S J Perelman Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to S J Perelman. Here they are! All 39 of them:

The main obligation is to amuse yourself.
S.J. Perelman
I guess I'm just an old mad scientist at bottom. Give me an underground laboratory, half a dozen atom-smashers, and a beautiful girl in a diaphanous veil waiting to be turned into a chimpanzee, and I care not who writes the nation's laws.
S.J. Perelman
If, at the close of business each evening, I myself can understand what I've written, I feel the day hasn't been totally wasted.
S.J. Perelman
Love is not the dying moan of a distant violin .. it's the triumphant twang of a bedspring
S.J. Perelman
You'll have to leave my meals on a tray outside the door because I'll be working pretty late on the secret of making myself invisible, which may take me almost until eleven o'clock.
S.J. Perelman
A farm is an irregular patch of nettles bounded by short-term notes, containing a fool and his wife who didn’t know enough to stay in the city.
S.J. Perelman
The fact is that all of us have only one personality, and we wring it out like a dishtowel. You are what you are.
S.J. Perelman
I had a hell of a time getting here, brother,” I revealed when we had finished trading insincerities.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
One stifling summer afternoon last August, in the attic of a tiny stone house in Pennsylvania, I made a most interesting discovery: the shortest, cheapest method of inducing a nervous breakdown ever perfected. In this technique..., the subject is placed in a sharply sloping attic heated to 340 F and given a mothproof closet known as the Jiffy-Cloz to assemble.
S.J. Perelman (The Most Of S.J.Perelman)
Learning is what most adults will do for a living in the 21st century." ~ S J Perelman
Sue Stebbins (Mind Your Head: Revolutionary Brain Training Handbook)
He opened my eyes to just how great S. J. Perelman was, superior to all other funny minds, an axiom I hold to this day.
Woody Allen (Apropos of Nothing)
immortality is a chancy matter, subject to the caprice of the unborn. Not
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
For the written record in this personal document, let me simply say to me, Groucho Marx, W. C. Fields, and Elaine May are indisputably funny, with S.J. Perelman the funniest human of my time on earth.
Woody Allen (Apropos of Nothing)
It was grudgingly conceded by the traffic wizards that in abolishing so-called normal hazards like sharp curves, intersections, traffic signals, and pedestrian and railroad crossings they had substituted the peril of deadly monotony. The
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Writing is learned by imitation. I learned to write mainly by reading writers who were doing the kind of writing I wanted to do and by trying to figure out how they did it. S. J. Perelman told me that when he was starting out he could have been arrested for imitating Ring Lardner. Woody Allen could have been arrested for imitating S. J. Perelman. And who hasn’t tried to imitate Woody Allen? Students often feel guilty about modeling their writing on someone else’s writing. They think it’s unethical—which is commendable. Or they’re afraid they’ll lose their own identity. The point, however, is that we eventually move beyond our models; we take what we need and then we shed those skins and become who we are supposed to become. But
William Zinsser (Writing to Learn: How to Write--And Think--Clearly about Any Subject at All)
Look, Grover Cleveland,” one of them finally snapped at me after my third approach. “Harmoniums and water wings, diavolos and pungs we got, but Victorian easy chairs—nyet. And now, excuse me, will you? I have another nudnick here wants a round table like King Arthur’s.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
An inexpressible radiance suffused me. The chair was so much more beautiful than my cinematic memory that speech was inadequate. It was a haven, a refuge; I saw myself lolling in it, churchwarden poised, evolving new cosmogonies, quoting abstruse references to Occam’s razor and Paley’s watch. “Oh, God,” I choked, extracting a fistful of bills. “I—You’ve made me so happy! How much?
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
MENDOZA (hoarsely): I tell you the blood is boiling in my veins! You are a candy store filled with luscious nougats, a henhouse from which the pullets have yet to be stolen! MAVIS: Promise me one thing. Whatever happens— whatever they should tell you about me—we’ll always have this moment together. MENDOZA: Parbleu! Do you think I am a milk-sap, that you can put me off with your bobbery? What stands between us—this man’s foot sticking out from behind the davenport? MAVIS: Of course not. It’s—well—it’s that you’re not the man I thought you were. Who are you, anyway? MENDOZA: (simply): The exterminator.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
MAVIS (coming up close to him): Robin, don’t you notice anything different about me? ROBIN (sniffing): Hm-m-m. Why, yes, you’ve got a funny smell. MAVIS: Don’t you find me heady, sultry, confusing? ROBIN: No. (critically) But you’ve put on a lot of weight lately. MAVIS: Have I? ROBIN: You certainly have. You’re as big as a house. And your slip is showing. MAVIS: I’m not wearing a slip. ROBIN: Well, it would show if you were. MAVIS: Anything else? ROBIN: Maybe I shouldn’t call attention to it. MAVIS: No, no, darling. By all means call attention to it. ROBIN: You’re getting wrinkles under the eyes. And a scraggly neck, like a turkey. MAVIS: Not much gets past you, does it? ROBIN (comfortably): I guess I’m just about as wide awake as anybody in the hardware business.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
The Shapiras brought me the book "The Road to Miltown" by S.J. Perelman, and I still have it. It's moved with me across the country, put up in innumerable bookshelves, for almost fifty years. It's showing signs of wear. (Hell, so am I, but we're both still good to take to bed.)
