Rig Life Quotes

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In case you haven't noticed, as the result of a shamelessly rigged election in Florida, in which thousands of African Americans were arbitrarily disenfranchised, we now present ourselves to the rest of the world as proud, grinning, jut-jawed, pitiless war-lovers with appalling powerful weaponry - who stand unopposed. In case you haven't noticed, we are now as feared and hated all over the world as the Nazi's once were. And with good reason. In case you haven't noticed, our unelected leaders have dehumanized millions and millions of human beings simply because of their religion and race. We wound 'em and kill 'em and torture 'em and imprison 'em all we want. Piece of cake. In case you haven't noticed, we also dehumanize our own soldiers, not because of their religion or race, but because of their low social class. Send 'em anywhere. Make 'em do anything. Piece of cake. The O'Reilly Factor. So I am a man without a country, except for the librarians and a Chicago paper called "In These Times." Before we attacked Iraq, the majestic "New York Times" guaranteed there were weapons of destruction there. Albert Einstein and Mark Twain gave up on the human race at the end of their lives, even though Twain hadn't even seen the First World War. War is now a form of TV entertainment, and what made the First World War so particularly entertaining were two American inventions, barbed wire and the machine gun. Shrapnel was invented by an Englishman of the same name. Don't you wish you could have something named after you? Like my distinct betters Einstein and Twain, I now give up on people too. I am a veteran of the Second World War and I have to say this is the not the first time I surrendered to a pitiless war machine. My last words? "Life is no way to treat an animal, not even a mouse." Napalm came from Harvard. Veritas! Our president is a Christian? So was Adolf Hitler. What can be said to our young people, now that psychopathic personalities, which is to say persons without consciences, without senses of pity or shame, have taken all the money in the treasuries of our government and corporations and made it all their own?
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (A Man Without a Country)
What if … what if … what if … I play the What If? game all the time. But it’s rigged, is the thing. Impossible to win. Asking What If? can only lead to Maybe Things Could Have Been Different, via Was It My Fault?
David Arnold (Mosquitoland)
A man is never happy, but spends his whole life in striving after something that he thinks will make him so; he seldom attains his goal, and when he does, it is only to be disappointed; he is mostly shipwrecked in the end, and comes into harbour with mast and rigging gone. And then, it is all one whether he is happy or miserable; for his life was never anything more than a present moment always vanishing; and now it is over.
Arthur Schopenhauer (Studies in Pessimism: The Essays)
Live life as if everything is rigged in your favor.
Everyone who loves pro basketball assumes it's a little fixed. We all think the annual draft lottery is probably rigged, we all accept that the league aggressively wants big market teams to advance deep into the playoffs, and we all concede that certain marquee players are going to get preferential treatment for no valid reason. The outcomes of games aren't predeteremined or scripted but there are definitely dark forces who play with our reality. There are faceless puppet masters who pull strings and manipulate the purity of justice. It's not necessarily a full-on conspiracy, but it's certainly not fair. And that's why the NBA remains the only game that matters: Pro basketball is exactly like life.
Chuck Klosterman (Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifesto)
...he took a look at the blond girl's eyes and knew that he must not take part in the rigged game in which the ephemeral passes for the eternal and the small for the big, that he must not take part in the rigged game called love.
Milan Kundera (Life is Elsewhere)
The problem with getting old was that each day had to compete with the thousands of others gone by. How wonderful would a day have to be to win such a beauty contest? To even make it into the finals? Never mind that memory rigged the game, airbrushed the flaws from its contestants, while the present had to shuffle into the spotlight unaided, all pockmarked with mundanities and baggy with annoyances.
Daryl Gregory (Spoonbenders)
It means that your birth, with all your particulars, is a wildly improbable event, and hence precious. You won the sweepstakes by being born at all. Think of all the wallflower sperm and egg cells. You made it, buddy. Whew! What a staggering wonder! What a thing to rejoice in! The lottery wasn't fixed! God didn't rig it! You won fair and square! What a miracle!
Robert M. Price
And when they asked us where we were from, we exchanged glances and smiled with the shyness of child brides. They said, Africa? We nodded yes. What part of Africa? We smiled. Is it that part where vultures wait for famished children to die? We smiled. Where the life expectancy is thirty-five years? We smiled? Is is there where dissidents shove AK-47s between women's legs? We smiled. Where people run about naked? We smiled. That part where they massacred each other? We smiled. Is it where the old president rigged the election and people were tortured and killed and a whole bunch of them put in prison and all, there where they are dying of cholera - oh my God, yes, we've seen your country; it's been on the news.
NoViolet Bulawayo (We Need New Names)
In a dictatorship, every election is faked and everybody seems to know it except for the dictator. In a democracy it is the politicians that are rigged.
Lamine Pearlheart (To Life from the Shadows)
Know something about the world, and by this I mean the world outside of books. This might require joining the Marines, or working on an oil rig or as a hash slinger at a truck stop in Kentucky. Know what it smells like out there. If everything you write smells like a library, then your prospective audience will be limited to those who like the smell of libraries.
Douglas Wilson (Wordsmithy: Hot Tips for the Writing Life)
Does rough weather choose men over women? Does the sun beat on men, leaving women nice and cool?' Nyawira asked rather sharply. 'Women bear the brunt of poverty. What choices does a woman have in life, especially in times of misery? She can marry or live with a man. She can bear children and bring them up, and be abused by her man. Have you read Buchi Emecheta of Nigeria, Joys of Motherhood? Tsitsi Dangarembga of Zimbabwe, say, Nervous Conditions? Miriama Ba of Senegal, So Long A Letter? Three women from different parts of Africa, giving words to similar thoughts about the condition of women in Africa.' 'I am not much of a reader of fiction,' Kamiti said. 'Especially novels by African women. In India such books are hard to find.' 'Surely even in India there are women writers? Indian women writers?' Nyawira pressed. 'Arundhati Roy, for instance, The God of Small Things? Meena Alexander, Fault Lines? Susie Tharu. Read Women Writing in India. Or her other book, We Were Making History, about women in the struggle!' 'I have sampled the epics of Indian literature,' Kamiti said, trying to redeem himself. 'Mahabharata, Ramayana, and mostly Bhagavad Gita. There are a few others, what they call Purana, Rig-Veda, Upanishads … Not that I read everything, but …' 'I am sure that those epics and Puranas, even the Gita, were all written by men,' Nyawira said. 'The same men who invented the caste system. When will you learn to listen to the voices of women?
Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o (Wizard of the Crow)
Ugh,” I snort in disgust. No doubt that girl’s some goddy rich trot living the sweet life farther inland, in one of LA’s upper-class sectors. Who cares what she scored on her Trial? The whole test is rigged in favor of the wealthy kids, anyway, and she’s probably just someone with average smarts who bought her high score.
Marie Lu (Life Before Legend (Legend, #0.5))
Some false representations contravene the law; some do not. The law does not pretend to punish everything that is dishonest. That would seriously interfere with business, and, besides, could not be done. The line between honesty and dishonesty is a narrow, shifting one and usually lets those get by that are the most subtle and already have more than they can use.
Clarence Darrow (The Story of My Life)
He took a look at the blond girl’s eyes and knew that he must not take part in the rigged game in which the ephemeral passes for the eternal and the small for the big, that he must not take part in the rigged game called love.
Milan Kundera (Life is Elsewhere)
16 I am the ritual and the sacrifice; I am true medicine and the mantram. I am the offering and the fire which consumes it, and the one to whom it is offered. 17 I am the father and mother of this universe, and its grandfather too; I am its entire support. I am the sum of all knowledge, the purifier, the syllable Om; I am the sacred scriptures, the Rig, Yajur, and Sama Vedas. 18 I am the goal of life, the Lord and support of all, the inner witness, the abode of all. I am the only refuge, the one true friend; I am the beginning, the staying, and the end of creation; I am the womb and the eternal seed. 19 I am heat; I give and withhold the rain. I am immortality and I am death; I am what is and what is not.
Bhagavad Gita (The Bhagavad Gita)
One should never fear sorrow because it is the stepping stone to happiness,”   - Rig Veda
the laws of nature are rigged in favor of life.” In this view, “life emerges from a soup in the same dependable way that a crystal emerges from a saturated solution,
Kevin Kelly (What Technology Wants)
Live life as though everything is rigged in your favor.
Vishen Lakhiani (The Code of the Extraordinary Mind: 10 Unconventional Laws to Redefine Your Life and Succeed On Your Own Terms)
Where'd you learn to do all these funny things?' he laughed. 'And you know I say funny but there's sumpthin so durned sensible about 'em. Here I am killin myself drivin this rig back and forth from Ohio to L.A. and I make more money than you ever had in your whole life as a hobo, but you're the one who enjoys life and not only that but you do it without workin or a whole lot of money. Now who's smart, you or me?' And he had a nice home in Ohio with wife, daughter, Christmas tree, two cars, garage, lawn, lawnmower, but he couldn't enjoy any of it because he really wasn't free.
Jack Kerouac (The Dharma Bums)
A life without a storm would lack drama. Pounding waves of a tempestuous sea test a person’s mettle. A fearless sailor climbs the rigging and shouts out at the top of their lungs into the wind and rain whipping across their face that they will not go quietly into the good night without a fight.
Kilroy J. Oldster (Dead Toad Scrolls)
You, yourself, this whole big drama, it was never more than a jerry rig of presumption and dumb will, and you could just let go. To finally know that you didn't have to hold on so tight. To realize that all your life, all your love, all your hate, all your memories, all your pain, it was all the same thing. It was all the same dream, a dream that you had inside a locked room, a dream about being a person.
Rustin Cohle
For Buddha, attachments are like a game of roulette in which someone else spins the wheel and the game is rigged: The more you play, the more you lose. The only way to win is to step away from the table. And the only way to step away, to make yourself not react to the ups and downs of life, is to meditate and tame the mind. Although you give up the pleasures of winning, you also give up the larger pains of losing.
Jonathan Haidt (The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom)
The basic recurring theme in Hindu mythology is the creation of the world by the self-sacrifice of God—"sacrifice" in the original sense of "making sacred"—whereby God becomes the world which, in the end, becomes again God. This creative activity of the Divine is called lila, the play of God, and the world is seen as the stage of the divine play. Like most of Hindu mythology, the myth of lila has a strong magical flavour. Brahman is the great magician who transforms himself into the world and then performs this feat with his "magic creative power", which is the original meaning of maya in the Rig Veda. The word maya—one of the most important terms in Indian philosophy—has changed its meaning over the centuries. From the might, or power, of the divine actor and magician, it came to signify the psychological state of anybody under the spell of the magic play. As long as we confuse the myriad forms of the divine lila with reality, without perceiving the unity of Brahman underlying all these forms, we are under the spell of maya. (...) In the Hindu view of nature, then, all forms are relative, fluid and ever-changing maya, conjured up by the great magician of the divine play. The world of maya changes continuously, because the divine lila is a rhythmic, dynamic play. The dynamic force of the play is karma, important concept of Indian thought. Karma means "action". It is the active principle of the play, the total universe in action, where everything is dynamically connected with everything else. In the words of the Gita Karma is the force of creation, wherefrom all things have their life.
Fritjof Capra (The Tao of Physics: An Exploration of the Parallels between Modern Physics and Eastern Mysticism)
The things here are stronger--the things that differentiate us from one another are too powerful. The common interest is no longer decisive. It has broken up already and given place to the interest of the individual. Now and then something still will shine through from that other time when we all wore the same rig, but already it is dwindled and dim. These others here are still our comrades and yet our comrades no longer--that is what is so sad. All else went west in the war, but comradeship we did believe in; now only to find that what death could not do, life is achieving; it is driving us asunder.
