and children. The economic structure just doesn't permit it unless he's prepared to live down in poverty and have his wife work too. That's part of it. Our people aren't educated because they can't afford it or else they know education won't earn them the jobs it would a white men.
John Howard Griffin
Where do I belong?” “With me,” my mother and Galen say in unison. They exchange hard glares. Galen locks his jaw. “I’m her mother,” she tells Galen, her voice sharp. “Her place is with me.” “I want her for my mate,” Galen says. The admission warms up the space between us with an impossible heat and I want to melt into him. His words, his declaration, cannot be unspoken. And how he’s declared it to everyone who matters. It’s out there in the open, hanging in the air. He wants me for his mate. Me. Him. Forever. And I’m not sure how I feel about that. How I should feel about that. I’ve known for some time that he wanted that eventually, but how soon? Before we graduate? Before I go to college? What does it mean to mate with him? He’s a Triton prince. His place is with the Syrena, in the ocean. And let’s not forget that my place with them is dead-no Half-Breeds allowed. We have so much to talk about before this can even happen, but I feel saying so might make him feel rejected, or embarrass him in front of his older brother, the great Triton king. Or like I’m having second thoughts, and I’m not. Not exactly. I peer up at him, wanting to see his eyes, to see the promise in them that I heard in his voice. But he won’t look at me. He’s not looking at Mom, either. He keeps his iron glare on Grom, unyielding and demanding. But Grom doesn’t wither under the weight of it. In fact, he deflects it with an indifferent expression. They are definitely engaging in some sort of battle of will via manly staring contest.
Anna Banks (Of Triton (The Syrena Legacy, #2))
Everybody has got to live for something, but Jesus is arguing that, if he is not that thing, it will fail you. First, it will enslave you. Whatever that thing is, you will tell yourself that you have to have it or there is no tomorrow. That means that if anything threatens it, you will become inordinately scared; if anyone blocks it, you will become inordinately angry; and if you fail to achieve it, you will never be able to forgive yourself. But second, if you do achieve it, it will fail to deliver the fulfillment you expected. Let me give you an eloquent contemporary expression of what Jesus is saying. Nobody put this better than the American writer David Foster Wallace. He got to the top of his profession. He was an award-winning, bestselling postmodern novelist known around the world for his boundary-pushing storytelling. He once wrote a sentence that was more than a thousand words long. A few years before the end of his life, he gave a now-famous commencement speech at Kenyon College. He said to the graduating class, Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. And the compelling reason for maybe choosing some sort of god . . . to worship . . . is that pretty much anything else you worship will eat you alive. If you worship money and things, if they are where you tap real meaning in life, then you will never have enough, never feel you have enough. It’s the truth. Worship your own body and beauty and sexual allure, and you will always feel ugly. And when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before [your loved ones] finally plant you. . . . Worship power, and you will end up feeling weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to numb you to your own fear. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart, you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out. Look, the insidious thing about these forms of worship is not that they are evil or sinful; it is that they’re unconscious. They are default settings.4 Wallace was by no means a religious person, but he understood that everyone worships, everyone trusts in something for their salvation, everyone bases their lives on something that requires faith. A couple of years after giving that speech, Wallace killed himself. And this nonreligious man’s parting words to us are pretty terrifying: “Something will eat you alive.” Because even though you might never call it worship, you can be absolutely sure you are worshipping and you are seeking. And Jesus says, “Unless you’re worshipping me, unless I’m the center of your life, unless you’re trying to get your spiritual thirst quenched through me and not through these other things, unless you see that the solution must come inside rather than just pass by outside, then whatever you worship will abandon you in the end.
