When a man’s suit fits, when the construction is beautiful, when the sewing and fabrics are there… in the end, you’ll look the best in it.
[Robert's eulogy at his brother, Ebon C. Ingersoll's grave. Even the great orator Robert Ingersoll was choked up with tears at the memory of his beloved brother]The record of a generous life runs like a vine around the memory of our dead, and every sweet, unselfish act is now a perfumed flower.Dear Friends: I am going to do that which the dead oft promised he would do for me.The loved and loving brother, husband, father, friend, died where manhood's morning almost touches noon, and while the shadows still were falling toward the west.He had not passed on life's highway the stone that marks the highest point; but, being weary for a moment, he lay down by the wayside, and, using his burden for a pillow, fell into that dreamless sleep that kisses down his eyelids still. While yet in love with life and raptured with the world, he passed to silence and pathetic dust.Yet, after all, it may be best, just in the happiest, sunniest hour of all the voyage, while eager winds are kissing every sail, to dash against the unseen rock, and in an instant hear the billows roar above a sunken ship. For whether in mid sea or 'mong the breakers of the farther shore, a wreck at last must mark the end of each and all. And every life, no matter if its every hour is rich with love and every moment jeweled with a joy, will, at its close, become a tragedy as sad and deep and dark as can be woven of the warp and woof of mystery and death.This brave and tender man in every storm of life was oak and rock; but in the sunshine he was vine and flower. He was the friend of all heroic souls. He climbed the heights, and left all superstitions far below, while on his forehead fell the golden dawning, of the grander day.He loved the beautiful, and was with color, form, and music touched to tears. He sided with the weak, the poor, and wronged, and lovingly gave alms. With loyal heart and with the purest hands he faithfully discharged all public trusts.He was a worshipper of liberty, a friend of the oppressed. A thousand times I have heard him quote these words: 'For Justice all place a temple, and all season, summer!' He believed that happiness was the only good, reason the only torch, justice the only worship, humanity the only religion, and love the only priest. He added to the sum of human joy; and were every one to whom he did some loving service to bring a blossom to his grave, he would sleep to-night beneath a wilderness of flowers.Life is a narrow vale between the cold and barren peaks of two eternities. We strive in vain to look beyond the heights. We cry aloud, and the only answer is the echo of our wailing cry. From the voiceless lips of the unreplying dead there comes no word; but in the night of death hope sees a star and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing.He who sleeps here, when dying, mistaking the approach of death for the return of health, whispered with his latest breath, 'I am better now.' Let us believe, in spite of doubts and dogmas, of fears and tears, that these dear words are true of all the countless dead.And now, to you, who have been chosen, from among the many men he loved, to do the last sad office for the dead, we give his sacred dust.Speech cannot contain our love. There was, there is, no gentler, stronger, manlier man.
The best I can say, it's like this. A man's in his skin, see, like a nut in its shell ... It's hard and strong, that shell, and it's all full of him. Full of grand man-meat, man-self. And that's all. That's all there is.A woman's a different thing entirely. Who knows where a woman begins and ends? Listen mistress, I have roots, I have roots deeper than this island. Deeper than the sea, older than the raising of the lands. I go back into the dark ... I go back into the dark! Before the moon I am, what a woman is, a woman of power, a woman's power, deeper than the roots of trees, deeper than the roots of islands, older than the Making, older than the moon. Who dares ask questions of the dark? Who'll ask the dark its name?
When I left you," he whispered, "you were already more beautiful than anything Idared to dream. In our years apart, my imaginings did their best to improve on your perfection. At night,your face was forever behind my eyes. And now I see that that vision who kept me company in myloneliness was a hag compared to the beauty now before me.
While learning others, respect demands that one never takes issue with another's freedom to choose their 'get down' - their way of living... and don't be mad. But carefully listen, observe, and compare mental notes before you open your heart's desire -- to make a clear determination what's in your best interest. If you already know how the story ends, and it doesn't fit you, keep [the] proper distance in perspective, in any form(s) of relationship, for the love of self. It may be disappointing, but you'll eventually discover the right one deserving of your full attention. Or, you may be surprised by their sudden awakening to your worthiness. Walk slowly, especially, when it comes to matters of the heart.
