This little four-letter word undermines our modern values of tolerance and presumption of innocence.
I’ve tried to enjoy schlepping water, thinking that it serves to keep us to some human roots.
Annoyances and upsets with the iPhone 4S have been more than offset by its screen, the silkiness of its surfaces, the camera, and the third-party market for both software and hardware.
After they finished watching the Bond movies, I figured the next series John Gruber and Dan Benjamin would discuss on The Talk Show would be Stanley Kubrick’s oeuvre. But Gruber refused — too personal for podcasting, he said. Disappointed, I rewatched 2001.
Instead of acknowledging the wisdom of leading from behind, the Right jumped on the Obama administration’s handling of Libya as yet another example of at best incompetence. They lost me there.
Steve Jobs we lost at the age of 56; when Frank Lloyd Wright reached that age it was still only 1923, the time of merely his second comeback with Tokyo’s Imperial Hotel.
It’s amazing, given the adulation he enjoyed elsewhere, that the Israeli public knew from the start not to trust this US President.
Nobody from usesthis.com has asked me what my setup us, nor is likely to anytime soon. So I’m just going to mouth off here about it. But first, some background.
On the Leon Wieseltier/Andrew Sullivan spat, Walter Russell Mead seems to want to have his strudel and eat it too.
Defeat in the Olympics bid may focus the mind in the Oval Office where it should be: Afghanistan.
There’s nothing else around here except empty desolate pretty hills. The Israel Trail passes by a bit to the west. It’s a hot July Wednesday morning. Things are reasonably busy. The shops are mostly franchises, almost all homegrown — Super-Pharm, Aroma, Tzomet Sfarim, Cup O’ Joe’s, LaMetayel, Mega, Fox, Castro, H&O.
I’m surprised at the general appearance of Tel Aviv folks. Yes, it’s hot, but people appear dressed as if they’re in, I don’t know, Be’er Sheva. And the people in Be’er Sheva, last time I was there, looked to me like they’re dressed for Gaza.
Tomorrow morning I return to Bikram Yoga practice after two days off. I’ve just done 60 days in a row. So what has it done?
What do the Lost characters mostly want these days? It’s not to get off the island. Increasingly, the island is just where they live and love. If anything, they’ve found home — or, rather, their home found them.
When life gets fast, unlike how it’s lived by most of us out here in the dark, loyalties are quickly superceded by new circumstances. This is not despite values but because of them. Such Darwinian churn is a theme shared by the very different Lost and 24 and so might just be a defining one for our times.
If someone is living life in reverse time while the rest of us are living it forwards, then our world is Buddhist, because such an impossibility falsifies reality, which must therefore be a dream.
So, finally, we stopped yesterday; the Israeli assault of late 2008/early 2009 on Gaza is over. With it, Israel lost moral purity and made vital strategic gains.
Even if it did nothing, was just a prop in a futuristic movie, the MacBook Pro would be impressive. It’s like a sculpture of my previous computer, the MacBook, except it’s actually an improved computer! So even though I’m looking at it now and touching it to write these words, I’m going to stop now just to look at it and touch it.
Is the goal of Israel’s assault on Gaza to discourage Hamas from firing rockets, or is it to render Hamas incapable of firing rockets? These are two very different projects, yet we are hearing about both from the government, which worryingly suggests that the government isn’t quite sure.
If there is one tangible benefit to having lived in a variety of places it’s that it furnishes evidence of the futility of longing to be elsewhere.
A President of the United States must be ebullient. At the presidential debates we should have seen McCain like we saw him at the Al Smith dinner.
McCain pulled through but he’d better improve, better get relaxed. This was the big one, and Obama came off a 21st century Brat Packer.
As if those glass double doors belong to a wild saloon wherein one must repulse brigands just for a peaceful drink.
Irit, the Jam and I walk from Brighton to Gatwick Airport.
Time was, Seymour Hersh’s dispatches were a cause for minor celebration. They were full- and deep-throated journalistic tours de force, possible changers of paradigms. But his latest, “Preparing the Battlefield” on funding covert ops in Iran, leaves too many clues that reveal precisely where he’s coming from.
