Friday, February 27, 2009

Quotes: Men and Women (2)

Men and women 113 "It was very painful, when you made it quite clear to a young man that you were determined not to marry him, however much he might wish it, that he would still continue to pay you marked attentions; if he meant them sincerely, instead of being so strange as Mr. Godfrey Cass was, sometimes behaving as if he didn’t want to speak to her, and taking no notice of her for weeks and weeks, and then, all on a sudden, almost making love again?" George Eliot, Silas Marner. Predictable male behavior when rejected by a woman.

Men and women 193 "It drives me past patience, said Priscilla, impetuously, that way o’ the men—always wanting and wanting and never easy with what they’ve got: they can’t sit comfortable in their chairs when they’ve neither ache nor pain, but either they must stick a pipe in their mouths, to make them better than well, or else they must be swallowing something strong…." George Eliot, Silas Marner. The female view of men.

Men and women 326 "He had vanity, which strongly inclined him…to think she did love him, though she might not know it herself…that he should be able in time to make those feelings what he wished." Austen, Mansfield Park. The male view of women. She doesn't know she loves me. I will make her love me.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Quotes: Men and Women (1)

Men 587 "Boys, of vastly different sizes, but all affecting a brave unconcern." Richard Cobb. “The Homburg Hat.” 1985. Gross, ed. Essays. The male cult of nonchalance.

Men 587 "…fathers sharing with their sons, whether tall or quite tiny, a brave indifference and common stiff upper-lipdom" “The Homburg Hat.” 1985. Gross, ed. Essays. Men dare not cry.

Men and women 411 "Most of the men who came to the flat…had the easy gentleness, the acceptance of women without embarrassed banter, for which she had longed in Gopher Prairie." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street. Lack of male self-consciousness when mixing with women in a social setting.

Men and women 280 "...oh, damn these women and the way they get you all tied up in complications!" Lewis, Main Street. Male stereotype of women.

Men and women 203 Red: “Naw, she didn’t lie, but people change, you know.” Mailer, The Naked and the Dead. "Dear John!"

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Quotes: Memories (2)

Memories 346 Marianne’s regrets: "Whenever I looked towards the past, I saw some duty neglected or some failing indulged; everybody seemed injured by me…an heart hardened against their merits, and a temper irritated by their very attention." Jane Austen. Ubiquitous negative memories.

Memories 376 "The terrors that he had lived through seemed to choke him as he remembered the awful scenes." Rölvaag, Giants in the Earth. Negative memories.

Memories 300 "…there was the sound of a piano lesson just like the one that Fernanda heard during the siestas of her adolescence." Marquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude. Pleasant memories.

Memory 47 "We look back on our life as a thing of broken pieces, because our mistakes and failures are always the first to strike us, and outweigh in our imagination what we have accomplished and attained." Goethe. Early 19th century. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms. The reality of memories.

Memory 432 "…memory as the flagellant." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead. Negative memories.

Memory techniques 61 "Following recommendations made by Cicero to improve the rhetorician’s ability to recall, he [St. Thomas Aquinas] elaborated a series of memory rules for readers: placing the things one wished to remember in a certain order, developing an 'affection' for them, transforming them into 'unusual similitudes' that would render them easy to visualize, repeating them frequently. Manguel, A History of Reading. The idea of memory techniques goes way back in history.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Quotes: Memories (1)

Memories 568 "Would that my hiding place were lonelier, so that the past might not find me!" Hawthorne: "Footprints on the Sea-Shore." Trying to escape from past memories. RayS.

Memories 708 "I can spare none of my recollections—not even those of error or sorrow…are all alike the food of my spirit." Hawthorne: "A virtuoso's Collection." All memories, good and bad, are a part of my spirit. RayS.

Memories 726 "The glow of festal torches—the blaze of perfumed lamps—the bonfires that had been kindled for him, when he was the darling of the people—the splendor of the royal court, where he had been the peculiar star…."Hawthorne: "The Antique Ring." Memories of past glories. RayS.

Memories 794 "The past, dismal as it seems, shall fling no gloom upon the future; to give it its due importance, we must think of it as an anecdote in our eternity." Hawthorne: "Egotism; Or, the Bosom-Serpent." Make bad memories anecdotes in our eternal life. RayS.