Timothy J. Keller (Encounters with Jesus: Unexpected Answers to Life's Biggest Questions)
Pleasure died forty years ago in America, perhaps further back, in a wave of carbon monoxide, gasoline, cigarettes for dames, the belief in everything and everybody, tolerance for the intolerable, the hatred of being alone in silence for more than twenty seconds, the assurance that immortality was Americans eating all-cow franks, with speeded-up peristalsis while talking to a crowd of fifteen trillion other same-bodies eating sandwiches, gassing cokes, peristalsing, and talking, while baseball-sound-movie-TV tomorrow's trots off track betting howled roared farted choked gagged exploded reentered atmo honked bawled deafened pawed puked croaked shouted repeated repeated REPEATED, especially SAY IT AGAIN LOUDER SAY IT AGAIN, stick that product in every God-damned American's mouth and make him say I BOUGHT IT, GOD I BOUGHT IT AND IT'S GREAT IT's HOLLYWOOD IT'S MY ARSE GOING UP AND DOWN AGAIN, IT'S USA, GOD, and if you can't get it in his mouth and make him SWEAR IT SWEAR IT USA, stick it in his anal sphincter (look it up in the dictionary, college graduates, on account of you didn't have time to learn it in the College of Your Choice).
James Purdy
The universities are an absolute wreck right now, because for decades, any graduate student in the humanities who had independent thinking was driven out. There was no way to survive without memorizing all these stupid bromides with this referential bowing to these over-inflated figures like Lacan, Derrida, Foucault, and so on. Basically, it's been a tyranny in the humanities, because the professors who are now my age – who are the baby boomer professors, who made their careers on the back of Foucault and so on – are determined that that survive. So you have a kind of vampirism going on. So I've been getting letters for 25 years since Sexual Personae was released in 1990, from refugees from the graduate schools. It's been a terrible loss. One of my favorite letters was early on: a woman wrote to me, she was painting houses in St. Louis, she said that she had wanted a career as a literature professor and had gone into the graduate program in comparative literature at Berkeley. And finally, she was forced to drop out because, she said, every time she would express enthusiasm for a work they were studying in the seminar, everyone would look at her as if she had in some way created a terrible error of taste. I thought, 'Oh my God', see that's what's been going on – a pretentious style of superiority to the text. [When asked what can change this]: Rebellion! Rebellion by the grad students. This is what I'm trying to foment. We absolutely need someone to stand up and start criticizing authority figures. But no; this generation of young people have been trained throughout middle school and high school and college to be subservient to authority.
Camille Paglia
New Rule: Now that liberals have taken back the word "liberal," they also have to take back the word "elite." By now you've heard the constant right-wing attacks on the "elite media," and the "liberal elite." Who may or may not be part of the "Washington elite." A subset of the "East Coast elite." Which is overly influenced by the "Hollywood elite." So basically, unless you're a shit-kicker from Kansas, you're with the terrorists. If you played a drinking game where you did a shot every time Rush Limbaugh attacked someone for being "elite," you'd be almost as wasted as Rush Limbaugh. I don't get it: In other fields--outside of government--elite is a good thing, like an elite fighting force. Tiger Woods is an elite golfer. If I need brain surgery, I'd like an elite doctor. But in politics, elite is bad--the elite aren't down-to-earth and accessible like you and me and President Shit-for-Brains. Which is fine, except that whenever there's a Bush administration scandal, it always traces back to some incompetent political hack appointment, and you think to yourself, "Where are they getting these screwups from?" Well, now we know: from Pat Robertson. I'm not kidding. Take Monica Goodling, who before she resigned last week because she's smack in the middle of the U.S. attorneys scandal, was the third-ranking official in the Justice Department of the United States. She's thirty-three, and though she never even worked as a prosecutor, was tasked with overseeing the job performance of all ninety-three U.S. attorneys. How do you get to the top that fast? Harvard? Princeton? No, Goodling did her undergraduate work at Messiah College--you know, home of the "Fighting Christies"--and then went on to attend Pat Robertson's law school. Yes, Pat Robertson, the man who said the presence of gay people at Disney World would cause "earthquakes, tornadoes, and possibly a meteor," has a law school. And what kid wouldn't want to attend? It's three years, and you have to read only one book. U.S. News & World Report, which does the definitive ranking of colleges, lists Regent as a tier-four school, which is the lowest score it gives. It's not a hard school to get into. You have to renounce Satan and draw a pirate on a matchbook. This is for the people who couldn't get into the University of Phoenix. Now, would you care to guess how many graduates of this televangelist diploma mill work in the Bush administration? On hundred fifty. And you wonder why things are so messed up? We're talking about a top Justice Department official who went to a college founded by a TV host. Would you send your daughter to Maury Povich U? And if you did, would you expect her to get a job at the White House? In two hundred years, we've gone from "we the people" to "up with people." From the best and brightest to dumb and dumber. And where better to find people dumb enough to believe in George Bush than Pat Robertson's law school? The problem here in America isn't that the country is being run by elites. It's that it's being run by a bunch of hayseeds. And by the way, the lawyer Monica Goodling hired to keep her ass out of jail went to a real law school.
Bill Maher (The New New Rules: A Funny Look At How Everybody But Me Has Their Head Up Their Ass)
friendship nostalgia i miss the days when my friends knew every mundane detail about my life and i knew every ordinary detail about theirs adulthood has starved me of that consistency​ ​that us those walks around the block those long conversations when we were too lost in the moment to care what time it was when we won-and celebrated when we failed and celebrated even harder when we were just kids now we have our very important jobs that fill up our very busy schedules we have to compare calendars just to plan coffee dates that one of us will eventually cancel because adulthood is being too exhausted to leave our apartments most days i miss belonging to a group of people bigger than myself it was that belonging that made life easier to live how come no one warned us about how we'd graduate and grow apart after everything we'd been through how come no one said one of life's biggest challenges would be trying to stay connected to the people that make us feel alive no one talks about the hole a friend can leave inside you when they go off to make their dreams come true in college we used to stay up till 4 in the morning dreaming of what we'd do the moment we started earning real paychecks now we finally have the money to cross everything off our bucket lists but those lists are collecting dust in some lost corridor of our minds sometimes when i get lonely ​i​ still search for them i'd give anything to go back and do the foolish things we used to do i feel the most present in your presence when we're laughing so hard the past slides off our shoulders and worries of the future slip away the truth is​ ​i couldn't survive without my friends they know exactly what i need before i even know that i need the way we hold each other is just different so forget grabbing coffee i don't want to have another dinner where we sit across from each other at a table reminiscing about old times when we have so much time left to make new memories with how about you go pack your bags and i'll pack mine you take a week off work i'll grab my keys and let's go for ride we've got years of catching up to do
Rupi Kaur
What I’m about to tell you,” Elliott told me, “ninety-nine percent of people in the world will never understand.” For the first time all week, it was just the two of us. Elliott had told Austin he wanted to talk to me one-on-one. We were standing on a rooftop lounge during sunset, looking out at the Manhattan skyline. “You see, most people live a linear life,” he continued. “They go to college, get an internship, graduate, land a job, get a promotion, save up for a vacation each year, work toward their next promotion, and they just do that their whole lives. Their lives move step by step, slowly and predictably. “But successful people don’t buy into that model. They opt into an exponential life. Rather than going step by step, they skip steps. People say that you first need to ‘pay your dues’ and get years of experience before you can go out on your own and get what you truly want. Society feeds us this lie that you need to do x, y, and z before you can achieve your dream. It’s bullshit. The only person whose permission you need to live an exponential life is your own. “Sometimes an exponential life lands in your lap, like with a child prodigy. But most of the time, for people like you and me, we have to seize it for ourselves. If you actually want to make a difference in the world, if you want to live a life of inspiration, adventure, and wild success—you need to grab on to that exponential life—and hold on to it with all you’ve got.
