Officer Dream Quotes

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To be, or not to be: that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep; No more; and by a sleep to say we end The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep; To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub; For in that sleep of death what dreams may come When we have shuffled off this mortal coil, Must give us pause: there's the respect That makes calamity of so long life; For who would bear the whips and scorns of time, The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely, The pangs of despised love, the law's delay, The insolence of office and the spurns That patient merit of the unworthy takes, When he himself might his quietus make With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear, To grunt and sweat under a weary life, But that the dread of something after death, The undiscover'd country from whose bourn No traveller returns, puzzles the will And makes us rather bear those ills we have Than fly to others that we know not of? Thus conscience does make cowards of us all; And thus the native hue of resolution Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought, And enterprises of great pith and moment With this regard their currents turn awry, And lose the name of action.--Soft you now! The fair Ophelia! Nymph, in thy orisons Be all my sins remember'd!
William Shakespeare (Hamlet)
We often dream about people from whom we receive a letter by the next post. I have ascertained on several occasions that at the moment when the dream occurred the letter was already lying in the post-office of the addressee.
C.G. Jung (Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle)
I left you sweet and smiling in this goddamed bed and I don’t see you or hear your voice for four days? Then I walk into your office and you give me attitude and tell me to kiss your ass because you’re in a pissy mood about some shit you refuse to share? No. You gotta know, darlin’, that shit don’t play with me.
Kristen Ashley (Motorcycle Man (Dream Man, #4))
Wanted, wanted: Dolores Haze. Hair: brown. Lips: scarlet. Age: five thousand three hundred days. Profession: none, or "starlet" Where are you hiding, Dolores Haze? Why are you hiding, darling? (I Talk in a daze, I walk in a maze I cannot get out, said the starling). Where are you riding, Dolores Haze? What make is the magic carpet? Is a Cream Cougar the present craze? And where are you parked, my car pet? Who is your hero, Dolores Haze? Still one of those blue-capped star-men? Oh the balmy days and the palmy bays, And the cars, and the bars, my Carmen! Oh Dolores, that juke-box hurts! Are you still dancin', darlin'? (Both in worn levis, both in torn T-shirts, And I, in my corner, snarlin'). Happy, happy is gnarled McFate Touring the States with a child wife, Plowing his Molly in every State Among the protected wild life. My Dolly, my folly! Her eyes were vair, And never closed when I kissed her. Know an old perfume called Soliel Vert? Are you from Paris, mister? L'autre soir un air froid d'opera m'alita; Son fele -- bien fol est qui s'y fie! Il neige, le decor s'ecroule, Lolita! Lolita, qu'ai-je fait de ta vie? Dying, dying, Lolita Haze, Of hate and remorse, I'm dying. And again my hairy fist I raise, And again I hear you crying. Officer, officer, there they go-- In the rain, where that lighted store is! And her socks are white, and I love her so, And her name is Haze, Dolores. Officer, officer, there they are-- Dolores Haze and her lover! Whip out your gun and follow that car. Now tumble out and take cover. Wanted, wanted: Dolores Haze. Her dream-gray gaze never flinches. Ninety pounds is all she weighs With a height of sixty inches. My car is limping, Dolores Haze, And the last long lap is the hardest, And I shall be dumped where the weed decays, And the rest is rust and stardust.
Vladimir Nabokov (Lolita)
But Hale didn't follow. For a second he just stood and stared out over his empire. It was like he was lost in a dream when he said, "So, your dad broke into the patent office." "Yep," Kat told him. "How many goats am I going to owe him for that?" "More than you've got, big guy. Way more than you've got.
Ally Carter (Perfect Scoundrels (Heist Society, #3))
The office’ is a cemetery of dreams.
Mokokoma Mokhonoana
Self-leaders do not look for followers because they are busily pursuing their influencial dreams that followers will trace and ask for. Followers look for influence and that can be obtained from self-leaders.
Israelmore Ayivor
I also suspected he was on the cover of the Denver Firefighters calendar, picture used for the month of July, he was that hot. If the firefighters merged with the police officers and they did a group shot that included Lawson and Jury, the paper might spontaneously combust.
Kristen Ashley (Mystery Man (Dream Man, #1))
Four shapeshifters are missing, the office smells like blood, you see some weird woman in a transparent gown who clearly shouldn't be in the building, and you run after her?" "It's my job to run after her." "Without backup?" "I am the backup.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Dreams (World of Kate Daniels, #4.5; Dali Harimau, #1))
A girl can dream can’t she? My new life plan is to stumble into every office of a CEO until I find a Christian Grey.
Sophie Monroe (Second Chance Romance)
Who the hell came up with this brilliant curse? (Aiden) It was the best I could manage in a hurry. (Leta) With those kinds of critical assessment skills you should consider running for political office. (Aiden)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Upon the Midnight Clear (Dark-Hunter, #12; Dream-Hunter, #2))
On his office wall he had a note to himself: 'Money is necessary--but it isn't too important.' Money meant for him to keep on writing and to go his own way.
Walter Farley (The Black Stallion (The Black Stallion, #1))
I’m an executioner, Leta, hence my Demon nickname. They send me in to take the heads off people and gods who’ve stepped over the line, usually only because someone has PMS. You want justice, Themis’s office is down the hall on the left. You want death and dismemberment, I’m your man…or rather god. (Deimos)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Upon the Midnight Clear (Dark-Hunter, #12; Dream-Hunter, #2))
Write it. Just write it. Write it on receipts in the car while you wait for your kid to finish their piano lessons, scribble on napkins at lunch with friends. Type on crappy typewriters or borrow computers if you have to. Fill notebooks with ink. Write inside your head while you’re in traffic and when you’re sitting in the doctor’s office. Write the truth, write lies. Write the perfect spouse. Write your dreams. Write your nightmares. Write while you cry about what you’re writing, write while you laugh out loud at your own words. Write until your fingers hurt, then keep writing more. Don’t ever stop writing. Don’t ever give up on your story, no matter what “they” say. Don’t ever let anybody take away your voice. You have something to say, your soul has a story to tell. Write it. There is never any reason to be afraid. Just write it and then put it out there for the world. Shove it up a flag pole and see who salutes it. Somebody will say it’s crap. So what? Somebody else will love it. And that’s what writing’s about. Love. Love of the art, love of the story, and love for and from the people who really understand your work. Nobody else matters. Love yourself. Love your work. Be brave. Just write.
Melodie Ramone
Exactly one month after he was convicted, when the lights were dimmed and the detention officers made a final sweep of the catwalk, Peter reached down and tugged off his right sock. He turned on his side in the lower bunk, so that he was facing the wall. He fed the sock into his mouth, stuffing it as far back as it would go. When it got hard to breathe, he fell into a dream. He was still eighteen, but it was the first day of kindergarten. He was carrying his backpack and his Superman lunch box. The orange school bus pulled up and, with a sigh, split open its gaping jaws. Peter climbed the steps and faced the back of the bus, but this time, he was the only student on it. He walked down the aisle to the very end, near the emergency exit. He put his lunch box down beside him and glanced out the rear window. It was so bright he thought the sun itself must be chasing them down the highway. 'Almost there,' a voice said, and Peter turned around to look at the driver. But just as there had been no passengers, there was no one at the wheel. Here was the amazing thing: in his dream, Peter wasn't scared. He knew, somehow, that he was headed exactly where he'd wanted to go.
Jodi Picoult (Nineteen Minutes)
At a dinner party in north London, I listened to friends bragging about buying Porsches with their bonuses and sending out from their offices for pizzas and clean shirts because they were clinching a deal and could not leave their desks. I wanted to tell them of a place where every family had lost a son or a husband or had a leg blown off, almost every child seen someone die in a rocket attack and where a small boy had told me his dream was to have a brightly coloured ball. But, when I began to talk about Afghanistan, I watched eyes glaze and felt as if I was trying to have a conversation about a movie no one else had seen.
Christina Lamb (The Sewing Circles of Herat: A Personal Voyage Through Afghanistan)
Hello there, officer, just out for a walk. Lovely evening for a dismemberment, isn't it?
Jeff Lindsay (Darkly Dreaming Dexter (Dexter, #1))
It’s late and most of the clerks are at home in their beds, dreaming of swimming in pools filled with real money.
Carla H. Krueger (From the Horse’s Mouth)
Office gossip annoyed him because it always proved better than the truth.
Philip K. Dick (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)
Despite being wealthy and having the two story houses of our American dreams, the marbled sink bathrooms, the offices with bay windows looking out at the water, their lives still lacked something. I became fascinated by the things hidden in dark corners and the self help books for hope. Maybe they just had longer hallways and bigger closets to hide the things that scared them.
Stephanie Land (Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother's Will to Survive)
Some made the long drop from the apartment or the office window; some took it quietly in two-car garages with the motor running; some used the native tradition of the Colt or Smith and Wesson; those well-constructed implements that end insomnia, terminate remorse, cure cancer, avoid bankruptcy, and blast an exit from intolerable positions by the pressure of a finger; those admirable American instruments so easily carried, so sure of effect, so well designed to end the American dream when it becomes a nightmare, their only drawback the mess they leave for relatives to clean up.
Ernest Hemingway (To Have and Have Not)
Men learn to regard rape as a moment in time; a discreet episode with a beginning, middle, and end. But for women, rape is thousands of moments that we fold into ourselves over a lifetime. Its' the day that you realize you can't walk to a friend's house anymore or the time when your aunt tells you to be nice because the boy was just 'stealing a kiss.' It's the evening you stop going to the corner store because, the night before, a stranger followed you home. It's the late hour that a father or stepfather or brother or uncle climbs into your bed. It's the time it takes you to write an email explaining that you're changing your major, even though you don't really want to, in order to avoid a particular professor. It's when you're racing to catch a bus, hear a person demand a blow job, and turn to see that it's a police officer. It's the second your teacher tells you to cover your shoulders because you'll 'distract the boys, and what will your male teachers do?' It's the minute you decide not to travel to a place you've always dreamed about visiting and are accused of being 'unadventurous.' It's the sting of knowing that exactly as the world starts expanding for most boys, it begins to shrink for you. All of this goes on all day, every day, without anyone really uttering the word rape in a way that grandfathers, fathers, brothers, uncles, teachers, and friends will hear it, let alone seriously reflect on what it means.
Soraya Chemaly (Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger)
In the long run, our customers are going to determine whether we have a job or whether we do not. Their attitude toward us is going to be the factor determining our success.
Bill McDermott (Winners Dream: A Journey from Corner Store to Corner Office)
I shouted to the cop who pulled us over for dreaming. I'm not high, officer, I just don't believe in time. Tomorrow, partly cloudy with a chance.
