I was taught that the human brain was the crowning glory of evolution so far, but I think it’s a very poor scheme for survival.
What should young people do with their lives today? Many things, obviously. But the most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured.
About astrology and palmistry: they are good because they make people vivid and full of possibilities. They are communism at its best. Everybody has a birthday and almost everybody has a palm.
True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.
Maturity is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter could be said to remedy anything.
The feeling about a soldier is, when all is said and done, he wasn’t really going to do very much with his life anyway. The example usually is: he wasn’t going to compose Beethoven’s Fifth.
Who is more to be pitied, a writer bound and gagged by policemen or one living in perfect freedom who has nothing more to say?
People have to talk about something just to keep their voice boxes in working order so they’ll have good voice boxes in case there’s ever anything really meaningful to say.
Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion. I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward.
Still and all, why bother? Here’s my answer. Many people need desperately to receive this message: I feel and think much as you do, care about many of the things you care about, although most people do not care about them. You are not alone.
I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can’t see from the center.
Beware of the man who works hard to learn something, learns it, and finds himself no wiser than before.
Human beings will be happier – not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That’s my utopia.
Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae.