Meeting Someone For The First Time Quotes

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I no longer believed in the idea of soul mates, or love at first sight. But I was beginning to believe that a very few times in your life, if you were lucky, you might meet someone who was exactly right for you. Not because he was perfect, or because you were, but because your combined flaws were arranged in a way that allowed two separate beings to hinge together.
Lisa Kleypas (Blue-Eyed Devil (Travises, #2))
Six hundred and forty fish later, the only thing I know is everything you love will die. The first time you meet someone special, you can count on them one day being dead and in the ground.
Chuck Palahniuk (Survivor)
We all have the potential to fall in love a thousand times in our lifetime. It's easy. The first girl I ever loved was someone I knew in sixth grade. Her name was Missy; we talked about horses. The last girl I love will be someone I haven't even met yet, probably. They all count. But there are certain people you love who do something else; they define how you classify what love is supposed to feel like. These are the most important people in your life, and you’ll meet maybe four or five of these people over the span of 80 years. But there’s still one more tier to all this; there is always one person you love who becomes that definition. It usually happens retrospectively, but it happens eventually. This is the person who unknowingly sets the template for what you will always love about other people, even if some of these loveable qualities are self-destructive and unreasonable. The person who defines your understanding of love is not inherently different than anyone else, and they’re often just the person you happen to meet the first time you really, really, want to love someone. But that person still wins. They win, and you lose. Because for the rest of your life, they will control how you feel about everyone else.
Chuck Klosterman (Killing Yourself to Live: 85% of a True Story)
Half of the time, the Holy Ghost tries to warn us about certain people that come into our life. The other half of the time he tries to tell us that the sick feeling we get in a situation is not the other person’s fault, rather it is our own hang-ups. A life filled with bias, hatred, judgment, insecurity, fear, delusion and self-righteousness can cloud the soul of anyone you meet. Our job is never to assume,instead it is to listen, communicate, ask questions then ask more, until we know the true depth of someone’s spirit.
Shannon L. Alder
I know there's no way I can convince you this is not one of their tricks, but I don't care, I am me. My name is Valerie, I don't think I'll live much longer and I wanted to tell someone about my life. This is the only autobiography ill ever write, and god, I'm writing it on toilet paper. I was born in Nottingham in 1985, I don't remember much of those early years, but I do remember the rain. My grandmother owned a farm in Tuttlebrook, and she use to tell me that god was in the rain. I passed my 11th lesson into girl's grammar; it was at school that I met my first girlfriend, her name was Sara. It was her wrists. They were beautiful. I thought we would love each other forever. I remember our teacher telling us that is was an adolescent phase people outgrew. Sara did, I didn't. In 2002 I fell in love with a girl named Christina. That year I came out to my parents. I couldn't have done it without Chris holding my hand. My father wouldn't look at me, he told me to go and never come back. My mother said nothing. But I had only told them the truth, was that so selfish? Our integrity sells for so little, but it is all we really have. It is the very last inch of us, but within that inch, we are free. I'd always known what I wanted to do with my life, and in 2015 I starred in my first film, "The Salt Flats". It was the most important role of my life, not because of my career, but because that was how I met Ruth. The first time we kissed, I knew I never wanted to kiss any other lips but hers again. We moved to a small flat in London together. She grew Scarlet Carsons for me in our window box, and our place always smelled of roses. Those were there best years of my life. But America's war grew worse, and worse. And eventually came to London. After that there were no roses anymore. Not for anyone. I remember how the meaning of words began to change. How unfamiliar words like collateral and rendition became frightening. While things like Norse Fire and The Articles of Allegiance became powerful, I remember how different became dangerous. I still don't understand it, why they hate us so much. They took Ruth while she was out buying food. I've never cried so hard in my life. It wasn't long till they came for me.It seems strange that my life should end in such a terrible place, but for three years, I had roses, and apologized to no one. I shall die here. Every inch of me shall perish. Every inch, but one. An Inch, it is small and it is fragile, but it is the only thing the world worth having. We must never lose it or give it away. We must never let them take it from us. I hope that whoever you are, you escape this place. I hope that the world turns and that things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you. I love you. With all my heart, I love you. -Valerie
Alan Moore (V for Vendetta)
What do you say when you're not enough to make someone stay? What do you do when you meet the love of your life and realize it's all about timing? How do you accept that no matter how perfect you are for each other, circumstances get in the way? How do you compete with that kind of fate?
Katie Kacvinsky (First Comes Love (First Comes Love, #1))
When they bombed Hiroshima, the explosion formed a mini-supernova, so every living animal, human or plant that received direct contact with the rays from that sun was instantly turned to ash. And what was left of the city soon followed. The long-lasting damage of nuclear radiation caused an entire city and its population to turn into powder. When I was born, my mom says I looked around the whole hospital room with a stare that said, "This? I've done this before." She says I have old eyes. When my Grandpa Genji died, I was only five years old, but I took my mom by the hand and told her, "Don't worry, he'll come back as a baby." And yet, for someone who's apparently done this already, I still haven't figured anything out yet. My knees still buckle every time I get on a stage. My self-confidence can be measured out in teaspoons mixed into my poetry, and it still always tastes funny in my mouth. But in Hiroshima, some people were wiped clean away, leaving only a wristwatch or a diary page. So no matter that I have inhibitions to fill all my pockets, I keep trying, hoping that one day I'll write a poem I can be proud to let sit in a museum exhibit as the only proof I existed. My parents named me Sarah, which is a biblical name. In the original story God told Sarah she could do something impossible and she laughed, because the first Sarah, she didn't know what to do with impossible. And me? Well, neither do I, but I see the impossible every day. Impossible is trying to connect in this world, trying to hold onto others while things are blowing up around you, knowing that while you're speaking, they aren't just waiting for their turn to talk -- they hear you. They feel exactly what you feel at the same time that you feel it. It's what I strive for every time I open my mouth -- that impossible connection. There's this piece of wall in Hiroshima that was completely burnt black by the radiation. But on the front step, a person who was sitting there blocked the rays from hitting the stone. The only thing left now is a permanent shadow of positive light. After the A bomb, specialists said it would take 75 years for the radiation damaged soil of Hiroshima City to ever grow anything again. But that spring, there were new buds popping up from the earth. When I meet you, in that moment, I'm no longer a part of your future. I start quickly becoming part of your past. But in that instant, I get to share your present. And you, you get to share mine. And that is the greatest present of all. So if you tell me I can do the impossible, I'll probably laugh at you. I don't know if I can change the world yet, because I don't know that much about it -- and I don't know that much about reincarnation either, but if you make me laugh hard enough, sometimes I forget what century I'm in. This isn't my first time here. This isn't my last time here. These aren't the last words I'll share. But just in case, I'm trying my hardest to get it right this time around.
Sarah Kay
It's funny, because you always think the hard part is meeting someone the first time. It's not. It's the second time, because you've already used up all the obvious topics of conversation. And even if you haven't, it's strange and heavy-handed to introduce random conversational topics at this stage in the game. Hi, Reid. Let's converse about topics. HOW MANY SIBLINGS DO YOU HAVE? WHAT BOOKS DO YOU LIKE?
Becky Albertalli (The Upside of Unrequited (Simonverse, #2))
Civilized people must, I believe, satisfy the following criteria: 1) They respect human beings as individuals and are therefore always tolerant, gentle, courteous and amenable ... They do not create scenes over a hammer or a mislaid eraser; they do not make you feel they are conferring a great benefit on you when they live with you, and they don't make a scandal when they leave. (...) 2) They have compassion for other people besides beggars and cats. Their hearts suffer the pain of what is hidden to the naked eye. (...) 3) They respect other people's property, and therefore pay their debts. 4) They are not devious, and they fear lies as they fear fire. They don't tell lies even in the most trivial matters. To lie to someone is to insult them, and the liar is diminished in the eyes of the person he lies to. Civilized people don't put on airs; they behave in the street as they would at home, they don't show off to impress their juniors. (...) 5) They don't run themselves down in order to provoke the sympathy of others. They don't play on other people's heartstrings to be sighed over and cosseted ... that sort of thing is just cheap striving for effects, it's vulgar, old hat and false. (...) 6) They are not vain. They don't waste time with the fake jewellery of hobnobbing with celebrities, being permitted to shake the hand of a drunken [judicial orator], the exaggerated bonhomie of the first person they meet at the Salon, being the life and soul of the bar ... They regard prases like 'I am a representative of the Press!!' -- the sort of thing one only hears from [very minor journalists] -- as absurd. If they have done a brass farthing's work they don't pass it off as if it were 100 roubles' by swanking about with their portfolios, and they don't boast of being able to gain admission to places other people aren't allowed in (...) True talent always sits in the shade, mingles with the crowd, avoids the limelight ... As Krylov said, the empty barrel makes more noise than the full one. (...) 7) If they do possess talent, they value it ... They take pride in it ... they know they have a responsibility to exert a civilizing influence on [others] rather than aimlessly hanging out with them. And they are fastidious in their habits. (...) 8) They work at developing their aesthetic sensibility ... Civilized people don't simply obey their baser instincts ... they require mens sana in corpore sano. And so on. That's what civilized people are like ... Reading Pickwick and learning a speech from Faust by heart is not enough if your aim is to become a truly civilized person and not to sink below the level of your surroundings. [From a letter to Nikolay Chekhov, March 1886]
Anton Chekhov (A Life in Letters)
When I feel threatened, vulnerable, or insecure, whether it from simply walking into a room of unknown people, meeting someone for the first time, an unexpected or expected confrontation, or doing something new, I affirm in my mind (over and over): There is no danger, there is no threat. From there, the discomfort lessens and I become open for discovery and adventure.
Charles F. Glassman (Brain Drain - The Breakthrough That Will Change Your Life)
She’d never believed in love at first sight but she did believe in recognition at first sight, she believed in understanding upon meeting someone for the first time that they were going to be important in her life, a sensation like recognizing a familiar face in an old photograph: in a sea of faces that mean nothing, one comes into focus. You.
Emily St. John Mandel (The Glass Hotel)
This is fish number six hundred and forty-one in a lifetime of goldfish. My parents bought me the first one to teach me about loving and caring for another living breathing creature of God. Six hundred and forty fish later, the only thing I know is everything you love will die. The first time you meet that someone special, you can count on them one day being dead and in the ground.
Chuck Palahniuk (Survivor)
After meeting someone by chance and throwing off a few sparks, can there be any substance to the feeling that you've known each other your whole lives? After those first few hours of conversation, can you really be sure that your connection is so uncommon that it belongs outside the bounds of time and convention?
Amor Towles (Rules of Civility)
People are afraid to merge on freeways in Los Angeles. This is the first thing I hear when I come back to the city. Blair picks me up from LAX and mutters this under her breath as she drives up the onramp. She says, "People are afraid to merge on freeways in Los Angeles." Though that sentence shouldn't bother me, it stays in my mind for an uncomfortably long time. Nothing else seems to matter. Not the fact that I'm eighteen and it's December and the ride on the plane had been rough and the couple from Santa Barbara, who were sitting across from me in first class, had gotten pretty drunk. Not the mud that had splattered on the legs of my jeans, which felt kind of cold and loose, earlier that day at an airport in New Hampshire. Not the stain on the arm of the wrinkled, damp shirt I wear, a shirt which looked fresh and clean this morning. Not the tear on the neck of my gray argyle vest, which seems vaguely more eastern than before, especially next to Blair's clean tight jeans and her pale-blue shirt. All of this seems irrelevant next to that one sentence. It seems easier to hear that people are afraid to merge than "I'm pretty sure Muriel is anorexic" or the singer on the radio crying out about magnetic waves. Nothing else seems to matter to me but those ten words. Not the warm winds, which seem to propel the car down the empty asphalt freeway, or the faded smell of marijuana which still faintly permeates Blaire's car. All it comes down to is the fact that I'm a boy coming home for a month and meeting someone whom I haven't seen for four months and people are afraid to merge.
Bret Easton Ellis (Less Than Zero)
Hell of a sight. She let out a scream and just fell to pieces. Can't say I blame her. Like I said, this sort of thing is not for the female temperament." He directed that last sentiment at me, making eye contact for the first time. "I dare say you're right, sir," I conceded, meeting his gaze. "Out of curiosity, though, is there someone whose temperament you do find suited to this sort of thing? I think I would be most unnerved to meet a man who found it pleasant.
William Ritter (Jackaby (Jackaby, #1))
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))
she believed in understanding upon meeting someone for the first time that they were going to be important in her life, a sensation like recognizing a familiar face in an old photograph: in a sea of faces that mean nothing, one comes into focus. You.
Emily St. John Mandel (The Glass Hotel)
In Japanese, koi no yokan means the ineluctable feeling you have, upon meeting someone for the first time, that eventually the two of you will fall in love.
Alena Graedon (The Word Exchange)
The first time you meet that someone special, you can count on them one day being dead and in the ground.
Chuck Palahniuk (Survivor)
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))
Some day the load we're carrying with us may help someone. But even when we had the books on hand, a long time ago, we didn't use what we got out of them. We went right on insulting the dead. We went right on spitting in the graves of all the poor ones who died before us. We're going to meet a lot of lonely people in the next week and the next month and the next year. And when they ask us what we're doing, you can say, 'We're remembering'. That's where we'll win out in the long run. And some day we'll remember so much that we'll build the biggest goddamn steam-shovel in history and dig the biggest grave of all time and shove war in and cover it up. Come on now, we're going to go build a mirror-factory first and put out nothing but mirrors for the next year and take a long look in them.
Ray Bradbury (Fahrenheit 451)
Rukia, let me ask you something. From your experience where do you think your heart is?" "um well if I had to guess I think somewhere around here isn't that right?" "If you want to be literal about it. But in my opinion it's more a state of mind. I believe its right here, not inside our bodies at all. I think a heart is created between people when they meet for the first time, a bond that's brought to life between individuals. It's an emotional connection, when you think about something or care about someone, that's where your heart is born. If you were the only person that existed in this world, your heart would have no way of forming so it just wouldn't be anywhere. There's nothing to worry about Rukia. If you believe with all of your heart that you belong here, then this is where you'll stay. If your heart is here then that's all the reason in the world you need to be here. You must never doubt that. But listen Rukia, in the fights to come, there's something I must warn you about. Something you must promise me you will never ever do. I mean this. You must never die alone. Our souls are our bodies and when we die our bodies turn to dust and become the reishi that go on to form the soul society, but where do our hearts go? We entrust our hearts to our friends. If you entrust your heart to your friends it will continue to live on inside them. That's the most important thing you'll learn from my training. Don't you dare die alone Rukia.
Tite Kubo
I think you know you’ve found someone special when you meet them for the first time, and it feels like you’re just picking up where you left off. You kind of look at them and think ‘Where the hell did you come from? Where the hell have you been?