Memories 273 "The things we remember best are those better forgotten." Gracian. 1647. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms. We can't forget those bad memories. RayS.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Quotes: Medicine (5)

Medicine 254 " …it was in a way a very merciful death—though slow—for it was without pain, turning from a fitful fever into an unconquerable laziness strange to see in the busy natives of the lake shore; it passed, this death, from lethargy into a ridiculous sleepiness that made the mouths of the Negroes fall open while they ate; it went at last from such a drowsiness into a delicious coma—no waking from this!—and into a horrible unnatural coldness that merged with the chill of the grave…African sleeping sickness…a few years it had killed hundreds of thousands of the people of Uganda, it had sent brave missionaries to meet their God, and English colonial administrators home to their final slumber." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters. Vivid description of a slow death. RayS.

Medicine 7 "Yossarian was in the hospital with a pain in his liver that fell just short of being jaundice…doctors were puzzled by the fact that it wasn’t quite jaundice; if it became jaundice they could treat it." Heller, Catch-22. That's all right. If doctors don't treat what's wrong with you, they will find something they can treat. For example, high blood pressure. RayS.

Medicine 33 "Their names were Gus and Wes and they had succeeded in elevating medicine to an exact science: all men reporting on sick call with temperatures above 102 were rushed to the hospital; all those…reporting on sick call with temperatures below 102 had their gums and toes painted with gentian violet solution and were given a laxative…all those reporting on sick call with temperatures of exactly 102 were asked to return in an hour to have their temperatures taken again." Heller, Catch-22. That's what's known as a complete and foolproof system. Probably as useful as any other methods doctors use. RayS.

Medicine 178 "One of the things he wanted to start screaming about was the surgeon’s knife that was almost certain to be waiting for him and everyone else who lived long enough to die." Heller, Catch-22. If you live long enough you will face surgery sometime in your life. RayS.

Medicine 179 "It’s not my business to save lives, Doc Daneeka retorted sullenly…all they ever told me was to uphold the ethics of my profession and never give testimony against another physician." Heller, Catch-22. A doctor's training. Doctors don't cure. They make patients sick. RayS.

Medicine 343 "There are so many ways for me to get killed, Yossarian commented, and you had to find one more." Heller, Catch-22. Doctors can put a label on any kind of death. But the usual scapegoat is "hole in the heart." RayS.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Quotes: Medicine (4)

Medicine 103 Robert Koch: "I hate this bluff that my medical practice isn’t because I do not want to save babies from diphtheria...but mothers come to me crying--asking me to save their babies--and what can I do?--grope... fumble... reassure them when I know there is no can I cure diphtheria when I do not even know what causes it, when the wisest doctor in Germany doesn’t know." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters. On what doctors don't know. RayS.

Medicine 103 "...but meanwhile the Moujiks of desolate towns in Russia were still warding off scourges by hitching four widows to a plow and with them drawing a furrow round their villages in the dead of night--and their doctors had no sounder protection to offer them." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters. Will today's medical practices be any sounder? RayS.

Medicine 118 "So it was that he [Koch] began to change the whole business of doctors from a foolish hocus-pocus with pills and leeches into an intelligent fight where science instead of superstition was the weapon." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters. We still have the pills. Boy, do we! RayS.

Medicine 135 "In Alexandria the streets were still with fear; the murderous virus...sneaked into healthy men in the morning, doubled them into knots of spasm-racked agony by afternoon, and put them to rest beyond the reach of all pain by night." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters. The terror of the plague. RayS.

Medicine 227 "He [Theobald Smith] was a doctor of medicine from the Albany Medical College...detested the idea of going through life solemnly diagnosing sickness he could not hope to cure, offering sympathy where help was needed, trying to heal patients for whom there was no hope--in brief, medicine seemed to him to be a mixed-up, illogical business." DeKruif, Microbe Hunters. Still is. RayS.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Quotes: Medicine (3)

Medicine 478 "Too few physicians practice the intuitive diagnosis that used to be expected from every medical man while medicine was still a calling rather than a business." Robert Graves. “The Case for Xanthippe [Plato’s shrewish wife].” 1960. Gross, ed. Essays. "When baseball was a game instead of a business," etc., etc., etc. RayS.

Medicine 19 "We land in a rut of obstetrics and typhoid and busted legs." Sinclair Lewis, Main Street. From the general practitioner's point of view. RayS.

Medicine 163 "…tries to argue his patients into having whatever he diagnoses them as having!" Sinclair Lewis, Main Street. The psychology of doctoring. RayS.

Medicine 308 "The ambulance whirled under the hooded carriage-entrance of the hospital, and instantly he was reduced to a zero in the nightmare succession of cork-floored halls, endless doors open on old women sitting up in bed, and elevator, the anesthetizing room...was permitted to kiss his wife...." Lewis, Babbitt. The hospital "experience." RayS.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Quotes: Medicine (2)

Medicine 86 "Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less, in human beings of whom they know nothing." Voltaire. Portable Curmudgeon. Wow! That describes the doctors I know. RayS.

Medicine 86 "Doctors are just the same as lawyers; the only difference is that lawyers merely rob you, whereas doctors rob you and kill you, too." Anton Chekhov. Portable Curmudgeon.

Medicine 124 "She got her good looks from her father; he’s a plastic surgeon." Groucho Marx. Portable Curmudgeon.

Medicine 194 "We have not lost faith, but we have transferred it from God to the medical profession." George Bernard Shaw. Portable Curmudgeon.

Medicine 10 "The garden and the bee hive are all her physic and cirugery, and she lives the longer for it." Thomas Overbury, “A Fair and Happy Milkmaid.” 1615. Gross, ed. Essays. Let Nature, not surgery, take its course and you will live the longer for it. RayS.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Quotes: Medicine (1)

Medicine 982 "…that he cares infinitely more for science than for mankind…patients are interesting to him only as subjects for some new experiment…would sacrifice human life, his own among the rest…for the sake of adding so much as a grain of mustard-seed to the great heap of his accumulated knowledge." Hawthorne: “Rappaccini’s Daughter.” The modern physician's code? RayS.

Medicine 327 "It takes a wise doctor to know when not to prescribe." Gracián. 1647. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms. When in doubt, let Nature take her course. RayS.

Medicine 327 "Formerly, when religion was strong and science weak, men mistook magic for medicine; now, when science is strong and religion weak, men mistake medicine for magic." Thomas Szasz. 1974. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms. Medicine, the new superstition? RayS.

Medicine 327 "Before undergoing a surgical operation arrange your temporal affairs; you may live." Ambrose Bierce. 1906. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.

Medicine 86 "God heals, and the doctor takes the fee." Benjamin Franklin. Portable Curmudgeon. I hope to live to be 105 years old so I can answer the question, "What's the secret of your longevity?" with the words, "I stayed away from doctors." RayS.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Quotes: Media

Media 276 "Of all the forces accused of homogenizing the modern mind, few have been so continuously and bitterly criticized as the mass media." Toffler, Future Shock.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Quotes: May (2)

May 125 "[May] is life after dormancy, irrepressible life." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

May 129 "May just is." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

May 129 "[May] is the burgeoning, the resurgence, the promise fulfilled of life insistent." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

May 132 "…halfway to June is a wonderful time to be alive." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

May 134 "Blue sky, warm sun, and roadside violets are as comforting a discovery as any heart could ask of the burgeoning countryside." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

May 146 May. "…the insect buzz-and-hum makes the air vibrant." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Quotes: May (1)

May 120 "April is promises and tentative beginnings, but May is achievement." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year.

May 120 "May is apple blossoms and lilacs, and if any other month can surpass that combination we have yet to learn its name." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year.

May 120 "Lawns grow like mad in May, and the song of the mower is heard throughout the land." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year.

May 122 "But in May you can go outdoors, out where there are trees and grass and open sky and wild flowers and wild birds, and know without asking that you are in the midst of truth…don’t even have to define it, because it is there, obvious." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year. I don't know if the right word is "truth." I think it's satisfaction with the way things are. RayS.

May 125 "May in the country…is natural force as simple as the opening of a bud and as complex as the vast spread of chlorophyll in the countless leaves, even in the infinite blades of grass." Borland, Twelve Moons of the Year.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Quotes: Maxims

Maxims 1 "Men’s maxims reveal their characters." Vauvenargues. 1746. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.

Maxims 365 "All the good maxims already exist in the world; we just fail to apply them." Pascal. 1670. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Quote: Mathematics

Mathematics 6 "…my mathematics professors taught me to see math as a process of thought—a language in which to express much, but certainly not all, of human activity; to this day, I see quantification as a language to add precision to reasoning about the world…it cannot deal with issues of morality, beauty, and love, but it is a powerful tool too often neglected when we seek to overcome poverty, fiscal deficits, or the failure of our national health programs." McNamara’s In Retrospect

Monday, February 9, 2009

Quote: Masses

Masses 301 Seneca: "…behavior of the masses, who live not according to reason, but in order to conform." Manguel, A History of Reading.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Quote: Martin Luther King

Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King 576 Of Martin Luther King: "His natural mode of address was the sermon." Elizabeth Hardwick. “The Apotheosis of Martin Luther King.” 1968. Gross, ed. Essays.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Quotes: Marriage (17)

Marriage 252 Young black woman: "In the white world, marriage is always billed as ‘the end’—like in a Hollywood movie."Toffler, Future Shock. The stereotype of marriage is defined in a Hollywood movie.