With the recent reported training exercises over Crete, perhaps Israel’s strike on the Iranian regime’s machinery of genocide has already begun.
Beyond steadfastness and vigor in prosecuting Islamofascism, John McCain seems an American president I’d love even more than the great liberator George W. Bush (most of you just left, I know) because he is more American on immigration than either his party or the other.
First, there is a general moode and desire to write.
Apple’s operating system will, I believe, become in time the dominant one, and with a current market share of only 6% or so, that’s a lot more computers to sell. And as the only operating system seller that also sells the computers it runs on, as well as owning the shops they’re sold from, Apple stands to become a colossus, even a frightening one.
My phone! One of the reasons I didn’t want an iPhone is that I’m invested in the T9 text entry method and like it. But while I do like the Nokia N95’s slider, it creates discomfort when entering text because all the weight in the phone is further up.
Parries is the blog, Photos the photoblog. Words listed are those I needed to look up, the Books those I recently read.
Latmag, Queen of Letters, is astounding 800-word excerpts, and the Trail links to web pages that I appreciated and hope you will too.
Thu 7 Nov ’13
Andrew O’Hagan on Norman Mailer rather than on A Double Life by J. Michael Lennon, the book he’s supposed to be reviewing. “They had Ancient Evenings, his vast Egyptian tome (I read the first ninety pages) and The Naked and the Dead, which was filled with the word ‘fug’ and seemed both plain and good.”
Fri 11 Oct ’13
Dore Gould recounts Iran’s first ‘charm offensive’: its use of the tactic of khod’eh, ie, “tricking one’s enemy into a misjudgment of one’s true position”, when Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini waged a successful deception campaign from exile in Paris.
Fri 4 Oct ’13
David Horovitz interviews Yossi Klein Halevi about his new book, Like Dreamers: The story of the Israeli Paratroopers who Reunited Jerusalem and Divided a Nation. The friendship between these two gifted greying Anglo-Israelis is warming.
Thu 12 Sep ’13
Sun 8 Sep ’13
The squat, the perch — a reminder that we are not designed to defacate in seating position.
Fri 7 Jun ’13
Leon R. Kass on The Ten Commandments is the opening essay at the new http://mosaicmagazine.com.
Wed 5 Jun ’13
Mon 3 Jun ’13
Household objects form iconic buildings. Watch out for Falling
Sun 2 Jun ’13
Devising tailor-made rules of international law for application only where Israel is concerned undermines international law and can have an insidious and corrosive effect on the rule of law in general.
Mon 27 May ’13
Sorry, but more David P. Goldman, this time at Tablet with “Dumb and Dumber” (not his title) on recent US Middle East policy. He begins: “Errors by the party in power can get America into trouble; real catastrophes require consensus.” Like liberals, neocons got mugged by reality.
Released: Steve Jobs’ and James Murdoch’s email correspondence negotiating over HarperCollins e-books for iPad. Note how Murdoch’s careless spelling and grammar improves after receiving a reply in Steve’s impeccable English. Murdoch capitalizes News Corp’s businesses, “Studios, Books, and Newspapers” but then writes lowercase “apple”, which, if deliberate, is kind of thuggy.
Really, most science fiction is about economics. A list of the best.
Sun 26 May ’13
How neighboring Lebanon is being tugged into Syria’s civil war.
Sat 25 May ’13
Why, by the William Shatner School of Toupological Studies.
Tue 21 May ’13
The horror, the horror. Spengler looks at Syria. What we’ve seen so far, he says, are merely the preliminary skirmishes of Sunni-Shi’ite war.
Sat 11 May ’13
Cary Grant’s 1963 op-ed in This Week magazine on dressing well.
Thu 9 May ’13
Galei Zahal (IDF Radio)‘s Arab Affairs correspondent looks acutely at the Syrian civil war from Hezballah’s perspective. It’s all-out Sunni-Shiite confrontation.
Some advice for Disney from fellow artist Frank Lloyd Wright on February 25, 1939, at 11am in Projection Room IV.
Wed 1 May ’13
Peres and the Pope as covered by the Voice of America (Reuters). This meeting has not gotten much coverage.
Sun 7 Apr ’13
Read Parul Sehgal, book reviewer extraordinaire.