Alex Banayan (The Third Door: The Wild Quest to Uncover How the World's Most Successful People Launched Their Careers)
They asked me to tell you what it was like to be twenty and pregnant in 1950 and when you tell your boyfriend you’re pregnant, he tells you about a friend of his in the army whose girl told him she was pregnant, so he got all his buddies to come and say, “We all fucked her, so who knows who the father is?” And he laughs at the good joke…. What was it like, if you were planning to go to graduate school and get a degree and earn a living so you could support yourself and do the work you loved—what it was like to be a senior at Radcliffe and pregnant and if you bore this child, this child which the law demanded you bear and would then call “unlawful,” “illegitimate,” this child whose father denied it … What was it like? […] It’s like this: if I had dropped out of college, thrown away my education, depended on my parents … if I had done all that, which is what the anti-abortion people want me to have done, I would have borne a child for them, … the authorities, the theorists, the fundamentalists; I would have born a child for them, their child. But I would not have born my own first child, or second child, or third child. My children. The life of that fetus would have prevented, would have aborted, three other fetuses … the three wanted children, the three I had with my husband—whom, if I had not aborted the unwanted one, I would never have met … I would have been an “unwed mother” of a three-year-old in California, without work, with half an education, living off her parents…. But it is the children I have to come back to, my children Elisabeth, Caroline, Theodore, my joy, my pride, my loves. If I had not broken the law and aborted that life nobody wanted, they would have been aborted by a cruel, bigoted, and senseless law. They would never have been born. This thought I cannot bear. What was it like, in the Dark Ages when abortion was a crime, for the girl whose dad couldn’t borrow cash, as my dad could? What was it like for the girl who couldn’t even tell her dad, because he would go crazy with shame and rage? Who couldn’t tell her mother? Who had to go alone to that filthy room and put herself body and soul into the hands of a professional criminal? – because that is what every doctor who did an abortion was, whether he was an extortionist or an idealist. You know what it was like for her. You know and I know; that is why we are here. We are not going back to the Dark Ages. We are not going to let anybody in this country have that kind of power over any girl or woman. There are great powers, outside the government and in it, trying to legislate the return of darkness. We are not great powers. But we are the light. Nobody can put us out. May all of you shine very bright and steady, today and always.
Ursula K. Le Guin
Well,” I said, trying to keep my tone light as I walked over to put my arms around his neck, though I had to stand on my toes to do so. “That wasn’t so bad, was it? You told me something about yourself that I didn’t know before-that you didn’t, er, care for your family, except for your mother. But that didn’t make me hate you…it made me love you a bit more, because now I know we have even more in common.” He stared down at him, a wary look in his eyes. “If you knew the truth,” he said, “you wouldn’t be saying that. You’d be running.” “Where would I go?” I asked, with a laugh I hoped didn’t sound as nervous to him as it did to me. “You bolted all the doors, remember? Now, since you shared something I didn’t know about you, may I share something you don’t know about me?” Those dark eyebrows rose as he pulled me close. “I can’t even begin to imagine what this could be.” “It’s just,” I said, “that I’m a little worried about rushing into this consort thing…especially the cohabitation part.” “Cohabitation?” he echoed. He was clearly unfamiliar with the word. “Cohabitation means living together,” I explained, feeling my cheeks heat up. “Like married people.” “You said last night that these days no one your age thinks of getting married,” he said, holding me even closer and suddenly looking much more eager to stick around for the conversation, even though I heard the marina horn blow again. “And that your father would never approve it. But if you’ve changed your mind, I’m sure I could convince Mr. Smith to perform the ceremony-“ “No,” I said hastily. Of course Mr. Smith was somehow authorized to marry people in the state of Florida. Why not? I decided not to think about that right now, or how John had come across this piece of information. “That isn’t what I meant. My mom would kill me if I got married before I graduated from high school.” Not, of course, that my mom was going to know about any of this. Which was probably just as well, since her head would explode at the idea of my moving in with a guy before I’d even applied to college, let alone at the fact that I most