Erich Maria Remarque (The Road Back)
You think I married you because I lost when we drew straws?” He chuckled softly. “Oh, Meri. Sweetheart. I won the straw draw. I didn’t lose it.” She stared at him, not comprehending the difference. “What are you saying?” Travis grinned. “When we sat around the table that night, we didn’t decide to draw straws because none of us wanted to marry you. We drew straws because all of us wanted to marry you.” Meredith blinked up at her husband. Could it be true? Had she been a prize, not a chore? “And I’ll tell you something else.” He dipped his head and lowered his voice, his grin turning downright mischievous. “But you gotta swear not to tell the others.” She nodded. “I rigged the contest.” “What?” “I made sure that I was the one who ended up with the short straw.” Meredith’s pulse quickened. “Why?” Travis shrugged a bit, and if she didn’t know better, she could have sworn his skin pinkened a bit under his tan. “At the time I told myself that you were my responsibility. That because of our previous encounter, I should be the one to marry you.” A responsibility. Of course. Meredith forced her chin to stay raised and her back straight despite her yearning to curl up into a protective ball. “But I was fooling myself.” Travis’s gaze met hers, and she caught her breath. The way he looked at her, it was . . . was . . . “Even then I was falling in love with you.” It was love. “I couldn’t stand the idea of one of my brothers marrying you. You belonged with me. I knew it. I couldn’t explain it, but I knew it. And over the last several weeks, I’ve only grown more sure. I love you, Meredith. I thank God every day for bringing you back into my life.
Karen Witemeyer (Short-Straw Bride (Archer Brothers, #1))
After that it had all been oral history for about a thousand years, since there had been no paper to write on and no ink to write on it with. Memory devices were scarce and jury-rigged. Every single chip had been used for critical functions such as robots and life support.
Neal Stephenson (Seveneves)
Each of us hides our own private Delaware lost in the gray jungle-tangle of our brains. No one else can know its depths and byways. No one else can know the height of its towers, the secrets of its tides and pools. There will always be lost lagoons to find there, and ruins almost hidden by the sand. There will always be monsters of great beauty and good men with ugly frowns. The forests are dark but lights bob among the branches. You are at home there, more at home than anyplace else, and yet you will never go there in your life. Their legends are yours. The pirates sale around the cape, a crew of skeletons in the rigging. Milkmaids run down mountain passes, dragging kites behind them. Wizards crack their backs after long days of chalk and incantation while above the crowded bazaars, over the golden temples, against the setting sun, around the ruddy minarets, the pterodactyls call out a long farewell.
M.T. Anderson (Jasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware (Pals in Peril, #3))
Now when he closes his eyes he can really look at himself. He no longer sees a mask. He sees without seeing, to be exact. Vision without sight, a fluid grasp of intangibles: the merging of sight and sound: the heart of the web. Here stream the different personalities which evade the crude contact of the senses; here the overtones of recognition discreetly lap against one another in bright, vibrant harmonies. There is no language employed, no outlines delineated. When a ship founders, it settles slowly; the spars, the masts, the rigging float away. On the ocean floor of death the bleeding hull bedecks itself with jewels; remorselessly the anatomic life begins. What was ship becomes the nameless indestructible. Like ships, men founder time and again. Only memory saves them from complete dispersion. Poets drop their stitches in the loom, straws for drowning men to grasp as they sink into extinction. Ghosts climb back on watery stairs, make imaginary ascents, vertiginous drops, memorize numbers, dates, events, in passing from gas to liquid and back again. There is no brain capable of registering the changing changes. Nothing happens in the brain, except the gradual rust and detrition of the cells. But in the minds, worlds unclassified, undenominated, unassimilated, form, break, unite, dissolve and harmonize ceaselessly. In the mind-world ideas are the indestructible elements which form the jewelled constellations of the interior life. We move within their orbits, freely if we follow their intricate patterns, enslaved or possessed if we try to subjugate them.
Henry Miller (Sexus (The Rosy Crucifixion, #1))
The face that Moses had begged to see – was forbidden to see – was slapped bloody (Exodus 33:19-20) The thorns that God had sent to curse the earth’s rebellion now twisted around his brow… “On your back with you!” One raises a mallet to sink the spike. But the soldier’s heart must continue pumping as he readies the prisoner’s wrist. Someone must sustain the soldier’s life minute by minute, for no man has this power on his own. Who supplies breath to his lungs? Who gives energy to his cells? Who holds his molecules together? Only by the Son do “all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17). The victim wills that the soldier live on – he grants the warrior’s continued existence. The man swings. As the man swings, the Son recalls how he and the Father first designed the medial nerve of the human forearm – the sensations it would be capable of. The design proves flawless – the nerves perform exquisitely. “Up you go!” They lift the cross. God is on display in his underwear and can scarcely breathe. But these pains are a mere warm-up to his other and growing dread. He begins to feel a foreign sensation. Somewhere during this day an unearthly foul odor began to waft, not around his nose, but his heart. He feels dirty. Human wickedness starts to crawl upon his spotless being – the living excrement from our souls. The apple of his Father’s eye turns brown with rot. His Father! He must face his Father like this! From heaven the Father now rouses himself like a lion disturbed, shakes His mane, and roars against the shriveling remnant of a man hanging on a cross.Never has the Son seen the Father look at him so, never felt even the least of his hot breath. But the roar shakes the unseen world and darkens the visible sky. The Son does not recognize these eyes. “Son of Man! Why have you behaved so? You have cheated, lusted, stolen, gossiped – murdered, envied, hated, lied. You have cursed, robbed, over-spent, overeaten – fornicated, disobeyed, embezzled, and blasphemed. Oh the duties you have shirked, the children you have abandoned! Who has ever so ignored the poor, so played the coward, so belittled my name? Have you ever held a razor tongue? What a self-righteous, pitiful drunk – you, who moles young boys, peddle killer drugs, travel in cliques, and mock your parents. Who gave you the boldness to rig elections, foment revolutions, torture animals, and worship demons? Does the list never end! Splitting families, raping virgins, acting smugly, playing the pimp – buying politicians, practicing exhortation, filming pornography, accepting bribes. You have burned down buildings, perfected terrorist tactics, founded false religions, traded in slaves – relishing each morsel and bragging about it all. I hate, loathe these things in you! Disgust for everything about you consumes me! Can you not feel my wrath? Of course the Son is innocent He is blamelessness itself. The Father knows this. But the divine pair have an agreement, and the unthinkable must now take place. Jesus will be treated as if personally responsible for every sin ever committed. The Father watches as his heart’s treasure, the mirror image of himself, sinks drowning into raw, liquid sin. Jehovah’s stored rage against humankind from every century explodes in a single direction. “Father! Father! Why have you forsaken me?!” But heaven stops its ears. The Son stares up at the One who cannot, who will not, reach down or reply. The Trinity had planned it. The Son had endured it. The Spirit enabled Him. The Father rejected the Son whom He loved. Jesus, the God-man from Nazareth, perished. The Father accepted His sacrifice for sin and was satisfied. The Rescue was accomplished.
Joni Eareckson Tada (When God Weeps Kit: Why Our Sufferings Matter to the Almighty)
The rock spun out of his hand so fast, she heard it buzz through the air. It skimmed across the water, hop after hop like a leapfrog racing across the water. It went on and on until it had crossed the lake and had hopped onto the opposite shore. “Well,” he mused softly, a masculine taunt in his voice, “I would say that about wraps things up. Twenty-two skips all the way to the other side.” He sounded very complacent. “I believe you get to be my slave and brush my hair for me at each rising.” Francesca shook her head. “What I believe is, you rigged this wager. You did something to win.” “It is called practice. I have spent much time skipping rocks across the lake.” Francesca laughed softly. “You are not telling the truth, Gabriel. I don’t believe you ever skipped a rock in your life until now. You tricked me.” “You think?” He asked it innocently. Too innocently. “You know you did. Just to win a silly bet. I can’t believe you.” He reached out to tuck a wayward strand of hair behind her ear, making her heart leap wildly. “It was not just a silly bet, honey, it was a way to get you to brush my hair. No one has ever done such a thing for me and I think I crave attention.” He rubbed the bridge of his nose again and grinned at her almost boyishly. “I asked Lucian to do so once and he threatened to beat me to a bloody pulp.” He shrugged his broad shoulders. “Some things are just not worth it, you know.
Christine Feehan (Dark Legend (Dark, #7))
We are blatantly biased by an overwhelming desire to find certain answers. Life good. Dead universe bad. Science, we have been taught, is supposed to be neutral, like Switzerland. We’re not supposed to take sides or rig the game. Yet, when it comes to life in the universe, we’ve unabashedly forsaken our neutrality. We can’t hide our love away. We want life.
David Grinspoon (Lonely Planets: The Natural Philosophy of Alien Life)
Rigor Mortis.” I say, almost as an apology. But he won’t have any of it. He locks onto my gaze. He doesn’t lean forward, but he doesn’t need to, suddenly the room feels like it’s filled with him. His presence floats in the air like a noxious gas, and I’m breathing it in. “Ike, you don’t get it. That’s why I wanted to talk to you. Do you think I have the right to talk to anyone? Do you think its fun to have a ‘human’ brain in a pet’s body? Sure, I have Kamu. And that’s fugging great, but guess what? Kamu is queen to be, and emotionally unstable.” I've never heard Rig talk this powerfully before, but he doesn’t seem scary, just sad. “And then I get someone else I can actually talk to, Ike, I get you. And you don’t treat me like I’m a pet and you talk about Kamu like she needs to be protected and you are there. You are there, and you keep being there, and the only one who’s ever there is Kamu, but now there is Ike. And Ike is perfect, albeit a bit dense, but perfect.” “Rig, I’m really sorry bu-“ I start, I don’t know how much more of this I can take. With each sentence Rig loses some of his force, he sounds more pathetic and lost. “I’m not done.” He pronounces the words in such a voice that it makes me shut up more than the context of the sentence does. “And all I want is to be with this boy who is there, this boy who is my friend, this boy who isn’t always caught up in politics. All I want is to have my one good break.” He finishes. I keep holding his eye contact, and his eyes, they already reflect hurt and rejectment. I don’t know if from me…or from life.
Ginny Albinson
Once he raised his arm to show his friends the back of his hand, where the veins were laid out in the shape of a tree, and he broke out in the following improvisation: “Here,” he said, “is the tree of life. Here is a tree that tells me more about life and death than the flowering and fading of tree gardens. I don’t remember when exactly I discovered that my wrist was blooming like a tree…but it must have been during that wonderful time when the flowering and fading of trees still spoke to me not of life and death but of the end and beginning of the school year! It was blue then, this tree, blue and slender, and the blood, which at the time I thought of not as a liquid but as light, rose like the dawn over it and turned my metacarpus’s entire landscape into a Japanese watercolor… “The years passed, I changed, and the tree changed, too. “I remember a splendid time; the tree was spreading. The pride I felt, seeing its inexorable flowering! It became gnarled and reddish brown—and therein lay its strength! I could call it my hand’s might rigging. But now, my friends! How decrepit it is, how rotten! “The branches seem to be breaking off, cavities have appeared…It’s sclerosis, my friends! And the fact that the skin is getting glassy, and the tissue beneath it is squishy—isn’t this a fog settling on the tree of my life, the fog that will soon envelop all of me?