Ocean Vuong (Time Is a Mother)
The thing about the Lexington International Bank ladder was that it was very long, and climbing it was very exhausting, and so Andrew Brown didn't have a lot of time to think about whether he really wanted to get to the top of it—and besides, since so many other people were climbing too, the view from the top must be worth it. So he kept going. He worked hard. He put his heart and mind and soul into it. There was an opening for a position half a rung higher than he already was. With a promotion, he might get two hours a week of a secretary's time. He'd go to more important meetings, with more senior people, and have the opportunity to impress them, and if he did he might be promoted again and then... well, of course eventually he'd be running the whole office. It's important to have a dream: otherwise you might notice where you really are.
Naomi Alderman (Doctor Who: Borrowed Time)
My sweetheart, my love, my love, my love—do you know what—all the happiness of the world, the riches, power and adventures, all the promises of religions, all the enchantment of nature and even human fame are not worth your two letters. It was a night of horror, terrible anguish, when I imagined that your undelivered letter, stuck at some unknown post office, was being destroyed like a sick little stray dog . . . But today it arrived—and now it seems to me that in the mailbox where it was lying, in the sack where it was shaking, all the other letters absorbed, just by touching it, your unique charm and that that day all Germans received strange wonderful letters—letters that had gone mad because they had touched your handwriting. The thought that you exist is so divinely blissful in itself that it is ridiculous to talk about the everyday sadness of separation—a week’s, ten days’—what does it matter? since my whole life belongs to you. I wake at night and know that you are together with me,—I sense your sweet long legs, your neck through your hair, your trembling eyelashes—and then such happiness, such simmering bliss follows me in my dreams that I simply suffocate . . .
Vladimir Nabokov (Letters to Vera)
It was the general opinion of ancient nations, that the divinity alone was adequate to the important office of giving laws to men... and modern nations, in the consecrations of kings, and in several superstitious chimeras of divine rights in princes and nobles, are nearly unanimous in preserving remnants of it... Is the jealousy of power, and the envy of superiority, so strong in all men, that no considerations of public or private utility are sufficient to engage their submission to rules for their own happiness? Or is the disposition to imposture so prevalent in men of experience, that their private views of ambition and avarice can be accomplished only by artifice? — … There is nothing in which mankind have been more unanimous; yet nothing can be inferred from it more than this, that the multitude have always been credulous, and the few artful. The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature: and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. Although the detail of the formation of the American governments is at present little known or regarded either in Europe or America, it may hereafter become an object of curiosity. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had any interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the inspiration of heaven, any more than those at work upon ships or houses, or labouring in merchandize or agriculture: it will for ever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses. As Copley painted Chatham, West, Wolf, and Trumbull, Warren and Montgomery; as Dwight, Barlow, Trumbull, and Humphries composed their verse, and Belknap and Ramzay history; as Godfrey invented his quadrant, and Rittenhouse his planetarium; as Boylston practised inoculation, and Franklin electricity; as Paine exposed the mistakes of Raynal, and Jefferson those of Buffon, so unphilosophically borrowed from the Recherches Philosophiques sur les Américains those despicable dreams of de Pauw — neither the people, nor their conventions, committees, or sub-committees, considered legislation in any other light than ordinary arts and sciences, only as of more importance. Called without expectation, and compelled without previous inclination, though undoubtedly at the best period of time both for England and America, to erect suddenly new systems of laws for their future government, they adopted the method of a wise architect, in erecting a new palace for the residence of his sovereign. They determined to consult Vitruvius, Palladio, and all other writers of reputation in the art; to examine the most celebrated buildings, whether they remain entire or in ruins; compare these with the principles of writers; and enquire how far both the theories and models were founded in nature, or created by fancy: and, when this should be done, as far as their circumstances would allow, to adopt the advantages, and reject the inconveniences, of all. Unembarrassed by attachments to noble families, hereditary lines and successions, or any considerations of royal blood, even the pious mystery of holy oil had no more influence than that other of holy water: the people universally were too enlightened to be imposed on by artifice; and their leaders, or more properly followers, were men of too much honour to attempt it. Thirteen governments thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favour of the rights of mankind. [Preface to 'A Defence of the Constitutions of the United States of America', 1787]
John Adams (A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America)
Once upon a time, there lived a boy and a girl. The boy was eighteen and the girl sixteen. He was not unusually handsome, and she was not especially beautiful. They were just an ordinary lonely boy and an ordinary lonely girl, like all the others. But they believed with their whole hearts that somewhere in the world there lived the 100% perfect boy and the 100% perfect girl for them. Yes, they believed in a miracle. And that miracle actually happened. One day the two came upon each other on the corner of a street. “This is amazing,” he said. “I’ve been looking for you all my life. You may not believe this, but you’re the 100% perfect girl for me.” “And you,” she said to him, “are the 100% perfect boy for me, exactly as I’d pictured you in every detail. It’s like a dream.” They sat on a park bench, held hands, and told each other their stories hour after hour. They were not lonely anymore. They had found and been found by their 100% perfect other. What a wonderful thing it is to find and be found by your 100% perfect other. It’s a miracle, a cosmic miracle. As they sat and talked, however, a tiny, tiny sliver of doubt took root in their hearts: Was it really all right for one’s dreams to come true so easily? And so, when there came a momentary lull in their conversation, the boy said to the girl, “Let’s test ourselves - just once. If we really are each other’s 100% perfect lovers, then sometime, somewhere, we will meet again without fail. And when that happens, and we know that we are the 100% perfect ones, we’ll marry then and there. What do you think?” “Yes,” she said, “that is exactly what we should do.” And so they parted, she to the east, and he to the west. The test they had agreed upon, however, was utterly unnecessary. They should never have undertaken it, because they really and truly were each other’s 100% perfect lovers, and it was a miracle that they had ever met. But it was impossible for them to know this, young as they were. The cold, indifferent waves of fate proceeded to toss them unmercifully. One winter, both the boy and the girl came down with the season’s terrible inluenza, and after drifting for weeks between life and death they lost all memory of their earlier years. When they awoke, their heads were as empty as the young D. H. Lawrence’s piggy bank. They were two bright, determined young people, however, and through their unremitting efforts they were able to acquire once again the knowledge and feeling that qualified them to return as full-fledged members of society. Heaven be praised, they became truly upstanding citizens who knew how to transfer from one subway line to another, who were fully capable of sending a special-delivery letter at the post office. Indeed, they even experienced love again, sometimes as much as 75% or even 85% love. Time passed with shocking swiftness, and soon the boy was thirty-two, the girl thirty. One beautiful April morning, in search of a cup of coffee to start the day, the boy was walking from west to east, while the girl, intending to send a special-delivery letter, was walking from east to west, but along the same narrow street in the Harajuku neighborhood of Tokyo. They passed each other in the very center of the street. The faintest gleam of their lost memories glimmered for the briefest moment in their hearts. Each felt a rumbling in their chest. And they knew: She is the 100% perfect girl for me. He is the 100% perfect boy for me. But the glow of their memories was far too weak, and their thoughts no longer had the clarity of fouteen years earlier. Without a word, they passed each other, disappearing into the crowd. Forever. A sad story, don’t you think?
Haruki Murakami (The Elephant Vanishes)
I had a dream about you. You took control of my body and forced me to have sex with you. Then you called the cops, and the police said I raped you—but I was the one who was raped. If I had known you were that kind of person, I’d have never voted you into political office in the first place.

Jarod Kintz (I Had a Dream About You)
You know what?” he whispered, out of breath, “You’re about to be in a whole lot of trouble. We probably better go.
Laney Smith (Lock Creek: One Year's Time)
All those hopes and dreams and talk of ballerinas and pop stars, concert pianists and boundary-breaking scientists. They all ended up in an office.
Lisa Jewell (Then She Was Gone)
I've noticed that there is danger in spending all this time writing about those "publicans and sinners" over there in the great and spacious building. If our spot near the tree of life becomes a Rameumptom where we congratulate each other on our chosen-ness and look down on everyone else, then we're occupying nothing more than a branch office of the great and spacious.
John Bytheway (Lifestyles of the Great and Spacious: Finding Your Path in Lehi's Dream)
All the way down the creek, perched in the windows of the office blocks and department stores, the iguanas watched them go past, their hard frozen heads jerking stiffly… Without the reptiles, the lagoons and the creeks of office blocks half-submerged in the immense heat would have had a strange dream-like beauty, but the iguanas and basilisks brought the fantasy down to earth. As their seats in the one-time board-rooms indicated, the reptiles had taken over the city. Once again they were the dominant form of life.
J.G. Ballard (The Drowned World)
Ilsa approached the office of Dr. Dr. Bradford M. Bradford armed with her thesis. But she hesitated a moment before opening the outer door. Habit made her tremble before the awful majesty of the dean. Still, her recent adventures changed things. Had the dean ever hijacked a Spanish ship of the line? Run a British blockade at sea? Had he ever trudged over hill and dale to a Revolutionary army camp? Had he ever shaken hands with George Washington or flown a kite with Benjamin Franklin? Did he have an actual duke staying in his spare bedroom? She was pretty sure the dean would fail all these simple tests.
James Allen Moseley (The Duke of D.C.: The American Dream)
Nobody wants to hear that any aspect of my awesome life is bad. I get that. But there are days, maybe two or three times a year, when I get completely overwhelmed by my job and go to my office, lie on the floor, and cry for ten minutes. Then I think: Mindy, you have literally the best life in the world besides that hot lawyer who married George Clooney. This is what you dreamed about when you were a weird, determined little ten-year-old. There are more than a thousand people in one square mile of this studio who would kill to have this job. Get your ass up off the floor and go back into that writers’ room, you weakling. Then I get up, pour myself a generous glass of whiskey and club soda, think about the sustained grit of my parents, and go back to work.
Mindy Kaling (Why Not Me?)
You don’t fucking get it, do you, Sparks?” Out of sheer frustration, Ben thwacked the wall with his hand. Hard. So hard his palm stung. “I love you. I am so goddamned, madly in love with you, I can’t see straight.” Ben’s voice resonated through the offices, echoed in his own ears. “You’re the first thing I think about in the morning and the last thing I imagine before I fall asleep. I dream about you. Every single night. I live to see you, at the office, at home, anywhere. I just need to see your face. Hold your body. Touch your skin. I need you, Mel. More than I need air. You can’t walk away from me. You can’t love someone else.” He gulped in a breath and almost choked on the emotion clogging his throat, so when he spoke again his voice was scratchy, and much, much softer. “I screwed up. I made you choose. And I’m sorry. So desperately, pathetically sorry for that. But I can’t let you go. I can’t let him have you, because you’re mine. You were made for me, like I was made for you. We’re two peas in a pod, sweetness. We’re the same, you and I. We’re meant to be together.
Jess Dee (Office Affair)
Now the police dreams that one look at the gigantic map on the office wall should suffice at any given moment to establish who is related to whom and in what degree of intimacy; and, theoretically, this dream is not unrealizable although its technical execution is bound to be somewhat difficult. If this map really did exist, not even memory would stand in the way of the totalitarian claim to domination; such a map might make it possible to obliterate people without any traces, as if they had never existed at all.
Hannah Arendt (The Origins of Totalitarianism)
It wasn't exactly like I'd sold out on my life and dreams and all that other bullshit, because the truth was I'd never actually had anything to sell. It was more like I slowly froze in place, inside my little office at the museum; more like some part of me just fell asleep one day and never woke up.
Elizabeth Hand (Waking the Moon)
On the second floor was the office in which Houston pounded an ancient typewriter with two fingers, always setting an example of unceasing hard work for his admiring students. They had no hint of the fact that their hard-driving dean had contracted tuberculosis while serving as a GI in France in Word War I. Houstan always seemed vibrant and impassioned in the chase for justice as he tried to expose his students to everything relating to the law that might give them an advantage. . . . "I never worked hard until I got to the Howard Law School and met Charlie Houston," Marshal told me. "I saw this man's dedication, his vision, his willingness to sacrifice, and I told myself, 'You either shape up or ship out.' When you are being challenged by a great human being, you know that you can't ship out." So Houston rescued Marshall and launched him into a career as one of the greatest lawyers in American history.
Carl T. Rowan (Dream Makers, Dream Breakers: The World of Justice Thurgood Marshall)
Probably, Adam had made the connection between his rent change and the tuition raise. It wasn’t a complicated assumption, and he was clever. It was easy, too, to hang it on Gansey. If Adam had been thinking straight, though, he would’ve considered how it was Ronan who had infinite connections to St. Agnes. And how whoever was behind the rent change would have had to enter a church office with both a wad of cash and a burning intention to persuade a church lady to lie about a fake tax assessment. Taken apart that way, it seemed to have Ronan written all over it. But one of the marvelous things about being Ronan Lynch was that no one ever expected him to do anything nice for anyone.
Maggie Stiefvater (The Dream Thieves (The Raven Cycle, #2))
Favourable Chance, I fancy, is the god of all men who follow their own devices instead of obeying a law they believe in. Let even a polished man of these days get into a position he is ashamed to avow, and his mind will be bent on all the possible issues that may deliver him from the calculable results of that position. Let him live outside his income, or shirk the resolute honest work that brings wages, and he will presently find himself dreaming of a possible benefactor, a possible simpleton who may be cajoled into using his interest, a possible state of mind in some possible person not yet forthcoming. Let him neglect the responsibilities of his office, and he will inevitably anchor himself on the chance that the thing left undone may turn out not to be of the supposed importance. Let him betray his friend's confidence, and he will adore that same cunning complexity called Chance, which gives him the hope that his friend will never know. Let him forsake a decent craft that he may pursue the gentilities of a profession to which nature never called him, and his religion will infallibly be the worship of blessed Chance, which he will believe in as the mighty creator of success. The evil principle deprecated in that religion is the orderly sequence by which the seed brings forth a crop after its kind.
George Eliot (Silas Marner)
The absence of even rough agreement on the facts puts every opinion on equal footing and therefore eliminates the basis for thoughtful compromise. It rewards not those who are right, but those - like the White House press office - who can make their arguments most loudly, most frequently, most obstinately, and with the best backdrop.
Barack Obama (The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream)
Variety is definitely the spice of life but I love writing office romances (I was a secretary before I became a writer), because it's every girl's dream to meet that gorgeous hunky boss who sweeps her off her feet and takes her out of her dull routine.
Helen Brooks
...these bizarre images... reminded her of the slides of exposed spinal levels in Travis’s office. They hung on the enamelled walls like the codes of insoluble dreams, the keys to a nightmare in which she had begun to play a more willing and calculated role.
J.G. Ballard
Stephen had been put to sleep in his usual room, far from children and noise, away in that corner of the house which looked down to the orchard and the bowling-green, and in spite of his long absence it was so familiar to him that when he woke at about three he made his way to the window almost as quickly as if dawn had already broken, opened it and walked out onto the balcony. The moon had set: there was barely a star to be seen. The still air was delightfully fresh with falling dew, and a late nightingale, in an indifferent voice, was uttering a routine jug-jug far down in Jack's plantations; closer at hand and more agreeable by far, nightjars churred in the orchard, two of them, or perhaps three, the sound rising and falling, intertwining so that the source could not be made out for sure. There were few birds that he preferred to nightjars, but it was not they that had brought him out of bed: he stood leaning on the balcony rail and presently Jack Aubrey, in a summer-house by the bowling-green, began again, playing very gently in the darkness, improvising wholly for himself, dreaming away on his violin with a mastery that Stephen had never heard equalled, though they had played together for years and years. Like many other sailors Jack Aubrey had long dreamed of lying in his warm bed all night long; yet although he could now do so with a clear conscience he often rose at unChristian hours, particularly if he were moved by strong emotion, and crept from his bedroom in a watch-coat, to walk about the house or into the stables or to pace the bowling-green. Sometimes he took his fiddle with him. He was in fact a better player than Stephen, and now that he was using his precious Guarnieri rather than a robust sea-going fiddle the difference was still more evident: but the Guarnieri did not account for the whole of it, nor anything like. Jack certainly concealed his excellence when they were playing together, keeping to Stephen's mediocre level: this had become perfectly clear when Stephen's hands were at last recovered from the thumb-screws and other implements applied by French counter-intelligence officers in Minorca; but on reflexion Stephen thought it had been the case much earlier, since quite apart from his delicacy at that period, Jack hated showing away. Now, in the warm night, there was no one to be comforted, kept in countenance, no one could scorn him for virtuosity, and he could let himself go entirely; and as the grave and subtle music wound on and on, Stephen once more contemplated on the apparent contradiction between the big, cheerful, florid sea-officer whom most people liked on sight but who would have never been described as subtle or capable of subtlety by any one of them (except perhaps his surviving opponents in battle) and the intricate, reflective music he was now creating. So utterly unlike his limited vocabulary in words, at times verging upon the inarticulate. 'My hands have now regained the moderate ability they possessed before I was captured,' observed Maturin, 'but his have gone on to a point I never thought he could reach: his hands and his mind. I am amazed. In his own way he is the secret man of the world.
Patrick O'Brian (The Commodore (Aubrey/Maturin, #17))
Just as I never wondered what it was like for my mother to be a full-time, at-home mother, I never wondered then what it meant to be married. I took my parents’ union for granted. It was the simple solid fact upon which all four of our lives were built. Much later, my mother would tell me that every year when spring came and the air warmed up in Chicago, she entertained thoughts about leaving my father. I don’t know if these thoughts were actually serious or not. I don’t know if she considered the idea for an hour, or for a day, or for most of the season, but for her it was an active fantasy, something that felt healthy and maybe even energizing to ponder, almost as ritual. I understand now that even a happy marriage can be a vexation, that it’s a contract best renewed and renewed again, even quietly and privately—even alone. I don’t think my mother announced whatever her doubts and discontents were to my father directly, and I don’t think she let him in on whatever alternative life she might have been dreaming about during those times. Was she picturing herself on a tropical island somewhere? With a different kind of man, or in a different kind of house, or with a corner office instead of kids? I don’t know, and I suppose I could ask my mother, who is now in her eighties, but I don’t think it matters.
Michelle Obama (Becoming)
Hi there, cutie." Ash turned his head to find an extremely attractive college student by his side. With black curly hair, she was dressed in jeans and a tight green top that displayed her curves to perfection. "Hi." "You want to go inside for a drink? It's on me." Ash paused as he saw her past, present, and future simultaneously in his mind. Her name was Tracy Phillips. A political science major, she was going to end up at Harvard Med School and then be one of the leading researchers to help isolate a mutated genome that the human race didn't even know existed yet. The discovery of that genome would save the life of her youngest daughter and cause her daughter to go on to medical school herself. That daughter, with the help and guidance of her mother, would one day lobby for medical reforms that would change the way the medical world and governments treated health care. The two of them would shape generations of doctors and save thousands of lives by allowing people to have groundbreaking medical treatments that they wouldn't have otherwise been able to afford. And right now, all Tracy could think about was how cute his ass was in leather pants, and how much she'd like to peel them off him. In a few seconds, she'd head into the coffee shop and meet a waitress named Gina Torres. Gina's dream was to go to college herself to be a doctor and save the lives of the working poor who couldn't afford health care, but because of family problems she wasn't able to take classes this year. Still Gina would tell Tracy how she planned to go next year on a scholarship. Late tonight, after most of the college students were headed off, the two of them would be chatting about Gina's plans and dreams. And a month from now, Gina would be dead from a freak car accident that Tracy would see on the news. That one tragic event combined with the happenstance meeting tonight would lead Tracy to her destiny. In one instant, she'd realize how shallow her life had been, and she'd seek to change that and be more aware of the people around her and of their needs. Her youngest daughter would be named Gina Tory in honor of the Gina who was currently busy wiping down tables while she imagined a better life for everyone. So in effect, Gina would achieve her dream. By dying she'd save thousands of lives and she'd bring health care to those who couldn't afford it... The human race was an amazing thing. So few people ever realized just how many lives they inadvertently touched. How the right or wrong word spoken casually could empower or destroy another's life. If Ash were to accept Tracy's invitation for coffee, her destiny would be changed and she would end up working as a well-paid bank officer. She'd decide that marriage wasn't for her and go on to live her life with a partner and never have children. Everything would change. All the lives that would have been saved would be lost. And knowing the nuance of every word spoken and every gesture made was the heaviest of all the burdens Ash carried. Smiling gently, he shook his head. "Thanks for asking, but I have to head off. You have a good night." She gave him a hot once-over. "Okay, but if you change your mind, I'll be in here studying for the next few hours." Ash watched as she left him and entered the shop. She set her backpack down at a table and started unpacking her books. Sighing from exhaustion, Gina grabbed a glass of water and made her way over to her... And as he observed them through the painted glass, the two women struck up a conversation and set their destined futures into motion. His heart heavy, he glanced in the direction Cael had vanished and hated the future that awaited his friend. But it was Cael's destiny. His fate... "Imora thea mi savur," Ash whispered under his breath in Atlantean. God save me from love.
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Dark Side of the Moon (Dark-Hunter, #9; Were-Hunter, #3))
You’re not going to college to get educated. You’re going there to get trained. They’ll train you to want what you don’t need. They’ll train you to manipulate words so they don’t mean anything anymore. They’ll train you to forget what it is that you already know. They’ll train you so good, you’ll start believing what they tell you about equal opportunity and the American way and all that shit. They’ll give you a corner office and invite you to fancy dinners, and tell you you’re a credit to your race. Until you want to actually start running things, and then they’ll yank on your chain and let you know that you may be a well-trained, well-paid nigger, but you’re a nigger just the same.