Caitlyn Siehl
Falling in love for the first time is a completely transcendent experience. It’s like eating pizza-flavored ice cream. Your brain can’t even process that level of joy. Love makes people do crazy things like kill other people or shop at Crate & Barrel. I think on some level it makes us all delusional. Deep down, our whole lives, no matter how low our self-esteem gets, we think, I have a special skill that no one knows about and if they knew they’d be amazed. And then eventually we meet someone who says, “You have a secret special skill.” And you’re like, “I know! So do you!” And they’re like, “I know!” And then you’re like, “We should eat pizza ice cream together.” And that’s what love is. It’s this giant mound of pizza-flavored ice cream and delusion
Mike Birbiglia
So here is my profound thought for the day: this is the first time I have met someone who seeks out people and who sees beyond. That may seem trivial but I think it is profound all the same. We never look beyond our assumptions and, what's worse, we have given up trying to meet others; we just meet ourselves. We don't recognize each other because other people have become our permanent mirrors....when people walk by the concierge, all they see is a void, because she is not from their world. As for me, I implore fate to give me the chance to see beyond myself and truly meet someone.
Muriel Barbery (The Elegance of the Hedgehog)
Clay, did you ever love me?" I'm studying a billboard and say that I didn't hear what she said. "I asked if you ever loved me?" On the terrace the sun bursts into my eyes and for one blinding moment I see myself clearly. I remember the first time we made love, in the house in Palm Springs, her body tan and wet, lying against cool, white sheets. "Don't do this, Blair," I tell her. "Just tell me." I don't say anything. "Is it such a hard question to answer?" I look at her straight on. "Yes or no?" "Why?" "Damnit, Clay," she sighs. "Yeah, sure, I guess." "Don't lie to me." "What in the fuck do you want to hear?" "Just tell me," she says, her voice rising. "No," I almost shout. "I never did." I almost start to laugh. She draws in a breath and says, "Thank you. That's all I wanted to know." She sips her wine. "Did you ever love me?" I ask her back, though by now I can't even care. She pauses. "I thought about it and yeah, I did once. I mean I really did. Everything was all right for a while. You were kind." She looks down and then goes on. "But it was like you weren't there. Oh shit, this isn't going to make any sense." She stops. I look at her, waiting for her to go on, looking up at the billboard. Disappear Here. "I don't know if any other person I've been with has been really there, either ... but at least they tried." I finger the menu; put the cigarette out. "You never did. Other people made an effort and you just ... It was just beyond you." She takes another sip of her wine. "You were never there. I felt sorry for you for a little while, but then I found it hard to. You're a beautiful boy, Clay, but that's about it." I watch the cars pass by on Sunset. "It's hard to feel sorry for someone who doesn't care." "Yeah?" I ask. "What do you care about? What makes you happy?" "Nothing. Nothing makes me happy. I like nothing," I tell her. "Did you ever care about me, Clay?" I don't say anything, look back at the menu. "Did you ever care about me?" she asks again. "I don't want to care. If I care about things, it'll just be worse, it'll just be another thing to worry about. It's less painful if I don't care." "I cared about you for a little while." I don't say anything. She takes off her sunglasses and finally says, "I'll see you later, Clay." She gets up. "Where are you going?" I suddenly don't want to leave Blair here. I almost want to take her back with me. "Have to meet someone for lunch." "But what about us?" "What about us?" She stands there for a moment, waiting. I keep staring at the billboard until it begins to blur and when my vision becomes clearer I watch as Blair's car glides out of the parking lot and becomes lost in the haze of traffic on Sunset. The waiter comes over and asks, "Is everything okay, sir?" I look up and put my sunglasses on and try to smile. "Yeah.
Bret Easton Ellis (Less Than Zero)
I think I have a very good idea why it is that anti-Semitism is so tenacious and so protean and so enduring. Christianity and Islam, theistic though they may claim to be, are both based on the fetishizing of human primates: Jesus in one case and Mohammed in the other. Neither of these figures can be called exactly historical but both have one thing in common even in their quasi-mythical dimension. Both of them were first encountered by the Jews. And the Jews, ravenous as they were for any sign of the long-sought Messiah, were not taken in by either of these two pretenders, or not in large numbers or not for long. If you meet a devout Christian or a believing Muslim, you are meeting someone who would give everything he owned for a personal, face-to-face meeting with the blessed founder or prophet. But in the visage of the Jew, such ardent believers encounter the very figure who did have such a precious moment, and who spurned the opportunity and turned shrugging aside. Do you imagine for a microsecond that such a vile, churlish transgression will ever be forgiven? I myself certainly hope that it will not. The Jews have seen through Jesus and Mohammed. In retrospect, many of them have also seen through the mythical, primitive, and cruel figures of Abraham and Moses. Nearer to our own time, in the bitter combats over the work of Marx and Freud and Einstein, Jewish participants and protagonists have not been the least noticeable. May this always be the case, whenever any human primate sets up, or is set up by others, as a Messiah.
Christopher Hitchens (Hitch 22: A Memoir)
Are you enjoying your company so far?" "Yes! It's been a pleasure getting to know these ladies." "Are they all the sweet, gentle ladies they appear to be?" Gavril asked. Before Maxon replied, the answer brought a smile to my face. Because I knew that it was yes...sort of. "Umm..." Maxon looked past Gavril at me. "Almost." "Almost?" Gavril asked, surprised. He turned to us. "Is someone over there being naughty?" Mercifully, all the girls let out light giggles, so I blended in. The little traitor! "What exactly did these girls do that isn't so sweet?" Gavril asked Maxon. "Oh, well, let me tell you." Maxon crossed his legs and got very comfortable in his chair. It was probably the most relaxed I'd ever seen him, sitting there poking fun at me. I liked this side of him. I wished it would come out more often. "One of them had the nerve to yell at me rather forcefully the first time we met. I was given a very severe scolding." Above Maxon's head, the king and queen exchanged a glance. It seemed they were hearing this story for the first time, too. Beside me the girls were looking at one another, confused. I didn't get it until Marlee said something. "I don't remember anyone yelling at him in the Great Room. Do you?" Maxon seemed to have forgotten that our first meeting was meant to be a secret. "I think he's talking it up to make it funnier. I did say some serious things to him. I think he might mean me." "A scolding, you say? Whatever for?" Gavril continued. "Honestly, I wasn't really sure. I think it was a bout of homesickness. Which is why I forgave her, of course." Maxon was loose and easy now, talking to Gavril as if he were the only person in the room. I'd have to tell him later how wonderful he did. "So she's still with us, then?" Gavril looked over at the collection of girls, grinning widely, and then returned to face his prince. "Oh, yes. She's still here," Maxon said, not letting his eyes wander from Gavril's face. "And I plan on keeping her here for quite a while.
Kiera Cass (The Selection (The Selection, #1))
The first time I hung out with [David Blaine], he took me to this condemned building, and it had a pizza oven and he crawled into the pizza oven and turned the heat on to 400 degrees or something like that, and he stayed in it for I guess a half hour. He came out, and except for one or two second-degree burns, he was unscathed. You meet a lot of musicians and filmmakers and actors, but it's rare to meet someone who can step inside a pizza oven and take the heat. I was intrigued by that.
Harmony Korine
And he knew at that moment that love world never die, that it would never fade away altogether. The time might come when he would meet and marry someone else. He might even be reasonably happy. But there would always be a deep precious place in his heart that belonged to his first real love.
Mary Balogh (Simply Magic (Simply Quartet #3))
The first time you meet that some­one spe­cial, you can count on them one day be­ing dead and in the ground.
Chuck Palahniuk (Survivor)
...This is the first time I have met someone who seeks out people and who sees beyond...We never look beyond our assumptions and, what's worse, we have given up trying to meet others; we just meet ourselves. We don't recognize each other because other people have become our permanent mirrors. If we actually realized this, if we were to become aware of the fact that we are alone in the wilderness, we would go crazy...As for me, I implore fate to give me the chance to see beyond myself and truly meet someone.
Muriel Barbery
I know all about the power imbalance that exists every time you meet someone who's seen you at yourmost vulnerable, whether or not it was your choice in the first place. How you have to hope that they don't use it against you in some way.
Ella Berman (The Comeback)
But I still feel like I lost. We all have the potential to fall in love a thousand times in our lifetime. It's easy. The first girl I ever loved was someone I knew in the sixth grade. Her name was Missy; we talked about horses. The last girl I love will be someone I haven't even met yet. probably. They all count. But there are certain people you love who do something else; they define how you classify what love is supposed to feel like. These are the most important people in your life, and you'll meet maybe four or five of these people over the span of 80 years. But there's still one more tier to all this; there is always one person you love who becomes that definition. It usually happens retrospectively, but it always happens eventually. This is the person who unknowingly sets the template for what you will always love about other people, even if some of those lovable qualities are self-destructive and unreasonable. You will remember having conversations with this person that never actually happened. You will recall sexual trysts with this person that never technically occurred. This is because the individual who embodies your personal definition of love does not really exist. The person is real, and the feelings are real-but you create the context. And context is everything. The person who defines your understanding of love is not inherently different than anyone else, and they're often just the person you happen to meet first time you really, really want to love someone. But that person still wins. They win, and you lose. Because for the rest of your life, they will control how you feel about everyone else.
Chuck Klosterman (Killing Yourself to Live: 85% of a True Story)
Sometimes we don't know what we want until we don't get it. It's like meeting someone for the first time after hearing their voice on the phone- before you met them you'd have said you had no particular image of them; afterward, you inevitably say you imagined them looking different.
Sloane Crosley (I Was Told There'd Be Cake: Essays)
It’s hard to know someone so well and then meet them for the first time in their new life.
Sarah Noffke (Defects (The Reverians, #1))
Did you ever wish that you had a second chance to meet someone again for the first time?
Faraaz Kazi (More Than Just Friends)
When he turned to her, the moonlight shone upon him in a way that reminded Signa of a painting, wisps of shadows like brushstrokes upon a canvas. “Because I have waited an eternity to meet you, Signa Farrow.” The words were a balm she clung to, relished. “To me, you are a song to a soul that has never known music. Light to someone who has only seen the darkness. You bring out the absolute worst in me, and I become vindictive toward those who treat you in ways I don’t care for. Yet you also bring out the best in me—I want to be better because of you. Better for you. “In all my existence, I’ve asked only for one thing—for one person who might understand me, and whom I could let myself touch. When I touch someone, I see the life they’ve lived in flashes of memories as they die. But the first time I touched you, it was your future I saw. A glimpse of you in my arms, dancing in a beautiful red dress beneath the moonlight.” He tilted her chin up and Signa shivered, savoring the touch. “You are what I want.” He drew his hand away. “I know I cannot force you to want me in return, but say that you do, and I promise that I am wholly and unequivocally yours. Say that you do, and I will make this world everything for you, Signa.
Adalyn Grace (Belladonna (Belladonna, #1))
the only thing I know is everything you love will die. The first time you meet that someone special, you can count on them one day being dead and in the ground.
Chuck Palahniuk (Survivor)
When I saw Jonah’s face for the first time it was like seeing someone again after a long absence. Not a meeting, but a reunion.
Emma Scott (Full Tilt (Full Tilt, #1))
the same time. There’s a Japanese phrase that I like: koi no yokan. It doesn’t mean love at first sight. It’s closer to love at second sight. It’s the feeling when you meet someone that you’re going to fall in love with them. Maybe you don’t love them right away, but it’s inevitable that you will.
Nicola Yoon (The Sun is Also a Star)
it’s a terrible feeling when you first fall in love. your mind gets completely taken over, you can’t function properly anymore. the world turns into a dream place, nothing seems real. you forget your keys, no one seems to be talking English and even if they are you don’t care as you can’t hear what they’re saying anyway, and it doesn’t matter since your not really there. things you cared about before don’t seem to matter anymore and things you didn’t think you cared about suddenly do. I must become a brilliant cook, I don’t want to waste time seeing my friends when I could be with him, I feel no sympathy for all those people in India killed by an earthquake last night; what is the matter with me? It’s a kind of hell, but you feel like your in heaven. even your body goes out of control, you can’t eat, you don’t sleep properly, your legs turn to jelly as your not sure where the floor is anymore. you have butterflies permanently, not only in your tummy but all over your body - your hands, your shoulders, your chest, your eyes everything’s just a jangling mess of nerve endings tingling with fire. it makes you feel so alive. and yet its like being suffocated, you don’t seem to be able to see or hear anything real anymore, its like people are speaking to you through treacle, and so you stay in your cosy place with him, the place that only you two understand. occasionally your forced to come up for air by your biggest enemy, Real Life, so you do the minimum then head back down under your love blanket for more, knowing it’s uncomfortable but compulsory. and then, once you think you’ve got him, the panic sets in. what if he goes off me? what if I blow it, say the wrong thing? what if he meets someone better than me? Prettier, thinner, funnier, more like him? who doesn’t bite there nails? perhaps he doesn’t feel the same, maybe this is all in my head and this is just a quick fling for him. why did I tell him that stupid story about not owning up that I knew who spilt the ink on the teachers bag and so everyone was punished for it? does he think I'm a liar? what if I'm not very good at that blow job thing and he’s just being patient with me? he says he loves me; yes, well, we can all say words, can’t we? perhaps he’s just being polite. of course you do your best to keep all this to yourself, you don’t want him to think you're a neurotic nutcase, but now when he’s away doing Real Life it’s agony, your mind won’t leave you alone, it tortures you and examines your every moment spent together, pointing out how stupid you’ve been to allow yourself to get this carried away, how insane you are to imagine someone would feel like that about you. dad did his best to reassure me, but nothing he said made a difference - it was like I wanted to see Simon, but didn’t want him to see me.
Annabel Giles (Birthday Girls)
Merry has just found her bio dad Sly and is meeting him for the first time (as her dad) and her beau Jason is confused: Jason scratched the back of his neck. "Does someone want to tell me what's going on here?" Sly lowered his voice and breathed heavily a couple of times. "Luke, I am her father." "Funny." "No, really," Merry said, wide-eyed. "It might be true.
Ashlyn Chase (Strange Neighbors (Strange Neighbors, #1))
I turned halfway round, and saw Dorian Gray for the first time. When our eyes met, I felt that I was growing pale. A curious sensation of terror came over me. I knew that I had come face to face with someone whose mere personality was so fascinating that, if I allowed it do so, it would absorb my whole nature, my whole soul, my very art itself.
Oscar Wilde
It must be murder to be an aging beauty, a former Tadzio, to see your future as an ignored spectator rushing up to meet you like the hard pavement. What a small sip of gall to be able to time with each passing year the ever-shorter interval in which someone's eyes focus upon you. And then shift away.
