Monday, April 25, 2011

A Line Burned In Your Brain

(Sorry I've been absent from blogosphere. Lots of financial stuff going on. And then the tornadoes struck. My immediate family is OK, but I know so many people with damage to their homes/businesses. I even captured footage of a funnel cloud retreating back up into the sky over my house. Mother Nature can be merciless).

Words are powerful things. And when you put them together, the meaning and profoundness are a thousand-fold. Songs, poems, novels, movies, TV shows - I can think of a handful of lines from each that for some reason or another have stuck with me all of my life for many reasons. Sometimes, a deep and enlightning message is captured in just one sentence. Other times, the line is just so incredibly funny, it's burned into my brain.

Here is just a small example of my favorite lines from various books:

"Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don't belong no place. . . . With us it ain't like that. We got a future." John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men.
* This line is unforgettable. George and Lenny are living in the darkness of The Great Depression, going from ranch to ranch to make a living. It just shows the hope and friendship the the odd couple hold for each other.

"Either get busy living or get busy dying." Stephen King's Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redeption.
* Whoever thinks King's works have no literary merit are mistaken. This is a powerful line, and one that is often quoted in the political and self-help arenas. Time is short. Time waits for no one.  Every single one of us will one day die. What we do until then is really up to us.

"Sanity is not statistical." George Orwell's 1984.
* Four power words. In the age of "groupthink" this statement has never rang more true. Just because the entire mass of people believe something to be true doesn't make it so.

"It's funny.  All you have to do is say something nobody understands and they'll do practically anything you want them to." J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye.
* Talk about the human condition! Geez. Salinger's character Holden Caufield knows what makes people tick. People tend to overlook logic when dealing with powerful emotions. Even when something doesn't make sense at all, when there's no scientific or factual data to back you up - if you strike an emotional chord, people will follow.

Politicians and laywers have been doing it for eons.


The Desert Rocks said...

Great blog. Very interesting quotes too! I'm glad everyone is all right after the storm.

Nessa said...

I'm glad you and yours are ok. Mother Nature sure is awe inspiring.

These quotes are great.

I haven't read Of Mice and Men in 30 years but it has stuck with me.

I don't read S King's horror books but I love his other stuff. He is quite literary.

The other two are just scary in their accuracy and frightening in reality.

Anonymous said...


Praise God that you and the fam are doing well. I was missing you, man!

Glad to see that you are back.

P.S. You need a contact page so others can keep in touch with you. Hint, hint. Cough, Cough.

-E.J. Apostrophe

Jay Noel said...

Desert: Yeah. Clean up will take some time.

Nessa: I just saw Of Mice and Men on TV. Gary Sinese and John Malkovich were born to play those roles.

EJ: Contact page? Hmm....I'm on Twitter. Though I don't tweet very often either.

Tiyana, aka "Yoyo" said...

Psh, EJ and his persuasive powers...

Funnel clouds?! That's crazy! The only wild weather we get in the desert is dust storms and the occasional microburst. But I guess this is a good thing.

And we're glad to see you back around! I was wondering if something had happened. :(

On another note, I don't think I have any favorite quotes from books...or if I do I don't remember them now, lol. Most of my faves come from movies, I think.

Anonymous said...

The one favourite line of mine from a book is Linda Howard's Mr. Perfect where the heroine is talking about a coworker. I use it all the time. "The wheel is turning but the hamster's dead." Damn I wish I wrote that.

Glad you survived the storm.

angel, jr. said...

Catcher In The Rye is one of my favorite books.

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