Barack Obama (Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance)
Whenever God thinks of you, he has your best interests in mind; he has plans to take you further, deeper, and higher than you ever dreamed. This process begins when you seek God and spend time with him. Look for every opportunity to know God. Consider your daily schedule. What does it include? A workout at the gym? A trip to the post office? A lunch hour? A commute? Look for ways to include God in your activities. Invite God to accompany you by talking together. Look for moments- even if it's only ten or twenty seconds- to steal away with him. God will reward your efforts as you reshape your inner life to be focused around him. As you seek God, you will find yourself abiding in him." -Hungry for God
Margaret Feinberg (Hungry for God: Hearing God's Voice in the Ordinary and the Everyday)
This is the shame of the woman whose hand hides her smile because her teeth are so bad, not the grand self-hate that leads some to razors or pills or swan dives off beautiful bridges however tragic that is. This is the shame of seeing yourself, of being ashamed of where you live and what your father’s paycheck lets you eat and wear. This is the shame of the fat and the bald, the unbearable blush of acne, the shame of having no lunch money and pretending you’re not hungry. This is the shame of concealed sickness—diseases too expensive to afford that offer only their cold one-way ticket out. This is the shame of being ashamed, the self-disgust of the cheap wine drunk, the lassitude that makes junk accumulate, the shame that tells you there is another way to live but you are too dumb to find it. This is the real shame, the damned shame, the crying shame, the shame that’s criminal, the shame of knowing words like glory are not in your vocabulary though they litter the Bibles you’re still paying for. This is the shame of not knowing how to read and pretending you do. This is the shame that makes you afraid to leave your house, the shame of food stamps at the supermarket when the clerk shows impatience as you fumble with the change. This is the shame of dirty underwear, the shame of pretending your father works in an office as God intended all men to do. This is the shame of asking friends to let you off in front of the one nice house in the neighborhood and waiting in the shadows until they drive away before walking to the gloom of your house. This is the shame at the end of the mania for owning things, the shame of no heat in winter, the shame of eating cat food, the unholy shame of dreaming of a new house and car and the shame of knowing how cheap such dreams are. © Vern Rutsala
Brené Brown (I Thought It Was Just Me: Women Reclaiming Power and Courage in a Culture of Shame)
Before I die, I want to be completely myself. Soon the idea spawned over a thousand such walls all over the world: Before I die, I would like to have a relationship with my sister. Be a great dad. Go skydiving. Make a difference in someone’s life. I don’t know if people followed through, but based on what I’ve seen in my office, a good number may have had momentary awakenings, done a little soul-searching, added more to their lists—and then neglected to tick things off. People tend to dream without doing, death remaining theoretical.
Lori Gottlieb (Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, Her Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed)
His [Luke]letter went something like this: "Dear Mr President, Thank you for introducing me to the Hall of Famers and for showing me the Oval Office. I think if I work really hard I will have a chance for both." The next time I saw the president I told him about my son's ambitious plans. His response was beautiful: "Never get between a boy and his dreams
Tim Russert
Your work isn’t simply your job description, title, or industry. It’s when you wake up, what you wear, and your first 30 minutes in the office. It’s what your office is or is not, the five people you are physically closest to, and whether you can get up and walk or have to sit all day. It’s whether you fear for your job due to changing laws or innovation each day. It’s how it fits with your family and all the people and events that matter most. It’s the person you are when you come home.
Evan Thomsen (Don’t Chase The Dream Job, Build It: The unconventional guide to inventing your career and getting any job you want)
I have brought peace to this land, and security," he began. "And what of your soul, when you use the cleverness of argument to cloak such acts? Do you think that the peace of a thousand cancels out the unjust death of one single person? It may be desirable, it may win you praise from those who have happily survived you and prospered from your deeds, but you have committed ignoble acts, and have been too proud to own them. I have waited patiently here, hoping that you would come to me, for if you understood, then some of your acts would be mitigated. But instead you send me this manuscript, proud, magisterial, and demonstrating only that you have understood nothing at all." "I returned to public life on your advice, madam," he said stiffly. "Yes; I advised it. I said if learning must die it should do so with a friend by its bedside. Not an assassin.
Iain Pears (The Dream of Scipio)
Well, Dr. Freud, I start where you leave off. You meet people in the artificial setting of your office. I meet them on the street and in their homes, in their natural surroundings. You analyze their dreams. I give them the courage to dream again. You analyze and tear them apart. I let them act out their conflicting roles and help them to put the parts back together again.
Jacob Levy Moreno
In our offices and places of work we love to tell others what to do.We denigrate them.We compare their work unfavourably with our own.We are always in competition.We show off and gossip.Our dream is of being well treated and we dream of treating others badly...
Hanif Kureishi
He said he could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and people would still vote for him. Am I dreaming this?" Willa asked. "No." "No. He said that. It couldn't have been more than a week ago." "Apparently he was right." "Iano, nobody gets away with murder. You can't behave like a madman when you're running for public office. That kind of trash talk is supposed to end careers.
Barbara Kingsolver (Unsheltered)
Extraordinary—that Willowdale Academy and Calvin Coolidge High School should both be institutions of learning! The contrast is stunning. I had a leisurely tea with the Chairman of the English Department. I saw several faculty members sitting around in offices and lounges, sipping tea, reading, smoking. Through the large casement windows bare trees rubbed cozy branches. (One of my students had written wistfully of a dream-school that would have "windows with trees in them"!) Old leather chairs, book-lined walls, air of cultivated casualness, sound of well-bred laughter.
Bel Kaufman (Up the Down Staircase)
I have no idea who dreamed up the idiotic notion that summer vacations require "light" reading. Just the opposite, since the "light" books get read—if any reading's done at all—before bedtime, after the office work and house work, when we lack the concentration required for heavier fare.
Wisława Szymborska (Nonrequired Reading)
My conception of a novel is that it ought to be a personal struggle, a direct and total engagement with the author's story of his or her own life. This conception, again, I take from Kafka, who, although he was never transformed into an insect, and although he never had a piece of food (an apple from his family's table!) lodged in his flesh and rotting there, devoted his whole life as a writer to describing his personal struggle with his family, with women, with moral law, with his Jewish heritage, with his Unconscious, with his sense of guilt, and with the modern world. Kafka's work, which grows out of the nighttime dreamworld in Kafka's brain, is *more* autobiographical than any realistic retelling of his daytime experiences at the office or with his family or with a prostitute could have been. What is fiction, after all, if not a kind of purposeful dreaming? The writer works to create a dream that is vivid and has meaning, so that the reader can then vividly dream it and experience meaning. And work like Kafka's, which seems to proceed directly from dream, is therefore an exceptionally pure form of autobiography. There's an important paradox here that I would like to stress: the greater the autobiographical content of a fiction writer's work, the *smaller* its superficial resemblance to the writer's actual life. The deeper the writer digs for meaning, the more the random particulars of the writer's life become *impediments* to deliberate dreaming.
Jonathan Franzen (Farther Away)
I jump from a building As if I were falling asleep, The wind like a pillow Slowing me down, Slowing me down As if I were dreaming. Surrounded by air, I come to a stop, And stand like a tourist Watching the pigeons. People in offices, Wanting to save me, Open their mouths. 'Throw me a stone,' I yell, Wanting to fall. But nobody listens. They throw me a rope. And now I am walking, Taking to you, Talking to you As if I were dreaming I were alive.
Mark Strand (Reasons for Moving)
Just so hollow and ineffectual, for the most part, is our ordinary conversation. Surface meets surface. When our life ceases to be inward and private, conversation degenerates into mere gossip. We rarely meet a man who can tell us any news which he has not read in a newspaper, or been told by his neighbor; and, for the most part, the only difference between us and our fellow is, that he has seen the newspaper, or been out to tea, and we have not. In proportion as our inward life fails, we go more constantly and desperately to the post-office. You may depend on it, that the poor fellow who walks away with the greatest number of letters, proud of his extensive correspondence, has not heard from himself this long while. I do not know but it is too much to read one newspaper a week. I have tried it recently, and for so long it seems to me that I have not dwelt in my native region. The sun, the clouds, the snow, the trees say not so much to me. You cannot serve two masters. It requires more than a day's devotion to know and to possess the wealth of a day. We may well be ashamed to tell what things we have read or heard in our day. I do not know why my news should be so trivial,--considering what one's dreams and expectations are, why the developments should be so paltry. The news we hear, for the most part, is not news to our genius. It is the stalest repetition.
Henry David Thoreau (Life Without Principle)
The cashier had long since left for home. By now she was probably bustling by an unmade bed that was waiting in her small room like a boat to carry her off to the black lagoons of sleep, into the complicated world of dreams. The person sitting in the box office was only a wraith, an illusory phantom looking with tired, heavily made-up eyes at the empyiness of light, fluttering her lashes thoughtlessly to disperse the golden dust of drowsiness scattered by the elctric bulbs.
Bruno Schulz (The Street of Crocodiles)
To understand, I destroyed myself. To understand is to forget about loving. I know nothing more simultaneously false and telling than the statement by Leonardo da Vinci that we cannot love or hate something until we’ve understood it. Solitude devastates me; company oppresses me. The presence of another person derails my thoughts; I dream of the other’s presence with a strange absent-mindedness that no amount of my analytical scrutiny can define. Isolation has carved me in its image and likeness. The presence of another person – of any person whatsoever – instantly slows down my thinking, and while for a normal man contact with others is a stimulus to spoken expression and wit, for me it is a counterstimulus, if this compound word be linguistically permissible. When all by myself, I can think of all kinds of clever remarks, quick comebacks to what no one said, and flashes of witty sociability with nobody. But all of this vanishes when I face someone in the flesh: I lose my intelligence, I can no longer speak, and after half an hour I just feel tired. Yes, talking to people makes me feel like sleeping. Only my ghostly and imaginary friends, only the conversations I have in my dreams, are genuinely real and substantial, and in them intelligence gleams like an image in a mirror. The mere thought of having to enter into contact with someone else makes me nervous. A simple invitation to have dinner with a friend produces an anguish in me that’s hard to define. The idea of any social obligation whatsoever – attending a funeral, dealing with someone about an office matter, going to the station to wait for someone I know or don’t know – the very idea disturbs my thoughts for an entire day, and sometimes I even start worrying the night before, so that I sleep badly. When it takes place, the dreaded encounter is utterly insignificant, justifying none of my anxiety, but the next time is no different: I never learn to learn. ‘My habits are of solitude, not of men.’ I don’t know if it was Rousseau or Senancour who said this. But it was some mind of my species, it being perhaps too much to say of my race.
Fernando Pessoa
I darted like a minnow through passers-by, in a most ungraceful fashion, constantly giving way to generals. officers of the Horse Guards and the Hussars, and fine ladies; at those moments I felt a spasmodic pain in my heart and hot flushes down my spine at the thought of the wretched inadequacy of my costume and the mean vulgarity of my small figure darting about.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (Notes from Underground, White Nights, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, and Selections from The House of the Dead)
He saw that a moon arose from the holy man’s breast and came to sink in his own breast. A tree then sprouted from his navel and its shade compassed the world. Beneath this shade there were mountains, and streams flowed forth from the foot of each mountain. Some people drank from these running waters, others watered gardens, while yet others caused fountains to flow. When Osman awoke he told the story to the holy man, who said ‘Osman, my son, congratulations, for God has given the imperial office to you and your descendants and my daughter Malhun shall be your wife’.
Caroline Finkel (Osman's Dream: The History of the Ottoman Empire)
With an incredulous sigh, I found myself still shaking my head. It all seemed so improbable but I knew he was right. That was the most frustrating part of it all. I knew about the bunyip. How many times had I heard the word as a child? I even knew that they liked still water, quiet billabongs. But if I walked into the Rangers office at Central Station and told them they had a bunyip in their lake! Once more I shook my head. They wouldn’t even bother to lock me up. They would probably take the report and then just file it somewhere... like in the bin, like I was a nutter.
Jan Hawkins (Shadow Dreaming (The Dreaming Series, #1))
A bloody scene with no witnesses was about to happen. It was a relief to me, finally, to have the foe in front of me and within reach. I set the mouth of the pistol at the man’s temple – he was too frightened to move – while my other fist grabbed hold of his tunic, feeling medals and badges of rank. An officer; he must have held some command post in these trenches. With a plaintive sound, he reached into his pocket, not to pull out a weapon, but a photograph which he held up to me. I saw him on it, surrounded by numerous family, all standing on a terrace. It was a plea from another world. Later, I thought it was blind chance that I let him go and plunged onward. That one man of all often appeared in my dreams. I hope that meant he got to see his homeland again.
Ernst Jünger (Storm of Steel)
One feels pan of a vast servitude, anonymous and unending, all of it vanishing unexpectedly with the passing image of Madame Picquet behind the glass of her office, that faintly vulgar, thrilling profile. As I think of it, there’s an ache in my chest. I cannot control these dreams in which she seems to lie in my future like a whole season of extravagant meals if only I knew how to arrange it.
James Salter (A Sport and a Pastime)
Because I am an officer and a gentleman they have given me my notebooks, pen, ink and paper. So I write and wait. I am committed to no cause, I love no living person. The fact that I have no future except what you can count in hours doesn't seem to disturb me unduly. After all, the future whether here or there is equally unknown. So for the waiting days I have only the past to play about with. I can juggle with a series of possibly inaccurate memories, my own interpretation, for what is worth, of events. There is no place for speculation or hope, or even dreams. Strangely enough I think I like it like that.
Jennifer Johnston (How Many Miles to Babylon?)
Each time a police officer engages us, death, injury, maiming is possible. It is not enough to say that this is true of anyone or more true of criminals. The moment the officers began their pursuit of Prince Jones, his life was in danger. The Dreamers accept this as the cost of doing business, accept our bodies as currency, because it is their tradition. As slaves we were this country’s first windfall, the down payment on its freedom. After the ruin and liberation of the Civil War came Redemption for the unrepentant South and Reunion, and our bodies became this country’s second mortgage. In the New Deal we were their guestroom, their finished basement. And today, with a sprawling prison system, which has turned the warehousing of black bodies into a jobs program for Dreamers and a lucrative investment for Dreamers; today, when 8 percent of the world’s prisoners are black men, our bodies have refinanced the Dream of being white. Black life is cheap, but in America black bodies are a natural resource of incomparable value.
Ta-Nehisi Coates (Between the World and Me)
I might put it another way: Franz felt his book life to be unreal. He yearned for real life, for the touch of people walking side by side with him, for their shouts. It never occurred to him that what he considered unreal (the work he did in the solitude of the office or library) was in fact his real life, whereas the parades he imagined to be reality were nothing but theater, dance, carnival- in other words, a dream.
Milan Kundera (The Unbearable Lightness of Being)
If you can deny your talents, if you can conceal them from others or, even better, persuade yourself that they weren’t even given to you, you’re off the hook. And being off the hook is a key element of the industrialized school’s promise. It lets parents off the hook, certainly, since the institution takes over the teaching. It lets teachers off the hook, since the curriculum is preordained and the results are tested. And it lets students off the hook, because the road is clearly marked and the map is handed to everyone. If you stay on the path, do your college applications through the guidance office and your job hunting at the placement office, the future is not your fault. That’s the refrain we hear often from frustrated job seekers, frustrated workers with stuck careers, and frustrated students in too much debt. 'I did what they told me to do and now I’m stuck and it’s not my fault.' What they’ve exchanged for that deniability is their dreams, their chance for greatness. To go off the path is to claim responsibility for what happens next.
Seth Godin
You know, my friend, sometimes we do travel all around the world thinking of finding the happiness. Not only in mind, or in dreams, as I used to do when communism borders enclosed us in a “happy island”, preaching us the benefits of being in such and such powerful state. We do travel in real time and space, pushed by the fantasy of colourful dreams. As real as us. Yet, love, yes, love is one of the most powerful force that could take us from our comfort zone and makes us jump the borders. Which I did. And now, looking at that refusal letter from Home Office, I was feeling all their hatred and abuse slapping my honesty. - Write Like A Girl Anthology
Simona Prilogan
Up there in my little room I was reading revolutionary works and had the feeling that the whole world might explode at any moment; then when I went out, I found life going on as usual, peacefully and calmly: office workers were going off to their jobs, tradesmen were selling their wares in their shops, and one could even see people lazing on benches in the squares, just sitting there watching the hours go by: all of them equally dull and monotonous. Once again, and this would not be the last time, I felt more or less as though I were a stranger in the world, as though I had awakened in it all of a sudden and had no notion of its laws and meaning. I wandered aimlessly about the streets of Buenos Aires, I watched its people, I sat down on a bench in the Plaza Constitucion and meditated. Then I would return to my little room, feeling lonelier than ever. And it was only when I buried myself in books that I seemed to be in touch with reality again, as though that existence out in the streets were, by contrast, a sort of vast dream unfolding in the minds of hypnotized people. It took me many years to realize that in those streets, those public sqaures, and even in those business establishments and offices of Buenos Aires there were thousands who thought or felt more or less as I did at that moment: lonely anguished people, people pondering the sense and nonsense of life, people who had the feeling that they were seeing a world that had gone to sleep round about them, a world made up of men and women who had been hypnotized or turned into robots.
Ernesto Sabato
In Aditya Chopra’s old office, there used to hang a poster of DDLJ with the following inscription by Shah Rukh Khan: “More than half my career ago, you gave me a dream to cherish all my life. My kids will see it, my grandchildren will love it and I’m sure even in heaven they are playing our film – so my parents would have seen it too. Thanx for taking me to them and making me the star I’m today. Lots of love and come let’s make some more dreams together.
Anupama Chopra (100 Films to See before You Die)
Our guy has a property office, John. And I don't mean the Property Office here in One PP. I mean the huge fucking storage facility. A guy in there, with access to thousands of fucking handguns. Even the ones that other people would be keeping an eye on, like Son of Sam's piece, for fuck's sake - a guy in there who'll just boost them and give them to our guy to kill people with. And if the guns are too famous, he'll cut his own slugs out of the bodies and walk away. This guy, our guy, he's actually starting to scare me a bit right now." "A couple of hundred kills to his name didn't do that?" "Meh. I dream about killing two hundred people every fucking night." "You know," said Tallow, "whenever I'm in danger of forgetting you're CSU, you always find a way to remind me.
Warren Ellis (Gun Machine)
Our family was starting. We kept on moving with our young lives, shortly afterward and took Ben Young with us everywhere. But pretty soon Pegi started noticing that Ben was not doing the things some other babies were doing. Pegi was wondering if something was wrong. She was young, and nothing had ever gone wrong in her life. People told us kids grow at different rates and do things at different times. But as Ben reached six months old, we found ourselves sitting in a doctor's office. He glanced at us and offhandedly said, "Of course. Ben has cerebral palsy." I was in shock. I walked around in a for for weeks. I couldn't fathom how I had fathered two children with a rare condition that was not supposed to be hereditary, with tow different mothers. I was so angry and confused inside, projecting scenarios in my mind where people said something bad about Ben or Zeke and I would just attack them, going wild. Luckily that never did happen, but there was a root of instability inside me for a while. Although it mellowed with time, I carried that feeling around for years. Eventually Pegi and I, wanting to have another child after Ben, went to se an expert of the subject. That was Pegi's idea. Always organized and methodical in her approach to problems, Pegi planned an approach to our dilemma with her very high intelligence. We both loved children but were a little gun-shy about having another, to say the least. After evaluating our situation and our children, the doctor told us that probably Zeke dis not actually have CP-he likely had suffered a stroke in utero. The symptoms are very similar. Pegi and I weighed this information. To know someone like her and to make a decision about a subject as important as this with her was a gift beyond anything I have ever experienced. It was her idea, and she had guided us to this point. We made a decision together to go forward and have another child.
Neil Young (Waging Heavy Peace: A Hippie Dream)
The company that employed me strived only to serve up the cheapest fare that its customers would tolerate, churn it out as fast as possible, and charge as much as they could get away with. If it were possible to do so, the company would sell what all businesses of its kind dream about selling, creating that which all our efforts were tacitly supposed to achieve: the ultimate product – Nothing. And for this product they would command the ultimate price – Everything. This market strategy would then go on until one day, among the world-wide ruins of derelict factories and warehouses and office buildings, there stood only a single, shining, windowless structure with no entrance and no exit. Inside would be – will be – only a dense network of computers calculating profits. Outside will be tribes of savage vagrants with no comprehension of the nature or purpose of the shining, windowless structure. Perhaps they will worship it as a god. Perhaps they will try to destroy it, their primitive armory proving wholly ineffectual against the smooth and impervious walls of the structure, upon which not even a scratch can be inflicted.
Thomas Ligotti (My Work is Not Yet Done: Three Tales of Corporate Horror)
I know what she smells like. This little freckle on her neck when she pulls up her hair. Her upper lip is a little plumper than the lower. The curve of her wrist, when she holds a pen. It’s wrong, really wrong, but I know the shape of her. I go to sleep thinking about it, and then I wake up, go to work, and she is there, and it’s impossible. I tell her stuff I know she’ll agree to, just to hear her hum back at me. It’s like hot water down my fucking spine. She’s married. She’s brilliant. She trusts me, and all I think about is taking her to my office, stripping her, doing unspeakable things to her. And I want to tell her. I want to tell her that she’s luminous, she’s so bright in my mind, sometimes I can’t focus. Sometimes I forget why I came into the room. I’m distracted. I want to push her against a wall, and I want her to push back. I want to go back in time and punch her stupid husband on the day I met him and then travel back to the future and punch him again. I want to buy her flowers, food, books. I want to hold her hand, and I want to lock her in my bedroom. She’s everything I ever wanted and I want to inject her into my veins and also to never see her again. There’s nothing like her and these feelings, they are fucking intolerable. They were half-asleep while she was gone, but now she’s here and my body thinks it’s a fucking teenager and I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what to do. There is nothing I can do, so I’ll just . . . not.