The phone rang. It was a familiar voice.It was Alan Greenspan. Paul O'Neill had tried to stay in touch with people who had served under Gerald Ford, and he'd been reasonably conscientious about it. Alan Greenspan was the exception. In his case, the effort was constant and purposeful. When Greenspan was the chairman of Ford's Council of Economic Advisers, and O'Neill was number two at OMB, they had become a kind of team. Never social so much. They never talked about families or outside interests. It was all about ideas: Medicare financing or block grants - a concept that O'Neill basically invented to balance federal power and local autonomy - or what was really happening in the economy. It became clear that they thought well together. President Ford used to have them talk about various issues while he listened. After a while, each knew how the other's mind worked, the way married couples do.In the past fifteen years, they'd made a point of meeting every few months. It could be in New York, or Washington, or Pittsburgh. They talked about everything, just as always. Greenspan, O'Neill told a friend, "doesn't have many people who don't want something from him, who will talk straight to him. So that's what we do together - straight talk."O'Neill felt some straight talk coming in."Paul, I'll be blunt. We really need you down here," Greenspan said. "There is a real chance to make lasting changes. We could be a team at the key moment, to do the things we've always talked about."The jocular tone was gone. This was a serious discussion. They digressed into some things they'd "always talked about," especially reforming Medicare and Social Security. For Paul and Alan, the possibility of such bold reinventions bordered on fantasy, but fantasy made real."We have an extraordinary opportunity," Alan said. Paul noticed that he seemed oddly anxious. "Paul, your presence will be an enormous asset in the creation of sensible policy."Sensible policy. This was akin to prayer from Greenspan. O'Neill, not expecting such conviction from his old friend, said little. After a while, he just thanked Alan. He said he always respected his counsel. He said he was thinking hard about it, and he'd call as soon as he decided what to do.The receiver returned to its cradle. He thought about Greenspan. They were young men together in the capital. Alan stayed, became the most noteworthy Federal Reserve Bank chairman in modern history and, arguably the most powerful public official of the past two decades. O'Neill left, led a corporate army, made a fortune, and learned lessons - about how to think and act, about the importance of outcomes - that you can't ever learn in a government.But, he supposed, he'd missed some things. There were always trade-offs. Talking to Alan reminded him of that. Alan and his wife, Andrea Mitchell, White House correspondent for NBC news, lived a fine life. They weren't wealthy like Paul and Nancy. But Alan led a life of highest purpose, a life guided by inquiry.Paul O'Neill picked up the telephone receiver, punched the keypad."It's me," he said, always his opening.He started going into the details of his trip to New York from Washington, but he's not much of a phone talker - Nancy knew that - and the small talk trailed off."I think I'm going to have to do this."She was quiet. "You know what I think," she said.She knew him too well, maybe. How bullheaded he can be, once he decides what's right. How he had loved these last few years as a sovereign, his own man. How badly he was suited to politics, as it was being played. And then there was that other problem: she'd almost always been right about what was best for him."Whatever, Paul. I'm behind you. If you don't do this, I guess you'll always regret it."But it was clearly about what he wanted, what he needed.Paul thanked her. Though somehow a thank-you didn't seem appropriate.And then he realized she was crying.