Australian-born himself, rising Israeli statesman Tal Becker does the regional lowdown at the Lowy Institute.
Tue 2 Apr ’13
Bracing clarity from Krauthammer on the meaning of Obama’s visit to Jerusalem.
Fri 22 Mar ’13
Hanna Rosin writes on the iPad and young children. The beginning could have appeared anywhere, the middle in any number of magazines, the end in only a small handful. And a rather relevant topic at the moment in this house, where Good Morning is spoken as “Where the iPad gone!”
Thu 21 Mar ’13
Jeffrey Goldberg imagines what Obama would really like to be doing on his visit to Israel.
Sun 17 Mar ’13
Welshman Tom Doran explains why, as a liberal secular humanist, he must stand up for Israel.
Fri 8 Mar ’13
Considering how central it is for Londoners, Why is the Tube so underrepresented in stories? The writer suggests that, like sex and prayer, and unlike on the street, any human significance down there is internal.
Surely the definitive article about internet wunderkind Aaron Swartz. Only eating white or yellow food seems a glaring sign that not everything there was quite right.
Moving piece about the writer’s father, a sportswriter, who could not give up cigarettes.
Sun 17 Feb ’13
Not that this article needs anybody else to promote it, as it’s also the cover story on Esquire, but it’s like watching Zero Dark Thirty through one of the other characters.
Sat 19 Jan ’13
Wow. Dan Kois, a senior editor at Slate, heads to Portland for a week of serious karaoke.
The 20 Most Popular Homes in Dwell. Many of these homes are small so encourage ingeniousness and are in general encouraging.
Fri 18 Jan ’13
It’s official: women are mate-poachers. I would have wagered on this anyway. “Offered a single man, 59% [of single women] were interested … But when he was attached, 90% said they were…”
Wed 16 Jan ’13
Adam Garfinkle at The American Interest waxes catholic and sensible on the runaway American health care system — or, more accurately, disease repair system.
Tue 15 Jan ’13
Gadamer’s Floor by Jacques Herzog, in which the Swiss starchitect relates designing the Tate Modern. Actually, forget it, it gets boring, drifting off to installations within the museum and other projects, as if the job itself wasn’t interesting enough to warrant an entire little article.
Given that this is the second time I’ve ended up at this story, I can’t miss adding it to the Trail: The best houses of all time in L.A. by the LA Times.
“The Bashar al-Assad regime commits atrocities that are designed to be unforgivable,” Spengler postulates, “in order to persuade their base to fight to the end.” His conclusion? “Let the Alawites have their enclave, and let the Sunni Arabs have a rump state, minus the Syrian Kurds, whose autonomy would be an important step towards an eventual Kurdish state.” Me, I’d be willing to wager just three things about the Middle East in 50 years: there will be Israel, there will be Kurdistan, and there will be Arabs. PS — Doesn’t Goldman look like Gary Oldman playing James Baker III?
Mon 14 Jan ’13
The ABC of Architects, a great short animated film.
Wed 2 Jan ’13
The visual effects of Iron Man on YouTube.
Tue 1 Jan ’13
Happy 2013! A look back at 2012 with WhatCulture’s Top 12 Of Everything film wise including top 20 movie posters.
Thu 13 Dec ’12
All 8 Kraftwerk shows at Tate Modern, £60 per, sold out quicker than the museum’s servers could handle.
7,500-year-old cheese discovered. “The most important ingredient for cheese-making is milk and only domesticates can be milked. Thus, it is unlikely that the origins of cheese-making predates the Neolithic,” says the researcher breezily.
Mon 3 Dec ’12
Check out the “Beneficial effects of sauna bathing for heart failure patients” by Arnon Blum and Nava Blum, an article published by the US National Institutes of Health. Turns out people with heart problems not only can use the sauna, it’s a therapy.
Some pro-sauna theory: Sweat Therapy Theory by Stephen Colmant. “From clinical experience, sweating induces commonly observed effects of exercise on mental health, such as reducing anxiety, depression, and stress and improving body image, self-esteem, and sense of well being.”
Sun 2 Dec ’12
Loudness, pitch and timbre: in a study, newer pop music really does all sound the same.
Stand up for your work! Or as The New York Times puts it, “Taking a Stand for Office Ergonomics”.
Sat 1 Dec ’12
The best piece of James Bond movie criticism I’ve read: “My favourite Bond film: You Only Live Twice” by Phelim O’Neill, at The Guardian film blog. Muscular, yet pitch-perfect, and deft with what to throw in from the film(s) to illustrate his compelling argument.
Thu 22 Nov ’12
Dense, readable, utterly informed, worth re-reading almost as if literary: “How to End the War in Gaza: What an Egypt-Brokered Cease-Fire Should Look Like” by the inestimable Ehud Yaari (now requires registration).
Mon 19 Nov ’12
Walter Russell Mead explains why Americans tend to view Israel’s actions so differently than does the rest of the world. In brief: “In America, war is not a sport.”
Get fed up with me:
In a modern, liberal society, religious observance does not “take away” choice. It is a choice.
Home is not where you live; it’s where your friends are.
I prefer you farting than saying these stupid things.
Only my sickness brought me to reason.
Where God speaks, the Tao is sexy.
Do you understand? A bad visitor wants to go sleep, and that doggie making mess? Visitor‘s gonna give you big kick.
Me to my dog at 3:45am as she barks in the night like a fool
Success: when the current book I’m reading can express the essence of the previous.
If you are a native of the rainforest you learn to distinguish many sorts of leaves. We learn to distingush many different typefaces.
We used to choose which stories to read in our newspaper. Now we choose the newspapers in which to read our story.
To map between dissimilar data structures, a more powerful data representation is needed.
Jewish Prayer and Torah study are the yin and yang of religious life.
Rabbi Maurice Lamm
The English feel a special sympathy for folly committed in the name of loyalty to an utterly outmoded code of conduct.
I still can’t decide which is simpler: a single wall interrupted by a door, which is arguably three things, or a door next to a wall, which is definitely two.
The most democratic and fair way of choosing candidates is by committee.
Outdoors, hat on; indoors, shoes off.
A deep and intimate relationship with the security forces of the new Iraqi state is likely to be a significant asset for American foreign policy well into the future.
Walter Russell Mead
Problems which bring solutions often bring about your best material.
The difference between the judgment of a great critic and that of a semi-literate censorious fool lies in its range of inferred or cited reference, in the lucidity and rhetorical strength of articulation or in the accidental addendum which is that of a critic who is a creator in his own right.
More is often more.
The daily activities most associated with happiness are having sex, socializing after work and having dinner. The daily activity most injurious to happiness is commuting.
We are that part of creation that seeks to know all creation.
George W. Bush
Always carry treats.
Life is not a burden, but we make it one when we refuse to accept things as they are.
Baba Hari Dass
You’re diminutive, for sure.
Brian Greben, to me
Do I not know what to do?
Be free, belong, believe!
Let the day end.
To paraphrase what Lincoln said about slavery, if cruelty to animals is not wrong then nothing is wrong.
One of the few benefits of being a journalist is that you’re not in the Army.
P. J. O’Rourke
The Protestant faith: success is evidence of integrity.
The Turk is proud of his German; the German of his English; and the English-speaker of his French.
Calling something evil is to say that it is one’s duty to eradicate it.
Lordy, I’m such a pagan.
The key characteristic of the logic of strategy is that it’s paradoxical and contradictory right through.
Florence is going to Paris.
In the age of the global village James Bond is the chivalrous knight about town.
Web folk—the least experienced designers out there—are taking on some of the most difficult design challenges.
Keep the cave.
Once I’ve spoken the spell is broken.
Give me the luxuries of life and I will willingly do without the necessities.
Frank Lloyd Wright
Writers should engage in politics only enough to protect themselves from politics.
Out of my head all the time; in the bid for a rhyme.
Constraints amount to the solution half-built.
Without the fear of God and the love of the republic, all we have to check our behavior is the fear of the police.
Walter Russell Mead
The two classic errors in predicting the future of a technology shift are to overestimate its short-term impact and underestimate its long-term impact.
He took his work for granted and so he succeeded at it.
Civilization… is the conscious forefront of evolution.
A successful nation has to be, to one degree or another, a romance.