Yury Olesha (Envy)
Oh, do you, Milo? You’re so selfish. You don’t see the bigger picture.” “What’s the bigger picture?” “You’re still here looking for handouts. Who’s going to take care of me?” “I’m on my knees here, Mom. Not for me, for my family. For my wife. For a beautiful grandson you have totally ignored.” “He’s kind of a brat. I’ll be in his life when he gets a little impulse control.” “He’s not even four.” “I have needs. I’m tired of this child-worshipping culture. You’re just a slave to it, Milo.” “I’m only trying to be a decent dad.” “Don’t waste your time. It’s not in your genes. Besides, try making some money. That might be a good dad move. For heaven’s sake, the system’s rigged for white men and you still can’t tap in.” “You’re right, Mom. What can I say? But still, it would mean a lot to me if you made a little more of an effort with Bernie.” “Bernie schmernie. This is my decade.” “Okay, you wrinkled old spidercunt, have it your way.
Sam Lipsyte (The Ask)
About thirty truckers in Brighton, Colorado, refused to move their rigs in protest of the high cost of diesel fuel, fuel shortages, and the fifty-five-mile-per-hour speed limit. Other drivers followed suit in Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Nevada, Nebraska, Connecticut, and Delaware. In New Jersey, the governor had to call on the National Guard to remove blockading trucks. The truckers complained that higher fuel prices and lower speed limits were threatening their profits.
Tom Lewis (Divided Highways: Building the Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life)
The hour or so after I woke up was my least favorite part of each day, because I spent it in the real world. This was when I dealt with the tedious business of cleaning and exercising my physical body. I hated this part of the day because everything about it contradicted my other life. My real life, inside the OASIS. The sight of my tiny one-room apartment, my immersion rig, or my reflection in the mirror—they all served as a harsh reminder that the world I spent my days in was not, in fact, the real one.
Ernest Cline (Ready Player One (Ready Player One, #1))
He’s rumored to have more bravery than sense.” “Then he and Gabe make a good pair,” Oliver growled. “Lay off of him, will you?” Jarret told Oliver. Closest to being a blend of their parents, he had black hair but blue-green eyes and no trace of Oliver’s Italian features. “You’ve been ragging him ever since that stupid carriage race. He was drunk. It’s a state you ought to be familiar with.” Oliver whirled on Jarret. “Yes, but you were not drunk, yet you let him-“ “Don’t blame Jarret,” Gabe put in. “Chetwin challenged me to it. He would have branded me a coward if I’d refused.” “Better a coward than dead.” Oliver had no tolerance for such idiocy. Nothing was worth risking one’s life for-not a woman, not honor, and certainly not reputation. A pity that he hadn’t yet impressed that upon his idiot brothers. Gabe, of all people, ought to know better. The course he’d run was the most dangerous in London. Two large boulders flanked the path so closely that only one rig could pass between them, forcing a driver to fall back at the last minute to avoid being dashed on the rocks. Many was the time drivers pulled out too late. The sporting set called it “threading the needle.” Oliver called it madness.
Sabrina Jeffries (The Truth About Lord Stoneville (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #1))
I knew it was my duty to my own legend to survive this trial. But I was still crippled by my own devices. Imagine me as a great fully-rigged man-of-war. Four masts, great bulwarks of oak and five score cannon. All my life I have sailed smooth seas and waters that parted for me by virtue of my own splendor. Never tested. Never riled. A tragic existence, if ever there was one. “But at long last: a storm! And when I met it I found my hull . . . rotten. My planks leaking brine, my cannon brittle, powder wet. I foundered upon the storm. Upon you, Darrow of Lykos.” He sighs. “And it was my own fault.” I war between wanting to punch him in the mouth and surrendering into my curiosity by letting him continue. He’s a strange man with a seductive presence. Even as an enemy, his flamboyance fascinated me. Purple capes in battle. A horned Minotaur helmet. Trumpets blaring to signal his advance, as if welcoming all challengers. He even broadcast opera as his men bombarded cities. After so much isolation, he’s delighting in imposing his narrative upon us. “My peril is thus: I am, and always have been, a man of great tastes. In a world replete with temptation, I found my spirit wayward and easy to distract. The idea of prison, that naked, metal world, crushed me. The first year, I was tormented. But then I remembered the voice of a fallen angel. ‘The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, or a hell of heaven.’ I sought to make the deep not just my heaven, but my womb of rebirth. “I dissected the underlying mistakes which led to my incarceration and set upon an internal odyssey to remake myself. But—and you would know this, Reaper—long is the road up out of hell! I made arrangements for supplies. I toiled twenty hours a day. I reread the books of youth with the gravity of age. I perfected my body. My mind. Planks were replaced; new banks of cannon wrought in the fires of solitude. All for the next storm. “Now I see it is upon me and I sail before you the paragon of Apollonius au Valii-Rath. And I ask one question: for what purpose have you pulled me from the deep?” “Bloodyhell, did you memorize that?” Sevro mutters.
Pierce Brown (Iron Gold)
At this point doubts started to creep in. One was always reading of young men running away to sea, or people shipping as deck-hands and working their passages. There seemed to be no special qualifications needed. No ropes had to be spliced. No rigging had to be climbed. All you did was paint the anchor, chip rust off the deck plating and say 'aye, aye, sir', when addressed by an officer. It was a tough life and you met tough men. There were weevils in the ship's biscuits and you had little to eat but skilly. Quarrels were settled with bare fists and you went about naked to the waist. But one of the crew always had a concertina and there were sing-songs when the day's work was done. In after life you wrote a book about it.
Eric Ambler (Epitaph for a Spy)
Tell me, Mar,” she would say (and here it must be explained, that when she called him by the first syllable of his first name, she was in a dreamy, amorous, acquiescent mood, domestic, languid a little, as if spiced logs were burning, and it was evening, yet not time to dress, and a thought wet perhaps outside, enough to make the leaves glisten, but a nightingale might be singing even so among the azaleas, two or three dogs barking at distant farms, a cock crowing—all of which the reader should imagine in her voice)—“Tell me, Mar,” she would say, “about Cape Horn.” Then Shelmerdine would make a little model on the ground of the Cape with twigs and dead leaves and an empty snail shell or two. “Here’s the north,” he would say. “There’s the south. The wind’s coming from hereabouts. Now the Brig is sailing due west; we’ve just lowered the top-boom mizzen; and so you see—here, where this bit of grass is, she enters the current which you’ll find marked—where’s my map and compasses, Bo’sun?—Ah! thanks, that’ll do, where the snail shell is. The current catches her on the starboard side, so we must rig the jib boom or we shall be carried to the larboard, which is where that beech leaf is,—for you must understand my dear—” and so he would go on, and she would listen to every word; interpreting them rightly, so as to see, that is to say, without his having to tell her, the phosphorescence on the waves, the icicles clanking in the shrouds; how he went to the top of the mast in a gale; there reflected on the destiny of man; came down again; had a whisky and soda; went on shore; was trapped by a black woman; repented; reasoned it out; read Pascal; determined to write philosophy; bought a monkey; debated the true end of life; decided in favour of Cape Horn, and so on. All this and a thousand other things she understood him to say and so when she replied, Yes, negresses are seductive, aren’t they? he having told her that the supply of biscuits now gave out, he was surprised and delighted to find how well she had taken his meaning. “Are you positive you aren’t a man?” he would ask anxiously, and she would echo, “Can it be possible you’re not a woman?” and then they must put it to the proof without more ado.
Virginia Woolf (Orlando: A Biography)
helps to be good at the job, of course, but even if you’re a positive genius humiliation and ridicule are lurking just round the corner. I once got an eminent horse specialist along here to do a rig operation and the horse stopped breathing half way through. The sight of that man dancing frantically on his patient’s ribs taught me a great truth—that I was going to look just as big a fool at fairly regular intervals throughout my career.” I laughed. “Then I might as well resign myself to it right at the beginning.” “That’s the idea. Animals are unpredictable things so our whole life is unpredictable. It’s a long tale of little triumphs and disasters and you’ve got to really like it to stick it. Tonight it was Soames, but another night it’ll be something else. One thing, you never get bored.
James Herriot (All Creatures Great and Small (All Creatures Great and Small, #1))
This isn’t some libertarian mistrust of government policy, which is healthy in any democracy. This is deep skepticism of the very institutions of our society. And it’s becoming more and more mainstream. We can’t trust the evening news. We can’t trust our politicians. Our universities, the gateway to a better life, are rigged against us. We can’t get jobs. You can’t believe these things and participate meaningfully in society. Social psychologists have shown that group belief is a powerful motivator in performance. When groups perceive that it’s in their interest to work hard and achieve things, members of that group outperform other similarly situated individuals. It’s obvious why: If you believe that hard work pays off, then you work hard; if you think it’s hard to get ahead even when you try, then why try at all? Similarly, when people do fail, this mind-set allows them to look outward. I once ran into an old acquaintance at a Middletown bar who told me that he had recently quit his job because he was sick of waking up early. I later saw him complaining on Facebook about the “Obama economy” and how it had affected his life. I don’t doubt that the Obama economy has affected many, but this man is assuredly not among them. His status in life is directly attributable to the choices he’s made, and his life will improve only through better decisions. But for him to make better choices, he needs to live in an environment that forces him to ask tough questions about himself. There is a cultural movement in the white working class to blame problems on society or the government, and that movement gains adherents by the day. Here is where the rhetoric of modern conservatives (and I say this as one of them) fails to meet the real challenges of their biggest constituents. Instead of encouraging engagement, conservatives increasingly foment the kind of detachment that has sapped the ambition of so many of my peers. I have watched some friends blossom into successful adults and others fall victim to the worst of Middletown’s temptations—premature parenthood, drugs, incarceration. What separates the successful from the unsuccessful are the expectations that they had for their own lives. Yet the message of the right is increasingly: It’s not your fault that you’re a loser; it’s the government’s fault. My dad, for example, has never disparaged hard work, but he mistrusts some of the most obvious paths to upward mobility. When
J.D. Vance (Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis)
Pierce Hutton gave him a highly amused smile as they went over updated security information from the oil rig in the Caspian Sea. “So you’ve finally decided to do something about Cecily,” Peirce murmured. “It’s about time. I was beginning to get used to that permanent scowl.” Tate glanced at him wryly. “I thought I was doing a great job of keeping her at arm’s length. She’s pregnant, now, of course,” he volunteered. The older man chuckled helplessly. “So much for keeping her at arm’s length. When’s the wedding?” Tate’s smile faded. “That’s premature. She ran. I finally tracked her down, but now I have to convince her that I want to get married without having her think it’s only because of the baby.” “I don’t envy you the job,” Pierce replied, his black eyes twinkling. “I had my own rocky road to marriage, if you recall.” “How’s the baby these days?” he asked. Pierce laughed with wholehearted delight. “We watch him instead of television. I never expected fatherhood to make such changes in me, in my life.” He shook his head, with a faraway look claiming his eyes. “Sometimes I’m afraid it’s all a dream and I’ll wake up alone.” He shifted, embarrassed. “You can have the time off. But who’s going to handle your job while you’re gone?” “I thought I’d get you to put Colby Lane on the payroll.” He held up his hand when Pierce looked thunderous. “He’s stopped drinking,” he hold him. “Cecily got him into therapy. He’s not the man he was.” “You’re sure of that?” Pierce wanted to know. Tate smiled. “I’m sure. “Okay. But if he ever throws a punch at me again, he’ll be smiling on the inside of his mouth!” Tate chuckled. “Fair enough. I’ll give him a call before I leave town.
