Category Archives: Quotations

Things people said.

A Dying Hero’s Own Thoughts and Prayers

Vicky Phelan died of cervical cancer last month at age 48 in County Limerick, Ireland. She had been an advocate for fellow victims of botched Pap smears. Her ringing demand for freedom from callous, corrupt leadership has universal application. “I … Continue reading

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The Fellow’s Garrulous, But a Decent Painter

He talks about a narrow, closed view of the world in which a contempt for America – the home of “degenerate” jazz for the Nazis, the capitalist enemy for the GDR – was a constant. “Until I was about 20 … Continue reading

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Bill Lynch Painted on Wood

“I realised that the art of the 20th century is the fruit of personal revelation,” Lynch wrote, “while ancient art is the product of mystery initiation.” I’ve no idea what Bill Lynch (1960 – 2013) meant by his incantation about … Continue reading

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Sensing the Presence of Vinegar: Food Poetry

(A squalid detail to put behind us: “vichyssoise” is misspelled in the review as “vichysoisse.” Slipshod, to be sure, but my esteem for Pete Wells’s writing remains intact. Even Homer nodded.) Pete Wells said once that when he became restaurant … Continue reading

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Less Democrazy, More Malumacy: El señor Fútbol señala al insigne artista colombiano

“I will say something which is crazy, but less democracy is sometimes better for organizing a World Cup. When you have a very strong head of state, that is easier for us organizers.” (FIFA secretary general Jérôme Valcke, 2013) Nota … Continue reading

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Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Sober Soccer

“I feel 200 percent in control of this World Cup.” (FIFA lord Gianni Infantino) With four games per day in the opening group stage, all played in what is effectively a single city-state, Infantino said the movement of large groups … Continue reading

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Hardcore Arabic: ‘Treble Formation’

The language has astonishing sweep and granularity that are explicit and penetrative to a degree redolent of lore and legend. The open-sesame to Arabic’s magic for this English speaker is Wright’s majestic grammar. (1) Here, of an early morning on … Continue reading

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‘A Writer Who Composed Prose Like Poetry’

Considering the toll it takes on me to construct a writing boiled down to within an inch of its life about something I think, punctuate it punctiliously, then figure out too late what I’ve said, much less thought, if anything, … Continue reading

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‘It’s More Than It Initially Appears’

The comment attributed to a museum director about Jennifer Guidi’s painting reminded me of Mark Twain’s remark that Wagner’s music is “better than it sounds.” “I’m thinking of color as a way to connect — a way to engage — … Continue reading

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Shades of Ribald Theobald’s Piebald Cow Pies

“I don’t know, I find it vaguely therapeutic to express myself on Twitter. It’s a way to get messages out to the public.” (Elon Musk) (John Cassidy, “Elon Musk Just Highlighted His Biggest Dilemma at Twitter,” The New Yorker, 10-31-22) … Continue reading

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