likely wasn’t going to college. Not that there was any school that would have accepted me with my grades, not to mention my disciplinary record. “What I meant was that maybe we should take it more slowly,” I explained. “The past couple years, while all my friends were going out with boys, I was home, trying to figure out how this necklace you gave me worked. I wasn’t exactly dating.” “Pierce,” he said. He wore a slightly quizzical expression on his face. “Is this the thing you think I didn’t know about you? Because for one thing, I do know it, and for another, I don’t understand why you think I’d have a problem with it.” I’d forgotten he’d been born in the eighteen hundreds, when the only time proper ladies and gentlemen ever spent together before they were married was at heavily chaperoned balls…and that for most of the past two centuries, he’d been hanging out in a cemetery. Did he even know that these days, a lot of people hooked up on first dates, or that the average age at which girls-and boys as well-lost their virginity in the United States was seventeen…my age? Apparently not. “What I’m trying to say,” I said, my cheeks burning brighter, “is that I’m not very experienced with men. So this morning when I woke up and found you in bed beside me, while it was really, super nice-don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed it very much-it kind of freaked me out. Because I don’t know if I’m ready for that kind of thing yet.” Or maybe the problem was that I wasn’t prepared for how ready I was…
Meg Cabot (Underworld (Abandon, #2))
How are things going with your brothers?” “The judge set a date to hear me out after graduation. Mrs.Collins has been prepping me.” “That is awesome!” “Yeah.” “What’s wrong?” “Carrie and Joe hired a lawyer and I lost visitation.” Echo placed her delicate hand over mine.“Oh, Noah. I am so sorry." I’d spent countless hours on the couch in the basement, staring at the ceiling wondering what she was doing. Her laughter, her smile, the feel of her body next to mine, and the regret that I let her walk away too easily haunted me. Taking the risk, I entwined my fingers with hers. Odds were I’d never get the chance to be this close again. "No, Mrs. Collins convinced me the best thing to do is to keep my distance and follow the letter of the law." "Wow, Mrs. Collins is a freaking miracle worker. Dangerous Noah Hutchins on the straight and narrow. If you don’t watch out she’ll ruin your rep with the girls." I lowered my voice. "Not that it matters. I only care what one girl thinks about me." She relaxed her fingers into mine and stroked her thumb over my skin. Minutes into being alone together, we fell into each other again, like no time had passed. I could blame her for ending us, but in the end, I agreed with her decision. “How about you, Echo? Did you find your answers?” “No.” If I continued to disregard breakup rules, I might as well go all the way. I pushed her curls behind her shoulder and let my fingers linger longer than needed so I could enjoy the silky feel. “Don’t hide from me, baby. We’ve been through too much for that.” Echo leaned into me, placing her head on my shoulder and letting me wrap an arm around her. “I’ve missed you, too, Noah. I’m tired of ignoring you.” “Then don’t.” Ignoring her hurt like hell. Acknowledging her had to be better. I swallowed, trying to shut out the bittersweet memories of our last night together. “Where’ve you been? It kills me when you’re not at school.” “I went to an art gallery and the curator showed some interest in my work and sold my first piece two days later. Since then, I’ve been traveling around to different galleries, hawking my wares.” “That’s awesome, Echo. Sounds like you’re fitting into your future perfectly. Where did you decide to go to school?” “I don’t know if I’m going to school.” Shock jolted my system and I inched away to make sure I understood. “What the fuck do you mean you don’t know? You’ve got colleges falling all over you and you don’t fucking know if you want to go to school?” My damned little siren laughed at me. “I see your language has improved.” Poof—like magic, the anger disappeared. “If you’re not going to school, then what are your plans?” "I’m considering putting college off for a year or two and traveling cross-country, hopping from gallery to gallery.” “I feel like a dick. We made a deal and I left you hanging. I’m not that guy who goes back on his word. What can I do to help you get to the truth?” Echo’s chest rose with her breath then deflated when she exhaled. Sensing our moment ending, I nuzzled her hair, savoring her scent. She patted my knee and broke away. “Nothing. There’s nothing you can do.” "I think it’s time that I move on. As soon as I graduate, this part of my life will be over. I’m okay with not knowing what happened.” Her words sounded pretty, but I knew her better. She’d blinked three times in a row.
Katie McGarry (Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1))