Diana Palmer (Paper Rose (Hutton & Co. #2))
Hitler and Mussolini were indeed authoritarians, but it doesn’t follow that authoritarianism equals fascism or Nazism. Lenin and Stalin were authoritarian, but neither was a fascist. Many dictators—Franco in Spain, Pinochet in Chile, Perón in Argentina, Amin in Uganda—were authoritarian without being fascists or Nazis. Trump admittedly has a bossy style that he gets from, well, being a boss. He has been a corporate boss all his life, and he also played a boss on TV. Republicans elected Trump because they needed a tough guy to take on Hillary; previously they tried bland, harmless candidates like Romney, and look where that got them. That being said, Trump has done nothing to subvert the democratic process. While progressives continue to allege a plot between Trump and the Russians to rig the election, the only evidence for actual rigging comes from the Democratic National Committee’s attempt to rig the 2016 primary in favor of Hillary over Bernie. This rigging evoked virtually no dissent from Democratic officials or from the media, suggesting the support, or at least acquiescence, of the whole progressive movement and most of the party itself. Trump fired his FBI director, provoking dark ruminations in the Washington Post about Trump’s “respect for the rule of law,” yet Trump’s action was entirely lawful.18 He has criticized judges, sometimes in derisive terms, but contrary to Timothy Snyder there is nothing undemocratic about this. Lincoln blasted Justice Taney over the Dred Scott decision, and FDR was virtually apoplectic when the Supreme Court blocked his New Deal initiatives. Criticizing the media isn’t undemocratic either. The First Amendment isn’t just a press prerogative; the president too has the right to free speech.
Dinesh D'Souza (The Big Lie: Exposing the Nazi Roots of the American Left)
I swung it a couple of times, getting used to the weight. “Two swords,” Bran said from the doorway. His spasm had torn his clothes, and he had cut and rigged the remnants of his shirt and pants into a makeshift kilt, showcasing the world’s greatest chest. Too bad the kilt gave me a flashback to Greg’s killer. He had worn a kilt, too. “Can you handle two swords?” I pulled Slayer from the sheath, lunged at him, drawing a classic figure eight around his body with Slayer, and blocked his arm with the flat of the shorter blade when he tried to counter. “Fancy. You missed,” he said. “You want something?” “I thought since we both might die tomorrow, you’d be up for a friendly roll-in-the-hay.” “I might die. You’ll be healed.” He shook his head. “I’m not immortal, dove. Do enough damage fast and I’ll kick the bucket like the rest of you.” I disengaged and moved past him to the door. His kilt fell. “It took me forever to fix this!” He grabbed it off the floor and it fell apart in his hand. I had cut it in three places. I walked out into the hallway and almost ran into Curran accompanied by a group of shapeshifters. Bran followed me in all his naked glory. “Hey, does this mean no sex?” Curran’s face went blank. I dodged him and kept walking. Bran chased me, weaving through the shapeshifters. “Get out of my way, don’t you see I’m trying to talk to a woman?” I made the mistake of looking back in time to see Curran reach for Bran’s neck as the Hound of Morrigan rushed by. With an effort of will that must have taken a year off his life, Curran curled his fingers into a fist and lowered his hand instead. I chuckled to myself and kept walking. The Universe had proven Curran wrong: a person who aggravated him more than me did, in fact, exist.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Burns (Kate Daniels, #2))
The talk here makes me quite ill. I would rather we had never come together again; then at least we might still have preserved a memory. In vain do I try to picture all these fellows in dirty uniforms again, and this Konersmann’s restaurant as a canteen in the rest area. It cannot be done. The things here are stronger—the things that differentiate us from one another are too powerful. The common interest is no longer decisive. It has broken up already and given place to the interest of the individual. Now and then something still will shine through from that other time when we all wore the same rig, but already it is dwindled and dim. These others here are still our comrades and yet our comrades no longer—that is what is so sad. All else went west in the war, but comradeship we did believe in; now only to find that what death could not do, life is achieving; it is driving us asunder.
Erich Maria Remarque (The Road Back)
Kath Two wondered, as she always did, whether the people of the Epic would have said and done some of what they had, had they known that, five thousand years later, billions of people would be watching them on video screens, citing them as examples, and quoting them from memory. Over the first few decades on Cleft, the cameras had died one by one. Depending on how you felt about ubiquitous surveillance, the result had either been a new Dark Age and an incalculable loss to history, or a liberation from digital tyranny. Either way, it signaled the end of the Epic: the painstakingly recorded account of everything that the people of the Cloud Ark had done from Zero onward. After that it had all been oral history for about a thousand years, since there had been no paper to write on and no ink to write on it with. Memory devices were scarce and jury-rigged. Every single chip had been used for critical functions such as robots and life support.
Neal Stephenson (Seveneves)
My mom worked as a hairdresser at the Village Mall in Horsham Township when I was a little kid. There was a movie theater in the mall that showed second-run features, and I have clear memories of being around five years old and walking through the mall by myself to go watch Star Wars. I believe I saw it in that theater twenty-one times. The research definitely began then. Actually, it began even earlier. Before I was born, my father conspired with my uncle to name me Wyatt, after Wyatt Earp. There was an election held by putting names into a hat, and whatever name was drawn would be the winner. Uncle Billy distracted the people in attendance while my dad rigged the hat so that every name inside read Wyatt. My mom was horrified at the result, but eventually uncovered their ruse. The research was really just me referring to things I already knew from the life I’ve lived. You either hear the music of the open range and a man with two six-shooters or you don’t. You either look out at the stars and wonder what lies beyond them or…I don’t know what you are…someone who loves Nicholas Sparks books.
Bernard Schaffer
WHODUNIT BY BRUCE TIERNEY | 838 words A slippery situation in the Gulf Black Horizon (Harper, $25.99, 384 pages, ISBN 9780062109880), the 11th book in James Grippando's popular series featuring Florida attorney Jack Swyteck, opens with the two most important words of the lawyer's life: "I do." (Ha, ha—you thought I was going to say, "Not guilty.") The beach wedding in scenic Key Largo goes wildly awry when an epic storm arises in the Gulf, launching manifold repercussions for Swyteck and his new bride. One of the victims of the storm is a young Cuban oil rig worker whose wife emigrated to the U.S. ahead of him. He had planned to follow, but the deadly combination of high winds and an explosive oil spill have put paid to those plans forever. Now his wife would like Swyteck to file a wrongful death suit against the Chinese/Russian/Venezuelan/Cuban consortium that owns the oil rig. This is no easy feat, since the rig is in Cuban waters, and the only tenuous tie to the U.S. legal system is the wife's residency in Key West. The situation is volatile; the adversaries are lethal; and the backdrop is a toxic oil slick poised to slime the Florida coast. Black Horizon is timely, relentlessly paced and a thrill ride of the first
Then Daniel stepped forward and a trumpet sounded, followed by a drum. The dance was beginning. He took her hand. When he spoke, he spoke to her, not to the audience,as the other players did. "The fairest hand I ever touched," Daniel said. "O Beauty, till now I never knew thee." As if the lines had been written for the two of them. They began to dance,and Daniel locked eyes with her the whole time. His eyes were crystal clear and violet, and the way they never strayed from hers chipped away at Luce's heart. She knew he'd loved her always,but until this moment,dancing with him on the stage in front of all these people,she had never really thought about what it meant. It meant that when she saw him for the first time in every life,Daniel was already in love with her. Every time. And always had been. And every time, she had to fall in love with him from scratch.He could never pressure her or push her into loving him. He had to win her anew each time. Daniel's love for her was one long, uninterrupted stream.It was the purest form of love there was,purer even than the love Luce returned. His love flowed without breaking,without stopping. Whereas Luce's love was wiped clean with every death, Daniel's grew over time, across all eternity. How powerfully strong must it be by now? Hundreds of love stacked one on top of the other? It was almost too massive for Luce to comprehend. He loved her that much,and yet in every lifetime,over and over again,he had to wait for her to catch up. All this time,they had been dancing with the rest of the troupe, bounding in and out of the wings at breaks in the music,coming back onstage for more gallantry,for longer sets with more ornate steps,until the whole company was dancing. At the close of the scene,even though it wasn't in the script,even though Cam was standing right there watching,Luce held fast to Daniel's hand and pulled him to her,up against the potted orange trees.He looked at her like she was crazy and tried to tug her to the mark dictated by her stage directions. "What are you doing?" he murmured. He had doubted her before,backstage when she'd tried to speak freely about her feelings.She had to make him believe her.Especially if Lucinda died tonight,understanding the depth of her love would mean everything to him. It would help him to carry on,to keep loving her for hundreds more years, through all the pain and hardship she'd witnessed,right up to the present. Luce knew that it wasn't in the script, but she couldn't stop herself: She grabbed Daniel and she kissed him. She expected him to stop her,but instead he swooped her into his arms and kissed her back.Hard and passionately, responding with such intensity that she felt the way she did when they were flying,though she knew her feet were planted on the ground. For a moment, the audience was silent. Then they began to holler and jeer.Someone threw a shoe at Daniel, but he ignored it. His kisses told Luce that he believed her,that he understood the depth of her love,but she wanted to be absolutely sure. "I will always love you,Daniel." Only, that didn't seem quite right-or not quite enough. She had to make him understand,and damn the consequences-if she changed history,so be it. "I'll always choose you." Yes, that was the word. "Every single lifetime, I'll choose you.Just as you have always chosen me.Forever." His lips parted.Did he believe her? Did he already know? It was a choice, a long-standing, deep-seated choice that reached beyond anything else Luce was capable of.Something powerful was behind it.Something beautiful and- Shadows began to swirl in the rigging overhead. Heat quaked through her body, making her convulse,desperate for the fiery release she knew was coming. Daniel's eyes flashed with pain. "No," he whispered. "Please don't go yet." Somehow,it always took both of them by surprise.
Lauren Kate (Passion (Fallen, #3))
While there are deeper regularities in the Universe than the simple circumstances we generally describe as orderly, all that order, simple and complex, seems to derive from laws of Nature established at the Big Bang (or earlier), rather than as a consequence of belated intervention by an imperfect deity. “God is to be found in the details” is the famous dictum of the German scholar Aby Warburg. But, amid much elegance and precision, the details of life and the Universe also exhibit haphazard, jury-rigged arrangements and much poor planning. What shall we make of this: an edifice abandoned early in construction by the architect? The evidence, so far at least and laws of Nature aside, does not require a Designer. Maybe there is one hiding, maddeningly unwilling to be revealed. Sometimes it seems a very slender hope. The significance of our lives and our fragile planet is then determined only by our own wisdom and courage. We are the custodians of life’s meaning. We long for a Parent to care for us, to forgive us our errors, to save us from our childish mistakes. But knowledge is preferable to ignorance. Better by far to embrace the hard truth than a reassuring fable. If we crave some cosmic purpose, then let us find ourselves a worthy goal. --Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space
Sagan, Carl; Druyan, Ann
In this simple observation about the nature of human consciousness lies a challenge that was taken up sometime in the course of Hinduism’s long development: focus the mind so that the tumble of extraneous thoughts is slowed, then stilled altogether. The practice that developed, which we know as meditation, is of unknown antiquity. It was certainly already in use when the Upanishads were put into writing circa –6C. An archaic form may be inferred from the Rig Veda, which takes the practice back at least to –1200. If recent arguments that the Rig Veda dates to the Indus-Sarasvati civilization hold up, then we must think in terms of an additional millennium or two during which some form of meditation was practiced. I have dated the culmination of the development of meditation to –2C because that is the most popular dating for the life of Patanjali, the Hindu sage who is seen as the progenitor of classical Yoga, an advanced system of meditation. Since its initial development in India, forms of meditation have become part of most religions and of a wide range of secular schools as well. In the West, despite the importance of forms of meditation in Catholicism and some Protestant Christian churches, the word meditation has become identified with some of the flamboyant sects that attracted publicity in the 1960s and 1970s. In some circles, meditation is seen as part of Asian mysticism, not a cognitive tool. This is one instance in which Eurocentrism is a genuine problem. The nature of meditation is coordinate with ways of perceiving the world that are distinctively Asian. But to say that the cognitive tool called meditation is peculiarly useful to Asians is like saying that logic—my next meta-invention—is useful only to Europeans. Meditation and logic found homes in different parts of the world, but meditation, like logic, is a flexible, powerful extension of human cognitive capacity.
