[Note: After today’s post, the next one will be on May 19. Off to Machu Picchu.}
“One of the most salient features of our culture is that there is so much bullshit.” Harry G. Frankfort, On Bullshit.
“The Film Snob’s stance is one of proprietary knowingness—the pleasure he takes in movies derives not only from the sensory experience of watching them, but also from knowing more about them than you do, and from zealously guarding this knowledge from the cheesy, Julia Roberts-loving masses, who have no right whatsoever to be fluent in the works of Sam (White Dog) Fuller and Andrei (the original Solaris) Tarkovsky.” David Kamp with Lawrence Levi, The Film Snob’s Dictionary.
“In 1934, the summer before I entered third grade, my grandmother mistook Andrew Imhof for a girl.” Curtis Sittenfeld, American Wife.
“In later years, holding forth to an interviewer or to an audience of aging fans at a comic book convention, Sam Clay liked to declare apropos of his and Joe Kavalier’s greatest creation, that back when he was a boy, sealed and hog-tied inside the airtight vessel known as Brooklyn, New York, he had been haunted by dreams of Harry Houdini.” Michael Chabon, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay.
“I have a friend who’s an artist and he’s sometimes taken a view which I don’t agree with very well.” Richard P. Feynman, The Pleasure of Finding Things Out.
“Imagine yourself on a moonlit night in mid-August in the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.” Garland Allen and Jeffrey Baker, Biology: Scientific Process and Social Issues.
“To be honest I thought the road trip would be a caper.” Michael Paterniti, Driving Mr. Albert: A Trip Across America with Einstein’s Brain.
“Once, in those dear dead days, almost, but not quite beyond recall, there was a view of science that commanded widespread popular and academic assent.” Philip Kitcher, The Advancement of Science: Science without Legend, Objectivity without Illusions.
“Manhattan is shaped like an ocean liner or a lozenge or like a paramecium (what remains of the protruding piers, its cilia) or like a gourd or like some sort of fish, a striped bass, say, but most of all like a luxury liner, permanently docked, going nowhere.” Phillip Lopate, Waterfront: A Journey Around Manhattan.
“Making one’s home in an unpublished novel wasn’t without its compensations.” Jasper Fforde, The Well of Lost Plots.
“She was running, running as she had done before in her dreams, except this wasn’t a dream, even though with the flares dropping, as slowly as petals, and the yellow light, and the dark streets with the orange glow on the skyline it could easily be a dream, a horror dream.” Robert Wilson, The Company of Strangers.
“The girl screamed once, only the once, but it was enough.” Ian Rankin, Exit Music.
“When the old man died, there was probably no great joy in heaven; and quite certainly little if any real grief in Charlbury Drive, the pleasantly unpretentious cul-de-sac of semi-detached houses to which he had retired.” Colin Dexter, The Secret of Annexe 3.