What is the use of beauty in woman? Provided a woman is physically well made and capable of bearing children, she will always be good enough in the opinion of economists.What is the use of music? -- of painting? Who would be fool enough nowadays to prefer Mozart to Carrel, Michael Angelo to the inventor of white mustard?There is nothing really beautiful save what is of no possible use. Everything useful is ugly, for it expresses a need, and man's needs are low and disgusting, like his own poor, wretched nature. The most useful place in a house is the water-closet.For my part, saving these gentry's presence, I am of those to whom superfluities are necessaries, and I am fond of things and people in inverse ratio to the service they render me. I prefer a Chinese vase with its mandarins and dragons, which is perfectly useless to me, to a utensil which I do use, and the particular talent of mine which I set most store by is that which enables me not to guess logogriphs and charades. I would very willingly renounce my rights as a Frenchman and a citizen for the sight of an undoubted painting by Raphael, or of a beautiful nude woman, -- Princess Borghese, for instance, when she posed for Canova, or Julia Grisi when she is entering her bath. I would most willingly consent to the return of that cannibal, Charles X., if he brought me, from his residence in Bohemia, a case of Tokai or Johannisberg; and the electoral laws would be quite liberal enough, to my mind, were some of our streets broader and some other things less broad. Though I am not a dilettante, I prefer the sound of a poor fiddle and tambourines to that of the Speaker's bell. I would sell my breeches for a ring, and my bread for jam. The occupation which best befits civilized man seems to me to be idleness or analytically smoking a pipe or cigar. I think highly of those who play skittles, and also of those who write verse. You may perceive that my principles are not utilitarian, and that I shall never be the editor of a virtuous paper, unless I am converted, which would be very comical.Instead of founding a Monthyon prize for the reward of virtue, I would rather bestow -- like Sardanapalus, that great, misunderstood philosopher -- a large reward to him who should invent a new pleasure; for to me enjoyment seems to be the end of life and the only useful thing on this earth. God willed it to be so, for he created women, perfumes, light, lovely flowers, good wine, spirited horses, lapdogs, and Angora cats; for He did not say to his angels, 'Be virtuous,' but, 'Love,' and gave us lips more sensitive than the rest of the skin that we might kiss women, eyes looking upward that we might behold the light, a subtile sense of smell that we might breathe in the soul of the flowers, muscular limbs that we might press the flanks of stallions and fly swift as thought without railway or steam-kettle, delicate hands that we might stroke the long heads of greyhounds, the velvety fur of cats, and the polished shoulder of not very virtuous creatures, and, finally, granted to us alone the triple and glorious privilege of drinking without being thirsty, striking fire, and making love in all seasons, whereby we are very much more distinguished from brutes than by the custom of reading newspapers and framing constitutions.
I know I grew up in the time when a young man in a baggy suit and slicked-down hair stood spraddle-legged in the crossroads of history and talked hot and mean about the colored, giving my poor and desperate people a reason to feel superior to somebody, to anybody. I know that even as the words of George Wallace rang through my Alabama, the black family who lived down the dirt road from our house sent fresh-picked corn and other food to the poor white lady and her three sons, because they knew their daddy had run off, because hungry does not have a color.
It begins when he’s still a man in a suit, doing the kinds of boring things that men in suits do. The things that no one writes about because they know that boys don’t really have nightmares about clowns or three-eyed tentacled beasts that rise from deep within volcanoes. When boys wake up screaming in the night, it’s because they know that, one day, they’ll have to grow into men who wear suits and spend their days doing boring things that cause them to rot from within, so their skin withers and blackens and cracks, leaking out their juices until they finally lie decaying and putrid, forgotten by a world that deemed them unworthy of remembering.It begins there because it’s important to know that a superhero with no past began as a man with no future.
When I was a young man and very well thought of,I couldn't ask aught that the ladies denied.I nibbled their hearts like a handful of raisins,And I never spoke love but I knew that I lied. But I said to myself, 'Ah, they none of them know The secret I shelter and savor and save I wait for the one who will see through my seeming, And I'll know when I love by the way I behave.'The years drifted over like clouds in the heavens;The ladies went by me like snow on the wind.I charmed and I cheated, deceived and dissembled,And I sinned, and I sinned, and I sinned, and I sinned. But I said to myself, 'Ah, they none of them see There's part of me pure as the whisk of a wave. My lady is late but she'll find I've been faithful, And I'll know when I love by the way I behave.'At last came a lady both knowing and tender,Saying, 'you're not at all what they take you to be.'I betrayed her before she had quite finished speaking,And she swallowed cold poison and jumped in the sea. And I say to myself when there's time for a word, As I gracefully grow more debauched and depraved, 'Ah, love may be strong, but a habit is stronger And I knew when I loved by the way I behaved.