David Rakoff (Don't Get Too Comfortable: The Indignities of Coach Class, The Torments of Low Thread Count, The Never-Ending Quest for Artisanal Olive Oil, and Other First World Problems)
An attachment grew up. What is an attachment? It is the most difficult of all the human interrelationships to explain, because it is the vaguest, the most impalpable. It has all the good points of love, and none of its drawbacks. No jealousy, no quarrels, no greed to possess, no fear of losing possession, no hatred (which is very much a part of love), no surge of passion and no hangover afterward. It never reaches the heights, and it never reaches the depths. As a rule it comes on subtly. As theirs did. As a rule the two involved are not even aware of it at first. As they were not. As a rule it only becomes noticeable when it is interrupted in some way, or broken off by circumstances. As theirs was. In other words, its presence only becomes known in its absence. It is only missed after it stops. While it is still going on, little thought is given to it, because little thought needs to be. It is pleasant to meet, it is pleasant to be together. To put your shopping packages down on a little wire-backed chair at a little table at a sidewalk cafe, and sit down and have a vermouth with someone who has been waiting there for you. And will be waiting there again tomorrow afternoon. Same time, same table, same sidewalk cafe. Or to watch Italian youth going through the gyrations of the latest dance craze in some inexpensive indigenous night-place-while you, who come from the country where the dance originated, only get up to do a sedate fox trot. It is even pleasant to part, because this simply means preparing the way for the next meeting. One long continuous being-together, even in a love affair, might make the thing wilt. In an attachment it would surely kill the thing off altogether. But to meet, to part, then to meet again in a few days, keeps the thing going, encourages it to flower. And yet it requires a certain amount of vanity, as love does; a desire to please, to look one's best, to elicit compliments. It inspires a certain amount of flirtation, for the two are of opposite sex. A wink of understanding over the rim of a raised glass, a low-voiced confidential aside about something and the smile of intimacy that answers it, a small impromptu gift - a necktie on the one part because of an accidental spill on the one he was wearing, or of a small bunch of flowers on the other part because of the color of the dress she has on. So it goes. And suddenly they part, and suddenly there's a void, and suddenly they discover they have had an attachment. Rome passed into the past, and became New York. Now, if they had never come together again, or only after a long time and in different circumstances, then the attachment would have faded and died. But if they suddenly do come together again - while the sharp sting of missing one another is still smarting - then the attachment will revive full force, full strength. But never again as merely an attachment. It has to go on from there, it has to build, to pick up speed. And sometimes it is so glad to be brought back again that it makes the mistake of thinking it is love. ("For The Rest Of Her Life")
Cornell Woolrich (Angels of Darkness)
She'd never believed in love at first sight but she did believe in recognition at first sight, she believed in understanding upon meeting someone for the first time that they were going to be important in her life, a sensation like recognizing a familiar face in an old photograph: in a set of faces that mean nothing, one comes into focus: You.
Emily St. John Mandel (The Glass Hotel)
The silence is a little painful. It’s funny, because you always think the hard part is meeting someone for the first time. It’s not. It’s the second time, because you’ve already used up all the obvious topics of conversation. And even if you haven’t, it’s strange and heavy-handed to introduce random conversational topics at this stage in the game.
Becky Albertalli (The Upside of Unrequited (Simonverse, #2))
Meeting, for the first time in person, someone that you’ve ‘known’ for sometime online = Taking the relationship to the ‘previous’ level.
Mokokoma Mokhonoana
When a film's heroine innocently coughs, you know that two scenes later, at most, she'll be in an oxygen tent; when a man bumps into a woman at the train station, you know that man will become the woman's lover and/or murderer. In everyday life, where we cough often and are always bumping into people, our daily actions rarely reverberate so lucidly. Once we love or hate someone, we can think back and remember that first casual encounter. But what of all the chance meetings that nothing ever comes of? While our bodies move ever forward on the time line, our minds continuously trace backward, seeking shape and meaning as deftly as any arrow seeking its mark.
Lucy Grealy (Autobiography of a Face)
So here is my profound thought for the day: This is the first time I have met someone who seeks out people and who sees beyond. That may seem trivial but I think it is profound all the same. We never look beyond our assumptions and, what's worse, we have given up trying to meet others; we just meet ourselves. We don't recognize each other because other people have become our permanent mirrors. If we actually realized this, if we were to become aware of the fact that we are only ever looking at ourselves in the other person, that we are alone in the wilderness, we would go crazy. When my mother offers macaroons from Chez Laduree to Madame de Broglie, she is telling herself her own life story and just nibbling at her own flavor; when Papa drinks his coffee and reads his paper, he is contemplating his own reflection in the mirror, as if practicing the Coue method or something; when Colombe talks about Marian's lectures, she is ranting about her own reflection; and when people walk by the concierge, all they see is a void, because she is not from their world. As for me, I implore fate to give me the chance to see beyond myself and truly meet someone.
Muriel Barbery (The Elegance of the Hedgehog)
...My grandpa has always told us that you know you're in love when your heart goes "boom." The way he explained this "boom" is that it's not the giddy feeling you get when you first meet someone; it's deeper than that. It's more of a low, bellowing boom that resonates in your body the moment you realize you need someone, you love someone. It's more a boooom than a boom! I have yet to feel it.
Karyn Bosnak (20 Times a Lady)
I can’t look at a stranger’s face and think, She’s smiling just like Amy. When Amy smiles like that she’s happy, so this person is probably happy, too. Instead, I watch and evaluate, with a slightly anxious feeling. It’s as if I have to build a behavior database for every single person I meet in life. When I encounter someone for the first time, the slate is blank and I don’t know what to expect.
John Elder Robison (Be Different: Adventures of a Free-Range Aspergian with Practical Advice for Aspergians, Misfits, Families & Teachers)
My mom said that when you become a parent you understand for the first time what a parent feels. But…but what you really need to understand what you really shouldn’t forget is what you felt like as a child. The first time you did a somersault, the first time someone got really mad at you…If you can really remember how you felt when you were a child even when you’re an adult or a parent, then you can understand each other. Even if it’s not 100% you can meet each other half-way…she said. Because thinking that way reminds you that life is fun.
Natsuki Takaya (Fruits Basket: The Complete Collection)
This is why most people do not stick with a contemplative discipline for very long; we have heard all sorts of talk about contemplation delivering inner peace but when we turn within to seek this peace, we meet inner chaos instead of peace. But at this point it is precisely the meeting of chaos that is salutary, not snorting lines of euphoric peace. The peace will indeed come, but it will be the fruit, not of pushing away distractions, but of meeting thoughts and feelings with stillness instead of commentary. This is the skill we must learn. The struggle with distractions is not characterized only by afflictive thoughts. Many sincerely devout people never enter the silent land because their attention is so riveted to devotions and words. If there is not a wordy stream of talking to God and asking God for this and that, they feel they are not praying. Obviously this characterizes any relationship to a certain extent. When we are first getting to know someone, the relationship is nurtured by talking. Only with time does the relationship mature in such a way that we can be silent with someone, that silence comes to be seen to be the deeper mode of communion. And so it is with God; our words give way to silence.
Martin Laird (Into the Silent Land: A Guide to the Christian Practice of Contemplation)
But there is an unbounded pleasure to be had in the possession of a young, newly blossoming soul! It is like a flower, from which the best aroma evaporates when meeting the first ray of the sun; you must pluck it at that minute, breathing it in until you’re satisfied, and then throw it onto the road: perhaps someone will pick it up! I feel this insatiable greed, which swallows everything it meets on its way. I look at the suffering and joy of others only in their relation to me, as though it is food that supports the strength of my soul. I myself am not capable of going mad under the influence of passion. My ambition is stifled by circumstances, but it has manifested itself in another way, for ambition is nothing other than a thirst for power, and my best pleasure is to subject everyone around me to my will, to arouse feelings of love, devotion and fear of me—is this not the first sign and the greatest triumph of power? Being someone’s reason for suffering while not being in any position to claim the right—isn’t this the sweetest nourishment for our pride? And what is happiness? Sated pride. If I considered myself to be better, more powerful than everyone in the world, I would be happy. If everyone loved me, I would find endless sources of love within myself. Evil spawns evil. The first experience of torture gives an understanding of the pleasure in tormenting others. An evil idea cannot enter a person’s head without his wanting to bring it into reality: ideas are organic creations, someone once said. Their birth gives them form immediately, and this form is an action. The person in whom most ideas are born is the person who acts most. Hence a genius, riveted to his office desk, must die or lose his mind, just as a man with a powerful build who has a sedentary life and modest behavior will die from an apoplectic fit. Passions are nothing other than the first developments of an idea: they are a characteristic of the heart’s youth, and whoever thinks to worry about them his whole life long is a fool: many calm rivers begin with a noisy waterfall, but not one of them jumps and froths until the very sea. And this calm is often the sign of great, though hidden, strength. The fullness and depth of both feeling and thought will not tolerate violent upsurges. The soul, suffering and taking pleasure, takes strict account of everything and is always convinced that this is how things should be. It knows that without storms, the constant sultriness of the sun would wither it. It is infused with its own life—it fosters and punishes itself, like a child. And it is only in this higher state of self-knowledge that a person can estimate the value of divine justice.
Mikhail Lermontov (A Hero of Our Time)
I knew it!" he cried, jubilant. "I thought 'twas you, but there's more of you now. You should've seen the likes of her, boys," he said, turning towards the other convicts as he pointed at Kel. "We was all outlaws, livin' on the edges, and this bunch of pages stumbled into our camp. We chased 'em back in a canyon, and her -" he jabbed his finger at Kel - "she gutted ol' Breakbone Dell, and him the meanest dog-skinner you'd ever hope to meet. Stood there afoot, her and her spear, cool as meltwater with Breakbone ridin' down on her with that neck-cutter sword of his. First time she got 'im in the leg, second in the tripes, and he was done. Her and six lads held us all back, just them. There she was, eyes like stone and that bloody spear in her hand. Lady." He bowed deep. Kel looked at him, not sure what to say. Finally she asked, "What's your name, soldier?" "Me? Gilab Lofts - Gil. Lady. It's - it's good to see you well." He bowed again and returned to his seat, whispering with the men on either side of him. Kel waited for them to quiet once again before she said ruefully, "I'm not sure that being known for gutting a man is exactly a recommendation for a commander." "It is in the north!" cried someone. Several men laughed outright; others grinned.
Tamora Pierce (Lady Knight (Protector of the Small, #4))
Meet your partner. You think you’ve never seen them before, but you knew them. They were in your first breakup, your worst heartbreak, your old marriage, the honeymoon sex, in the alcohol swishes of finding out your spouse cheated, and in the times she leaned over the grass to kiss your cheek at picnics. Love was dancing in the same candidate who kissed you, the same nominee who hated you, and the plenty of people who tricked you. Love was dancing to the tango of your agreement to try. Love grows bigger and bigger, shaping itself more correctly to your happy heart.
Kristian Ventura (The Goodbye Song)
You can recite random facts from the encyclopedia until you’re blue in the face, but that does little to advertise your generic facility with information. Similarly, when you meet someone for the first time, you’re more eager to sniff each other out for this generic skill, rather than to exchange the most important information each of you has gathered to this point in your lives. In other words, listeners generally prefer speakers who can impress them wherever a conversation happens to lead, rather than speakers who steer conversations to specific topics where they already know what to say.
Kevin Simler (The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life)
2-Make eye contact. When someone is speaking, keep your eyes on him or her at all times. If someone makes a comment, turn and face that person. 3-During discussions, respect other students’ comments, opinions, and ideas. When possible, make statements like, “I agree with John, and I also feel that…” or “I disagree with Sarah. She made a good point I feel that…” or “I think Victor made an excellent observation, and it made me realize…” 4-If you win or do well at something, do not brag. If you lose, do not show anger. Instead, say something like, “I really enjoyed the competition, and I look forward to playing you again,” or “good game,” or don’t say anything at all. To show anger or sarcasm, such as “I wasn’t playing hard anyway” or “You really aren’t that good,” shows weakness. 5-“When you cough or sneeze or burp, it is appropriate to turn your head away from others and cover your mouth with the full part of your hand. Using a fist is not acceptable. Afterward, you should say, “Excuse me.” 6- “Do not smack your lips, tsk, roll your eyes, or show disrespect with gestures.” 7-“Always say thank you when I give you something. 8-“Surprise others by performing random acts of kindness. Go our of your way to do something surprisingly kind and generous for someone at least once a month.” 9-“You will make every effort to be as organized as possible.” 10-"Quickly learn the name of other teachers in the school and greet them by saying things like, "Good morning Mrs. Graham," or "Good afternoon Ms. Ortiz. 11-"When we go on field trips, we will meet different people. When I introduce you to people, make sure that you remember their names. Then, when we are leaving, make sure to shake their hands and thank them, mentioning their names as you do so." 12-“If you approach a door and someone is following you, hold the door. If the door opens by pulling, pull it open, stand to the side, and allow the other person 13-to pass through it first, then you can walk through. If the door opens by pushing, hold the door open after you push through." "Be positive and enjoy life. Some things just aren't worth getting upset over. Keep everything in perspective and focus on the good in your life.
Ron Clark
There are moments in our lives when we meet someone and we feel as if we have known them all our lives. It seems astounding really to know that you can understand each other so well. It feels fascinating when you find out that you even if you both are meeting for the first time, there is already an amazing chemistry happening between you two! And what is captivating is the depth to which you already know each other; almost like you both know each other inside out. When you both look into each other's eyes, you both already know what is going on in each other's minds. As if words are not needed at all to understand the thoughts, feelings, and emotions of the other person. It feels as if you both know each other from centuries ago in time! It feels absolutely exhilarating when you do find this person in your life. And then your life becomes totally awesome and amazing.
Avijeet Das
I’m not sure how the ponies happened, though I have an inkling: “Can I get you anything?” I’ll say, getting up from a dinner table, “Coffee, tea, a pony?” People rarely laugh at this, especially if they’ve heard it before. “This party’s ‘sposed to be fun,” a friend will say. “Really? Will there be pony rides?” It’s a nervous tic and a cheap joke, cheapened further by the frequency with which I use it. For that same reason, it’s hard to weed it out of my speech – most of the time I don’t even realize I’m saying it. There are little elements in a person’s life, minor fibers that become unintentionally tangled with your personality. Sometimes it’s a patent phrase, sometimes it’s a perfume, sometimes it’s a wristwatch. For me, it is the constant referencing of ponies. I don’t even like ponies. If I made one of my throwaway equine requests and someone produced an actual pony, Juan-Valdez-style, I would run very fast in the other direction. During a few summers at camp, I rode a chronically dehydrated pony named Brandy who would jolt down without notice to lick the grass outside the corral and I would careen forward, my helmet tipping to cover my eyes. I do, however, like ponies on the abstract. Who doesn’t? It’s like those movies with the animated insects. Sure, the baby cockroach seems cute with CGI eyelashes, but how would you feel about fifty of her real-life counterparts living in your oven? And that’s precisely the manner in which the ponies clomped their way into my regular speech: abstractly. “I have something for you,” a guy will say on our first date. “Is it a pony?” No. It’s usually a movie ticket or his cell phone number. But on our second date, if I ask again, I’m pretty sure I’m getting a pony. And thus the Pony drawer came to be. It’s uncomfortable to admit, but almost every guy I have ever dated has unwittingly made a contribution to the stable. The retro pony from the ‘50s was from the most thoughtful guy I have ever known. The one with the glitter horseshoes was from a boy who would later turn out to be straight somehow, not gay. The one with the rainbow haunches was from a librarian, whom I broke up with because I felt the chemistry just wasn’t right, and the one with the price tag stuck on the back was given to me by a narcissist who was so impressed with his gift he forgot to remover the sticker. Each one of them marks the beginning of a new relationship. I don’t mean to hint. It’s not a hint, actually, it’s a flat out demand: I. Want. A. Pony. I think what happens is that young relationships are eager to build up a romantic repertoire of private jokes, especially in the city where there’s not always a great “how we met” story behind every great love affair. People meet at bars, through mutual friends, on dating sites, or because they work in the same industry. Just once a coworker of mine, asked me out between two stops on the N train. We were holding the same pole and he said, “I know this sounds completely insane, bean sprout, but would you like to go to a very public place with me and have a drink or something...?” I looked into his seemingly non-psycho-killing, rent-paying, Sunday Times-subscribing eyes and said, “Sure, why the hell not?” He never bought me a pony. But he didn’t have to, if you know what I mean.
