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Everybody’s youth is a dream, a form of chemical madness.
– F. Scott Fitzgerald
Every one suspects himself of at least one of the cardinal virtues.
I’ve been drunk for about a week now, and I thought it might sober me up to sit in a library.
Family quarrels are bitter things. They don’t go according to any rules. They’re not like aches or wounds, they’re more like splits in the skin that won’t heal because there’s not enough material.
You can stroke people with words.
The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.
You don’t write because you want to say something, you write because you have something to say.
Though the Jazz Age continued it became less and less an affair of youth. The sequel was like a children’s party taken over by the elders.
Personality is an unbroken series of successful gestures.
An author ought to write for the youth of his own generation, the critics of the next, and the schoolmaster of ever afterwards.
Men get to be a mixture of the charming mannerisms of the women they have known.
Only remember west of the Mississippi it’s a little more look, see, act. A little less rationalize, comment, talk.
What’ll we do with ourselves this afternoon? And the day after that, and the next thirty years?
It is in the thirties that we want friends. In the forties we know they won’t save us any more than love did.
Action is character.
Show me a hero and I’ll write you a tragedy.
Vitality shows in not only the ability to persist but the ability to start over.
No such thing as a man willing to be honest – that would be like a blind man willing to see.
Advertising is a racket, like the movies and the brokerage business. You cannot be honest without admitting that its constructive contribution to humanity is exactly minus zero.
The idea that to make a man work you’ve got to hold gold in front of his eyes is a growth, not an axiom. We’ve done that for so long that we’ve forgotten there’s any other way.
Trouble has no necessary connection with discouragement. Discouragement has a germ of its own, as different from trouble as arthritis is different from a stiff joint.
Great art is the contempt of a great man for small art.
There are only the pursued, the pursuing, the busy and the tired.
Often people display a curious respect for a man drunk, rather like the respect of simple races for the insane… There is something awe-inspiring in one who has lost all inhibitions.
I’m a romantic; a sentimental person thinks things will last, a romantic person hopes against hope that they won’t.
Her body calculated to a millimeter to suggest a bud yet guarantee a flower.
Either you think, or else others have to think for you and take power from you, pervert and discipline your natural tastes, civilize and sterilize you.
First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.
Cut out all these exclamation points. An exclamation point is like laughing at your own joke.
Speech is an arrangement of notes that will never be played again.