Ali Hazelwood (Love on the Brain (The Love Hypothesis))
At This Moment Of Time Some who are uncertain compel me. They fear The Ace of Spades. They fear Loves offered suddenly, turning from the mantelpiece, Sweet with decision. And they distrust The fireworks by the lakeside, first the spuft, Then the colored lights, rising. Tentative, hesitant, doubtful, they consume Greedily Caesar at the prow returning, Locked in the stone of his act and office. While the brass band brightly bursts over the water They stand in the crowd lining the shore Aware of the water beneath Him. They know it. Their eyes Are haunted by water Disturb me, compel me. It is not true That "no man is happy," but that is not The sense which guides you. If we are Unfinished (we are, unless hope is a bad dream), You are exact. You tug my sleeve Before I speak, with a shadow's friendship, And I remember that we who move Are moved by clouds that darken midnight
Delmore Schwartz
I had ceased to be a writer of tolerably poor tales and essays, and had become a tolerably good Surveyor of the Customs. That was all. But, nevertheless, it is any thing but agreeable to be haunted by a suspicion that one's intellect is dwindling away; or exhaling, without your consciousness, like ether out of a phial; so that, at every glance, you find a smaller and less volatile residuum. Of the fact, there could be no doubt; and, examining myself and others, I was led to conclusions in reference to the effect of public office on the character, not very favorable to the mode of life in question. In some other form, perhaps, I may hereafter develop these effects. Suffice it here to say, that a Custom-House officer, of long continuance, can hardly be a very praiseworthy or respectable personage, for many reasons; one of them, the tenure by which he holds his situation, and another, the very nature of his business, which—though, I trust, an honest one—is of such a sort that he does not share in the united effort of mankind. An effect—which I believe to be observable, more or less, in every individual who has occupied the position—is, that, while he leans on the mighty arm of the Republic, his own proper strength departs from him. He loses, in an extent proportioned to the weakness or force of his original nature, the capability of self-support. If he possess an unusual share of native energy, or the enervating magic of place do not operate too long upon him, his forfeited powers may be redeemable. The ejected officer—fortunate in the unkindly shove that sends him forth betimes, to struggle amid a struggling world—may return to himself, and become all that he has ever been. But this seldom happens. He usually keeps his ground just long enough for his own ruin, and is then thrust out, with sinews all unstrung, to totter along the difficult footpath of life as he best may. Conscious of his own infirmity,—that his tempered steel and elasticity are lost,—he for ever afterwards looks wistfully about him in quest of support external to himself. His pervading and continual hope—a hallucination, which, in the face of all discouragement, and making light of impossibilities, haunts him while he lives, and, I fancy, like the convulsive throes of the cholera, torments him for a brief space after death—is, that, finally, and in no long time, by some happy coincidence of circumstances, he shall be restored to office. This faith, more than any thing else, steals the pith and availability out of whatever enterprise he may dream of undertaking. Why should he toil and moil, and be at so much trouble to pick himself up out of the mud, when, in a little while hence, the strong arm of his Uncle will raise and support him? Why should he work for his living here, or go to dig gold in California, when he is so soon to be made happy, at monthly intervals, with a little pile of glittering coin out of his Uncle's pocket? It is sadly curious to observe how slight a taste of office suffices to infect a poor fellow with this singular disease. Uncle Sam's gold—meaning no disrespect to the worthy old gentleman—has, in this respect, a quality of enchantment like that of the Devil's wages. Whoever touches it should look well to himself, or he may find the bargain to go hard against him, involving, if not his soul, yet many of its better attributes; its sturdy force, its courage and constancy, its truth, its self-reliance, and all that gives the emphasis to manly character.
Nathaniel Hawthorne (The Scarlet Letter)
So, when women dream of the natural predator, it is not always or solely a message about the interior life. Sometimes it is a message about the threatening aspects of the culture one lives in, whether it be a small but brutal culture at the office, one within their own family, the lands of their neighborhood, or as wide as their own religious or national culture. As you can see, each group and culture appears to also have its own natural psychic predator, and we see from history that there are eras in cultures during which the predator is identified with and allowed absolute sovereignty until the people who believe otherwise become a tide.
Clarissa Pinkola Estés (Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype)
The young activist who recycles Robert F. Kennedy’s line “There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why . . . I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?” has no idea he’s a walking, talking cliché, a non-conformist in theory while a predictable conformist in fact. But he also has no idea he’s tapping into his inner utopian.... RFK didn’t coin the phrase (JFK didn’t either, but he did use it first). The line actually comes from one of the worst people of the 20th century, George Bernard Shaw (admittedly he’s on the B-list of worst people since he never killed anybody; he just celebrated people who did). That much a lot of people know. But the funny part is the line comes from Shaw’s play Back to Methuselah. Specifically, it’s what the Serpent says to Eve in order to sell her on eating the apple and gaining a kind of immortality through sex (or something like that). Of course, Shaw’s Serpent differs from the biblical serpent, because Shaw — a great rationalizer of evil — is naturally sympathetic to the serpent. Still, it’s kind of hilarious that legions of Kennedy worshippers invoke this line as a pithy summation of the idealistic impulse, putting it nearly on par with Kennedy’s nationalistic “Ask Not” riff, without realizing they’re stealing lines from . . . the Devil. ​I don’t think this means you can march into the local high school, kick open the door to the student government offices with a crucifix extended, shouting “the power of Christ compels you!” while splashing holy water on every kid who uses that “RFK” quote on his Facebook page. But it is interesting.
Jonah Goldberg
Beside himself with shame and despair, the utterly ruined though perfectly just Mr. Golyadkin dashed headlong away, wherever fate might lead him; but with every step he took, with every thud of his foot on the granite of the pavement, there leapt up as though out of the earth a Mr. Golyadkin precisely the same, perfectly alike, and of a revolting depravity of heart. And all these precisely similar Golyadkins set to running after one another as soon as they appeared, and stretched in a long chain like a file of geese, hobbling after the real Mr. Golyadkin, so there was nowhere to escape from these duplicates — so that Mr. Golyadkin, who was in every way deserving of compassion, was breathless with terror; so that at last a terrible multitude of duplicates had sprung into being; so that the whole town was obstructed at last by duplicate Golyadkins, and the police officer, seeing such a breach of decorum, was obliged to seize all these duplicates by the collar and to put them into the watch-house, which happened to be beside him . . . Numb and chill with horror, our hero woke up, and numb and chill with horror felt that his waking state was hardly more cheerful . . . It was oppressive and harrowing . . . He was overcome by such anguish that it seemed as though some one were gnawing at his heart.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Double)
Since the early 1990s, a shadow government has taken root along K Street, the Washington corridor that is home to block after stately block of law firms and lobbying offices. Over the years, this army of influence peddlers has gone well beyond the hunt for votes on Capitol Hill. Smart lobbyists know that it is not just the final vote on a bill that counts, but every step along the way. Business enjoys huge political advantages by having its lobbying agents meet day in and day out with key legislators and their staffs, either to kill bills or provisions in them that business considers hostile or to insert arcane subparagraphs that its lobbyists have drafted and tailored to specific corporate interests.
Hedrick Smith (Who Stole the American Dream?)
Under conditions of extreme deprivation people will continue to grow crops that promise economic relief, and they will continue to trade in those crops and their products. The ultimate beneficiaries are neither the impoverished Afghan or Columbian peasant nor the street-corner pusher in the U.S. ghetto or on Vancouver’s skid row. The illegality of mind-altering substances enriches drug cartels, crime syndicates, and their corrupt enablers among politicians, government officials, judges, lawyers, and police officers around the world. If one set out deliberately to fashion a legal system designed to maximize and sustain the wealth of international drug criminals and their abettors, one could never dream up anything to improve upon the present one—except, perhaps, to add tobacco to the list of contraband substances. That way the traffickers and their allies could profit even more, although it’s unimaginable that their legally respectable counterparts—tax-hungry governments and the nicotine pushers in tobacco company boardrooms—would ever allow that to happen.
Gabor Maté (In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction)
It was as if she had spoken slightingly of a woman he loved. For he dreamed of peace by day and night. Once in sleep it had appeared to him as the great glowing shoulder of the moon heaving across his window like an iceberg, arctic and destructive in the moment before the world was struck: by day he tried to win a few moments of its company, crouched under the rusting handcuffs in the locked office, reading the reports from the sub-stations. Peace seemed to him the most beautiful word in the language: My peace I give to you, my peace I leave with you: O Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, grant us thy peace. In the Mass he pressed his fingers against his eyes to keep the tears of longing in.
Graham Greene (The Heart of the Matter)
I could never stand more than three months of dreaming at a time without feeling an irresistible desire to plunge into society. To plunge into society meant to visit my superior at the office, Anton Antonitch Syetotchkin. He was the only permanent acquaintance I have had in my life, and I wonder at the fact myself now. But I only went to see him when that phase came over me, and when my dreams had reached such a point of bliss that it became essential at once to embrace my fellows and all mankind; and for that purpose I needed, at least, one human being, actually existing. I had to call on Anton Antonitch, however, on Tuesday—his at-home day; so I had always to time my passionate desire to embrace humanity so that it might fall on a Tuesday.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (Notes from Underground, White Nights, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, and Selections from The House of the Dead)
And for the real noble a whole private dialect is set apart. The common names for an axe, for blood, for bamboo, a bamboo knife, a pig, food, entrails, and an oven are taboo in his presence, as the common names for a bug and for many offices and members of the body are taboo in the drawing-rooms of English ladies. Special words are set apart for his leg, his face, his hair, his belly, his eyelids, his son, his daughter, his wife, his wife's pregnancy, his wife's adultery, adultery with his wife, his dwelling, his spear, his comb, his sleep, his dreams, his anger, the mutual anger of several chiefs, his food, his pleasure in eating, the food and eating of his pigeons, his ulcers, his cough, his sickness, his recovery, his death, his being carried on a bier, the exhumation of his bones, and his skull after death. To address these demigods is quite a branch of knowledge, and he who goes to visit a high chief does well to make sure of the competence of his interpreter. To complete the picture, the same word signifies the watching of a virgin and the warding of a chief; and the same word means to cherish a chief and to fondle a favourite child.