Sloane Crosley (I Was Told There'd Be Cake: Essays)
Sweetheart," West murmured kindly, "listen to me. There's no need to worry. You'll either meet someone new, or you'll reconsider someone you didn't appreciate at first. Some men are an acquired taste. Like oysters, or Gorgonzola cheese." She let out a shuddering sigh. "Cousin West, if I haven't married by the time I'm twenty-five... and you're still a bachelor... would you be my oyster?" West looked at her blankly. "Let's agree to marry each other someday," she continued, "if no one else wants us. I would be a good wife. All I've ever dreamed of is having my own little family, and a happy home where everyone feels safe and welcome. You know I never nag or slam doors or sulk in corners. I just need someone to take care of. I want to matter to someone. Before you refuse-" "Lady Cassandra Ravenel," West interrupted, "that is the most idiotic idea anyone's come up with since Napoleon decided to invade Russia." Her gaze turned reproachful. "Why?" "Among a dizzying array of reasons, you're too young for me." "You're no older than Lord St. Vincent, and he just married my twin." "I'm older than him on the inside, by decades. My soul is a raisin. Take my word for it, you don't want to be my wife." "It would be better than being lonely." "What rubbish. 'Alone' and 'lonely' are entirely different things." West reached out to smooth back a dangling golden curl that had stuck against a drying tear track on her cheek. "Now, go bathe your face in cool water, and-" "I'll be your oyster," Tom broke in.
Lisa Kleypas (Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels, #6))
Desperately trying to remember her manners, she curtseyed and murmured, "Your Grace." The smile lines at his eyes deepened subtly. "You appear to be in need of rescue. Why don't you come inside with me, away from this riffraff? The duchess is eager to meet you." As Pandora hesitated, thoroughly intimidated, he assured her. "I'm quite trustworthy. In fact, I'm very nearly an angel. You'll come to love me in no time." "Take heed," Lord St. Vincent advised Pandora sardonically, fastening the loose sides of his vest. "My father is the pied piper of gullible women." "That's not true," the duke said, "The non-gullible ones follow me as well." Pandora couldn't help chuckling. She looked up into silvery-blue eyes lit with sparks of humor and playfulness. There was something reassuring about his presence, the sense of a man who truly liked women. When she and Cassandra were children, they had fantasized about a handsome father who would lavish them with affection and advice, and spoil them just a little, but not too much. A father who might have let them stand on his feet to dance. This man looked very much like the one Pandora had imagined. She moved forward and took his arm. "How was your journey, my dear?" the duke asked as he escorted her into the house. Before Pandora could reply, Lord St. Vincent spoke from behind them. "Lady Pandora doesn't like small talk, Father. She would prefer to discuss topics such as Darwin, or women's suffrage." "Naturally an intelligent young woman would wish to skip over mundane chitchat," the duke said, giving Pandora such an approving glance that she fairly glowed. "However," he continued thoughtfully, "most people need to be guided into a feeling of safety before they dare reveal their opinions to someone they've only just met. There's a beginning to everything, after all. Every opera has its prelude, every sonnet its opening quatrain. Small talk is merely a way of helping a stranger to trust you, by first finding something you can both agree on." "No one's ever explained it that way before," Pandora said with a touch of wonder. "It actually makes sense. But why must it be so often about weather? Isn't there something else we all agree on? Runcible spoons- everyone likes those, don't they? And teatime, and feeding ducks." "Blue ink," the duke added. "And a cat's purr. And summer storms- although I suppose that brings us back to weather." "I wouldn't mind talking about weather with you, Your Grace," Pandora said ingenuously. The duke laughed gently. "What a delightful girl.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Spring (The Ravenels, #3))
Then someone knocks on the door, very clearly, four times. I pull away from Lena quickly. "What's that?" I say, dragging my forearm across my eyes, trying to get control of myself. Lena tries to pass it off as though she hadn't heard. Her face has gone white, her eyes wide and terrified. When the knocking starts up again, she doesn't move, just stays frozen where she is. "I thought nobody comes in this way." I cross my arms, watching Lena narrowly. There's a suspicious needling, pricking at some corner of my mind, but I can't quite focus on it. "They don't. I mean—sometimes—I mean, the delivery guys—" As she stammers excuses, the door opens, and he pokes his head in—the boy from the day Lena and I jumped the gate at the lab complex, just after we had our evaluations. His eyes land on me and he, too, freezes. At first I think there must be a mistake. He must have knocked on the wrong door. Lena will yell at him now, tell him to clear off. But then my mind grinds slowly into gear and I realize that no, he has just called Lena's name. This was obviously planned.
Lauren Oliver (Hana (Delirium, #1.5))
To believe, it seemed, one had to want to believe. It was a conundrum, one Sazed wrestled with. He wanted someone, something, to force him to have faith. He wanted to have to believe because of the proof shown to him. Yet, the believers whose words now filled his mind would have said he already had proof. Had he not, in his moment of despair, received an answer? As he had been about to give up, TenSoon had spoken. Sazed had begged for a sign and received it. Was it chance? Was it providence? In the end, apparently, it was up to him to decide. He slowly returned the letters and journals to his metalminds, leaving his specific memory of them empty - yet retaining the feelings they had prompted in him. Which would he be? Believer or skeptic? At the moment, neither seemed a patently foolish path. I do want to believe, he thought. That's why I've spent so much time searching. I can't have it both ways. I simply have to decide. Which would it be? He sat for a few moments, thinking, feeling, and - most important - remembering. I sought help, Sazed thought. And something answered. Sazed smiled, and everything seemed a little brighter. Breeze was right, he thought, standing and organizing his things as he prepared to go. I was not meant to be an atheist. The thought seemed a little too flippant for what had just happened to him. As he picked up his metal sheets and prepared to go meet with the First Generation, he realized that kandra passed outside his humble little cavern, completely oblivious to the important decision he'd just made. But, that was how things often went, it seemed. Some important decisions were made on a battlefield or in a conference room. But others happened quietly, unseen by others. That didn't make the decision any less important to Sazed. He would believe. Not because something had been proven to him beyond his ability to deny. But because he chose to.
Brandon Sanderson (The Hero of Ages (Mistborn, #3))
There are moments in our lives when we meet someone and we feel as if we have known them all our lives. It seems astounding really to know that you can understand each other so well. It feels fascinating when you find out that even if you both are meeting for the first time, there is already an amazing chemistry happening between you two! And what is captivating is the depth to which you already know each other; almost like you both know each other inside out. When you both look into each other's eyes, you both already know what is going on in each other's minds. As if words are not required at all to understand the thoughts, feelings, and emotions of the other person. It feels as if you both know each other from centuries ago in time! It feels absolutely exhilarating when you do find this person in your life. And then your life becomes totally awesome and amazing.
Avijeet Das
But as an angel, I doubt that he bothered to take much stock of the humans. When he looks at me, it’s the look of someone noticing a person for the first time, proving yet again that an angel’s arrogance knows no bounds. Which, now that I think about it, increases the likelihood that this is Raffe. He does a full evaluation of me, taking in the cut and curled hair accented with peacock feathers, the blue and silver makeup ribbons chasing around my eyes and cheekbones, the silky dress that clings to every part of my body. But it’s not until his eyes meet mine that a jolt of recognition passes between us. I have no doubt that it’s Raffe. But he fights his recognition of me. For a second, his defenses fall and I can see the turmoil behind his eyes. He saw me die. This must be a mistake. This glittery girl doesn’t look anything like the street waif he traveled with. Yet… His step falters and he pauses, staring at me.
Susan Ee (World After (Penryn & the End of Days, #2))
From a practical angle this factor reveals itself in that an individual who follows his dreams for a considerable time will find that they are often concerned with his relationships with other people. His dreams my warn him against trusting a certain person too much, or he may dream about a favorable and agreeable meeting with someone whom he may previously have never consciously noticed. If a dream does pick up the image of another person for us in some such fashion, there are two possible interpretations. First, the figure may be a projection, which means that the dream-image of this person is a symbol for an inner aspect of the dreamer himself. One dreams, for instance of a dishonest neighbor, but the neighbor is used by the dream as a picture of one's own dishonesty. It is the task of dream interpretation to find out in which special areas one's own dishonesty comes into play. (This is called dream interpretation on the subjective level.)
C.G. Jung (Man and His Symbols)
You heard me. Let someone else send you to your blaze of glory. You're a speck, man. You're nothing. You're not worth the bullet or the mark on my soul for taking you out." You trying to piss me off again, Patrick?" He removed Campbell Rawson from his shoulder and held him aloft. I tilted my wrist so the cylinder fell into my palm, shrugged. "You're a joke, Gerry. I'm just calling it like I see it." That so?" Absolutely." I met his hard eyes with my own. "And you'll be replaced, just like everything else, in maybe a week, tops. Some other dumb, sick shit will come along and kill some people and he'll be all over the papers, and all over Hard Copy and you'll be yesterday's news. Your fifteen minutes are up, Gerry. And they've passed without impact." They'll remember this," Gerry said. "Believe me." Gerry clamped back on the trigger. When he met my finger, he looked at me and then clamped down so hard that my finger broke. I depressed the trigger on the one-shot and nothing happened. Gerry shrieked louder, and the razor came out of my flesh, then swung back immediately, and I clenched my eyes shut and depressed the trigger frantically three times. And Gerry's hand exploded. And so did mine. The razor hit the ice by my knee as I dropped the one shot and fire roared up the electrical tape and gasoline on Gerry's arm and caught the wisps of Danielle's hair. Gerry threw his head back and opened his mouth wide and bellowed in ecstasy. I grabbed the razor, could barely feel it because the nerves in my hand seemed to have stopped working. I slashed into the electric tape at the end of the shotgun barrel, and Danielle dropped away toward the ice and rolled her head into the frozen sand. My broken finger came back out of the shotgun and Gerry swung the barrels toward my head. The twin shotgun bores arced through the darkness like eyes without mercy or soul, and I raised my head to meet them, and Gerry's wail filled my ears as the fire licked at his neck. Good-bye, I thought. Everyone. It's been nice. Oscar's first two shots entered the back of Gerry's head and exited through the center of his forehead and a third punched into his back. The shotgun jerked upward in Gerry's flaming arm and then the shots came from the front, several at once, and Gerry spun like a marionette and pitched toward the ground. The shotgun boomed twice and punched holes through the ice in front of him as he fell. He landed on his knees and, for a moment, I wasn't sure if he was dead or not. His rusty hair was afire and his head lolled to the left as one eye disappeared in flames but the other shimmered at me through waves of heat, and an amused derision shone in the pupil. Patrick, the eye said through the gathering smoke, you still know nothing. Oscar rose up on the other side of Gerry's corpse, Campbell Rawson clutched tight to his massive chest as it rose and fell with great heaving breaths. The sight of it-something so soft and gentle in the arms of something so thick and mountaineous-made me laugh. Oscar came out of the darkness toward me, stepped around Gerry's burning body, and I felt the waves of heat rise toward me as the circle of gasoline around Gerry caught fire. Burn, I thought. Burn. God help me, but burn. Just after Oscar stepped over the outer edge of the circle, it erupted in yellow flame, and I found myself laughing harder as he looked at it, not remotely impressed. I felt cool lips smack against my ear, and by the time I looked her way, Danielle was already past me, rushing to take her child from Oscar. His huge shadow loomed over me as he approached, and I looked up at him and he held the look for a long moment. How you doing, Patrick?" he said and smiled broadly. And, behind him, Gerry burned on the ice. And everything was so goddamned funny for some reason, even though I knew it wasn't. I knew it wasn't. I did. But I was still laughing when they put me in the ambulance.
Dennis Lehane
You seem disappointed that I am not more responsive to your interest in "spiritual direction". Actually, I am more than a little ambivalent about the term, particularly in the ways it is being used so loosely without any sense of knowledge of the church's traditions in these matters. If by spiritual direction you mean entering into a friendship with another person in which an awareness and responsiveness to God's Spirit in the everydayness of your life is cultivated, fine. Then why call in an awkward term like "spiritual direction"? Why not just "friend"? Spiritual direction strikes me as pretentious in these circumstances, as if there were some expertise that can be acquired more or less on its own and then dispensed on demand. The other reason for my lack of enthusiasm is my well-founded fear of professionalism in any and all matters of the Christian life. Or maybe the right label for my fear is "functionalism". The moment an aspect of Christian living (human life, for that matter) is defined as a role, it is distorted, debased - and eventually destroyed. We are brothers and sisters with one another, friends and lovers, saints and sinners. The irony here is that the rise of interest in spiritual direction almost certainly comes from the proliferation of role-defined activism in our culture. We are sick and tired of being slotted into a function and then manipulated with Scripture and prayer to do what someone has decided (often with the help of some psychological testing) that we should be doing to bring glory to some religious enterprise or other. And so when people begin to show up who are interested in us just as we are - our souls - we are ready to be paid attention to in this prayerful, listening, non-manipulative, nonfunctional way. Spiritual direction. But then it begins to develop a culture and language and hierarchy all its own. It becomes first a special interest, and then a specialization. That is what seems to be happening in the circles you are frequenting. I seriously doubt that it is a healthy (holy) line to be pursuing. Instead, why don't you look over the congregation on Sundays and pick someone who appears to be mature and congenial. Ask her or him if you can meet together every month or so - you feel the need to talk about your life in the company of someone who believes that Jesus is present and active in everything you are doing. Reassure the person that he or she doesn't have to say anything "wise". You only want them to be there for you to listen and be prayerful in the listening. After three or four such meetings, write to me what has transpired, and we'll discuss it further. I've had a number of men and women who have served me in this way over the years - none carried the title "spiritual director", although that is what they have been. Some had never heard of such a term. When I moved to Canada a few years ago and had to leave a long-term relationship of this sort, I looked around for someone whom I could be with in this way. I picked a man whom I knew to be a person of integrity and prayer, with seasoned Christian wisdom in his bones. I anticipated that he would disqualify himself. So I pre-composed my rebuttal: "All I want you to do is two things: show up and shut up. Can you do that? Meet with me every six weeks or so, and just be there - an honest, prayerful presence with no responsibility to be anything other than what you have become in your obedient lifetime." And it worked. If that is what you mean by "spiritual director," okay. But I still prefer "friend". You can see now from my comments that my gut feeling is that the most mature and reliable Christian guidance and understanding comes out of the most immediate and local of settings. The ordinary way. We have to break this cultural habit of sending out for an expert every time we feel we need some assistance. Wisdom is not a matter of expertise. The peace of the Lord, Eugene
Eugene H. Peterson (The Wisdom of Each Other (Growing Deeper))
Religious Society of Negroes” in Boston. It was one of the first known organizations of African people in colonial America. In 1693, Cotton Mather drew up the society’s list of rules, prefaced by a covenant: “Wee, the miserable children of Adam and Noah . . . freely resolve . . . to become the Servants of that Glorious Lord.” Two of Mather’s rules were instructive: members were to be counseled by someone “wise and of English” descent, and they were not to “afford” any “Shelter” to anyone who had “Run away from their Masters.” Meeting weekly, some members of the society probably delighted in hearing Mather cast their souls as White. Some probably rejected these racist ideas and used the society to mobilize against enslavement. The Religious Society of Negroes did not last. Few Africans wanted to be Christians at that time (though that would change in a few decades). And not many masters were willing to let their captives become Christians because, unlike in other colonies, there was no Massachusetts law stipulating that baptized slaves did not have to be freed.
Ibram X. Kendi (Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America)
On average, odd years have been the best for me. I’m at a point where everyone I meet looks like a version of someone I already know. Without fail, fall makes me nostalgic for things I’ve never experienced. The sky is molting. I don’t know if this is global warming or if the atmosphere is reconfiguring itself to accommodate all the new bright suffering. I am struck by an overwhelming need to go to Iceland. Despite all awful variables, we are still full of ideas as possible as unsexed fruit. I was terribly sorry to be the one to explain to the first graders the connection between the sunset and pollution. On Venus you and I are not even a year old. Then there were two skies. The one we fly through and the one we bury ourselves in. I appreciate my wide beveled spatula which fulfills the moment I realized I would grow up and own such things. I am glad I do not yet want sexy bathroom accessories. Such things. In the story we were together every time. On his wedding day, the stone in his chest not fully melted but enough. Sometimes I feel like there are birds flying out of me.
Jennifer K. Sweeney
One consequence of opening women's spaces to males is to recast two common male sex crimes as rights. Exhibitionism - non-consensually displaying one's genitals - is so common that many women will tell you that the first time they saw a penis was when a stranger flashed them. Voyeurism - non-consensually viewing someone in a state of undress - is known to be a precursor to contact sex crimes. Entering a changing room constitutes consent to see and be seen by the other occupants while undressed. Women grant that consent on the basis that those occupants will be female; gender self-identification removes that basis while denying that it does so. It therefore turns facilities intended for women into places where males can commit exhibitionism and voyeurism with impunity.
Helen Joyce (Trans: When Ideology Meets Reality)
Every generation of children instinctively nests itself in nature, no matter matter how tiny a scrap of it they can grasp. In a tale of one city child, the poet Audre Lord remembers picking tufts of grass which crept up through the paving stones in New York City and giving them as bouquets to her mother. It is a tale of two necessities. The grass must grow, no matter the concrete suppressing it. The child must find her way to the green, no matter the edifice which would crush it. "The Maori word for placenta is the same word for land, so at birth the placenta is buried, put back in the mothering earth. A Hindu baby may receive the sun-showing rite surya-darsana when, with conch shells ringing to the skies, the child is introduced to the sun. A newborn child of the Tonga people 'meets' the moon, dipped in the ocean of Kosi Bay in KwaZulu-Natal. Among some of the tribes of India, the qualities of different aspects of nature are invoked to bless the child, so he or she may have the characteristics of earth, sky and wind, of birds and animals, right down to the earthworm. Nothing is unbelonging to the child. "'My oldest memories have the flavor of earth,' wrote Frederico García Lorca. In the traditions of the Australian deserts, even from its time in the womb, the baby is catscradled in kinship with the world. Born into a sandy hollow, it is cleaned with sand and 'smoked' by fire, and everything -- insects, birds, plants, and animals -- is named to the child, who is told not only what everything is called but also the relationship between the child and each creature. Story and song weave the child into the subtle world of the Dreaming, the nested knowledge of how the child belongs. "The threads which tie the child to the land include its conception site and the significant places of the Dreaming inherited through its parents. Introduced to creatures and land features as to relations, the child is folded into the land, wrapped into country, and the stories press on the child's mind like the making of felt -- soft and often -- storytelling until the feeling of the story of the country is impressed into the landscape of the child's mind. "That the juggernaut of ants belongs to a child, belligerently following its own trail. That the twitch of an animal's tail is part of a child's own tale or storyline, once and now again. That on the papery bark of a tree may be written the songline of a child's name. That the prickles of a thornbush may have dynamic relevance to conscience. That a damp hollow by the riverbank is not an occasional place to visit but a permanent part of who you are. This is the beginning of belonging, the beginning of love. "In the art and myth of Indigenous Australia, the Ancestors seeded the country with its children, so the shimmering, pouring, circling, wheeling, spinning land is lit up with them, cartwheeling into life.... "The human heart's love for nature cannot ultimately be concreted over. Like Audre Lord's tufts of grass, will crack apart paving stones to grasp the sun. Children know they are made of the same stuff as the grass, as Walt Whitman describes nature creating the child who becomes what he sees: There was a child went forth every day And the first object he look'd upon, that object he became... The early lilacs became part of this child... And the song of the phoebe-bird... In Australia, people may talk of the child's conception site as the origin of their selfhood and their picture of themselves. As Whitman wrote of the child becoming aspects of the land, so in Northern Queensland a Kunjen elder describes the conception site as 'the home place for your image.' Land can make someone who they are, giving them fragments of themselves.
Jay Griffiths (A Country Called Childhood: Children and the Exuberant World)
Zach: Are you close with your brother? He’s partially to blame for the wrong number thing, isn’t he? * * * Me: Kind of. Yeah, we’re close. My mom worked at the hospital so it was usually just us two fending for ourselves. * * * Me: Okay, so I shouldn’t say fending for ourselves. That makes me sound like a dick and unappreciative of all my mom did. We just spent many nights just the two of us because my mom was a hardworking single lady and she wasn’t searching for a man to put a ring on it because she. Is. Fierce. * * * Zach: I bet your mom is the shit. * * * Me: She really is. You should meet her sometime. * * * Me: Oh, awkward…I’m talking about meeting the family and we’re not even officially a couple. * * * Zach: We’re not? * * * Me: We are? My phone lights up with a call from Zach. “Are you saying we aren’t dating?” he says before I can say anything. “We are…” “Are you saying you’re wanting to see other people?” “No…” “So then we’re a couple.” I’m quiet, unsure what to say. I’m so scared to label this, which is stupid, I know. “Delia?” “Yes, Zach?” “Do you not want to be?” I take a deep breath and push out the answer I know is right, even though my head is saying otherwise. “No. I want to be a couple.” “Are you sure?” “Yes. I’m just…scared. I know I shouldn’t put that all on you, but you’re kind of the reason I’m scared. I like you, Zach—a lot—but what if this doesn’t work out? What if we jump in too soon?” He sighs. “Remember when we were talking about our exes? About the lack of fireworks?” “Yeah.” “I swear to god, someone is going to swoop in and take my man card for this shit, but I felt them with you. When we first kissed, I knew right then you were worth jumping in with both feet and taking a risk.” I don’t let myself overthink his words, wanting to keep my head level and clear. “What if I’m not worth the risk?” “We’ll never know if we don’t take it.” “Say you’re a couple already, Dalilah!” Robbie’s voice comes loud through the speaker. “He paused the movie during an epic scene!” “How many times have I told you that her name is Delia. Deal-ya. Get it?” “You talk about me with Robbie?” I ask. “Sometimes.” “Say yes! He looks like someone kicked his goat!” “Shut the fuck up, Robbie!” I laugh. “If I say yes, will he stop shouting?” “YES!” Robbie shouts again. “I’ll take the risk, Zach, but you better be worth it.” “You’ve seen my Harry Potter underwear—you know I’m worth it.” Then he whispers, “Wink.
Teagan Hunter (Let's Get Textual (Texting, #1))
But looking at you was nothing like looking at those pictures. When I first saw,” he said, looking down at her chest, then up again to meet her eyes, “it hurt, almost a physical pain. Since you finished chemo, you've gotten so strong again. Sometimes I almost forget what you've been through. But seeing your scars, they reminded me of your hurt. How you've been cut apart. What you gave up.” It was important, not keeping herself back from him, putting parts of herself off limits. But it stung when he sank down to brush his lips over the two biggest scars. “But your scars are beautiful. I mean, I look at them, and I want to kiss, I want to touch, I feel this tenderness for them. You know how when you love someone, when you've been with them a long time and you know all the little lines and curves and planes of their body, how you look at little parts of them—the corner of their mouth, the back of their hand, the little crease where their earlobe meets their jaw—and you can feel like you're in love with that little piece of them? Maybe soon, I'll look at your scars like that. But right now, it's this feeling I've never had for a part of someone's body, before, because they promise me you're well. That you get to live. That we get to have a long life together.” Her love for him was swelling up in her chest, the way it did sometimes, an ache she wanted to hold on to.
Varian Krylov (Hurt)
Suppose someone says, “Unfortunately, the popularity of soccer, the world’s favorite pastime, is starting to decline.” You suspect he is wrong. How do you question the claim? Don’t even think of taking a personal shot like “You’re silly.” That only adds heat, not light. “I don’t think so” only expresses disagreement without delving into why you disagree. “What do you mean?” lowers the emotional temperature with a question but it’s much too vague. Zero in. You might say, “What do you mean by ‘pastime’?” or “What evidence is there that soccer’s popularity is declining? Over what time frame?” The answers to these precise questions won’t settle the matter, but they will reveal the thinking behind the conclusion so it can be probed and tested. Since Socrates, good teachers have practiced precision questioning, but still it’s often not used when it’s needed most. Imagine how events might have gone if the Kennedy team had engaged in precision questioning when planning the Bay of Pigs invasion: “So what happens if they’re attacked and the plan falls apart?” “They retreat into the Escambray Mountains, where they can meet up with other anti-Castro forces and plan guerrilla operations.” “How far is it from the proposed landing site in the Bay of Pigs to the Escambray Mountains?” “Eighty miles.” “And what’s the terrain?” “Mostly swamp and jungle.” “So the guerrillas have been attacked. The plan has fallen apart. They don’t have helicopters or tanks. But they have to cross eighty miles of swamp and jungle before they can begin to look for shelter in the mountains? Is that correct?” I suspect that this conversation would not have concluded “sounds good!” Questioning like that didn’t happen, so Kennedy’s first major decision as president was a fiasco. The lesson was learned, resulting in the robust but respectful debates of the Cuban missile crisis—which exemplified the spirit we encouraged among our forecasters.
Philip E. Tetlock (Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction)
I resolved to come right to the point. "Hello," I said as coldly as possible, "we've got to talk." "Yes, Bob," he said quietly, "what's on your mind?" I shut my eyes for a moment, letting the raging frustration well up inside, then stared angrily at the psychiatrist. "Look, I've been religious about this recovery business. I go to AA meetings daily and to your sessions twice a week. I know it's good that I've stopped drinking. But every other aspect of my life feels the same as it did before. No, it's worse. I hate my life. I hate myself." Suddenly I felt a slight warmth in my face, blinked my eyes a bit, and then stared at him. "Bob, I'm afraid our time's up," Smith said in a matter-of-fact style. "Time's up?" I exclaimed. "I just got here." "No." He shook his head, glancing at his clock. "It's been fifty minutes. You don't remember anything?" "I remember everything. I was just telling you that these sessions don't seem to be working for me." Smith paused to choose his words very carefully. "Do you know a very angry boy named 'Tommy'?" "No," I said in bewilderment, "except for my cousin Tommy whom I haven't seen in twenty years..." "No." He stopped me short. "This Tommy's not your cousin. I spent this last fifty minutes talking with another Tommy. He's full of anger. And he's inside of you." "You're kidding?" "No, I'm not. Look. I want to take a little time to think over what happened today. And don't worry about this. I'll set up an emergency session with you tomorrow. We'll deal with it then." Robert This is Robert speaking. Today I'm the only personality who is strongly visible inside and outside. My own term for such an MPD role is dominant personality. Fifteen years ago, I rarely appeared on the outside, though I had considerable influence on the inside; back then, I was what one might call a "recessive personality." My passage from "recessive" to "dominant" is a key part of our story; be patient, you'll learn lots more about me later on. Indeed, since you will meet all eleven personalities who once roamed about, it gets a bit complex in the first half of this book; but don't worry, you don't have to remember them all, and it gets sorted out in the last half of the book. You may be wondering -- if not "Robert," who, then, was the dominant MPD personality back in the 1980s and earlier? His name was "Bob," and his dominance amounted to a long reign, from the early 1960s to the early 1990s. Since "Robert B. Oxnam" was born in 1942, you can see that "Bob" was in command from early to middle adulthood. Although he was the dominant MPD personality for thirty years, Bob did not have a clue that he was afflicted by multiple personality disorder until 1990, the very last year of his dominance. That was the fateful moment when Bob first heard that he had an "angry boy named Tommy" inside of him. How, you might ask, can someone have MPD for half a lifetime without knowing it? And even if he didn't know it, didn't others around him spot it? To outsiders, this is one of the most perplexing aspects of MPD. Multiple personality is an extreme disorder, and yet it can go undetected for decades, by the patient, by family and close friends, even by trained therapists. Part of the explanation is the very nature of the disorder itself: MPD thrives on secrecy because the dissociative individual is repressing a terrible inner secret. The MPD individual becomes so skilled in hiding from himself that he becomes a specialist, often unknowingly, in hiding from others. Part of the explanation is rooted in outside observers: MPD often manifests itself in other behaviors, frequently addiction and emotional outbursts, which are wrongly seen as the "real problem." The fact of the matter is that Bob did not see himself as the dominant personality inside Robert B. Oxnam. Instead, he saw himself as a whole person. In his mind, Bob was merely a nickname for Bob Oxnam, Robert Oxnam, Dr. Robert B. Oxnam, PhD.
Robert B. Oxnam (A Fractured Mind: My Life with Multiple Personality Disorder)
One of my greatest concerns for the young women of the Church is that they will sell themselves short in dating and marriage by forgetting who they really are--daughters of a loving Heavenly Father. . . . Unfortunately, a young woman who lowers her standards far enough can always find temporary acceptance from immature and unworthy young men. . . . At their best, daughters of God are loving, caring, understanding, and sympathetic. This does not mean they are also gullible, unrealistic, or easily manipulated. If a young man does not measure up to the standards a young woman has set, he may promise her that he will change if she will marry him first. Wise daughters of God will insist that young men who seek their hand in marriage change before the wedding, not after. (I am referring here to the kind of change that will be part of the lifelong growth of every disciple.) He may argue that she doesn't really believe in repentance and forgiveness. But one of the hallmarks of repentance is forsaking sin. Especially when the sin involves addictive behaviors or a pattern of transgression, wise daughters of God insist on seeing a sustained effort to forsake sin over a long period of time as true evidence of repentance. They do not marry someone because they believe they can change him. Young women, please do not settle for someone unworthy of your gospel standards. On the other hand, young women should not refuse to settle down. There is no right age for young men or young women to marry, but there is a right attitude for them to have about marriage: "Thy will be done" . . . . The time to marry is when we are prepared to meet a suitable mate, not after we have done all the enjoyable things in life we hoped to do while we were single. . . . When I hear some young men and young women set plans in stone which do not include marriage until after age twenty-five or thirty or until a graduate degree has been obtained, I recall Jacob's warning, "Seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel from his hand" (Jacob 4:10). . . . How we conduct ourselves in dating relationships is a good indication of how we will conduct ourselves in a marriage relationship. . . . Individuals considering marriage would be wise to conduct their own prayerful due diligence--long before they set their hearts on marriage. There is nothing wrong with making a T-square diagram and on either side of the vertical line listing the relative strengths and weaknesses of a potential mate. I sometimes wonder whether doing more homework when it comes to this critical decision would spare some Church members needless heartache. I fear too many fall in love with each other or even with the idea of marriage before doing the background research necessary to make a good decision. It is sad when a person who wants to be married never has the opportunity to marry. But it is much, much sadder to be married to the wrong person. If you do not believe me, talk with someone who has made that mistake. Think carefully about the person you are considering marrying, because marriage should last for time and for all eternity.
Robert D. Hales (Return: Four Phases of our Mortal Journey Home)
It was Day Three, Freshman Year, and I was a little bit lost in the school library,looking for a bathroom that wasn't full of blindingly shiny sophomores checking their lip gloss. Day Three.Already pretty clear on the fact that I would be using secondary bathrooms for at least the next three years,until being a senior could pass for confidence.For the moment, I knew no one,and was too shy to talk to anyone. So that first sight of Edward: pale hair that looked like he'd just run his hands through it, paint-smeared white shirt,a half smile that was half wicked,and I was hooked. Since, "Hi,I'm Ella.You look like someone I'd like to spend the rest of my life with," would have been totally insane, I opted for sitting quietly and staring.Until the bell rang and I had to rush to French class,completely forgetting to pee. Edward Willing.Once I knew his name, the rest was easy.After all,we're living in the age of information. Wikipedia, iPhones, 4G ntworks, social networking that you can do from a thousand miles away.The upshot being that at any given time over the next two years, I could sit twenty feet from him in the library, not saying a word, and learn a lot about him.ENough, anyway, for me to become completely convinced that the Love at First Sight hadn't been a fluke. It's pretty simple.Edward matched four and a half of my If My Prince Does, In Fact, Come Someday,It Would Be Great If He Could Meet These Five Criteria. 1. Interested in art. For me, it's charcoal. For Edward, oil paint and bronze. That's almost enough right there. Nice lips + artist= Ella's prince. 2. Not afraid of love. He wrote, "Love is one of two things worth dying for.I have yet to decide on the second." 3.Or of telling the truth. "How can I believe that other people say if I lie to them?" 4.Hot. Why not?I can dream. 5.Daring. Mountain climbing, cliff dying, defying the parents. Him, not me. I'm terrified of an embarrassing number of things, including heights, convertibles, moths, and those comedians everyone loves who stand onstage and yell insults at the audience. 5, subsection a. Daring enough to take a chance on me.Of course, in the end, that No. 5a is the biggie. And the problem. No matter how muuch I worshipped him,no matter how good a pair we might have been,it was never, ever going to happen. To be fair to Edward,it's not like he was given an opportunity to get to know me. I'm not stupid.I know there are a few basic truths when it comes to boys and me. Truth: You have to talk to a boy-really talk,if you want him to see past the fact that you're not beautiful. Truth: I'm not beautiful. Or much of a conversationalist. Truth: I'm not entirely sure that the stuff behind the not-beautiful is going to be all that alluring, either. And one written-in-stone, heartbreaking truth about this guy. Truth:Edward Willing died in 1916.
Melissa Jensen (The Fine Art of Truth or Dare)
Ella?” Cinder asked when things got quiet. “Are you there?” He sounded hesitant. “Welcome to my life,” I said with a sigh of defeat. “Sorry about that.” “It’s okay.” It was definitely not okay. I was so humiliated. It was a miracle I wasn’t crying. I think that was only because I was still in so much shock. “Look, thanks for giving me your phone number, but maybe this is a bad time.” My dad scrambled to his feet, waving his hands at me. “No! You don’t have to end your call. We’ll give you some privacy.” He glanced at both Jennifer and Juliette. “Won’t we, ladies?” His blatant desperation for me to talk to someone—even a stranger from the Internet—was as embarrassing as Anastasia’s outburst. Even worse, Jennifer was just as bad. “Of course! You go ahead and talk to your boyfriend, Ella,” she squealed. “We can keep an eye on you from the kitchen. I have to get dinner started anyway.” While I was busy dying from her use of the word boyfriend, she hopped off the elliptical. She hurried to catch up to my dad, seeming more than happy to finish her workout early. As they started up the steps, they both turned back to Juliette, who had sprawled out on the couch instead of getting up. “I was here first,” Juliette said in response to their expectant looks. “There’s no way I’m going anywhere near the upstairs with Ana in the mood she’s in, and I really don’t care about Ella’s love life. Besides, she’s not supposed to be alone, anyway. What if she tries to throw herself off the balcony or something?” Was there anyone in the world that didn’t feel the need to humiliate me? I glared at Juliette, and she just waved a pair of earbuds at me and shoved them in her ears. “I’ll turn the volume up.” My dad and Jennifer both gave me such hopeful looks that I couldn’t argue anymore. I rolled my eyes and made my way over to the armchair my father had been lounging in. Once Dad and Jennifer were gone, I glanced over at the couch. Juliette was already doing what she did best—ignoring me. She was bobbing her head along with her music as she read out of a textbook. I doubted she could hear me, but I spoke softly anyway, just in case. “Cinder? Are you still there?” “I didn’t realize upping our relationship to phone buddies would come with a boyfriend title. Does that mean if we ever meet in person, we’ll have to get married?” Surprised, I burst into laughter. Juliette glanced at me with one raised eyebrow, but went back to her textbook without saying anything.
Kelly Oram (Cinder & Ella (Cinder & Ella, #1))
Like anyone would fall in love that fast. It’s the whole clichéd love-at-first-sight bit, right?” Vince said. “So, you don’t believe in love at first sight?” I asked him. “What, you do?” Shawn piped up. I tapped my pen for a second. On the spot again. I could tell him my opinion on the matter was irrelevant, but I decided to pursue the question. “I suppose that depends on a number of factors, not the least of which is knowing yourself well enough to understand what type of person you’re looking for,” I said. “If you know which qualities you admire most in someone, you’re more likely to recognize that person when you meet her…or him. I prefer to call it recognition at first sight.” I avoided looking at Aubrey, but I had to meet her eyes as she posed another question. “In your opinion, what are the other factors contributing to this recognition at first sight, Daniel?” she asked casually. All eyes were on me. “Frame of mind, I suppose. There are times when you simply couldn’t fall in love if you tried because you’re not in the right place in your life. The conditions surrounding the actual meeting might also hold some sway. Certain circumstances seem to set the scene for emotional vulnerability, and you get swept away in the moment.
Georgina Guthrie (Better Deeds than Words (Words, #2))
Christy dug her hand deeper into her shoulder bag. Scanning the papers she finally located there, she found no phone numbers or addresses listed. All the plans had been made in such haste. All she knew was that someone was supposed to meet her here. She was here, and he or she wasn't. Never in her life had she felt so completely alone. Stranded with nowhere to turn. A prayer came quickly to her lips. "Father God, I'm at Your mercy here. I know You're in control. Please show me what to do." Suddenly she heard a voice calling to her. "Kilikina!" Christy's heart stopped. Only one person in the entire world had ever called her by her Hawaiian name. She spun around. "Kilikina," called out the tall, blond surfer who was running toward her. Christy looked up into the screaming silver-blue eyes that could only belong to one person. "Todd?" she whispered, convinced she was hallucinating. "Kilikina," Todd wrapped his arms around her so tightly that for an instant she couldn't breathe. He held her a long time. Crying. She could feel his warm tears on her neck. She knew this had to be real. But how could it be? "Todd?" she whispered again. "How? I mean, what...? I don't..." Todd pulled away, and for the first time she noticed the big gouquet of white carnations in his hand. They were now a bit squashed. "For you," he said, his eyes clearing and his rich voice sounding calm and steady. Then, seeing her shocked expression, he asked, "You really didn't know I was here, did you?" Christy shook her head, unable to find any words. "Didn't Dr. Benson tell you?" She shook her head again. "You mean you came all this way by yourself, and you didn't even know I was here?" Now it was Todd's turn to look surprised. "No, I thought you were in Papua New Guinea or something. I had no idea you were here!" "They needed me here more," Todd said with a chin-up gesture toward the beach. "It's the perfect place for me." With a wide smile spreading above his square jaw, he said, "Ever since I received the fax yesterday saying they were sending you, I've been out of my mind with joy! Kilikina, you can't imagine how I've been feeling." Christy had never heard him talk like this before. Todd took the bouquet from her and placed it on top of her luggage. Then, grasping both her quivering hands in his and looking into her eyes, he said, "Don't you see? There is no way you or I could ever have planned this. It's from God." The shocked tears finally caught up to Christy's eyes, and she blinked to keep Todd in focus. "It is," she agreed. "God brought us back together, didn't He?" A giggle of joy and delight danced from her lips. "Do you remember what I said when you gave me back your bracelet?" Todd asked. "I said that if God ever brought us back together, I would put that bracelet back on your wrist, and that time, it would stay on forever." Christy nodded. She had replayed the memory of that day a thousand times in her mind. It had seemed impossible that God would bring them back together. Christy's heart pounded as she realized that God, in His weird way, had done the impossible. Todd reached into his pocket and pulled out the "Forever" ID bracelet. He tenderly held Christy's wrist, and circling it with the gold chain, he secured the clasp. Above their heads a fresh ocean wind blew through the palm trees. It almost sounded as if the trees were applauding. Christy looked up from her wrist and met Todd's expectant gaze. Deep inside, Christy knew that with the blessing of the Lord, Todd had just stepped into the garden of her heart. In the holiness of that moment, his silver-blue eyes embraced hers and he whispered, "I promise, Kilikina. Forever." "Forever," Christy whispered back. Then gently, reverently, Todd and Christy sealed their forever promise with a kiss.
Robin Jones Gunn (A Promise Is Forever (Christy Miller, #12))
SURELY YOU SEE from this that you shouldn’t take your own experience as the rule of thumb by which you judge other contemplatives. For example, those who must work really hard to reach the peak of contemplation, and then only get there occasionally, might make the mistake of using their own experience as the standard for other contemplatives. We must remember that not everyone has a difficult journey to the exceptional ecstasy. Some walk a simple path, routinely meeting the miraculous in the ordinary. On the other hand, these contemplatives must not make the opposite assumption that their experience is universal. Not everyone feels the joy of contemplation whenever they wish. Avoid both close-minded ways of thinking, for you can’t judge another’s unique contemplative experience by your own. Besides, you can’t know God’s wisdom; someone who has struggled a long time with prayer only to know the extraordinary transcendent moment may one day have these moments whenever they want and as often as they want. Moses is a good example of this. To start with, he only rarely caught a glimpse of the Ark’s form and not without first working awfully hard on the mountain. But later, when the Ark was kept in the valley, Moses could see it as often as he liked.1
Carmen Acevedo Butcher (The Cloud of Unknowing: With the Book of Privy Counsel)
...[W]hen's it all going to f***ing stop? I’m going to jump from rock to rock for the rest of my life until there aren’t any rocks left? I’m going to run each time I get itchy feet? Because I get them about once a quarter, along with the utilities bills. More than that, even… I’ve been thinking with my guts since I was fourteen years old, and frankly speaking, between you and me, I have come to the conclusion that my guts have s*** for brains. I know what's wrong with Laura. What's wrong with Laura is that I'll never see her for the first or second or third time again. I'll never spend two or three days in a sweat trying to remember what she looks like, never again will I get to a pub half an hour early to meet her staring at the same article in a magazine and looking at my watch every thirty seconds, never again will thinking about her set something off in me like "Let's Get it On" sets something off in me. And sure, I love her and like her and have good conversations, nice sex and intense rows with her, and she looks after me and worries about me and arranges the Groucho for me, but what does all that count for, when someone with bare arms, a nice smile, and a pair of Doc Martens comes into the shop and says she wants to interview me? Nothing, that's what, but maybe it should count for a bit more.
Nick Hornby (High Fidelity)
So how, you might ask, do I exclude generously? This issue comes up a lot when I’m organizing large, complicated meetings for clients. These are some of the questions I ask them: Who not only fits but also helps fulfill the gathering’s purpose? Who threatens the purpose? Who, despite being irrelevant to the purpose, do you feel obliged to invite? When my clients answer the first two questions, they begin to grasp their gathering’s true purpose. Obviously people who fit and fulfill your gathering’s purpose need to be there. And, though this one is harder, people who manifestly threaten the purpose are easy to justify excluding. (That doesn’t mean they always end up being excluded. Politeness and habit often defeat the facilitator. But the hosts still know deep down who shouldn’t be there.) It is the third question where purpose begins to be tested. Someone threatens a gathering’s purpose? You can see why to keep him out. But what’s wrong with someone who’s irrelevant to the purpose? What’s wrong with inviting Bob? Every gathering has its Bobs. Bob in marketing. Bob your friend’s girlfriend’s brother. Bob your visiting aunt. Bob is perfectly pleasant and doesn’t actively sabotage your gathering. Most Bobs are grateful to be included. They sometimes bring extra effort or an extra bottle of wine. You’ve probably been a Bob. I certainly have. The crux of excluding thoughtfully and intentionally is mustering the courage to keep away your Bobs. It is to shift your perception so that you understand that people who aren’t fulfilling the purpose of your gathering are detracting from it, even if they do nothing to detract from it. This is because once they are actually in your presence, you (and other considerate guests) will want to welcome and include them, which takes time and attention away from what (and who) you’re actually there for. Particularly in smaller gatherings, every single person affects the dynamics of a group. Excluding well and purposefully is reframing who and what you are being generous to—your guests and your purpose.
Priya Parker (The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters)
Imagine going a long time without seeing someone you love. Then after months or years getting the moment to see them and catch up. I think that's what death is like. Going a long time and missing them a lot, more and more each day. No matter how many years go by you miss them just as much as the first day they left. I miss my mom. Its been years. Its easier to manage but I miss her more and more. But I often think of the moment we will meet again and catch up again. In living life going a long time not seeing someone is tough then catching up right where you left off BUT imagine in death how powerful the feeling to see them again must be. Death is getting the chance to catch up and see them again. Experiencing the butterflies and that special high that is felt all over your body. Do not fear death. Embrace it as you do life. In life, love hard! Life moves fast. For when your time comes you have a chance to love hard again and catch up with those that left, those you've missed and those that missed you. Someone is there counting the days to seeing you again. Some you may not expect or some you've missed just as much. Don't fear what you think you're leaving behind. Don't fear at all. For what you leave is temporary, the living will too join you as you wait for them. And, that moment to catch up is worth the wait. You will pick up right where you left off as if time did not pass.