Charles Murray (Human Accomplishment: The Pursuit of Excellence in the Arts and Sciences, 800 B.C. to 1950)
I took a shower after dinner and changed into comfortable Christmas Eve pajamas, ready to settle in for a couple of movies on the couch. I remembered all the Christmas Eves throughout my life--the dinners and wrapping presents and midnight mass at my Episcopal church. It all seemed so very long ago. Walking into the living room, I noticed a stack of beautifully wrapped rectangular boxes next to the tiny evergreen tree, which glowed with little white lights. Boxes that hadn’t been there minutes before. “What…,” I said. We’d promised we wouldn’t get each other any gifts that year. “What?” I demanded. Marlboro Man smiled, taking pleasure in the surprise. “You’re in trouble,” I said, glaring at him as I sat down on the beige Berber carpet next to the tree. “I didn’t get you anything…you told me not to.” “I know,” he said, sitting down next to me. “But I don’t really want anything…except a backhoe.” I cracked up. I didn’t even know what a backhoe was. I ran my hand over the box on the top of the stack. It was wrapped in brown paper and twine--so unadorned, so simple, I imagined that Marlboro Man could have wrapped it himself. Untying the twine, I opened the first package. Inside was a pair of boot-cut jeans. The wide navy elastic waistband was a dead giveaway: they were made especially for pregnancy. “Oh my,” I said, removing the jeans from the box and laying them out on the floor in front of me. “I love them.” “I didn’t want you to have to rig your jeans for the next few months,” Marlboro Man said. I opened the second box, and then the third. By the seventh box, I was the proud owner of a complete maternity wardrobe, which Marlboro Man and his mother had secretly assembled together over the previous couple of weeks. There were maternity jeans and leggings, maternity T-shirts and darling jackets. Maternity pajamas. Maternity sweats. I caressed each garment, smiling as I imagined the time it must have taken for them to put the whole collection together. “Thank you…,” I began. My nose stung as tears formed in my eyes. I couldn’t imagine a more perfect gift. Marlboro Man reached for my hand and pulled me over toward him. Our arms enveloped each other as they had on his porch the first time he’d professed his love for me. In the grand scheme of things, so little time had passed since that first night under the stars. But so much had changed. My parents. My belly. My wardrobe. Nothing about my life on this Christmas Eve resembled my life on that night, when I was still blissfully unaware of the brewing thunderstorm in my childhood home and was packing for Chicago…nothing except Marlboro Man, who was the only thing, amidst all the conflict and upheaval, that made any sense to me anymore. “Are you crying?” he asked. “No,” I said, my lip quivering. “Yep, you’re crying,” he said, laughing. It was something he’d gotten used to. “I’m not crying,” I said, snorting and wiping snot from my nose. “I’m not.” We didn’t watch movies that night. Instead, he picked me up and carried me to our cozy bedroom, where my tears--a mixture of happiness, melancholy, and holiday nostalgia--would disappear completely.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
The question I've always had about this army of young people with seemingly endless career options who wind up in finance is: What happens to them next? One moment they're young people: They have young people's idealism and hope to live a meaningful life. The next they're essentially old people, at work gaming ratings companies, designing securities to fail so they can make a killing off the investors they dupe into buying them, rigging various markets at the expense of the wider society, and encouraging all sorts of people to do stuff with their capital and their com panies that they should never do.
Each of us hides our own private Delaware lost in the gray jungle-tangle of our brains. No one else can know its depths and byways. No one else can know the height of its towers, the secrets of its tides and pools. There will always be lost lagoons to find there, and ruins almost hidden by the sand. There will always be monsters of great beauty and good men with ugly frowns. The forests are dark but lights bob among the branches. You are at home there, more at home than anyplace else, and yet you will never go there in your life. Their legends are yours. The pirates sale around the cape, a crew of skeletons in the rigging. Milkmaids run down mountain passes, dragging kites behind them. Wizards crack their backs after long days of chalk and incantation while above the crowded bazaars, over the golden temples, against the setting sun, around the ruddy minarets, the pterodactyls call out a long farewell.
MT Anderson
The weathered dairy barn, the wilted chicken coop, the leaning corn crib, the corroded silos-- all were revealed as structures of utility and grace. Someone must have rigged Ry's perception so that he had spent his whole life seeing only the ultimate futility of these structures while concealing what made them worthy, the struggle itself, the striving for a better day.
Daniel Kraus (Scowler)
It’s the belief that the system is rigged against you and that all attempts to resist or challenge it are futile. That the decisions that affect your life are being taken by a bunch of other people somewhere else who are deliberately trying to conceal things from you. A belief that you are excluded from taking part in the conversation about your own life. This belief is deeply held by people in many communities and there is a very good reason for it: it’s true.
Darren McGarvey (Poverty Safari: Understanding the Anger of Britain's Underclass)
Go through life as if it has already been rigged in your favor
Leah Kay (Bourbon & Chai: A Slow Burn Forbidden Romance Novel, Set in Philadelphia.)
age of computers and programming, and he couldn’t understand either. Sure, he could send emails, had even mastered Word and Excel, but apart from that, the complexities of the machine left him baffled. There was unemployment, but he had never taken the dole, or he could go overseas, try his luck on an oil rig. Even if that were possible, he didn’t want to go, but these were desperate times, and now, to add confusion, there was a solution. Betty Galton, his former sister-in-law, had in her possession a million pounds in gold. He opened his laptop and switched it on. How does one melt gold? How does one dispose of it? he thought. He entered the search terms, fingering one key at a time, and pressed enter. If a criminal act was committed during the planning stage, then he was guilty as charged. And for once, he did not care. He hummed a tune to himself. It had been some time since he had been contented. For that night, he would forget what would be required and envisage what his life could be like with money in his pocket. Maybe a small place in the country, a dog, possibly a woman. How long had it been since he had enjoyed the closeness of another’s skin? He picked up his phone and made a call. It was a special treat for himself and for once the budget was going to be blown. He knew she’d look after him, the way she looked after so many others. Chapter 11 Clare woke early the next day; her phone was ringing. She leant over and picked it up. ‘Yarwood, I’m at the hospital,’ Tremayne said. She could tell by his voice that something was amiss. ‘I’ll be there in fifteen.’ ‘Thanks, and don’t tell anyone.’ A quick shower, some food for her cat, and Clare was out of her cottage. A murder enquiry was serious; her boss being ill, more so. Parking at the hospital, she soon found her way to outpatients, meeting someone she knew. ‘It’s Tremayne, he’s not well,’ Clare said. ‘And please, not a word to anyone.’ The woman, a friend, understood. Inside, behind some screens, Tremayne was lying flat on his back. His shoes had been removed, and his tie had been loosened. ‘How long have you been here?’ Clare said. She knew Tremayne would not appreciate lashings of sympathy, although he looked dreadful. ‘Since last night. I’d had a few drinks, a few cigarettes, and all of a sudden I’m in the back of an ambulance.’ ‘Does Jean know?’ ‘Not yet. Maybe you can phone her. She went to see her son for a few days, left me on my own.’ ‘Off the leash and into trouble, that’s you, guv.’ ‘Not today, Yarwood. Maybe Moulton’s right about me retiring.’ ‘Having you feeling sorry for yourself isn’t going to help, is it?’ The nurse, standing on the other side of the bed, looked over at Clare disapprovingly. ‘It’s how we work,’ Clare said. ‘That may be the case, but Mr Tremayne has had a bit of a scare. He needs to be here for a few days while we conduct a few checks.’ ‘What’s the problem?’ ‘It’s not for me to say. That’s for the doctor.’ ‘He told me to cut down on the beer, quit smoking, and take it easy.’ ‘Retire, is that it?’ Clare said. ‘They don’t get it, do they?’ Tremayne looked over at the nurse who was monitoring his condition. ‘Sorry. We’ve got a murder to deal with, nothing personal.’ ‘Don’t worry about me. We get our fair share of people, men mainly, who think they’re invincible. You’re not the first, not the last, who thinks they know more
Phillip Strang (Death by a Dead Man's Hand (DI Tremayne Thriller Series #5))
On introducing his antitrust bill in 1890, Republican senator John Sherman of Ohio thundered, “If we will not endure a king as a political power, we should not endure a king over the production, transportation, and sale of any of the necessaries of life.” Sherman’s
Robert B. Reich (The System: Who Rigged It, How We Fix It)
As you know, the public conversation about the connection between Islamic ideology and Muslim intolerance and violence has been stifled by political correctness. In the West, there is now a large industry of apology and obfuscation designed, it would seem, to protect Muslims from having to grapple with the kinds of facts we’ve been talking about. The humanities and social science departments of every university are filled with scholars and pseudo-scholars—deemed to be experts in terrorism, religion, Islamic jurisprudence, anthropology, political science, and other fields—who claim that Muslim extremism is never what it seems. These experts insist that we can never take Islamists and jihadists at their word and that none of their declarations about God, paradise, martyrdom, and the evils of apostasy have anything to do with their real motivations. When one asks what the motivations of Islamists and jihadists actually are, one encounters a tsunami of liberal delusion. Needless to say, the West is to blame for all the mayhem we see in Muslim societies. After all, how would we feel if outside powers and their mapmakers had divided our lands and stolen our oil? These beleaguered people just want what everyone else wants out of life. They want economic and political security. They want good schools for their kids. They want to be free to flourish in ways that would be fully compatible with a global civil society. Liberals imagine that jihadists and Islamists are acting as anyone else would given a similar history of unhappy encounters with the West. And they totally discount the role that religious beliefs play in inspiring a group like the Islamic State—to the point where it would be impossible for a jihadist to prove that he was doing anything for religious reasons. Apparently, it’s not enough for an educated person with economic opportunities to devote himself to the most extreme and austere version of Islam, to articulate his religious reasons for doing so ad nauseam, and even to go so far as to confess his certainty about martyrdom on video before blowing himself up in a crowd. Such demonstrations of religious fanaticism are somehow considered rhetorically insufficient to prove that he really believed what he said he believed. Of course, if he said he did these things because he was filled with despair and felt nothing but revulsion for humanity, or because he was determined to sacrifice himself to rid his nation of tyranny, such a psychological or political motive would be accepted at face value. This double standard is guaranteed to exonerate religion every time. The game is rigged.
Sam Harris (Islam and the Future of Tolerance: A Dialogue)
Fate is the cruelest of masters, taking Life when it pleases or at random, handing Rigged decks to whom it pleases, cheating All alike and none the wiser, taking Everything away from those with nothing.
Justin Wetch (Bending The Universe)
In the first place a man never is happy but spends his whole life in striving after something which he thinks will make him so; he seldom attains his goal and, when he does it is only to be disappointed: he is mostly shipwrecked in the end and comes into the harbour with masts and riggings gone. And then it is all one whether he has been happy or miserable; for his life was never anything more than a present moment, always vanishing; and now it is over….We are like lambs playing in the field, while the butcher eyes them and selects first one then the other; for in our good days we do not know what calamity fate at this very moment has in store for us, sickness persecution, impoverishment, mutilation, loss of site, madness, and death.