If I buy a Fiat Uno, I'll read that, for a man like me, a Ferrari was more suitable. If instead I buy a Ferrari, they'll write that I should have kept my feet on the ground and bought a Fiat. If I smile, I'm not serious. If I don't smile, I'm a rich sulker that doesn't enjoy having the most beautiful job in the world.
Nonetheless, when it finally ended and the hairdressers left and Tess insisted upon pulling her to the mirror, Fire saw, and understood, that everyone had done the job well. The dress, deep shimmering purple and utterly simple in design, was so beautifully-cut and so clingy and well-fitting that Fire felt slightly naked. And her hair. She couldn’t follow what they’d done with her hair, braids thin as threads in some places, looped and wound through the thick sections that fell over her shoulders and down her back, but she saw that the end result was a controlled wildness that was magnificent against her face, her body, and the dress. She turned to measure the effect on her guard - all twenty of them, for all had roles to play in tonight’s proceedings, and all were awaiting her orders. Twenty jaws hung slack with astonishment - even Musa’s, Mila’s, and Neel’s. Fire touched their minds, and was pleased, and then angry, to find them open as the glass roofs in July.‘Take hold of yourselves,’ she snapped. ‘It’s a disguise, remember? This isn’t going to work if the people meant to help me can’t keep their heads.’‘It will work, Lady Granddaughter.’ Tess handed Fire two knives in ankle holsters. ‘You’ll get what you want from whomever you want. Tonight King Nash would give you the Winged River as a present, if you asked for it. Dells, child - Prince Brigan would give you his best warhorse.
What did we talk about?I don't remember. We talked so hard and sat so still that I got cramps in my knee. We had too many cups of tea and then didn't want to leave the table to go to the bathroom because we didn't want to stop talking. You will think we talked of revolution but we didn't. Nor did we talk of our own souls. Nor of sewing. Nor of babies. Nor of departmental intrigue. It was political if by politics you mean the laboratory talk that characters in bad movies are perpetually trying to convey (unsuccessfully) when they Wrinkle Their Wee Brows and say (valiantly--dutifully--after all, they didn't write it) "But, Doctor, doesn't that violate Finagle's Constant?" I staggered to the bathroom, released floods of tea, and returned to the kitchen to talk. It was professional talk. It left my grey-faced and with such concentration that I began to develop a headache. We talked about Mary Ann Evans' loss of faith, about Emily Brontë's isolation, about Charlotte Brontë's blinding cloud, about the split in Virginia Woolf's head and the split in her economic condition. We talked about Lady Murasaki, who wrote in a form that no respectable man would touch, Hroswit, a little name whose plays "may perhaps amuse myself," Miss Austen, who had no more expression in society than a firescreen or a poker. They did not all write letters, write memoirs, or go on the stage. Sappho--only an ambiguous, somewhat disagreeable name. Corinna? The teacher of Pindar. Olive Schriener, growing up on the veldt, wrote on book, married happily, and ever wrote another. Kate Chopin wrote a scandalous book and never wrote another. (Jean has written nothing.). There was M-ry Sh-ll-y who wrote you know what and Ch-rl-tt- P-rk-ns G-lm-an, who wrote one superb horror study and lots of sludge (was it sludge?) and Ph-ll-s Wh--tl-y who was black and wrote eighteenth century odes (but it was the eighteenth century) and Mrs. -nn R-dcl-ff- S-thw-rth and Mrs. G--rg- Sh-ld-n and (Miss?) G--rg-tt- H-y-r and B-rb-r- C-rtl-nd and the legion of those, who writing, write not, like the dead Miss B--l-y of the poem who was seduced into bad practices (fudging her endings) and hanged herself in her garter. The sun was going down. I was blind and stiff. It's at this point that the computer (which has run amok and eaten Los Angeles) is defeated by some scientifically transcendent version of pulling the plug; the furniture stood around unknowing (though we had just pulled out the plug) and Lady, who got restless when people talked at suck length because she couldn't understand it, stuck her head out from under the couch, looking for things to herd. We had talked for six hours, from one in the afternoon until seven; I had at that moment an impression of our act of creation so strong, so sharp, so extraordinarily vivid, that I could not believe all our talking hadn't led to something more tangible--mightn't you expect at least a little blue pyramid sitting in the middle of the floor?