Robert Louis Stevenson (A Footnote To History: Eight Years of Trouble in Samoa)
Putin was a former KGB intelligence officer who’d been stationed in East Germany at the Dresden headquarters of the Soviet secret service. Putin has said in interviews that he dreamed as a child of becoming a spy for the communist party in foreign lands, and his time in Dresden exceeded his imagination. Not only was he living out his boyhood fantasy, he and his then-wife also enjoyed the perks of a borderline-European existence. Even in communist East Germany, the standard of living was far more comfortable than life in Russia, and the young Putins were climbing KGB social circles, making influential connections, networking a power base. The present was bright, and the future looked downright luminous. Then, the Berlin wall fell, and down with it crashed Putin’s world. A few days after the fall, a group of East German protestors gathered at the door of the secret service headquarters building. Putin, fearing the headquarters would be overrun, dialed up a Red Army tank unit stationed nearby to ask for protection. A voice on the other end of the line told him the unit could not do anything without orders from Moscow. And, “Moscow is silent,” the man told Putin. Putin’s boyhood dream was dissolving before his eyes, and his country was impotent or unwilling to stop it. Putin despised his government’s weakness in the face of threat. It taught him a lesson that would inform his own rule: Power is easily lost when those in power allow it to be taken away. In Putin’s mind, the Soviet Union’s fatal flaw was not that its authoritarianism was unsustainable but that its leaders were not strong enough or brutal enough to maintain their authority. The lesson Putin learned was that power must be guarded with vigilance and maintained by any means necessary.
Matt Szajer (The Trump-Russia Hustle: The Truth about Russia's attack on America & how Donald Trump turned Republicans into Putin's puppets)
The Job Application Esteemed gentlemen, I am a poor, young, unemployed person in the business field, my name is Wenzel, I am seeking a suitable position, and I take the liberty of asking you, nicely and politely, if perhaps in your airy, bright, amiable rooms such a position might be free. I know that your good firm is large, proud, old, and rich, thus I may yield to the pleasing supposition that a nice, easy, pretty little place would be available, into which, as into a kind of warm cubbyhole, I can slip. I am excellently suited, you should know, to occupy just such a modest haven, for my nature is altogether delicate, and I am essentially a quiet, polite, and dreamy child, who is made to feel cheerful by people thinking of him that he does not ask for much, and allowing him to take possession of a very, very small patch of existence, where he can be useful in his own way and thus feel at ease. A quiet, sweet, small place in the shade has always been the tender substance of all my dreams, and if now the illusions I have about you grow so intense as to make me hope that my dream, young and old, might be transformed into delicious, vivid reality, then you have, in me, the most zealous and most loyal servitor, who will take it as a matter of conscience to discharge precisely and punctually all his duties. Large and difficult tasks I cannot perform, and obligations of a far-ranging sort are too strenuous for my mind. I am not particularly clever, and first and foremost I do not like to strain my intelligence overmuch. I am a dreamer rather than a thinker, a zero rather than a force, dim rather than sharp. Assuredly there exists in your extensive institution, which I imagine to be overflowing with main and subsidiary functions and offices, work of the kind that one can do as in a dream? --I am, to put it frankly, a Chinese; that is to say, a person who deems everything small and modest to be beautiful and pleasing, and to whom all that is big and exacting is fearsome and horrid. I know only the need to feel at my ease, so that each day I can thank God for life's boon, with all its blessings. The passion to go far in the world is unknown to me. Africa with its deserts is to me not more foreign. Well, so now you know what sort of a person I am.--I write, as you see, a graceful and fluent hand, and you need not imagine me to be entirely without intelligence. My mind is clear, but it refuses to grasp things that are many, or too many by far, shunning them. I am sincere and honest, and I am aware that this signifies precious little in the world in which we live, so I shall be waiting, esteemed gentlemen, to see what it will be your pleasure to reply to your respectful servant, positively drowning in obedience. Wenzel
Robert Walser (Selected Stories)
In the campaign of 1876, Robert G. Ingersoll came to Madison to speak. I had heard of him for years; when I was a boy on the farm a relative of ours had testified in a case in which Ingersoll had appeared as an attorney and he had told the glowing stories of the plea that Ingersoll had made. Then, in the spring of 1876, Ingersoll delivered the Memorial Day address at Indianapolis. It was widely published shortly after it was delivered and it startled and enthralled the whole country. I remember that it was printed on a poster as large as a door and hung in the post-office at Madison. I can scarcely convey now, or even understand, the emotional effect the reading of it produced upon me. Oblivious of my surroundings, I read it with tears streaming down my face. It began, I remember: "The past rises before me like a dream. Again we are in the great struggle for national life.We hear the sounds of preparation--the music of boisterous drums--the silver voices of heroic bugles. We see the pale cheeks of women and the flushed faces of men; and in those assemblages we see all the dead whose dust we have covered with flowers..." I was fairly entranced. he pictured the recruiting of the troops, the husbands and fathers with their families on the last evening, the lover under the trees and the stars; then the beat of drums, the waving flags, the marching away; the wife at the turn of the lane holds her baby aloft in her arms--a wave of the hand and he has gone; then you see him again in the heat of the charge. It was wonderful how it seized upon my youthful imagination. When he came to Madison I crowded myself into the assembly chamber to hear him: I would not have missed it for every worldly thing I possessed. And he did not disappoint me. A large handsome man of perfect build, with a face as round as a child's and a compelling smile--all the arts of the old-time oratory were his in high degree. He was witty, he was droll, he was eloquent: he was as full of sentiment as an old violin. Often, while speaking, he would pause, break into a smile, and the audience, in anticipation of what was to come, would follow him in irresistible peals of laughter. I cannot remember much that he said, but the impression he made upon me was indelible. After that I got Ingersoll's books and never afterward lost an opportunity to hear him speak. He was the greatest orater, I think, that I have ever heard; and the greatest of his lectures, I have always thought, was the one on Shakespeare. Ingersoll had a tremendous influence upon me, as indeed he had upon many young men of that time. It was not that he changed my beliefs, but that he liberated my mind. Freedom was what he preached: he wanted the shackles off everywhere. He wanted men to think boldly about all things: he demanded intellectual and moral courage. He wanted men to follow wherever truth might lead them. He was a rare, bold, heroic figure.
Robert Marion La Follette (La Follette's Autobiography: A Personal Narrative of Political Experiences)
Been to your office, Lupin. You forgot to take your potion tonight, so I took a gobletful along. And very lucky I did . . . lucky for me, I mean. Lying on your desk was a certain map. One glance at it told me all I needed to know. I saw you running along this passageway and out of sight.” “Severus —” Lupin began, but Snape overrode him. “I’ve told the headmaster again and again that you’re helping your old friend Black into the castle, Lupin, and here’s the proof. Not even I dreamed you would have the nerve to use this old place as your hideout —” “Severus, you’re making a mistake,” said Lupin urgently. “You haven’t heard everything — I can explain — Sirius is not here to kill Harry —” “Two more for Azkaban tonight,” said Snape, his eyes now gleaming fanatically. “I shall be interested to see how Dumbledore takes this. . . . He was quite convinced you were harmless, you know, Lupin . . . a tame werewolf —” “You fool,” said Lupin softly. “Is a schoolboy grudge worth putting an innocent man back inside Azkaban?” BANG! Thin, snakelike cords burst from the end of Snape’s wand and twisted themselves around Lupin’s mouth, wrists, and ankles; he overbalanced and fell to the floor, unable to move. With a roar of rage, Black started toward Snape, but Snape pointed his wand straight between Black’s eyes. “Give me a reason,” he whispered. “Give me a reason to do it, and I swear I will.” Black stopped dead. It would have been impossible to say which face showed more hatred.
J.K. Rowling
Even more confused than before, I started backing up. I’d go around and get in through the kitchen; David and Raquel had to know what was going on. Unfortunately for all of us, that was when Lend came out the front door, immediately collapsed with a thunk that made me cringe, and—perfect—went completely transparent. The police officers stopped fighting, every eye glued on my boyfriend, now essentially invisible other than this T-shirt and flannel pajama pants. “Okay,” I said, putting my hands on my hips. “No. This is unacceptable. I don’t care what the bleep is going on, we’re going to get it settled immediately or I swear I will give you all to the Dark Queen and let her feed on your dreams for the rest of eternity.” Every head turned my direction, their faces a portrait of shock and disbelief. “What, you’ve never seen a boy made of water before? Yawn. Go down to the pond—it’ll really blow your mind.” One close to the front—barrel-chested, middle-aged man with salt-and-pepper hair and a thick mustache—shook his head as though trying to clear it. “Are you Evelyn Green?” “Sort of. Mostly. I mean, legally. Again, sort of.” He tried to look at me, but his eyes kept drifting back to Lend. “You’re under—We’re here to—Could you please come with us?” I rolled my eyes. “No, I couldn’t. You’re last place in a very long line of people who want me right now. Besides, I haven’t done anything.” “Actually,” said a painfully tall and thin officer with a voice that struggled between tenor and bass but really sounded like a dog with something caught in its throat, “you’re wanted for terrorism.” He shrugged apologetically. “We’re supposed to take you into NSA headquarters.” “I think you have the wrong acronym there,” I said. This had Anne-Whatever Whatever written all over it.
Kiersten White (Endlessly (Paranormalcy, #3))
We're all so happy you're feeling better, Miss McIntosh. Looks like you still have a good bump on your noggin, though," she says in her childlike voice. Since there is no bump on my noggin, I take a little offense but decide to drop it. "Thanks, Mrs. Poindexter. It looks worse than it feels. Just a little tender." "Yeah, I'd say the door got the worst of it," he says beside me. Galen signs himself in on the unexcused tardy sheet below my name. When his arm brushes against mine, it feels like my blood's turned into boiling water. I turn to face him. My dreams really do not do him justice. Long black lashes, flawless olive skin, cut jaw like an Italian model, lips like-for the love of God, have some dignity, nitwit. He just made fun of you. I cross my arms and lift my chin. "You would know," I say. He grins, yanks my backpack from me, and walks out. Trying to ignore the waft of his scent as the door shuts, I look to Mrs. Poindexter, who giggles, shrugs, and pretends to sort some papers. The message is clear: He's your problem, but what a great problem to have. Has he charmed he sense out of the staff here, too? If he started stealing kids' lunch money, would they also giggle at that? I growl through clenched teeth and stomp out of the office. Galen is waiting for me right outside the door, and I almost barrel into him. He chuckles and catches my arm. "This is becoming a habit for you, I think." After I'm steady-after Galen steadies me, that is-I poke my finger into his chest and back him against the wall, which only makes him grin wider. "You...are...irritating...me," I tell him. "I noticed. I'll work on it." "You can start by giving me my backpack." "Nope." "Nope?" "Right-nope. I'm carrying it for you. It's the least I can do." "Well, can't argue with that, can I?" I reach around for it, but he moves to block me. "Galen, I don't want you to carry it. Now knock it off. I'm late for class." "I'm late for it too, remember?" Oh, that's right. I've let him distract me from my agenda. "Actually, I need to go back to the office." "No problem. I'll wait for you here, then I'll walk you to class." I pinch the bridge of my nose. "That's the thing. I'm changing my schedule. I won't be in your class anymore, so you really should just go. You're seriously violating Rule Numero Uno." He crosses his arms. "Why are you changing your schedule? Is it because of me?" "No." "Liar." "Sort of." "Emma-" "Look, I don't want you to take this personally. It's just that...well, something bad happens every time I'm around you." He raises a brow. "Are you sure it's me? I mean, from where I stood, it looked like your flip-flops-" "What were we arguing about anyway? We were arguing, right?" "You...you don't remember?" I shake my head. "Dr. Morton said I might have some short-term memory loss. I do remember being mad at you, though." He looks at me like I'm a criminal. "You're saying you don't remember anything I said. Anything you said." The way I cross my arms reminds me of my mother. "That's what I'm saying, yes." "You swear?" "If you're not going to tell me, then give me my backpack. I have a concussion, not broken arms. I'm not helpless." His smile could land him a cover shoot for any magazine in the country. "We were arguing about which beach you wanted me to take you to. We were going swimming after school." "Liar." With a capital L. Swimming-drowning-falls on my to-do list somewhere below giving birth to porcupines. "Oh, wait. You're right. We were arguing about when the Titanic actually sank. We had already agreed to go to my house to swim.