Irvin D. Yalom (The Schopenhauer Cure)
Deepwater violated that agreement shockingly, manifesting a substance on which most modern human life depends but that few people encounter in the raw. After returning from Norway, I would learn that the Moskstraumen Maelstrom had become literally enabling of the oil industry. In the 1980s a man called Bjørn Gjevig – an antiquarian scholar, professional mathematician and amateur sailor, who seems as if he must have been invented by Poe, but truly exists – became fascinated by the hydrodynamics of the Maelstrom. Using data gathered in part while sailing close to the whirlpool, Gjevig began to model the maths of its currents. When oil was discovered off the Lofotens, he realized that his data had gained application: oil companies would need to understand such ocean forces in order to construct rigs that could withstand ‘destructive currents of the kind found in the Maelstrom’. At the climax of Poe’s story, the human body loses all volition and becomes a kind of drift-matter, helpless within the ‘destructive currents’. The fisherman and his brother are drawn steadily deeper into the vortex. The fisherman realizes that he has entered a giant grading-machine, which weighs and measures the objects that have been pulled into it – and moves the heaviest and most irregularly shaped items to destruction at its base.
Robert Macfarlane (Underland: A Deep Time Journey)
She found she had a great deal less courage altogether than she had smugly supposed while blackmailing investors, or choosing a wig, or pronouncing social death sentences in the salons of Adua. She had always reckoned herself such a gambler. No more audacious woman in the Union. Now she realised the games had always been rigged in her favour. She never had to gamble with her life before, and the stakes had risen suddenly far too high for her taste.
Joe Abercrombie (A Little Hatred (The Age of Madness, #1))
If the cards are always stacked against you, perhaps the game you are playing is somehow rigged (perhaps by you, unbeknownst to yourself). If the internal voice within says the same denigrating things about everyone, no matter how successful, how reliable can it be? Maybe its comments are chatter, not wisdom. "There will always be people better than you" - that's a cliché of nihilism, like the phrase, "in a million years, who's going to know the difference?". The proper response to that statement is not, "well, then, everything is meaningless". It's "any idiot can choose a frame of time within which nothing matters". Talking yourself into irrelevance is not a profound critique of Being. It's a cheap trick of the rational mind.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
He displays of intellect consisted in vitriolic and well-seasoned mysterious messages, pure jibber-jabber. He followed her trail and he did all he could to make her believe in him. It was nice at first, he seemed smart, well -rounded and balanced, with great confidence and strength. She thought he was one of the men living in the shadows, the one that will help her to change her miserable life and give her that one in a life time opportunity. Is he testing her and her mental status? Is he the one out of his mind? Now he wants a meeting, he has some top-secret information, that can change the world, to share with her. Why her? Are you curious to know what is about? They have talked in the past using cryptic messages about “God's grace and all the hell we raised,” flashing lights, secret codes, rigged trucks, cell-battery explosions, life and dead, nothing more. At that time a wise man that was sat near her at the Coffee Shop told her: "God is great, beer is good and people are crazy" Did he know the man talking to her? Was that a premonition? Be careful what you wish for, the world is full of people looking around for their next victim...
Triumphant, Asha felt confirmed in a suspicion she'd developed in her years of multi-directional, marginally profitable enterprise. Becoming a success in the great, rigged market of the overcity required less effort and intelligence than getting by, day to day, in the slums. The crucial things were luck and the ability to sustain two convictions: that what you were doing wasn't all that wrong, in the scheme of things, and that you weren't all that likely to get caught.
Katherine Boo (Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity)
Eventually, I talked to Dad and Willie about my plan to go work on the oil rigs. Both told me to stay with the family at Duck Commander. “That would be a mistake,” Dad said. “Stay with us. You won’t believe what’s going to happen in two or three years. Be patient.” He had faith in the business, and he felt it was just a matter of time until we hit it big. “We’re all going to do well,” he’d say. Did I mention he’s one of the most optimistic people you’ll ever meet? Every day we go hunting (and he hunts every single day of duck season), he’ll sit back, laugh, and say, “Boys, this is going to be the best day of your life. You’ll be telling your grandchildren about this day!” Willie felt the same. “You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do,” he said. “But let me tell you this, I’m fixin’ to turn this thing around, and I want you to be here for it.” I decided to stay because Jess and I knew it was more important to be with family than to make more money. I continued working just about every job at Duck Commander. I still loved shipping and packaging, and I watched the entire run of X-files episodes when I worked in that department. Then I started making the reeds, the job Uncle Si does on the show.
Jep Robertson (The Good, the Bad, and the Grace of God: What Honesty and Pain Taught Us About Faith, Family, and Forgiveness)
You're a taffy-puller." "I'm a what?" "A taffy-puller. They hypnotize me. Didn't you ever see one? " I don't think so," she breathed. " But - " " You see them on the boardwalk. Beautifully machined little rigs, all chrome-plated eccentrics and cams. There are two cranks set near each other so that the 'handle' of each passes the axle of the other. They stick a big mass of taffy on one `handle' and start the machine. Before that sticky, homogeneous mass has a chance to droop and drip off, the other crank has swung up and taken most of it. As the crank handles move away from each other the taffy is pulled out, and then as they move together again it loops and sags; and at the last possible moment the loop is shoved together. The taffy welds itself and is pulled apart again." Robin's eyes were shining and his voice was rapt. "Underneath the taffy is a stainless steel tray. There isn't a speck of taffy on it, not a drop, not a smidgen. You stand there, and you look at it, and you wait for that lump of guff to slap itself all over those roller bearings and burnished cam rods, but it never does. You wait for it to get tired of thar fantastic juggling, and it never does. Sometimes gooey little bubbles get in the taffy and get carried around and squashed flat, and when they break they do it slowly, leaving little soft craters that take a long time to fill up; and they're being mauled around the way the bubbles were." He sighed. "There's almost too much contrast - that competent, beautiful machinist's dream handling - what? Taffy - no definition, no boundaries, no predictable tensile strength. I feel somehow as if there ought to be an intermediate stage somewhere. I'd feel better if the machine handled one of Dali's limp watches, and the watch handled the mud. But that doesn't matter. How I feel, I mean. The taffy gets pulled. You're a taffy-puller. You've never done a wasteful or incompetent thing in your life, no matter what you were working with.
Theodore Sturgeon (Maturity: Three Stories)
is intriguing, how a person’s virtues are suddenly realized when he or she departs. The same virtues go almost unrecognized and without being acknowledged all life.
Saiswaroopa Iyer (Avishi: Vishpala of Rig Veda Reimagined)
In 1859, the author Samuel Smiles published a book called Self-Help. (It's the first known use of the term.) In it, he explains that perseverance is the key to success. Accomplished people work harder than regular people. Success is anyone's for the taking. All you have to do was drill down-- get up earlier, stay up later, and apply yourself. Carnegie applied this same ethos to popularity. Anyone can be popular if they smile a lot and perfect the art of the compliment. All self-help, Carnegie included, promises that the world isn't rigged. That no dream is too big. That we can re-create ourselves to be prettier, smarter, more productive and more likable. Self-help recasts personality traits as skills. It posits that anything can be learned.
Jessica Weisberg (Asking for a Friend: Three Centuries of Advice on Life, Love, Money, and Other Burning Questions from a Nation Obsessed)
... -because that's when I realized that this life is a rigged game that you cannot win. Even good men die screaming.
Kevin Smith (Tough Shit: Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good)
No, I wouldn’t, for the smart caps won’t match the plain gowns without any trimming on them. Poor folks shouldn’t rig,” said Jo decidedly. “I wonder if I shall ever be happy enough to have real lace on my clothes and bows on my caps?” said Meg impatiently. “You said the other day that you’d be perfectly happy if you could only go to Annie Moffat’s,” observed Beth in her quiet way. “So I did! Well, I am happy, and I won’t fret, but it does seem as if the more one gets the more one wants, doesn’t it? There now, the trays are ready, and everything in but my ball dress, which I shall leave for Mother to pack,” said Meg, cheering up, as she glanced from the half-filled trunk to the many times pressed and mended white tarlaton, which she called her ‘ball dress’ with an important air. The next day was fine, and Meg departed in style for a fortnight of novelty and pleasure. Mrs. March had consented to the visit rather reluctantly, fearing that Margaret would come back more discontented than she went. But she begged so hard, and Sallie had promised to take good care of her, and a little pleasure seemed so delightful after a winter of irksome work that the mother yielded, and the daughter went to take her first taste of fashionable life. The Moffats were very fashionable, and simple Meg was rather daunted, at first, by the splendor of the house and the elegance of its occupants. But they were kindly people, in spite of the frivolous life they led, and soon put their guest at her ease. Perhaps Meg felt, without understanding why, that they were not particularly cultivated or intelligent people, and that all their gilding could not quite conceal the ordinary material of which they were made. It certainly was agreeable to fare sumptuously, drive in a fine carriage, wear her best frock every day, and do nothing but enjoy herself. It suited her exactly, and soon she began to imitate the manners and conversation of those about her, to put on little airs and graces,
Louisa May Alcott (Little Women)
may surprise you,’ he urged. Lily’s eyes no longer smiled. Now their licorice darkness reflected only bitterness. ‘It’s not a matter of me finding the courage, Jack. I know my parents. They won’t surprise me. They’re very predictable. They’re also traditional and as far as they’re concerned, I’m as good as engaged … no, married! And they approve of Jimmy.’ Her expression turned glum. ‘All that’s missing are the rings and the party.’ ‘Lily, risk their anger or whatever it is you’re not prepared to provoke but don’t do this.’ He stroked her cheek. ‘Forget me. I’m not important. I’m talking about the rest of your life, here. From what I can see of my friends and colleagues, marriage is hard enough without the kiss of death of not loving your partner.’ ‘It’s not his fault, Jack. You don’t understand. It’s complicated. And in his way, Jimmy is very charismatic.’ Jack didn’t know Professor James Chan, eminent physician and cranio-facial surgeon based at Whitechapel’s Royal London Hospital, but he already knew he didn’t much like him. Jack might be sleeping with Lily and loving every moment he could share with her, but James Chan had a claim on her and that pissed Jack off. Privately, he wanted to confront the doctor. Instead, he propped himself on one elbow and tried once more to reason with Lily. ‘It’s not complicated, actually. This isn’t medieval China or even medieval Britain. This is London 2005. And the fact is you’re happily seeing me … and you’re nearly thirty, Lily.’ He kept his voice light even though he felt like shaking her and cursing. ‘Are you asking me to make a choice?’ He shook his head. ‘No. I’m far more subtle. I’ve had my guys rig up a camera here. I think I should show your parents exactly what you’re doing when they think you’re comforting poor Sally. I’m particularly interested in hearing their thoughts on that rather curious thing you did to me on Tuesday.’ She gave a squeal and punched him, looking up to the ceiling, suddenly unsure. Jack laughed but grew serious again almost immediately. ‘Would it help if I —?’ Lily placed her fingertips on his mouth to hush him. She kissed him long and passionately before replying. ‘I know I shouldn’t be so answerable at my age but Mum and Dad are so traditional. I don’t choose to rub it in their face that I’m not a virgin. Nothing will help, my beautiful Jack. I will marry Jimmy Chan but we have a couple more weeks before I must accept his proposal. Let’s not waste it arguing and let’s not waste it on talk of love or longing. I know you loved the woman you knew as Sophie, Jack. I know you’ve been hiding from her memory ever since and, as much as I could love you, I am not permitted to because I’m spoken for and you aren’t ready to be in love again. This is not a happy-ever-after situation for us. I know you enjoy me and perhaps could love me but this is not the right moment for us to speak of anything but enjoying the time we have, because neither of us is available for anything beyond that.’ ‘You’re wrong, Lily.’ She smiled sadly and shook her head. ‘I have to go.’ Jack sighed. ‘I’ll drop you back.’ ‘No need,’ Lily said, moving from beneath the quilt, shivering as the cool air hit her naked body. ‘I have to pick up Alys from school. She’s very sharp and I don’t need her spotting you – especially as she’s had a crush on you since you first came into the flower shop.’ Suddenly she grinned. ‘If you hurry up, at least we can shower together!’ Jack leaped from the bed and dashed to the bathroom to turn on the taps. He could hear her laughing behind him but he felt sad. Two more weeks. It wasn’t fair – and then, as if the gods had decided to punish him further, his mobile rang, the ominous theme of Darth Vader telling him this was not a call he could ignore. He gave a groan. ‘Carry on without me,’ he called to Lily, reaching for the phone. ‘Hello, sir,’ he said, waiting for the inevitable apology
Fiona McIntosh (Beautiful Death (DCI Jack Hawksworth))
She had always reckoned herself such a gambler. No more audacious woman in the Union. Now she realised the games had always been rigged in her favour. She never had to gamble with her life before, and the stakes had risen suddenly far too high for her taste.