Rue McClanahan (My First Five Husbands... And the Ones Who Got Away)
At first they were pitched in a low, rasping hum devoid of vowels, somewhat like Icelandic but more bestial. As
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
The manager of the enterprise, a foxy-nose with a serried gray marcel that mounted like a linotype keyboard, was the soul of courtesy.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
To adduce proof that the husky, straw-hatted young man in gabardine who tailed me the whole next month was an F.B.I. operative is impossible, nor can I swear that my mail was fluoroscoped during that period. I do know that for a while I underwent all the tremors of a Graham Greene character on the run, even if it had no purificatory effect on my religious views. When
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
True, it was a difficult chair to slumber in; at the beginning, its magnificence overawed me and I sat gingerly in it, holding at eye level a copy of Sir Samuel Baker’s The Albert Nyanza in crushed levant. I then tried browsing through the latest English review, but somehow couldn’t get past the pictures of Ovomalt and thermal underwear. At last, I found the key in Max Lerner’s windy periods, and, lapped in his peristaltic rhetoric, slept like a baby. Once inside that chair, Lerner in hand, I was as remote from hypertension as from the Asiatic capitals where he bombinated.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
The other occupants of my car were a pair of tall, willowy thoroughbreds apparently checking in from Oshkosh, for they were flanked by luggage, the color of a weathered skull, of every conceivable size. From the scorn they evinced, I sensed that they were unaccustomed to persons bearing packages, so I receded as far as I was able into the costly woodwork. The coryphee who opened the door of Schrift’s antechamber, a Dresden-china shepherdess with scallops of blue-black hair framing her face, looked like the secretaries he generally used on his lightning visits from the Coast—more adept at disengaging a zipper at the Copa than at shorthand. She
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
I mean, he didn’t get in till four. He hosted a party at Neuralgio’s for our new French author, Claude Nasal-Passages, and then everybody went on to the Twelve Apostles.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
A moment later, Schrift reappeared in a striking pair of undershorts, with vertical stripes like French wallpaper. “Now, for openers,” he began, extracting the trees from a pair of suède chukker boots, “did you read this new best seller Valuta, by Waldemar Knobnose!” “Only the first eighteen pages,” I admitted. “The woman whose copy it was got off the bus at Altman’s.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Look at this shirt!” exclaimed Schrift, with sudden irrelevant fury. “Specially made for me by Thresher & Glenny in London—it cost more than you probably spent on coal last winter. If I told ’em once, I told ’em a hundred times—I want the monogram in Old English, not roman type! What do they think I am—a letterhead? No wonder the British Empire’s falling apart.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
PUDOVKIN: Kind of pooped, eh? You’ll lose that bay window before we’re through with you. BESSEMER (panting): Say, bud, bring me a glass of water, will you? MRS. BESSEMER: I’ll take some plain ginger ale. PUDOVKIN: Wouldn’t you rather have a tall, cool rum collins with mint and lots of ice? MRS. BESSEMER: Why, that sounds delicious. PUDOVKIN (comfortably) : Doesn’t it? I’ll hop down the mountain and get one. It’s only four miles—the exercise’ll do me good. BESSEMER: Look, if it’s any trouble, I’d just as soon— PUDOVKIN: Nonsense, that’s what I’m paid for, to run down every time some lush wants a snort. Or if you prefer, I can carry you down on my back.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
MRS. BESSEMER: Yes, sir? PUDOVKIN: If this is chicken consommé, so is Lake Louise. And you can tell the manager I said so. MRS. BESSEMER: But you’re the manager, Mr. Pudovkin. PUDOVKIN (to the others): Well, I’ve heard all the excuses, but that’s a new one.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
In reading them, it is well to remember that many portions are in anapaestic pentameter, as they were intended to be sung through tissue paper stretched over a comb. No
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Sure I like Grossinger’s,” it was saying, “but let me warn you—if you go up there, be sure and wear sunglasses. You can get snow blindness from the sour cream.” It
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Lox vobiscum, and give my regards to Broadway.” His
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Take one thing with another, there are few places I know better than the heart of Africa. Set me down in Bechuanaland or the Cameroons and I will find my way home with less difficulty than I would from Rittenhouse Square or Boylston Street. My
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
By this same post, I am delegating a close friend of mine, Irving Wiesel, to visit your place of business and ferret out the truth. You can lay your cards on the table with Wiesel or not, as you see fit. When he finishes with you, you will have neither cards nor table.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Two young ladies, in toreador pants and mohair sweaters, whose swirling coiffures looked as though they had been squeezed from an icing gun, had ranged themselves at the fountain. They
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Well—er—you see, my face never changes,” I replied evasively, “but there’s this portrait of me that ages instead.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
She was accompanied by a vital, leathery taxpayer with protuberant eyes, opulently clad in a black astrakhan coat sporting a mink collar. His face was screwed around an unlit Partagas which he was savagely chewing into submission.
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)
Back for the summer, eh?” he inquired. “Say, you certainly look awful. What are those big circles under your eyes?” “Glasses,” I said evenly. “What the hell do you think they are?
S.J. Perelman (The World of SJ Perelman: The Marx Brother's Greatest Scriptwriter)