Order means delight.
Only artists can fully audience.
To be pro-Israel is to be pro-hope.
Walter Russell Mead
The term “law of nature” illustrates just how young — and perhaps still fragile — science is.
There is no glamour without solitude.
The United States is too big a country, too important a country, too gracious a country to have permanent enemies.
Sit as little as possible.
I’m not passing the buck; this is someone else’s decision.
We either take each other for everything we are or leave the life we’ve made behind and make a brand new start.
In comedy you are the joke whilst over in tragedy the joke is on you.
“You should” is the rudest.
Ah, the persuasiveness of wretchedness.
If I’m facing a choice, I always know I’m standing in the wrong place.
The most dangerous way to lose time is not to spend it having fun, but to spend it doing fake work.
Editing is the natural place of man.
Not even Friday afternoons can offer sanctuary from dangerous or ill-considered policy choices.
Karl Rove, on the Obama Administration
A winner never quits and a quitter never wins.
In advanced societies, thinking that tea, coffee, alcohol, and manufactured beverages are desirable for the purely natural water needs of the daily “stressed” body is an elementary but catastrophic mistake.
Five minutes ahead of schedule. Right on schedule.
The trick is acquiring humility without having become wretched.
Is there any pleasure like sitting comfortably in Israel’s hills, a book open by an American, and meditating on England?
It’s hope so there’s got to be some truthfulness to it.
Without all the frills, the human body is quite economical to operate.
It only ends once; anything that happens before that is just progress.
The essence of Zionism is to meet destruction with construction.
Your rash is your bowels and your bowels is your rash.
Juan Carlos Bronstein
Pragmatism works in theory but not in practice.
When you try to dodge ownership of a problem, when you try to hide from responsibility, life will give you ownership and responsibility the hard way.
Don’t scorn fashion, for ‘tis the celebration of the age, and what else is one to do with one’s time?
Enjoys giving paprika.
Irit Levy (by mistake)
The secret of happiness is freedom, and the secret of freedom, courage.
Design: the marriage of ergonomics and aesthetics.
Science fiction provides shortcuts to profundity.
The center of moral gravity in world politics has decisively moved from the cause of greater equality in the rich countries to that of greater opportunity in the poor ones.
Walter Russell Mead
I know the feeling of the Jew who leaves these dungeons—and breathes the air of Jerusalem. He feels at home, he feels safe, feels the terrible difference between one who lives in his country, his homeland, in a country which is capable of defending his life — to one who stood alone, defenseless against bestial men.
Marxism is shit, the last of Christian shit.
I would rather sit in front of a machine fighting through a writer’s block than I would do anything else.
Jean M. Auel
I feel like another joint while doing it, but I know that it makes me dry and bleary as well as sensuous and special.
The sedentary life… is the real sin against the holy spirit.
It don’t mean a pittance if it ain’t got that resonance.
Beauty is the ultimate defence against complexity.
Life is surely best as discoveries of new things to love. Socratic or not?
Being in Italy issadly for my high-falutin’ ambitions — mostly just a nuisance.
Design is the expression of style, style of philosophy.
A smile is a valium beam.
Judgments are tragic expressions of unmet needs.
Whereas Western medicine may heroically rescue us, Chinese medicine can protect and preserve our health day to day.
Life is comprised of sevens, and there aren’t that many of them.
Glamour is to life as life is to everything else.
It’s easy to be clever. But the really clever thing is to be simple.
Let’s start calling it genderism and come up with a more exciting meaning for sexism.
Sauna:drug-free altered-state pod.
What’s good for Israel is good for the world.
The teenager is a problem of over-gregarious life.
Frank Lloyd Wright
There’s nothing here but volcanoes.
Vinegar, the conservative preservative.
The fridge is cool.
People get raped everywhere by every kind of person.
I don’t build a house without predicting the end of the present social order.
Frank Lloyd Wright
You only have to discipline yourself long enough to change your standards.
Some loathsome facsimile of integrity won’t let me have sex in dreams if I’m not having any in life.
The march towards self-determination can only be embarked on by a people with democratic aspirations and goals.
Edward Said, 1993
The most unromantic thing is to accuse someone of being unromantic.