Joe Abercrombie (A Little Hatred (The Age of Madness #1))
What makes Chinatown so uniquely disturbing as an American metaphor is that it is so unlike the whiteness of Ahab’s whale or the greenness of Gatsby’s light. However illusory, these are totems of aspiration, of possibility. Futility and fate, by contrast, are concepts that defy the capitalist’s dream of agency and advancement, the (graying) Protestant work ethic that assured pre-Watergate Americans that life was linear, not cyclical, and the game wasn’t rigged against them. It is no wonder, then, that Towne’s metaphor should borrow its desolation from Polanski, a European. “The American has not yet assimilated psychologically the disappearance of his own geographical frontier,” wrote the philosopher William Barrett in 1962. “His spiritual horizon is still the limitless play of human possibilities, and as yet he has not lived through the crucial experience of human finitude.” A decade after this writing, that spiritual horizon reached its finitude in Vietnam and Watergate, and symbolically in Los Angeles, the geographic end of America. As Towne foresaw, the only place left to go was up—up to The Sting, to “Happy Days,” Bogdanovich’s At Long Last Love, to “a mix of nostalgia and parody,” Kael wrote, the mass denial of the terrible truths Gittes was powerless to undo.
Sam Wasson (The Big Goodbye: Chinatown and the Last Years of Hollywood)
Even for a country where corruption is taken for granted as a part of daily life, the revelations have stunned citizens — for uncovering a wholly new criminal ring smack in the heart of the capital, and for the staggering array of charges involving politicians across the spectrum. The inquiry has blossomed into a national scandal and a reminder that virtually no corner of Italy is immune to criminal penetration. It has also raised fresh questions about Italy’s ability ever to reform itself and fulfill the demands for fiscal responsibility demanded by its eurozone partners. The widespread and unchecked corruption of public money revealed by the inquiry has helped bloat Italy’s national debt to one of the highest levels in Europe. Mr. Carminati and his associates are accused of infiltrating contracts for a wide assortment of tasks including garbage collection and park maintenance. The charges cover a gamut of activities — vote rigging, usury, extortion and embezzlement. Rome’s chief prosecutor, Giuseppe Pignatone, told Italy’s anti-Mafia commission Thursday that new operations were imminent.
We can't trust the evening news. We can't trust our politicians. Our universities, the gateway to a better life, are rigged against us. We can't get jobs. You can't believe these things and participate meaningfully in society. Social psychologists have shown that group belief is a powerful motivator in performance. When groups perceive that it's in their interest to work hard and achieve things, members of that group outperform other similarly situated individuals. It's obvious why: If you believe that hard work pays off, then you work hard; if you think it's hard to get ahead even when you try, then why try at all?
J.D. Vance
we might as well live life as if -as the poet Rumi put it-everything is rigged in our favor
Arianna Huffington (Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder)
There is a purpose to our lives, even if it is sometimes hidden from us, and even if the biggest turning points and heartbreaks only make sense as we look back, rather than as we are experiencing them. So we might as well live life as if—as the poet Rumi put it—everything is rigged in our favor.
Arianna Huffington (Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder)
The problem with getting old was that each day had to compete with the thousands of others gone by. How wonderful would a day have to be to win such a beauty contest? To even make it into the finals? Never mind that memory rigged the game, airbrushed the flaws from its contestants, while the present had to shuffle into the spotlight unaided, all pockmarked with mundanities and baggy with annoyances.
Daryl Gregoryl
Trading the markets is a totally self-centered activity. Nobody’s life gets better because you trade. Except your broker’s life.
Robert Rolih (The Million Dollar Decision: Get Out of the Rigged Game of Investing and Add a Million to Your Net Worth)
It’s a rigged game, K. Let me take the fall—that way, you survive to have a life with her. When she’s free.” “I’m
Elaine Levine (War Bringer (Red Team #6))
Russia is quickly (in my opinion) sliding back into the past—with that awful former KGB-SPY now as an acting president! I do hope and believe the people will not vote him into the Presidency—but, then of course elections always could be rigged. . . . The
Rosemary Sullivan (Stalin's Daughter: The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva)
Have you been crying?” She glanced away. “I’m sorry. I had one of those days.” He put his thumb and forefinger on her chin and pulled her eyes back to his. “What’s up?” he asked softly. “Need to talk about it?” “No,” she said, shaking her head. “I know you don’t want to—” “It’s okay. What made you cry? Homesick? Lonesome?” She took a deep breath. “It was a year ago today. Snuck up on me, I guess.” “Ah,” he said. He put his big arms around her. “That would make some tears, I guess. I’m sorry, Marcie. I’m sure it still hurts sometimes.” “That’s just it—it doesn’t exactly hurt. It’s just that I feel so useless.” She leaned against him. “Sometimes I feel all alone. I have lots of people in my life and can still feel so alone without Bobby.” She laughed softly. “And God knows, he wasn’t much company.” He tightened his embrace. “I think I understand.” Yeah, she thought, he might. Here was a guy who was around people regularly, yet completely unconnected to them. She pulled away and asked, “Why did you do this?” “I thought I could clean up a little and take you somewhere.” “Wait. You didn’t think I needed you to do this for me, did you? Because of Erin?” He laughed, and she could actually see the emotion on his face, given the absence of wild beard. “Actually, if you’d asked me to, I probably wouldn’t have. You really think you can match me for stubborn? Probably not. I kept the beard because of the scar,” he said, leaning his left cheek toward her. “That, and maybe a bit of attitude of who cares?” She gently fingered the beard apart to reveal a barely noticeable scar. “It’s hardly there at all. Ian, it’s only a thin line. You don’t have to cover it. You’re not disfigured.” She smiled at him. “You’re handsome.” “Memories from the scar, probably. Anyway, tonight is the truckers’ Christmas parade. A bunch of eighteen-wheelers in the area dress up their rigs and parade down the freeway. I see it every year—fantastic. You think you’re up to it? With it being that anniversary?” “Maybe it’s a good idea,” she said. “Getting out, changing the mood.” “We’ll eat out and—” “What’s all this?” she asked, looking at the bags and boxes. “Snow’s forecast. It’s just what you do up here. Be ready. But this time I got some different things, in case you’re sick of stew. And I never do this—but you’re a girl, so I bought some fresh greens. And fresh eggs. Just enough to last a couple of days. No fridge; and they’ll freeze if we leave ’em in the shed.” “Ian, what about the bathroom? What will we do about the bathroom if there’s a heavy snow?” He laughed at her. “No problem. We’ll tromp out there fine—but I’ll shovel a path. And I’ll plow out to the road, but it’s slow going and if the snow keeps coming, it’s going to be even slower.” “Wow. Is it safe to leave tonight? For the parade? Will we get back in?” “We don’t have blizzards, Marcie. Snow falls slow, but steady. Now, I’m thinking bath day. How about you?” She put her hands on her hips and looked up at him with a glare. “All right, be very careful here. I’ve had my bath. And a hair wash. I’m wearing makeup, Ian. Jesus. You wanna try to clean me up?” His eyes grew large for a moment. Then he said. “Bath day for me, I meant. I knew. You look great.” His thumb ran along her cheek under one eye. “Just a couple of tear marks, but you can take care of that. Let me put this stuff away and get my water ready. You have something to read? Or are you looking for the thrill of your life?” “I have something to read,” she said. And, she thought, at the end of the day, they all turn out to be just men. *
Robyn Carr (A Virgin River Christmas (Virgin River #4))
Their necks also beautifully demonstrate the jury-rigged nature of evolution while simultaneously refuting the notion that some divine Artificer intelligently designed organic life
Brian Switek (My Beloved Brontosaurus: On the Road with Old Bones, New Science, and Our Favorite Dinosaurs)
Everyone knew the draft was rigged to protect wealthy white men from service, while the poor and dark-skinned served in disproportionately high numbers, he said
Jonathan Eig (Ali: A Life)
Once, just west of Framingham on the Worcester Turnpike or Route 9 in Massachusetts, I caught a ride in a truck that had worn brakes. The driver, a jolly red-nosed individual with a white beard who could have passed as Santa Claus, suggested that I might want to get out considering the situation regarding the truck’s brakes. Not wanting to turn down a ride in the middle of the night, I rode it out with the driver. Going uphill was all right, but coming down was decidedly hairy. The driver knew what he was doing and used his engine to slow himself down, but he had to depend on his emergency brake if he wanted to, or had to, stop. At one traffic light, which was on a downhill slope, he couldn’t bring his rig to a stop and just blew through the intersection, horn blowing, weaving past the cross traffic. I hung on enjoying the excitement as the driver narrated his moves, as if he was telling a story. I watched and listened to him, too caught up in this wild ride to get concerned about the danger. There were a number of downgrades where he totally lost control of our speed, but fortunately the upgrade would slow us down again. He relied on his loud air horn, which sounded even louder in the dark of night. Fun was fun and eventually we got to Worcester, where I was glad to get off in one piece. I hope that he got his load to where it was going, but I knew that the farther west on Route 9 he went, the more mountainous the terrain would become and I didn’t want any part of that. Besides, this was where I needed to get off. My next leg would take me through Sturbridge and then on to Connecticut. .
Hank Bracker
 Life in this world is like a rigged roulette wheel in a casino. As much as we try, we can never be able to fully satisfy our selfish desires. It's virtually impossible. 
Daniel Rosenblit (Transformed by the Light: A Judgement Day Experience)
One way to get up-to-date travel information while driving in the South is to install a citizens band, or CB, radio into your car. …truckers devised their own radio dialect based on jargon filtered down from military, aviation and law enforcement radio protocols. A basic understanding of on-air etiquette and terminology is essential for those wishing to join in the conversations…might include an exchange like this (with translations): Break one-nine. (Please, gentlemen, might I break in on this conversation? [on channel 19]) Go ahead, breaker. (Oh, by all means.) Hey J.B., you got your ears on? (You, sir, driving the J.B. Hunt truck, are you listening to your CB radio?) Ten-four. (Yes.). “Can I get a bear report?” (Are there any police behind you?) “Yeah, that town up ahead of you is crawling with local yokels.” (The town I just left has a number of municipal police looking for speeders.) …For an average motorist, tuning a CB radio to channel 19 for the first time is like being cured of life-long deafness – provided there are truckers nearby. The big rigs that loomed large and soulless suddenly have personalities emanating from them. Truckers with similar destinations will keep each other awake for hundreds of miles at a stretch, chatting about politics, religion, sex, sports, and working conditions. This provides hours of entertainment for those listeners who can penetrate the jargon and rich accents.