Marriage and affairs 269 "He had pictured Tanis [his lover] as living in a rose-tinted vacuum, waiting for him, free of all the complications of a Floral Heights." Lewis, Babbitt. Men and lovers.

Marriage and affairs 294 "I want us to be friends but, gosh, I can’t go on this way feeling I got to come up here every so often--" Lewis, Babbitt. Men and lovers.

Marriage and affairs 302 "Then he broke, and one evening, late, he did run to Tanis...had not dared to hope for it, but she was in, and alone...wasn’t Tanis...a courteous, brow-lifting, ice-armored woman who looked like Tanis...said, 'Yes, George, what is it?' in even and uninterested tones, and he crept away, whipped. Lewis, Babbitt. The End!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Quotes: Marriage (16)

Marriage 292 "You will have a sweet little wife, all gratitude and devotion." Austen, Mansfield Park. One stereotype of a wife.

Marriage 354 "She [Miss Crawford] meant to urge him [her brother[ to persevere in the hope of being loved in time, and of having his addresses most kindly received at the end of about ten years’ happy marriage." Austen, Mansfield Park. There is a lot more truth about real marriage to this than one at first perceives.

Marriage 92 Utopia. "For although some men are won by physical beauty alone, no one’s affection is kept except by virtue and obedience." Sir Thomas More, Utopia. There has to be more than beauty to maintain a relationship in marriage.

Marriage 249 Love, however, is defined in terms of this notion of shared growth. Toffler, Future Shock. Love defined.

Marriage 250 "…the mathematical odds are heavily stacked against any couple achieving this ideal of parallel growth; if, at the same time, average life expectancy rises from, say, fifty to seventy years, thereby lengthening the term during which this acrobatic feat of matched development is supposed to be maintained, the odds against success become absolutely astronomical." Toffler, Future Shock. The longer the life, the less likely the shared growth can be maintained. A Star is Born.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Quotes: Marriage (15)

Marriage 330 "From Webster’s: hatred, n., 'strong aversion or detestation; settled ill will or malevolence'…a thread in most marriages…." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead. A cynic's view of marriage.

Marriage 62 " ‘Wilt thou have this man to thy wedded wife?’ says he, and then he says, ‘Wilt thou have this woman to thy wedded husband?’ says he...the particlarest thing of all is, as nobody took any notice on it but me and they answered straight off ‘yes,’ like as if it had been saying ‘Amen,’ i’ the right place, without listening to what went before...and I says to myself, ‘Is ‘t the meanin’ or the words as makes folks fast I’ wedlock?...the parson meant right, and the bride and bridegroom meant right...." George Eliot, Silas Marner. Whatever.

Marriage 200 "…and perhaps if he’d married a woman who’d have had children, she’d have vexed him in other ways." George Eliot, Silas Marner.

Marriage 43 Mrs. Grant: "I pay very little regard to what any young person says on the subject of marriage." Austen, Mansfield Park.

Marriage 202 "In all the important preparations of the mind she [Maria] was complete; being prepared for matrimony by an hatred of home, restraint and tranquility; by the misery of disappointed affection, and contempt of the man she was to marry." Austen, Mansfield Park. Preparation for marriage?

Monday, February 2, 2009

Quotes: Marriage (14)

Marriage 229 "...he found that he was turning toward youth, as youth." Lewis, Babbitt. Oh, to be young again!

Marriage 283 He: "Here I have to be in the office every single day, while you can go out all afternoon and see folks and visit with neighbors and do any blinkin’ thing you want to!" She: "Yes, and a fine lot of good that does me! Just talking over the same old things with the same old crowd, while you have all sorts of interesting people coming in to see you at the office." Lewis, Babbitt. The sniping that grinds down a marriage.

Marriage 295 "With true masculine wiles he not only convinced himself that she had injured him but, by the loudness of his voice and the brutality of his attack, he convinced her also, and presently he had her apologizing for his having spent the evening with Tanis [his lover]...went up to bed well pleased, not only the master, but the martyr of the household." Lewis, Babbitt. Masculine doubletalk.

Marriage 305 "Instantly all the indignations which had been dominating him and the spiritual dramas through which he had struggled became pallid and absurd before the ancient and overwhelming realities, the standard and traditional realities, of sickness and menacing death, the long night, and the thousand steadfast implications of married life." Lewis, Babbitt. Illusion and reality.

Marriage 203 "Red thought of the mother Wyman would have to support if he married his girl, and he had a quick elliptic knowledge of everything that would contain—the arguments, the worries over money, the grinding extinction of their youth until they would look like the people who walked by them in the park…." Mailer, The Naked and the Dead. An overview of marriage.