Jill Telford
Risking a glance at the dignified young man beside her- what was his name?- Mr. Arthurson, Arterton?- Pandora decided to try her hand at some small talk. "It was very fine weather today, wasn't it?" she said. He set down his flatware and dabbed at both corners of his mouth with his napkin before replying. "Yes, quite fine." Encouraged, Pandora asked, "What kind of clouds do you like better- cumulus or stratocumulus?" He regarded her with a slight frown. After a long pause, he asked, "What is the difference?" "Well, cumulus are the fluffier, rounder clouds, like this heap of potatoes on my plate." Using her fork, Pandora spread, swirled, and dabbed the potatoes. "Stratocumulus are flatter and can form lines or waves- like this- and can either form a large mass or break into smaller pieces." He was expressionless as he watched her. "I prefer flat clouds that look like a blanket." "Altostratus?" Pandora asked in surprise, setting down her fork. "But those are the boring clouds. Why do you like them?" "They usually mean it's going to rain. I like rain." This showed promise of actually turning into a conversation. "I like to walk in the rain, too," Pandora exclaimed. "No, I don't like to walk in it. I like to stay in the house." After casting a disapproving glance at her plate, the man returned his attention to eating. Chastened, Pandora let out a noiseless sigh. Picking up her fork, she tried to inconspicuously push her potatoes into a proper heap again. Fact #64 Never sculpt your food to illustrate a point during small talk. Men don't like it. As Pandora looked up, she discovered Phoebe's gaze on her. She braced inwardly for a sarcastic remark. But Phoebe's voice was gentle as she spoke. "Henry and I once saw a cloud over the English Channel that was shaped in a perfect cylinder. It went on as far as the eye could see. Like someone had rolled up a great white carpet and set it in the sky." It was the first time Pandora had ever heard Phoebe mention her late husband's name. Tentatively, she asked, "Did you and he ever try to find shapes in the clouds?" "Oh, all the time. Henry was very clever- he could find dolphins, ships, elephants, and roosters. I could never see a shape until he pointed it out. But then it would appear as if by magic." Phoebe's gray eyes turned crystalline with infinite variations of tenderness and wistfulness. Although Pandora had experienced grief before, having lost both parents and a brother, she understood that this was a different kind of loss, a heavier weight of pain. Filled with compassion and sympathy, she dared to say, "He... he sounds like a lovely man." Phoebe smiled faintly, their gazes meeting in a moment of warm connection. "He was," she said. "Someday I'll tell you about him." And finally Pandora understood where a little small talk about the weather might lead.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Spring (The Ravenels, #3))
Once again this unspeakable man had caused her to make a complete fool of herself, and the realization made her eyes blaze with renewed fury as she turned her head and looked at him. Despite Ian’s apparent nonchalance he had been watching her closely, and he stiffened, sensing instinctively that she was suddenly and inexplicably angrier than before. He nodded to the gun, and when he spoke there was no more mockery in his voice; instead it was carefully neutral. “I think there are a few things you ought to consider before you use that.” Though she had no intention of using it, Elizabeth listened attentively as he continued in that same helpful voice. “First of all, you’ll have to be very fast and very calm if you intend to shoot me and reload before Jake there gets to you. Second, I think it’s only fair to warn you that there’s going to be a great deal of blood all over the place. I’m not complaining, you understand, but I think it’s only right to warn you that you’re never again going to be able to wear that charming gown you have on.” Elizabeth felt her stomach lurch. “You’ll hang, of course,” he continued conversationally, “but that won’t be nearly as distressing as the scandal you’ll have to face first.” Too disgusted with herself and with him to react to that last mocking remark, Elizabeth put her chin up and managed to say with great dignity, “I’ve had enough of this, Mr. Thornton. I did not think anything could equal your swinish behavior at our prior meetings, but you’ve managed to do it. Unfortunately, I am not so ill-bred as you and therefore have scruples against assaulting someone who is weaker than I, which is what I would be doing if I were to shoot an unarmed man. Lucinda, we are leaving,” she said, then she glanced back at her silent adversary, who’d taken a threatening step, and she shook her head, saying with extreme, mocking civility, “No, please-do not bother to see us out, sir, there’s no need. Besides, I wish to remember you just as you are at this moment-helpless and thwarted.” It was odd, but now, at the low point of her life, Elizabeth felt almost exhilarated because she was finally doing something to avenge her pride instead of meekly accepting her fate. Lucinda had marched out onto the porch already, and Elizabeth tried to think of something to dissuade him from retrieving his gun when she threw it away outside. She decided to repeat his own advice, which she began to do as she backed away toward the door. “I know you’re loath to see us leave like this,” she said, her voice and her hand betraying a slight, fearful tremor. “However, before you consider coming after us, I beg you will take your own excellent advice and pause to consider if killing me is worth hanging for.” Whirling on her heel, Elizabeth took one running step, then cried out in pained surprise as she was jerked off her feet and a hard blow to her forearm sent the gun flying to the floor at the same time her arm was yanked up and twisted behind her back. “Yes,” he said in an awful voice near her ear, “I actually think it would be worth it.” Just when she thought her arm would surely snap, her captor gave her a hard shove that sent her stumbling headlong out into the yard, and the door slammed shut behind her. “Well! I never,” Lucinda said, her bosom heaving with rage as she glowered at the closed door. “Neither have I,” said Elizabeth, shaking dirt off her hem and deciding to retreat with as much dignity as possible. “We can talk about what a madman he is once we’re down the path, out of sight of the house. So if you’ll please take that end of the trunk?” With a black look Lucinda complied, and they marched down the path, both of them concentrating on keeping their backs as straight as possible.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
Tobias is standing in the hallway outside the dormitory. I am breathless, and I can feel my heartbeat even in my fingertips; I am overwhelmed, teeming with loss and wonder and anger and longing. “Tris,” Tobias says, his brow furrowed with concern. “Are you all right?” I shake my head, still struggling for air, and crush him against the wall with my body, my lips finding his. For a moment he tries to push me away, but then he must decide that he doesn’t care if I’m all right, doesn’t care if he’s all right, doesn’t care. We haven’t been alone together in days. Weeks. Months. His fingers slide into my hair, and I hold on to his arms to stay steady as we press together like two blades at a stalemate. He is stronger than anyone I know, and warmer than anyone else realizes; he is a secret that I have kept, and will keep, for the rest of my life. He leans down and kisses my throat, hard, and his hands smooth over me, securing themselves at my waist. I hook my fingers in his belt loops, my eyes closing. In that moment I know exactly what I want; I want to peel away all the layers of clothing between us, strip away everything that separates us, the past and the present and the future. I hear footsteps and laughter at the end of the hallway, and we break apart. Someone--probably Uriah--whistles, but I barely hear it over the pulsing in my ears. Tobias’s eyes meet mine, and it’s like the first time I really looked at him during my initiation, after my fear simulation; we stare too long, too intently. “Shut up,” I call out to Uriah, without looking away. Uriah and Christina walk into the dormitory, and Tobias and I follow them, like nothing happened.
Veronica Roth (Allegiant (Divergent, #3))
What to Make a Game About? Your dog, your cat, your child, your boyfriend, your girlfriend, your mother, your father, your grandmother, your friends, your imaginary friends, your summer vacation, your winter in the mountains, your childhood home, your current home, your future home, your first job, your worst job, the job you wish you had. Your first date, your first kiss, your first fuck, your first true love, your second true love, your relationship, your kinks, your deepest secrets, your fantasies, your guilty pleasures, your guiltless pleasures, your break-up, your make-up, your undying love, your dying love. Your hopes, your dreams, your fears, your secrets, the dream you had last night, the thing you were afraid of when you were little, the thing you’re afraid of now, the secret you think will come back and bite you, the secret you were planning to take to your grave, your hope for a better world, your hope for a better you, your hope for a better day. The passage of time, the passage of memory, the experience of forgetting, the experience of remembering, the experience of meeting a close friend from long ago on the street and not recognizing her face, the experience of meeting a close friend from long ago and not being recognized, the experience of aging, the experience of becoming more dependent on the people who love you, the experience of becoming less dependent on the people you hate. The experience of opening a business, the experience of opening the garage, the experience of opening your heart, the experience of opening someone else’s heart via risky surgery, the experience of opening the window, the experience of opening for a famous band at a concert when nobody in the audience knows who you are, the experience of opening your mind, the experience of taking drugs, the experience of your worst trip, the experience of meditation, the experience of learning a language, the experience of writing a book. A silent moment at a pond, a noisy moment in the heart of a city, a moment that caught you unprepared, a moment you spent a long time preparing for, a moment of revelation, a moment of realization, a moment when you realized the universe was not out to get you, a moment when you realized the universe was out to get you, a moment when you were totally unaware of what was going on, a moment of action, a moment of inaction, a moment of regret, a moment of victory, a slow moment, a long moment, a moment you spent in the branches of a tree. The cruelty of children, the brashness of youth, the wisdom of age, the stupidity of age, a fairy tale you heard as a child, a fairy tale you heard as an adult, the lifestyle of an imaginary creature, the lifestyle of yourself, the subtle ways in which we admit authority into our lives, the subtle ways in which we overcome authority, the subtle ways in which we become a little stronger or a little weaker each day. A trip on a boat, a trip on a plane, a trip down a vanishing path through a forest, waking up in a darkened room, waking up in a friend’s room and not knowing how you got there, waking up in a friend’s bed and not knowing how you got there, waking up after twenty years of sleep, a sunset, a sunrise, a lingering smile, a heartfelt greeting, a bittersweet goodbye. Your past lives, your future lives, lies that you’ve told, lies you plan to tell, lies, truths, grim visions, prophecy, wishes, wants, loves, hates, premonitions, warnings, fables, adages, myths, legends, stories, diary entries. Jumping over a pit, jumping into a pool, jumping into the sky and never coming down. Anything. Everything.
Anna Anthropy (Rise of the Videogame Zinesters: How Freaks, Normals, Amateurs, Artists, Dreamers, Drop-outs, Queers, Housewives, and People Like You Are Taking Back an Art Form)
Only in America do we ask our writers to believe they don't matter as a condition of writing. It is time to end this. Much of my time as a student was spent doubting the importance of my work, doubting the power it had to reach anyone or do anything of significance. I was already tired o hearing about how the pen was mightier than the sword by the time I was studying writing. Swords, it seemed to me, won all the time. By the time I found that Auden quote -- "poetry makes nothing happen" -- I was more than ready to believe what I thought he was saying. But books were still to me as they had been when I found them: the only magic. My mother's most common childhood memory of me is of standing next to me trying to be heard over the voice of the page. I didn't really commit to writing until I understood that it meant making that happen for someone else. And in order to do that, I had to commit the chaos inside of me to an intricate order, an articulate complexity. To write is to tell a ticket to escape, not from the truth, but into it. My job is to make something happen in a space barely larger than the span of your hand, behind your eyes, distilled out of all that I have carried, from friends, teachers, people met on planes, people I have only seen in my mind, all my mother and father ever did, every favorite book, until it meets and distills from you, the reader, something out of the everything it finds in you. All of this meets along the edge of a sentence like this on, as if the sentence is a fence, with you on one side and me on the other. When the writing works best, I feel like I could poke one of these words out of place and find the writer's eye there, looking through to me. If you don't know what I mean, what I mean is this: when I speak of walking through a snowstorm, you remember a night from your childhood full of snow, or from last winter, say, driving home at night, surprised by a storm. When I speak of my dead friends and poetry, you may remember your own dead friends, or if none of your friends are dead, you may imagine how it might feel to have them die. You may think of your poems, or poems you've seen or heard. You may remember you don't like poetry. Something new is made from my memories and yours as you read this. It is not my memory, not yours, and it is born and walks the bridges and roads of your mind, as long as it can. After it has left mine. All my life I've been told this isn't important, that it doesn't matter, that it could never matter. And yet I think it does. I think it is the real reason the people who would take everything from us say this. I think it's the same reason that when fascists come to power, writers are among the first to go to jail. And that is the point of writing.
Alexander Chee (How to Write an Autobiographical Novel)
How did you find me?" "I've followed you for a long time." He must have mistaken the look on my face for alarm or fear, and said, "Not literally. I just mean I never lost track." But it wasn't fear, or anything like that. It was an instant of realization I'd have a lot in the coming days: I'd been thinking of him as coming back from the dead, but the fact was he'd been there all along. He'd been alive when I cried in my room over him being gone. He'd been alive when I started a new school without him, the day I made my first friend a Jones Hall, the time I ran into Ethan at the library. Cameron Quick and I had existed simultaneously on the planet during all of those moments. It didn't seem possible that we could have been leading separate lives, not after everything we'd been through together. "...then I looked you up online," he was saying, "and found your mom's wedding announcement from before you changed your name. I didn't even need to do that. It's easy to find someone you never lost." I struggled to understand what he was saying. "You mean...you could have written to me, or seen me, sooner?" "I wanted to. Almost did, a bunch of times." "Why didn't you? I wish you had." And I did, I wished it so much, imagined how it would have been to know all those years that he was there, thinking of me. "Things seemed different for you," he said, matter-of-fact. "Better. I could tell that from the bits of information I found...like an interview with the parents who were putting their kids in your school when it first started. Or an article about that essay contest you won a couple years ago." "You knew about that?" He nodded. "That one had a picture. I could see just from looking at you that you had a good thing going. Didn't need me coming along and messing it up." "Don't say that," I said quickly. Then: "You were never part of what I wanted to forget." "Nice of you to say, but I know it's not true." I knew what he was thinking, could see that he'd been carrying around the same burden all those years as me. "You didn't do anything wrong." It was getting cold on the porch, and late, and the looming topic scared me. I got up. "Let's go in. I can make coffee or hot chocolate or something?" "I have to go." "No! Already?" I didn't want to let him out of my sight. "Don't worry," he said. "Just have to go to work. I'll be around." "Give me your number. I'll call you." "I don't have a phone right now." "Find me at school," I said, "or anytime. Eat lunch with us tomorrow." He didn't answer. "Really," I continued, "you should meet my friends and stuff." "You have a boyfriend," he finally said. "I saw you guys holding hands." I nodded. "Ethan." "For how long?" "Three months, almost." I couldn't picture Cameron Quick dating anyone, though he must have at some point. If I'd found Ethan, I was sure Cameron had some Ashley or Becca or Caitlin along the way. I didn't ask. "He's nice," I added. "He's..." I don't know what I'd planned to say, but whatever it was it seemed insignificant so I finished that sentence with a shrug. "You lost your lisp." And about twenty-five pounds, I thought. "I guess speech therapy worked for both of us." He smiled. "I always liked that, you know. Your lisp. It was...you." He started down the porch steps. "See you tomorrow, okay?" "Yeah," I said, unable to take my eyes off of him. "Tomorrow.