Gary Bridgman (Lonely Planet Louisiana & the Deep South)
rulers claim that they are applying the Law of Islam and assert at the same time that they are governing us by democracy God knows they are liars in both. Islamic law is ignored in our unhappy country and we are governed according to French secular law, which permits drunkenness, fornication, and perversion so long as it is by mutual consent. The state itself in fact benefits from gambling and the sale of alcohol, then spews out its ill-gotten gains in the form of salaries for the Muslims, who as a result are cursed with the curse of what is forbidden and God expunges His blessings from their life. The supposedly democratic state is based on the rigging of elections and the detention and torture of innocent people so that the ruling clique can remain on their thrones
Alaa Al Aswany (The Yacoubian Building)
daughters, our rulers claim that they are applying the Law of Islam and assert at the same time that they are governing us by democracy God knows they are liars in both. Islamic law is ignored in our unhappy country and we are governed according to French secular law, which permits drunkenness, fornication, and perversion so long as it is by mutual consent. The state itself in fact benefits from gambling and the sale of alcohol, then spews out its ill-gotten gains in the form of salaries for the Muslims, who as a result are cursed with the curse of what is forbidden and God expunges His blessings from their life. The supposedly democratic state is based on the rigging of elections and the detention and torture of innocent people so that the ruling clique can remain on their
Alaa Al Aswany (The Yacoubian Building)
Probably the number one reason why prayer malfunctions in the hands of believers is that we try to turn a wartime walkie-talkie into a domestic intercom. Until you know that life is war, you cannot know what prayer is for… But what have millions of Christians done? We have stopped believing that we are in a war. No urgency, no watching, no vigilance. No strategic planning. Just easy peace and prosperity. And what did we do with the walkie-talkie? We tried to rig it up as an intercom in our houses – not to call in firepower for conflict with a mortal enemy, but to ask for more comforts in the den…
Simon Guillebaud (Dangerously Alive)
life, Meeker continued on to New York, where he scuffled with police who wouldn’t allow him to run his oxen down Fifth Avenue. In Washington, D.C., he ran his rig onto the White House lawn and enlisted President Theodore Roosevelt to help him preserve the trail. Meeker was a big, visionary thinker. Not content with merely preserving the trail, he advocated the creation of a national commercial and military road across the West, linking growing cities like Denver and Salt Lake with the East, and spur roads that would connect with the vast national parks that had been created during the Progressive Era. Swimming and fishing facilities, hotels, and even towers with navigational beacons for passing airmail planes were all part of Meeker’s plan. None of this was built during his lifetime, and Meeker would receive no credit for his elaborate transportation dreams. But the national parks system built during the New Deal, and the interstate highways paved in the 1950s, eventually created a network of concrete and open spaces remarkably similar to Meeker’s original scheme. Meeker
Rinker Buck (The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey)
You mix metaphors,” added Carl. “I what?” “You mix metaphors. You start talking about the idea of having a gun to their head and then you describe the corps as having strings in their backs, like puppets. And then you talk about playing a rigged game. You’ve got to pick one or the other. Unless you want them all to see themselves as puppets playing cards with guns to their heads, but that’s just stupid. Who shoots a puppet?” The captain’s mouth fell open. “You know, I had teachers who talked like you in school. Pretty sure they’re what drove me to a life of crime.
Elliott Kay (Poor Man's Fight (Poor Man's Fight, #1))
It’s a rigged game, K. Let me take the fall—that way, you survive to have a life with her. When she’s free.
Elaine Levine (War Bringer (Red Team #6))
, whose red painted faces flash from out their peltry wigwams; for leagues and leagues are flanked by ancient and unentered forests, where the gaunt pines stand like serried lines of kings in Gothic genealogies; those same woods harboring wild Afric beasts of prey, and silken creatures whose exported furs give robes to Tartar Emperors; they mirror the paved capitals of Buffalo and Cleveland, as well as Winnebago villages; they float alike the full-rigged merchant ship, the armed cruiser of the State, the steamer, and the beech canoe; they are swept by Borean and dismasting blasts as direful as any that lash the salted wave; they know what shipwrecks are, for out of sight of land, however inland, they have drowned full many a midnight ship with all its shrieking crew. Thus, gentlemen, though an inlander, Steelkilt was wild-ocean born, and wild-ocean nurtured; as much of an audacious mariner as any. And for Radney, though in his infancy he may have laid him down on the lone Nantucket beach, to nurse at his maternal sea; though in after life he had long followed our austere Atlantic and your contemplative Pacific; yet was he quite as vengeful and full of social quarrel as the backwoods seaman, fresh from the latitudes of buckhorn handled Bowie-knives. Yet was this Nantucketer a man with some good-hearted traits; and this Lakeman, a mariner, who though a sort of devil indeed, might yet by inflexible firmness, only tempered by that common decency of human recognition which is the meanest slave's right; thus treated, this Steelkilt had long been retained harmless and docile. At all events, he had proved so thus far; but Radney was doomed and made mad, and Steelkilt—but, gentlemen, you shall hear.
Herman Melville (Moby Dick; or, the White Whale)
In the bows of the Desaix there was a sudden movement, a response to an order. Jack stepped to the wheel, taking the spokes from the quartermaster’s hands and looking back over his left shoulder. He felt the life of the sloop under his fingers: and he saw the Desaix begin to yaw. She answered her helm as quickly as a cutter, and in three heartbeats there were her thirty-seven guns coming round to bear. Jack heaved strongly at the wheel. The broadside’s roar and the fall of the Sophie’s maintopgallantmast and foretopsail yard came almost together – in the thunder a hail of blocks, odd lengths of rope, splinters, the tremendous clang of a grape-shot striking the Sophie’s bell; and then a silence. The greater part of the seventy-four’s roundshot had passed a few yards ahead of her stem: the scattering grape-shot had utterly wrecked her sails and rigging – had cut them to pieces. The next broadside must destroy her entirely. ‘Clew up,’ called Jack, continuing the turn that brought the Sophie into the wind. ‘Bonden, strike the colours.
Patrick O'Brian (Master and Commander (Aubrey/Maturin, #1))
Reform of our common life will not be led by socially responsible corporations or by enlightened CEOs. It will be led by concerned and active citizens.
Robert B. Reich (The System: Who Rigged It, How We Fix It)
He has now completed two books, the first on how investment dealers “fee-farm” over half of the life savings of many clients, and this second book about conditions which allow quiet professional corruption to remain hidden from the public, and ignored by authorities. What drives me? (in the authors words) I hope to have an impact upon the #1 cause of disability, disease, and stress in society today. I believe I have some unique perspectives on this from my experience. For example, the #1 cause of disability, disease, and stress is fear of economic uncertainty. In my experience, the #1 cause of fear of economic uncertainty, is unfairness between those who are protected and enriched within the “lifeboats” of certain professions, corporations or institutions, and those who are not so protected. There are different levels of protection by the law, and immunity from having to adhere to the law, depending upon the wealth, power or status of those involved. Justice systems simply do not often “look upwards” to investigate and prosecute those of great wealth, power and status. These rigged systems of governance, finance, justice etc, cause unfairness, injustice, and repeal the laws of poverty for a few very lucky people, and repeals the chances of prosperity for billions of others. A small few win by corruption, while the rest of society must lose by default. This is a broken system. The unfairness of rigged and/or broken systems, causes imbalances sufficient to destroy entire societies. Societies can literally shake themselves apart with the human vibration of living in an unjust, unfair world. At time of writing this, I am the chairperson of the volunteer Canadian Justice Review Board of Canada, working to better understand one of societies most valuable social systems,
Larry Elford (Farming Humans: Easy Money (Non Fiction))
Let us turn now to a study of a small Newfoundland fishing village. Fishing is, in England at any rate – more hazardous even than mining. Cat Harbour, a community in Newfoundland, is very complex. Its social relationships occur in terms of a densely elaborate series of interrelated conceptual universes one important consequence of which is that virtually all permanent members of the community are kin, ‘cunny kin’, or economic associates of all other of the 285 permanent members. The primary activity of the community is cod fishing. Salmon, lobster, and squid provide additional sources of revenue. Woodcutting is necessary in off-seasons. Domestic gardening, and stints in lumber camps when money is needed, are the two other profitable activities. The community's religion is reactionary. Women assume the main roles in the operation though not the government of the churches in the town. A complicated system of ‘jinking’ – curses, magic, and witchcraft – governs and modulates social relationships. Successful cod fishing in the area depends upon highly developed skills of navigation, knowledge of fish movements, and familiarity with local nautical conditions. Lore is passed down by word of mouth, and literacy among older fishermen is not universal by any means. ‘Stranger’ males cannot easily assume dominant positions in the fishing systems and may only hire on for salary or percentage. Because women in the community are not paid for their labour, there has been a pattern of female migration out of the area. Significantly, two thirds of the wives in the community are from outside the area. This has a predictable effect on the community's concept of ‘the feminine’. An elaborate anti-female symbolism is woven into the fabric of male communal life, e.g. strong boats are male and older leaky ones are female. Women ‘are regarded as polluting “on the water” and the more traditional men would not consider going out if a woman had set foot in the boat that day – they are “jinker” (i.e., a jinx), even unwittingly'. (It is not only relatively unsophisticated workers such as those fishermen who insist on sexual purity. The very skilled technicians drilling for natural gas in the North Sea affirm the same taboo: women are not permitted on their drilling platform rigs.) It would be, however, a rare Cat Harbour woman who would consider such an act, for they are aware of their structural position in the outport society and the cognition surrounding their sex….Cat Harbour is a male-dominated society….Only men can normally inherit property, or smoke or drink, and the increasingly frequent breach of this by women is the source of much gossip (and not a negligible amount of conflict and resentment). Men are seated first at meals and eat together – women and children eating afterwards. Men are given the choicest and largest portions, and sit at the same table with a ‘stranger’ or guest. Women work extremely demanding and long hours, ‘especially during the fishing season, for not only do they have to fix up to 5 to 6 meals each day for the fishermen, but do all their household chores, mind the children and help “put away fish”. They seldom have time to visit extensively, usually only a few minutes to and from the shop or Post Office….Men on the other hand, spend each evening arguing, gossiping, and “telling cuffers”, in the shop, and have numerous “blows” (i.e., breaks) during the day.’ Pre-adolescents are separated on sexual lines. Boys play exclusively male games and identify strongly with fathers or older brothers. Girls perform light women's work, though Faris indicates '. . . often openly aspire to be male and do male things. By this time they can clearly see the privileged position of the Cat Harbour male….’. Girls are advised not to marry a fisherman, and are encouraged to leave the community if they wish to avoid a hard life. Boys are told it is better to leave Cat Harbour than become fishermen....
Lionel Tiger (Men in Groups)
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You tell me, ‘Oh, you don’t know what it was like, you could never understand the past, it was so hard’—well, you can’t fucking understand the present. You don’t know what it is to grow up in a country that has only ever been at war. To do active shooter drills in fucking kindergarten. To grow up knowing you’ll never make a living wage. You’ll never own a house. That the whole game is rigged, and you’ll work your whole life and have nothing to show for it.
Rufi Thorpe (The Knockout Queen)
We were standing outside on the great steps of the hall high above the blue waters of San Francisco Bay, and they were there, the white ships on the tide, and all my love rose to sing my newfound seaman's life. -- The Sea! Real ships! My sweet ship had come in, no dream but true with tangled rigging and actual shipmates and the job slip secure in my wallet and only the night before I'd been kicking cockroaches in my tiny dark room in 3rd Street slums.
Jack Kerouac (Lonesome Traveler)
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Game Yan
Fear is born from our ignorance, from our concepts regarding life, death, being, and nonbeing. If we are able to get rig of all these concepts by touching the reality within ourselves, then nonfear will be there and the greatest relief will become possible.
Thich Nhat Hanh (True Love: A Practice for Awakening the Heart)
This world is rigged with ruin.
Kevin Young (Book of Hours: Poems)