I remember asking my friend. . .for tips and her best one was: When watching football with your man, just look up once in awhile and ask, Now who did he used to play for?' He'll talk for at least fifteen minutes, you'll seem like you care, and then you can go back to your In Style or whatever.
There were times when I was blown away by the virgin beauty of the land. Kind of like that guy who lost his shit on the internet at the full double rainbow across the sky. Remember that guy? He kept asking what it meant, and it is not so difficult a question to answer. It means that we are loved, like all living things that Gaia sustains. There is a poetry in the canapes of forests and in the gentle roll of hills. A song in the wind and a benediction in the kiss of the sun. There are stories in the chuckle of waters in creeks and epics told in the tides of oceans. There are trees, Granuaile, that seem sometimes like they have grown all their lives just to feel the touch of my hand upon their trunks. They are so welcoming to me. You will feel that welcome in your hands some day. You'll feel it in your toes as you walk upon the earth. I cannot wait to see that love bloom in your eyes....' Tears glistened at the edges of her eyes... She knew precisely what I meant. She understood. And she became almost unbearably beautiful to me in that moment.
When she says margarita she means daiquiri.When she says quixotic she means mercurial.And when she says, "I'll never speak to you again,"she means, "Put your arms around me from behindas I stand disconsolate at the window."He's supposed to know that.When a man loves a woman he is in New York and she is in Virginiaor he is in Boston, writing, and she is in New York, reading,or she is wearing a sweater and sunglasses in Balboa Park and he is raking leaves in Ithacaor he is driving to East Hampton and she is standing disconsolateat the window overlooking the baywhere a regatta of many-colored sails is going onwhile he is stuck in traffic on the Long Island Expressway.When a woman loves a man it is one ten in the morningshe is asleep he is watching the ball scores and eating pretzelsdrinking lemonadeand two hours later he wakes up and staggers into bedwhere she remains asleep and very warm.When she says tomorrow she means in three or four weeks.When she says, "We're talking about me now,"he stops talking. Her best friend comes over and says,"Did somebody die?"When a woman loves a man, they have goneto swim naked in the streamon a glorious July daywith the sound of the waterfall like a chuckleof water rushing over smooth rocks,and there is nothing alien in the universe.Ripe apples fall about them.What else can they do but eat?When he says, "Ours is a transitional era,""that's very original of you," she replies,dry as the martini he is sipping.They fight all the timeIt's funWhat do I owe you?Let's start with an apologyOk, I'm sorry, you dickhead.A sign is held up saying "Laughter."It's a silent picture."I've been fucked without a kiss," she says,"and you can quote me on that,"which sounds great in an English accent.One year they broke up seven times and threatened to do it another nine times.When a woman loves a man, she wants him to meet her at the airport in a foreign country with a jeep.When a man loves a woman he's there. He doesn't complain that she's two hours lateand there's nothing in the refrigerator.When a woman loves a man, she wants to stay awake.She's like a child cryingat nightfall because she didn't want the day to end.When a man loves a woman, he watches her sleep, thinking:as midnight to the moon is sleep to the beloved.A thousand fireflies wink at him.The frogs sound like the string sectionof the orchestra warming up.The stars dangle down like earrings the shape of grapes.
When a man falls in love, he sees the beloved in an idealized vision which to the rest of the world seems unjustified by the facts of the woman's character and appearance. The lover feels towards his beloved, thus idealized, a rapture of devotion, which seems to blend humility with exultation, self-giving with grateful receiving, in a joyful interchange of laughter and courtesy. What is the real significance of this vision and the mutual relationship which can emerge from it? [Charles] Williams tells us that the lover sees his beloved as all men would see one another, and all things, had not man fallen from his state of original innocence. He sees his beloved as all men ought to see their fellow-men 'in God'. The relationship between lover and beloved which emerges is (at its best) the relationship of joyful giving and receiving which ought to join all men together. Already such relationships exist among the perfected in Heaven. And the archetype of such perfected relationships is the coherence of the Three Persons of the Trinity.