Sara Zarr (Sweethearts)
Meeting the Prince of Wales I’ve known her [the Queen] since I was tiny so it was no big deal. No interest in Andrew and Edward--never thought about Andrew. I kept thinking, ‘Look at the life they have, how awful’ so I remember him coming to Althorp to stay, my husband, and the first impact was ‘God, what a sad man.’ He came with his Labrador. My sister was all over him like a bad rash and I thought, ‘God, he must really hate that.’ I kept out of the way. I remember being a fat, podgy, no make-up, unsmart lady but I made a lot of noise and he liked that and he came up to me after dinner and we had a big dance and he said: ‘Will you show me the gallery?’ and I was just about to show him the gallery and my sister Sarah comes up and tells me to push off and I said ‘At least, let me tell you where the switches are to the gallery because you won’t know where they are,’ and I disappeared. And he was charm himself and when I stood next to him the next day, a 16-year old, for someone like that to show you any attention--I was just so sort of amazed. ‘Why would anyone like him be interested in me?’ and it was interest. That was it for about two years. Saw him off and on with Sarah and Sarah got frightfully excited about the whole thing, then she saw something different happening which I hadn’t twigged on to, i.e. when he had his 30th birthday dance I was asked too. ‘Why is Diana coming as well?’ [my] sister asked. I said: ‘Well, I don’t know but I’d like to come.’ ‘Oh, all right then,’ that sort of thing. Had a very nice time at the dance--fascinating. I wasn’t at all intimidated by the surroundings [Buckingham Palace]. I thought, amazing place. Then I was asked to stay at the de Passes in July 1980 by Philip de Pass who is the son. ‘Would you like to come and stay for a couple of nights down at Petworth because we’ve got the Prince of Wales staying. You’re a young blood, you might amuse him.’ So I said ‘OK.’ So I sat next to him and Charles came in. He was all over me again and it was very strange. I thought ‘Well, this isn’t very cool.’ I thought men were supposed not to be so obvious, I thought this was very odd. The first night we sat down on a bale at the barbecue at this house and he’d just finished with Anna Wallace. I said: ‘You looked so sad when you walked up the aisle at Lord Mountbatten’s funeral.’ I said: ‘It was the most tragic thing I’ve ever seen. My heart bled for you when I watched. I thought, “It’s wrong, you’re lonely--you should be with somebody to look after you.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
Alice's Cutie Code TM Version 2.1 - Colour Expansion Pack (aka Because this stuff won’t stop being confusing and my friends are mean edition) From Red to Green, with all the colours in between (wait, okay, that rhymes, but green to red makes more sense. Dang.) From Green to Red, with all the colours in between Friend Sampling Group: Fennie, Casey, Logan, Aisha and Jocelyn Green  Friends’ Reaction: Induces a minimum amount of warm and fuzzies. If you don’t say “aw”, you’re “dead inside”  My Reaction: Sort of agree with friends minus the “dead inside” but because that’s a really awful thing to say. Puppies are a good example. So is Walter Bishop. Green-Yellow  Friends’ Reaction: A noticeable step up from Green warm and fuzzies. Transitioning from cute to slightly attractive. Acceptable crush material. “Kissing.”  My Reaction: A good dance song. Inspirational nature photos. Stuff that makes me laugh. Pairing: Madison and Allen from splash Yellow  Friends’ Reaction: Something that makes you super happy but you don’t know why. “Really pretty, but not too pretty.” Acceptable dating material. People you’d want to “bang on sight.”  My Reaction: Love songs for sure! Cookies for some reason or a really good meal. Makes me feel like it’s possible to hold sunshine, I think. Character: Maxon from the selection series. Music: Carly Rae Jepsen Yellow-Orange  Friends’ Reaction: (When asked for non-sexual examples, no one had an answer. From an objective perspective, *pushes up glasses* this is the breaking point. Answers definitely skew toward romantic or sexual after this.)  My Reaction: Something that really gets me in my feels. Also art – oil paintings of landscapes in particular. (What is with me and scenery? Maybe I should take an art class) Character: Dean Winchester. Model: Liu Wren. Orange  Friends’ Reaction: “So pretty it makes you jealous. Or gay.”  “Definitely agree about the gay part. No homo, though. There’s just some really hot dudes out there.”(Feenie’s side-eye was so intense while the others were answering this part LOLOLOLOLOL.) A really good first date with someone you’d want to see again.  My Reaction: People I would consider very beautiful. A near-perfect season finale. I’ve also cried at this level, which was interesting. o Possible tie-in to romantic feels? Not sure yet. Orange-Red  Friends’ Reaction: “When lust and love collide.” “That Japanese saying ‘koi no yokan.’ It’s kind of like love at first sight but not really. You meet someone and you know you two have a future, like someday you’ll fall in love. Just not right now.” (<-- I like this answer best, yes.) “If I really, really like a girl and I’m interested in her as a person, guess. I’d be cool if she liked the same games as me so we could play together.”  My Reaction: Something that gives me chills or has that time-stopping factor. Lots of staring. An extremely well-decorated room. Singers who have really good voices and can hit and hold superb high notes, like Whitney Houston. Model: Jasmine Tooke. Paring: Abbie and Ichabod from Sleepy Hollow o Romantic thoughts? Someday my prince (or princess, because who am I kidding?) will come? Red (aka the most controversial code)  Friends’ Reaction: “Panty-dropping levels” (<-- wtf Casey???).  “Naked girls.” ”Ryan. And ripped dudes who like to cook topless.”  “K-pop and anime girls.” (<-- Dear. God. The whole table went silent after he said that. Jocelyn was SO UNCOMFORTABLE but tried to hide it OMG it was bad. Fennie literally tried to slap some sense into him.)  My Reaction: Uncontrollable staring. Urge to touch is strong, which I must fight because not everyone is cool with that. There may even be slack-jawed drooling involved. I think that’s what would happen. I’ve never seen or experienced anything that I would give Red to.
Claire Kann (Let's Talk About Love)
This book festival...grew to attract thousands of visitors every year. Now they felt like they needed a new purpose. The festival’s continuing existence felt assured. What was it for? What could it do? How could it make itself count? The festival’s leadership reached out to me for advice on these questions. What kind of purpose could be their next great animating force? Someone had the idea that the festival’s purpose could be about stitching together the community. Books were, of course, the medium. But couldn’t an ambitious festival set itself the challenge of making the city more connected? Couldn’t it help turn strong readers into good citizens? That seemed to me a promising direction—a specific, unique, disputable lodestar for a book festival that could guide its construction...We began to brainstorm. I proposed an idea: Instead of starting each session with the books and authors themselves, why not kick things off with a two-minute exercise in which audience members can meaningfully, if briefly, connect with one another? The host could ask three city- or book-related questions, and then ask each member of the audience to turn to a stranger to discuss one of them. What brought you to this city—whether birth or circumstance? What is a book that really affected you as a child? What do you think would make us a better city? Starting a session with these questions would help the audience become aware of one another. It would also break the norm of not speaking to a stranger, and perhaps encourage this kind of behavior to continue as people left the session. And it would activate a group identity—the city’s book lovers—that, in the absence of such questions, tends to stay dormant. As soon as this idea was mentioned, someone in the group sounded a worry. “But I wouldn’t want to take away time from the authors,” the person said. There it was—the real, if unspoken, purpose rousing from its slumber and insisting on its continued primacy. Everyone liked the idea of “book festival as community glue” in theory. But at the first sign of needing to compromise on another thing in order to honor this new something, alarm bells rang. The group wasn’t ready to make the purpose of the book festival the stitching of community if it meant changing the structure of the sessions, or taking time away from something else. Their purpose, whether or not they admitted it, was the promotion of books and reading and the honoring of authors. It bothered them to make an author wait two minutes for citizens to bond. The book festival was doing what many of us do: shaping a gathering according to various unstated motivations, and making half-hearted gestures toward loftier goals.
Priya Parker (The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters)
Making the most of an experience: Living fully is extolled everywhere in popular culture. I have only to turn on the television at random to be assailed with the following messages: “It’s the best a man can get.” “It’s like having an angel by your side.” “Every move is smooth, every word is cool. I never want to lose that feeling.” “You look, they smile. You win, they go home.” What is being sold here? A fantasy of total sensory pleasure, social status, sexual attraction, and the self-image of a winner. As it happens, all these phrases come from the same commercial for razor blades, but living life fully is part of almost any ad campaign. What is left out, however, is the reality of what it actually means to fully experience something. Instead of looking for sensory overload that lasts forever, you’ll find that the experiences need to be engaged at the level of meaning and emotion. Meaning is essential. If this moment truly matters to you, you will experience it fully. Emotion brings in the dimension of bonding or tuning in: An experience that touches your heart makes the meaning that much more personal. Pure physical sensation, social status, sexual attraction, and feeling like a winner are generally superficial, which is why people hunger for them repeatedly. If you spend time with athletes who have won hundreds of games or with sexually active singles who have slept with hundreds of partners, you’ll find out two things very quickly: (1) Numbers don’t count very much. The athlete usually doesn’t feel like a winner deep down; the sexual conqueror doesn’t usually feel deeply attractive or worthy. (2) Each experience brings diminishing returns; the thrill of winning or going to bed becomes less and less exciting and lasts a shorter time. To experience this moment, or any moment, fully means to engage fully. Meeting a stranger can be totally fleeting and meaningless, for example, unless you enter the individual’s world by finding out at least one thing that is meaningful to his or her life and exchange at least one genuine feeling. Tuning in to others is a circular flow: You send yourself out toward people; you receive them as they respond to you. Notice how often you don’t do that. You stand back and insulate yourself, sending out only the most superficial signals and receive little or nothing back. The same circle must be present even when someone else isn’t involved. Consider the way three people might observe the same sunset. The first person is obsessing over a business deal and doesn’t even see the sunset, even though his eyes are registering the photons that fall on their retinas. The second person thinks, “Nice sunset. We haven’t had one in a while.” The third person is an artist who immediately begins a sketch of the scene. The differences among the three are that the first person sent nothing out and received nothing back; the second allowed his awareness to receive the sunset but had no awareness to give back to it—his response was rote; the third person was the only one to complete the circle: He took in the sunset and turned it into a creative response that sent his awareness back out into the world with something to give. If you want to fully experience life, you must close the circle.
Deepak Chopra (The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of Your Life)
O, Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who turn to you. Amen. . When we meet someone and fall in love, we have a sense that the whole universe is on our side. I saw this happen today as the sun went down. And yet if something goes wrong, there is nothing left! No herons, no distant music, not even the taste of his lips. How is it possible for the beauty that was there only minutes before to vanish so quickly? . Life moves very fast. It rushes us from heaven to hell in a matter of seconds. . I smile and say nothing, . If I must be faithful to someone or something, then I have, first of all, to be faithful to myself. . Everything is an illusion - and that applies to material as well as spiritual things. . She had spent a lot of her life saying 'no' to things to which she would have liked to say 'yes', . My dear, it's better to be unhappy with a rich man than happy with a poor man, and over there you'll have far more chance of becoming an unhappy rich woman. . Love isn't that important. I didn't love your father at first, but money buys everything, even true love. . Hail Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who turn to you. Amen. . She would never find what she was looking for if she couldn't express herself. . At the moment, I'm far too lonely to think about love, but I have to believe that it will happen, that I will find a job and that I am here because I chose this fate. . Life always waits for some crisis to occur before revealing itself at its most brilliant. . A writer once said that it is not time that changes man, nor knowledge; the only thing that can change someone's mind is love. What nonsense! The person who wrote that clearly knew only one side of the coin. Love was undoubtedly one of the things capable of changing a person's whole life, from one moment to the next. . Again, she seemed like a stranger to herself. . I let fate choose which route I should take. . Some people were born to face life alone, and this is neither good nor bad, it is simply life. . I'm not a body with a soul, I'm a soul that has a visible part called the body. . She was doing it because she had nothing to lose, because her life was one of constant, day-to-day frustration. . Human beings can withstand a week without water, two weeks without food, many years of homelessness, but not loneliness. It is the worst of all tortures, the worst of all sufferings. . We are each of us responsible for our own feelings and cannot blame someone else for what we feel. . No one loses anyone, because no one owns anyone. . However tempted she was to continue, however prepared she was for the challenges she had met on her path, all these months living alone with herself had taught her that there is always a right moment to stop something. . He knew everything about her, although she knew nothing about him. . She had opened a door which she didn't know how to close. . Our experiences have been entirely different, but we are both desperate people. . Free yourself from something that cost your heart even more. . One moment, you have nothing, the next, you have more than you can cope with. . Does a soldier go to war in order to kill the enemy? No, he goes in order to die for his country. . What the eyes don't see, the heart doesn't grieve over. . Because we don't want to forget who we are - nor can we. . This was simply a place where people gathered to worship something they could not understand.
Paulo Coelho (Eleven Minutes)
Take the famous slogan on the atheist bus in London … “There’s probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.” … The word that offends against realism here is “enjoy.” I’m sorry—enjoy your life? Enjoy your life? I’m not making some kind of neo-puritan objection to enjoyment. Enjoyment is lovely. Enjoyment is great. The more enjoyment the better. But enjoyment is one emotion … Only sometimes, when you’re being lucky, will you stand in a relationship to what’s happening to you where you’ll gaze at it with warm, approving satisfaction. The rest of the time, you’ll be busy feeling hope, boredom, curiosity, anxiety, irritation, fear, joy, bewilderment, hate, tenderness, despair, relief, exhaustion … This really is a bizarre category error. But not necessarily an innocent one … The implication of the bus slogan is that enjoyment would be your natural state if you weren’t being “worried” by us believer … Take away the malignant threat of God-talk, and you would revert to continuous pleasure, under cloudless skies. What’s so wrong with this, apart from it being total bollocks? … Suppose, as the atheist bus goes by, that you are the fifty-something woman with the Tesco bags, trudging home to find out whether your dementing lover has smeared the walls of the flat with her own shit again. Yesterday when she did it, you hit her, and she mewled till her face was a mess of tears and mucus which you also had to clean up. The only thing that would ease the weight on your heart would be to tell the funniest, sharpest-tongued person you know about it: but that person no longer inhabits the creature who will meet you when you unlock the door. Respite care would help, but nothing will restore your sweetheart, your true love, your darling, your joy. Or suppose you’re that boy in the wheelchair, the one with the spasming corkscrew limbs and the funny-looking head. You’ve never been able to talk, but one of your hands has been enough under your control to tap out messages. Now the electrical storm in your nervous system is spreading there too, and your fingers tap more errors than readable words. Soon your narrow channel to the world will close altogether, and you’ll be left all alone in the hulk of your body. Research into the genetics of your disease may abolish it altogether in later generations, but it won’t rescue you. Or suppose you’re that skanky-looking woman in the doorway, the one with the rat’s nest of dreadlocks. Two days ago you skedaddled from rehab. The first couple of hits were great: your tolerance had gone right down, over two weeks of abstinence and square meals, and the rush of bliss was the way it used to be when you began. But now you’re back in the grind, and the news is trickling through you that you’ve fucked up big time. Always before you’ve had this story you tell yourself about getting clean, but now you see it isn’t true, now you know you haven’t the strength. Social services will be keeping your little boy. And in about half an hour you’ll be giving someone a blowjob for a fiver behind the bus station. Better drugs policy might help, but it won’t ease the need, and the shame over the need, and the need to wipe away the shame. So when the atheist bus comes by, and tells you that there’s probably no God so you should stop worrying and enjoy your life, the slogan is not just bitterly inappropriate in mood. What it means, if it’s true, is that anyone who isn’t enjoying themselves is entirely on their own. The three of you are, for instance; you’re all three locked in your unshareable situations, banged up for good in cells no other human being can enter. What the atheist bus says is: there’s no help coming … But let’s be clear about the emotional logic of the bus’s message. It amounts to a denial of hope or consolation, on any but the most chirpy, squeaky, bubble-gummy reading of the human situation. St Augustine called this kind of thing “cruel optimism” fifteen hundred years ago, and it’s still cruel.
Francis Spufford