Paraprosdokians

The following are  paraprosdokians -phrases or sentences with an unexpected ending – attributed to writer and actor,    Steven Wright:

  • I have a large seashell collection which I keep scattered on the beaches all over the world. Maybe you’ve seen it.
  • Curiosity killed the cat, but for a while I was a suspect.
  • When I first read the dictionary, I thought it was a long poem about everything.
  • I’m addicted to placebos. I could quit, but it wouldn’t matter.
  • All those who believe in psychokinesis, raise my hand.

Albert Einstein

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“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

“When you are courting a nice girl an hour seems like a second. When you sit on a red-hot cinder a second seems like an hour. That’s relativity.”

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

“If A is a success in life, then A equals x plus y plus z. Work is x; y is play; and z is keeping your mouth shut.”

 Albert Einstein

The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby - by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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When I think about the authors that I admire, it is often not so much for the body of their works, or even particular books, but rather lines and images that, once I have read them, forever stay on the fringes of my consciousness, appearing and reappearing when appropriate – like a mental orchestration of the score to my own life.

And, no author’s genius provides more brilliant accompaniment than F. Scott Fitzgerald’s. So much has been written about his volatile life and death in obscurity that it can overshadow his strength of character and his genius. I choose to believe that despite all that he endured, toward the end of his short life he regained sight of that green light at the end of the dock.
If you somehow missed reading The Great Gatsby in school, or even if you have read it, pick it up again, if for nothing else but the beauty of the language. But, do keep in mind that there must be a reason that even if at first resistant, students introduced to the novel continue to appreciate that when encountering the story of Jay Gatsby they encounter the archetypes of the country in which we live.
Below are just a few of Fitzgerald’s many gems:

“ … it was an extraordinary gift for hope, a romantic readiness such as I have never found in any other person and which it is not likely I shall ever find again. No–Gatsby turned out all right at the end; it is what preyed on Gatsby, what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams that temporarily closed out my interest in the abortive sorrows and short-winded elations of men.”

“Americans, while occasionally willing to be serfs, have always been obstinate about being peasantry.”

“In his blue gardens men and girls came and went like moths among the whisperings and the champagne and the stars.”

“And as the moon rose higher the inessential houses began to melt away until gradually I became aware of the old island here that flowered once for the Dutch sailor’s eyes… [and] for a transitory enchanted moment man must have held his breath in the presence of this continent… face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate to his capacity for wonder…”
For more on F. Scott Fitzgerald…

Glimpses of Summer Snapshots Not Taken

Photo from the, "Would you mind taking our picture?" exchange.

Photo from the, “Would you mind taking our picture?” exchange.

It has been awhile since I winged my way deep in the heart of a planeload full of families to a summer vacation destination. And, I admit to being a little envious of those folks in the frequent-flyer section who practice the art of indifference while the rest of us schlep past on our way to the double-digit rows. With the right attitude, however, there is a lot to be gained from tossing oneself into the great economy-class salad bowl of life. [Read more...]

Signs that you Skipped 60 and Went Straight to 80

 

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She’s back…

In reflecting on my 60th birthday, I regretted that I wouldn’t actually get to experience 60, not because I expected to meet an ugly end any time too soon, but because in temperament I’m already 80. The signs are all there: [Read more...]

Writing the Stories of Our Lives

A very little Yoda

A very little Yoda

Our family loves stories.

Whether they come packaged in celluloid or on paper; whether via satellite or wireless transfer; whether fiction or non; we derive profound pleasure in immersing ourselves in good stories. [Read more...]

With Gratitude to Those Who Look When We Look Away

canstockphoto0873425Lost between the monstrous frenzy of Halloween and the glittering commercialism of the December holidays is Thanksgiving.

And, I think I’m good with that.

With little more to hype than turkey and leaf-motif linens, Madison Avenue largely ignores Thanksgiving, which leaves the rest of us to enjoy it in the same simple spirit with which it has been celebrated for centuries. [Read more...]