Being pro-Palestinian… [is] moral onanism.
In the gospel of America, there are no permanent conflicts.
Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.
Long before Israel resembled America, America resembled Israel.
I believe that sex is one of the most beautiful, natural, wholesome things that money can buy.
There actually are things to be said in favor of the exception, provided that it never wants to become the rule.
How much social capital America gains by its religion of enfranchisement; how stupid can peoples be to ignore this?
I like what the Middle East has become. The inevitabilities are being processed and Iran is more isolated than ever.
Thomas PM Barnett
If land for peace seems a wrongheaded policy for a large country, it is obviously far more so for a small one.
If inertia is the dominant factor during most of life, then momentum must be during quickenings.
Instead of concentrating on fat, you should carefully watch how much protein from prepared food you are eating.
Parsley—a cure for burn?
Low-density sprawl is ill-fitted to a creative, postindustrial economy.
Work is more fun than fun.
Look out for 1957 week.
First, a nation has to have a good operating system: laws, regulations and property rights.
My biggest expense? Not billing.
Marketing is about values.
I am led to religion because twinkle from surroundings is not constant.
Manhood first, and then gentleness.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
I couldn’t think of anything worse. Though it could be good fun.
When the need arises – and it does – you must be able to shoot your own dog.
Robert A. Heinlein
Rejoice your vocabulary!
If I rise before 6am it’s hard to be depressed, whereas if I rise after 10am it’s hard to be relaxed.
To joy, via habituated glee. Or to glee, via habituated joy?
If you want to be somebody nowadays, you’d better start by getting in touch with your inner nobody, because nobody likes a somebody who can’t prove they’ve been nobody all along.
The novel’s success lies in its own sensitiveness.
E. M. Forster
Myths rely on truth for their power.
Spontaneity requires the trampoline of a plan.
Even though I was glad to get out of those areas I still have a soft spot for them.
In fairy tales we get three wishes. In life we get one and it gets the rest.
The isolationism of the Left stems from the conviction that America is bad for the rest of the world, whereas the isolationism of the Right is based on the belief that the rest of the world is bad for America.
The biggest tragedy is muteness.
If extraterrestrial lifeforms visited our world and said,“Show us the song of your people,” this would be that song.
cathoman7, on “Bohemian Rhapsody”
The intensity of a memory is generally determined by the people one’s with.
In the foster home my hair was my room.
Erin Hannon, at lunch with Michael Scott
Balance, that’s the secret. Moderate extremism.
I think humor delineates who your friends really are.
Like many rationalists, I’m a Pisces.
It must suck not to have lips.
Lee Fisher, on dogs
Be not weary in well doing, for in due time you will reap, if you faint not.
O, reason not the need!
Equal distribution of libidinous drives between homo- and heterosexuality does not exist, simply because homosexuality is not a drive but a defense mechanism.
All orthodoxies believe that if you do the right thing, in the right way, at the right time, you will probably end up in possession of the right frame of mind.
Invert, always invert.
Remember, we are still in the 6th day.
Whistling is musical onanism.
We are our Archives.
Tears are the water that nourishes life after loss.
It makes increasingly less sense even to talk about a publishing industry, because the core problem publishing solves — the incredible difficulty, complexity, and expense of making something available to the public — has stopped being a problem.
The truest religion is a language.
It was one of the few times in my life that I realized that the artist is much ahead of me.
Woody Allen, on finally liking Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey the third time around
The best thing about New York is that the best thing about New York is its people.
Coffee spreads darkness. Tea is wholesome only in the morning.
We can’t have chaps walking around saying Muslims are violent because they’ll go bananas and smash the place up.
The only character to appear in all four Python films (And Now for Something Completely Different, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, The Meaning of Life and Life of Brian) is God.
If you need a horoscope to tell the future, you HAVE no future.
Bureaucracies temporarily reverse the Second Law of Thermodynamics. In a bureaucracy, it’s easier to make a process more complex than to make it simpler, and easier to create a new burden than kill an old one.
As far as we’re concerned, war always means failure.
Jacques Chirac, President of France
What Brando did for the cinema and Elvis did for music, Shatner did for the small screen.
Being an artist allows one to pay tribute to the things one loves.
I’d take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day.
The very expression ‘scientifically proven’ is a contradiction in terms.
What is the pitiable chatter of American flat- and muddle-heads to me?
He had a bad conscience because he had not taken revenge.
If you foolishly ignore beauty, you’ll soon find yourself without it. Your life will be impoverished. But if you wisely invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.
Frank Lloyd Wright
Make dinner before lunch.
Space is the breath of art.
Frank Lloyd Wright
There seems to be something in the cheesy romanticism of Latin American culture that really appeals to Russians.
They are lost who ask whether animals have souls, for all animals do — except arguably men, grown with language.
The interest of tone is the interest of manners, and the interest of manners is the interest of morals, and the interest of morals is the interest of civilization.
We need only live enough to write the rest convincingly.
Somehow I must get the elements of my soul locked into proper position so that I, as the world, am in good and proper relations with the world.
The quickest way to still the mind is to move the body.
How am I not myself?
It’s good consolation to know that good times passed were actively and consistently recognized at the time to be good.
The more routine I can make the basic practical aspects of my life, the more I am able to be energetic—and spontaneous—about intellectual and other things.
Writing, like most everything else good in life, revolves around flow and rhythm.
At the end of the day you have to do what’s right, and it was either living with myself or being happy.
The duel ruins it because all of a sudden Scaramanga seems like an idiot.
John Gruber, on The Man with the Golden Gun
I help people as a work on myself and I work on myself to help people.
Success is due generally to discipline, which is merely action leavened with order.
If past experience holds true, I will probably write an hour a day and spend eight hours a day biting my knuckle and worrying about not writing.
David Foster Wallace
In content metadata and hierarchies… you will often find a goldmine of implicit and explicit data that you can leverage to creatively contextualize content.
At least things aren’t going so well that I need fear, “From good fortune, disaster.”
With the advent of Israel, anti-Semitism is more detrimental to its practitioners than to Jews.
I am less and less capable of intellectual engagement with contemporary fiction because I feel like I’ve been had when I do so: the very process of literary analysis legitimizes a body of work that I feel is unworthy of such attention.
A yoga day never dips below 7 and is usually an 8.
Trust your own maps with your life.
Instead of doing the right thing, I will try to say it.
He was judged by the color of his skin rather than the content of his character.
Spengler, on Obama’s inauguration
No other animal on earth could do this. Maybe beavers. But not like this.
Dwight Schrute, in a garbage dump
A man commonly saunters a little in turning from one sort of employment to another.
The religious orthodox credo: think not lest ye be thunk about.
Environmentalism is in fact a perfect 21st century remapping of traditional Judeo-Christian beliefs and myths.
The Bond movies tend to go downhill once you see henchmen in jumpsuits.
I am especially leery when people who loudly and implausibly assert that anti-Semitism isn’t a problem anymore make harsh and unbalanced criticisms about the world’s only Jewish state.
Walter Russell Mead
It’s hard to do a really good job on anything you don’t think about in the shower.
My ambition for many years was to be involved in work that was utterly compelling to me, regardless of the consequences.
We’ve been waiting millennia for film.
Perhaps the mistake we make is to continue to regard them as an Anglo Saxon people. That blood is very much watered down now; they are a Latin-Slav mixture, with a fair amount of German and Irish. They are impatient, mercurial, panicky.
Harold Macmillan, on Americans
To know and feel what is good and right for you—that alone is princely.
Literature is an act of revenge that aspires to elegy.
It’s not being I get sick and tired of, not at all; it’s my thoughts.
Regarding terrorists, one cannot be both a murderer and a martyr.
Any fool can fast, but it takes a wise man to break a fast properly.
George Bernard Shaw
One of the world’s really important divides lies between nations that react well to accidents and nations that do not.
You know “that look” women get when they want sex? Me neither.
The further away you are from the Lonely Planet-clutching swarms of Israelis the more fun you will have.
Englishman Alistair Humphreys, on biking around the world
Let me be clear: I believe people of goodwill on all sides can find common ground between the absurdly implausible caricatures I attribute to them on a daily basis.
Mark Steyn channelling Barak Obama
Most people will play-act in order to get what they want. But all I want is freedom from ever having to play-act.
It’s OK to have a thought without writing it down.
Occasionally you may have to go to a hospital or to a restaurant.
Barbara Woodhouse, No Bad Dogs
Obama’s mispronunciation [of “corpsman”] is a pithier summation of the State of the Union than any of the dreary 90-minute sludge he paid his speechwriters for.
Please don’t shouldify every entertainment.
It is now anachronistic to sport no anachronisms.
Depression is cancer of the thought.
One nefarious invention is the tweezers, good only for perpetuating bad habits.
The sage seeks wisdom for his heart; the artist seeks wisdom for others’.
Only artists, and especially those of the theater, have… taught us the art of viewing ourselves as heroes… Perhaps one should concede a similar merit to the religion that made men see the sinfulness of every single individual through a magnifying glass.
Two great modern inventions are the rock concert and the rollercoaster, for with them returned to earth the sound of women screaming en masse in glee and worship.
The natural world, rightly studied, unlocks the soul, and the soul, once opened, yields truths about the moral structure of the universe.
Michael Knox Beran
It’s so important to launch fast that it may be better to think of your initial version not as a product, but as a trick for getting users to start talking to you.
The Holocaust reminds America of its calling, Europe of its fragility.
My feeling about the so-called occupied territories is that there was a war, Israel urged neighboring countries not to get involved in it once it started, they all jumped in, and they lost a lot of real estate to Israel because Israel prevailed in that conflict.
Donald Rumsfeld, US Secretary of Defence
Everything you’re doing I’m doing in heels.
Claire Foster, Date Night
Let us not forget that nature is utterly monstrous.
Success is the ability to go from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.
Women might be able to fake orgasms. But men can fake whole relationships.
Entertainment is denial.
There’s a simple measure of sanity in housing prices: the ratio of median home price to income.
Israel has no business not being in the Sinai.
If your work really is your life, and that things like friendship, and language, and travel, and bohemia are also the work, then you really are lucky.
A gifted mimic, he nonetheless eschews regional accents for comic effect.
Dean Allen, creator of Textile, on himself
The legacy of liberal individualism is the restoration of the very absolutism that it originally sought to overthrow—a philosophical tragedy.
We like to do things together even though I think she’s a stupid cunt.
Momentum has its own momentum.
It’s easier to modify appetites than to curtail them.
Hubris. Is it believing one is exempt, or knowing one isn’t and proceeding nonetheless?
The opponents of homosexual marriage feel much more strongly about the issue than the supporters.
Richard A. Posner
An organization that wins by exercising power starts to lose the ability to win by doing better work.
Wonderful, wonderful person. That was my son.
Jer Bulsara, on Freddie Mercury
Buildings, too, are children of the Earth and Sun.
Frank Lloyd Wright
Write a book on how to write a book.
You cannot eliminate religion from the psyche of mankind. If you suppress it in one form, it merely re-emerges in another.
To attempt to impose European-style centralized government on a third of a billion people from Maine to Hawaii is to invite failure on a scale unknown to history.
The golden ratio, that is old-fashioned.
Gentile ethics entails ought implies can, while in Jewish ethics can implies don’t.
Lettuce become thy pita;spinach thy mince; cucumber thy cracker.
Britain, with Charlies Darwin and Adam Smith, gives us at long last not narrative but algorithmic cosmology and sociology.
Women need a reason to have sex. Men just need a place.
Western rational thought is not an innate human characteristic; it is a learned ability.
The difference is psychological tricks.
It’s easier to hold to your principles 100% of the time than it is to hold to them 98% of the time.
Clayton M. Christensen
So Charlie looked away, too, and tried to buck himself up by considering the glories of his surroundings.
Tom Wolfe, A Man in Full
There’s just something about moving, breathing and sweating. It’s like God’s reset button.
Fine line it is between Yoda and Gollum.
It has a right to defend itself. It doesn’t follow that it has a right to defend itself by force.
Cunning linguist Noam Chomsky, on Israel
I did nothing. I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
I can’t live in a place where dogs require leashes. On the other hand, I need to be within walking distance of a cafe.
Happier is the man who has introduced his mind’s oral fixation to his body’s need of water.