You'll have a good, secure life when being alive means more to you than security, love more than money, your freedom more than public or partisan opinion, when the mood of Beethoven's or Bach's music becomes the mood of your whole life … when your thinking is in harmony, and no longer in conflict, with your feelings … when you let yourself be guided by the thoughts of great sages and no longer by the crimes of great warriors … when you pay the men and women who teach your children better than the politicians; when truths inspire you and empty formulas repel you; when you communicate with your fellow workers in foreign countries directly, and no longer through diplomats...
Are You Ready for New Urban Fragrances?Yeah, I guess I'm ready, but listen:Perfume is a disguise. Since the middle ages, we have worn masks of fruit and flowers in order to conceal from ourselves the meaty essence of our humanity. We appreciate the sexual attractant of the rose, the ripeness of the orange, more than we honor our own ripe carnality.Now today we want to perfume our cities, as well; to replace their stinging fumes of disturbed fossils' sleep with the scent of gardens and orchards. Yet, humans are not bees any more than they are blossoms. If we must pull an olfactory hood over our urban environment, let it be of a different nature.I want to travel on a train that smells like snowflakes.I want to sip in cafes that smell like comets.Under the pressure of my step, I want the streets to emit the precise odor of a diamond necklace.I want the newspapers I read to smell like the violins left in pawnshops by weeping hobos on Christmas Eve.I want to carry luggage that reeks of the neurons in Einstein's brain.I want a city's gases to smell like the golden belly hairs of the gods.And when I gaze at a televised picture of the moon, I want to detect, from a distance of 239,000 miles, the aroma of fresh mozzarella.
I HAVE MADE THIS FOR YOU. She reached out and took a damp square of cardboard. Water dripped off the bottom. Somewhere in the middle, a few brown feathers seemed to have been glued on. 'Thank you. Er ... what is it?'ALBERT SAID THERE OUGHT TO BE SNOW ON IT, BUT IT APPEARS TO HAVE MELTED, said Death. IT IS, OF COURSE, A HOGSWATCH CARD.'Oh ...' THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN A ROBIN ON IT AS WELL, BUT I HAD CONSIDERABLE DIFFICULTY IN GETTING IT TO STAY ON. 'Ah...'IT WAS NOT AT ALL COOPERATIVE.'Really ...?'IT DID NOT SEEM TO GET INTO THE HOGSWATCH SPIRIT AT ALL.
Vimes shook some lather off the blade. "Hah! I bet they have. Tell me, Willikins, did you fight much when you were a kid? Were you in a gang or anything?""I was privileged to belong to the Shamlegger Street Rude Boys, sir," said the butler."Really?" said Vimes, genuinely impressed. "They were pretty tough nuts, as I recall.""Thank you, sir," said Willikins smoothly. "I pride myself I used to give somewhat more than I got if we needed to discuss the vexed area of turf issues with the young men from Rope Street. Stevedore's hooks were their weapon of choice, as I recall.""And yours...?" said Vimes, agog."A cap-brim sewn with sharpened pennies, sir. An ever-present help in times of trouble.""Ye gods, man! You could put someone's eye out with something like that.""With care, sir, yes," said Willikins, meticulously folding a towel.
...so you have found me and would know the tale. When a poet speaks of truth to another poet, waht hope has truth? Let me ask this, then. DOes one find memory in invention? Or will you find invention in memory? Wich bows in servitude befor the other? Will the measure of greatness be weighed solely in details? Perhaps so, if details make up the full weft of the world, if themes are nothing more than the coomposite of lists perfectly ordered and unerring rendered; and if I should kneel before invention, as if it were memory made perfect.
Always face what you fear. Have just enough money, never too much, and some string. Even if it’s not your fault, it’s your responsibility. Witches deal with things. Never stand between two mirrors. Never cackle. Do what you must do. Never lie, but you don’t always have to be honest. Never wish. Especially don’t wish upon a star, which is astronomically stupid. Open your eyes, and then open your eyes again.
It’s when you have no external cause to blame for your unhappiness that suicide becomes more likely. I’ve used this idea to explain why African-Americans have lower suicide rates, why blind people whose sight is restored often become suicidal, and why adolescent suicide rates often rise as their quality of life gets better.
"Surely you have considered terrorist activity?"There was another pause. Then the spokesman said, in the quiet tones of someone who has had enough and who is going to quit after this and raise chickens somewhere, "Yes, I suppose we must. All we need to do is find some terrorists who are capable of taking an entire nuclear reactor out of its can while it's running and without anyone noticing. It weighs about a thousand tons and is forty feet high. So they'll be quite strong terrorists. Perhaps you'd like to ring them up, sir, and ask them questions in that supercilious, accusatory way of yours."-- The BBC interviews a nuclear spokesperson (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)
Because life is a symphony it must have its C Minor. Days there be when we hear only a discord of sharps and flats, and we wonder whether harmony will ever be restored. On other days we hear only an ominous, deep strain which seems to say that hope is fled. But why this chill despair? Symphonies are a blending of many tones, high and low, over and under, major and minor. One day cannot make a life a whole any more than shadows can make a picture or minor notes a symphony. We need to hear life's song, not as the discord of a single day, but as the completed harmony of all the years. Then will today's sorrow and tomorrow's disappointment ring forth in major key as glorious melody.
Character? I should have thought it needed a good deal of character to throw up a career after half an hour’s meditation, because you saw in another way of living a more intense significance. And it required still more character never to regret the sudden step. I wondered if Abraham really had made a hash of life. Is to do what you most want, to live under the conditions that please you, in peace with yourself, to make a hash of life; and is it success to be an eminent surgeon with ten thousand a year and a beautiful wife? I suppose it depends on what meaning you attach to life, the claim which you acknowledge to society, and the claim of the individual. But again I held my tongue, for who am I to argue with a knight?
You say that Caesar Borgia suffered the just punishment of his crimes. He was destroyed not by his misdeeds, but by circumstances over which he had no control. His wickedness was an irrelevant accident. In this world of sin and sorrow if virtue triumphs over vice it is not because it is virtuous, but because it has better and bigger guns; if honesty prevails over double-dealing, it is not because it is honest, but because it has a stronger army more ably led; and if good overcomes evil it is not because it is good, but because it has a well-lined purse. It is well to have right on our side, but it madness to forget that unless we have might as well it will avail us nothing. We must believe that God loves men of good will, but there is no evidence to show that He will save fools from the result of their folly.
Now that I have smelled you, I can face you down. Even though my body is shaking, I can keep a place free from you. I can feel you running round in my head, you see, but all the doors are closed to you now. I can control the dark inside, which is where all darkness is. You have shown me that I am more than just a rat. If I am not more than a rat, I am nothing at all.