Anna Banks (Of Poseidon (The Syrena Legacy, #1))
It seems to me just as imbecile, just as infernal, to have to go to the office on Monday,' said Jonathan, 'as it always has done and always will do. To spend all the best years of one's life sitting on a stool from nine to five, scratching in somebody's ledger! It's a queer use to make of one's...one and only life, isn't it? Or do I fondly dream?' He rolled over on the grass and looked up at Linda. 'Tell me, what is the difference between my life and that of an ordinary prisoner? The only difference I can see is that I put myself in jail and nobody's ever going to let me out. That's a more intolerable situation than the other. For if I'd been--pushed in, against my will--kicking, even--once the door was locked, or at any rate in five years or so, I might have accepted the fact and begun to take an interest in the flight of flies or counting the warder's steps along the passage with particular attention to variations of tread and so on. But as it is, I'm like an insect that's flown into a room of its own accord. I dash against the walls, dash against the windows, flop against the ceiling, do everything on God's earth, in fact, except fly out again. And all the while I'm thinking, like that moth, or that butterfly, or whatever it is, "The shortness of life! The shortness of life!" I've only one night or one day, and there's this vast dangerous garden, waiting out there, undiscovered, unexplored. [...] I'm exactly like that insect again. For some reason, it's not allowed, it's forbidden, it's against the insect law, to stop banging and flopping and crawling up the pane even for an instant.
Katherine Mansfield (Stories (Vintage Classics))
Cannery Row in Monterey in California is a poem, a stink, a grating noise, a quality of light, a tone, a habit, a nostalgia, a dream. Cannery Row is the gathered and scattered, tin and iron and rust and splintered wood, chipped pavement and weedy lots and junk heaps, sardine canneries of corrugated iron, honky-tonks, restaurants and whore-houses, and little crowded groceries, and laboratories and flop-houses. Its inhabitants are, as the man once said, "whores, pimps, gamblers, and sons of bitches," by which he meant Everybody. Had the man looked through another peep-hole he might have said: "Saints and angels and martyrs and holy men," and he would have meant the same thing. In the morning when the sardine fleet has made a catch, the purse-seiners waddle heavily into the bay blowing their whistles. The deep-laden boats pull in against the coast where the canneries dip their tails into the bay. The figure is advisedly chosen, for if the canneries dipped their mouths into the bay the canned sardines which emerge from the other end would be metaphorically, at least, even more horrifying. Then cannery whistles scream and all over the town men and women scramble into their clothes and come running down to the Row to go to work. Then shining cars bring the upper classes down: superintendents, accountants, owners who disappear into offices. Then from the town pour Wops and Chinamen and Polaks, men and women in trousers and rubber coats and oilcloth aprons. They come running to clean and cut and pack and cook and can the fish. The whole street rumbles and groans and screams and rattles while the silver rivers of fish pour in out of the boats and the boats rise higher and higher in the water until they are empty. The canneries rumble and rattle and squeak until the last fish is cleaned and cut and cooked and canned and then the whistles scream again and the dripping, smelly, tired Wops and Chinamen and Polaks, men and women, straggle out and droop their ways up the hill into the town and Cannery Row becomes itself again-quiet and magical. Its normal life returns. The bums who retired in disgust under the black cypress-tree come out to sit on the rusty pipes in the vacant lot. The girls from Dora's emerge for a bit of sun if there is any. Doc strolls from the Western Biological Laboratory and crosses the street to Lee Chong's grocery for two quarts of beer. Henri the painter noses like an Airedale through the junk in the grass-grown lot for some pan or piece of wood or metal he needs for the boat he is building. Then the darkness edges in and the street light comes on in front of Dora's-- the lamp which makes perpetual moonlight in Cannery Row. Callers arrive at Western Biological to see Doc, and he crosses the street to Lee Chong's for five quarts of beer. How can the poem and the stink and the grating noise-- the quality of light, the tone, the habit and the dream-- be set down alive? When you collect marine animals there are certain flat worms so delicate that they are almost impossible to capture whole, for they break and tatter under the touch. You must let them ooze and crawl of their own will on to a knife blade and then lift them gently into your bottle of sea water. And perhaps that might be the way to write this book-- to open the page and to let the stories crawl in by themselves.
John Steinbeck
When she finally reached it, she bent forward and looked through the peephole. Jay was grinning back at her from outside. Her heart leaped for a completely different reason. She set aside her crutches and quickly unbolted the door to open it. "What took you so long?" Her knee was bent and her ankle pulled up off the ground. She balanced against the doorjamb. "What d'you think, dumbass?" she retorted smartly, keeping her voice down so she wouldn't alert her parents. "You scared the crap out of me, by the way. My parents are already in bed, and I was all alone down here." "Good!" he exclaimed as he reached in and grabbed her around the waist, dragging her up against him and wrapping his arms around her. She giggled while he held her there, enjoying everything about the feel of him against her. "What are you doing here? I thought I wouldn't see you till tomorrow." "I wanted to show you something!" He beamed at her, and his enthusiasm reached out to capture her in its grip. She couldn't help smiling back excitedly. "What is it?" she asked breathlessly. He didn't release her; he just turned, still holding her gently in his arms, so that she could see out into the driveway. The first thing she noticed was the officer in his car, alert now as he kept a watchful eye on the two of them. Violet realized that it was late, already past eleven, and from the look on his face, she thought he must have been hoping for a quiet, uneventful evening out there. And then she saw the car. It was beautiful and sleek, painted a glossy black that, even in the dark, reflected the light like a polished mirror. Violet recognized the Acura insignia on the front of the hood, and even though she could tell it wasn't brand-new, it looked like it had been well taken care of. "Whose is it?" she asked admiringly. It was way better than her crappy little Honda. Jay grinned again, his face glowing with enthusiasm. "It's mine. I got it tonight. That's why I had to go. My mom had the night off, and I wanted to get it before..." He smiled down at her. "I didn't want to borrow your car to take you to the dance." "Really?" she breathed. "How...? I didn't even know you were..." She couldn't seem to find the right words; she was envious and excited for him all at the same time. "I know right?" he answered, as if she'd actually asked coherent questions. "I've been saving for...for forever, really. What do you think?" Violet smiled at him, thinking that he was entirely too perfect for her. "I think it's beautiful," she said with more meaning than he understood. And then she glanced back at the car. "I had no idea that you were getting a car. I love it, Jay," she insisted, wrapping her arms around his neck as he hoisted her up, cradling her like a small child." "I'd offer to take you for a test-drive, but I'm afraid that Supercop over there would probably Taser me with his stun gun. So you'll have to wait until tomorrow," he said, and without waiting for an invitation he carried her inside, dead bolting the door behind him. He settled down on the couch, where she'd been sitting by herself just moments before, without letting her go. There was a movie on the television, but neither of them paid any attention to it as Jay reclined, stretching out and drawing her down into the circle of his arms. They spent the rest of the night like that, cradled together, their bodies fitting each other perfectly, as they kissed and whispered and laughed quietly in the darkness. At some point Violet was aware that she was drifting into sleep, as her thoughts turned dreamlike, becoming disjointed and fuzzy and hard to hold on to. She didn't fight it; she enjoyed the lazy, drifting feeling, along with the warmth created by the cocoon of Jay's body wrapped protectively around her. It was the safest she'd felt in days...maybe weeks... And for the first time since she'd been chased by the man in the woods, her dreams were free from monsters.
Kimberly Derting (The Body Finder (The Body Finder, #1))
People, especially those in charge, rarely invite you into their offices and give freely of their time. Instead, you have to do something unique, compelling, even funny or a bit daring, to earn it. Even if you happen to be an exceptionally well-rounded person who possesses all of the scrappy qualities discussed so far, it’s still important to be prepared, dig deep, do the prep work, and think on your feet. Harry Gordon Selfridge, who founded the London-based department store Selfridges, knew the value of doing his homework. Selfridge, an American from Chicago, traveled to London in 1906 with the hope of building his “dream store.” He did just that in 1909, and more than a century later, his stores continue to serve customers in London, Manchester, and Birmingham. Selfridges’ success and staying power is rooted in the scrappy efforts of Harry Selfridge himself, a creative marketer who exhibited “a revolutionary understanding of publicity and the theatre of retail,” as he is described on the Selfridges’ Web site. His department store was known for creating events to attract special clientele, engaging shoppers in a way other retailers had never done before, catering to the holidays, adapting to cultural trends, and changing with the times and political movements such as the suffragists. Selfridge was noted to have said, “People will sit up and take notice of you if you will sit up and take notice of what makes them sit up and take notice.” How do you get people to take notice? How do you stand out in a positive way in order to make things happen? The curiosity and imagination Selfridge employed to successfully build his retail stores can be just as valuable for you to embrace in your circumstances. Perhaps you have landed a meeting, interview, or a quick coffee date with a key decision maker at a company that has sparked your interest. To maximize the impression you’re going to make, you have to know your audience. That means you must respectfully learn what you can about the person, their industry, or the culture of their organization. In fact, it pays to become familiar not only with the person’s current position but also their background, philosophies, triumphs, failures, and major breakthroughs. With that information in hand, you are less likely to waste the precious time you have and more likely to engage in genuine and meaningful conversation.
Terri L. Sjodin (Scrappy: A Little Book About Choosing to Play Big)