Catch 22 Quotes

Quotes tagged as "catch-22" (showing 1-30 of 33)
Joseph Heller
“You know, that might be the answer – to act boastfully about something we ought to be ashamed of. That’s a trick that never seems to fail.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“To Yossarian, the idea of pennants as prizes was absurd. No money went with them, no class privileges. Like Olympic medals and tennis trophies, all they signified was that the owner had done something of no benefit to anyone more capably than everyone else.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Jasper Fforde
“You see? I know where every single book used to be in the library.' She pointed to the shelf opposite. 'Over there was Catch-22, which was a hugely popular fishing book and one of a series, I believe.”
Jasper Fforde, Shades of Grey

Joseph Heller
“I’m not running away from my responsibilities. I’m running to them. There’s nothing negative about running away to save my life.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“So many things were testing his faith. There was the Bible, of course, but the Bible was a book, and so were Bleak House, Treasure Island, Ethan Frome and The Last of the Mohicans. Did it then seem probable, as he had once overheard Dunbar ask, that the answers to riddles of creation would be supplied by people too ignorant to understand the mechanics of rainfall? Had Almighty God, in all His infinite wisdom, really been afraid that men six thousand years ago would succeed in building a tower to heaven?”
Joseph Heller, Catch 22

Joseph Heller
“Who is Spain?
Why is Hitler?
Where are the Snowdens of yesteryear?”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“Yossarian was cold, too, and shivering uncontrollably. He felt goose pimples clacking all over him as he gazed down despondently at the grim secret Snowden had spilled all over the messy floor. It was easy to read the message in his entrails. Man was matter, that was Snowden's secret. Drop him out a window and he'll fall. Set fire to him and he'll burn. Bury him and he'll rot, like other kinds of garbage. The spirit gone, man is garbage. That was Snowden's secret. Ripeness was all.

I'm cold,' Snowden said. 'I'm cold.”
Joseph Heller, Catch 22

Joseph Heller
“He was one of those people with lots of intelligence but no brains”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“The night was filled with horrors, and he thought he knew how Christ must have felt as he walked through the world, like a psychiatrist through a ward full of nuts, like a victim through a prison full of thieves. What a welcome sight a leper must have been!”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“Four times during the first six days they were assembled and briefed and then sent back. Once, they took off and were flying in formation when the control tower summoned them down. The more it rained, the worse they suffered. The worse they suffered, the more they prayed that it would continue raining. All through the night, men looked at the sky and were saddened by the stars. All through the day, they looked at the bomb line on the big, wobbling easel map of Italy that blew over in the wind and was dragged in under the awning of the intelligence tent every time the rain began. The bomb line was a scarlet band of narrow satin ribbon that delineated the forward most position of the Allied ground forces in every sector of the Italian mainland.

For hours they stared relentlessly at the scarlet ribbon on the map and hated it because it would not move up high enough to encompass the city.

When night fell, they congregated in the darkness with flashlights, continuing their macabre vigil at the bomb line in brooding entreaty as though hoping to move the ribbon up by the collective weight of their sullen prayers. "I really can't believe it," Clevinger exclaimed to Yossarian in a voice rising and falling in protest and wonder. "It's a complete reversion to primitive superstition. They're confusing cause and effect. It makes as much sense as knocking on wood or crossing your fingers. They really believe that we wouldn't have to fly that mission tomorrow if someone would only tiptoe up to the map in the middle of the night and move the bomb line over Bologna. Can you imagine? You and I must be the only rational ones left."

In the middle of the night Yossarian knocked on wood, crossed his fingers, and tiptoed out of his tent to move the bomb line up over Bologna.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“Her own body was such a familiar and unremarkable thing to her that she was puzzled by the convulsive ecstasy men could take from it, by the intense and amusing need they had merely to touch it, to reach out urgently and press it, squeeze it, pinch it, rub it. She did not understand Yossarian's lust; but she was willing to take is word for it.”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“The night was full of horrors, and he thought he knew how Christ must have felt as he walked through the world, like a psychiatrist through a ward full of nuts.......”
joseph heller

Joseph Heller
“Nurse Duckett found Yossarian wonderful and was already trying to change him.”
Joseph Heller

Jodi Picoult
“You can tell yourself that you would be willing to lose everything you have in order to get something you want. But it’s a catch-22: all of those things that you’re willing to lose are what make you recognizable. Lose them, and you've lost yourself.”
Jodi Picoult, Handle with Care

Will Self
“The book was thick and red. It was almost thicker than it was wide, a thickness that somehow enhanced its bookishness. It was - to me aged 12 - quite clearly more of a book than most, if not all, of the paperbacks untidily stacked on the shelves of my father's study.”
Will Self

Joseph Heller
“They were the most depressing group of people Yossarian had ever been with. They were always in high spirits.”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“The chaplain glanced at the bridge table that served as his desk and saw only the abominable orange-red, pear-shaped, plum tomato he had obtained that same morning from Colonel Cathcart, still lying on its side where he had forgotten it like an indestructible and incarnadine symbol of his own ineptitude.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“Nobody would have anything to do with him. He began to drop things and to trip. He had a shy and hopeful manner in each new contact, and he was always disappointed. Because he NEEDED a friend so desperately, he never found one.”
Joseph Heller

Kevin Williamson
“They'll have to try like hell to catch me this time. They will try like hell. And even if they don't find you, what kind of way is that to live? You'll always be alone, no one will ever be on your side, and you'll always live in danger of betrayal. I live that way now. But you can't just turn your back on all your responsibilities and run away from them, Major Danby insisted. It's such a negative mood. It's escapist. Yossarian laughed with buoyant scorn and shook his head. I'm not running away from my responsibilities. I'm running to them. There's nothing negative about running away to save my life."


Hetson: As I said in class, a lot of critics find that moment too sentimental. An author ham-fistedly reaching in and injecting an amoral tale with a moral. An embarrassing betrayal of all the dark comedy that came before it. But me? I've always kind of liked it. It has such a nice, hopeful ring to it. Do you see my point?”
Kevin Williamson

Joseph Heller
“With a little ingenuity and vision, he had made it all but impossible for anyone in the squadron to talk to him, which was just fine with everyone, he noticed, since no one wanted to talk to him anyway.”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“The spirit gone, man is garbage.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“This stuff is better than cotton candy, really it is. It’s made out of real cotton. Yossarian, you’ve got to help me make the men eat it. Egyptian cotton is the finest cotton in the world.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“Appleby was as good at shooting crap as he was at playing Ping-Pong, and he was as good at playing Ping-Pong as he was at everything else. Everything Appleby did, he did well. Appleby was a fair-haired boy from Iowa who believed in God, Motherhood, and the American Way of Life, without ever thinking about any of them, and everybody who knew him liked him.

"I hate that son of a bitch," Yossarian growled.”
Joseph Heller

“​Dharma or Ethics and Morals are the Fundamental Set of Rules created for those who want to Play the Game, by those who are Inside the Game.”
Vineet Raj Kapoor

Joseph Heller
“Of course you're dying. We're all dying. Where the devil else do you think you're heading?”
Joseph Heller

Joseph Heller
“Sure, there’s a catch,” Doc Daneeka replied. “Catch-22. Anyone who wants to get out of combat duty isn’t really crazy.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Joseph Heller
“How much older can you be at your age? A half minute before that you were stepping into high school, and an unhooked brassiere was as close as you ever hoped to get to Paradise. Only a fifth of a second before that you were a small kid with a ten-week summer vacation that lasted a hundred thousand years and still ended too soon. Zip! They go rocketing by so fast.”
Joseph Heller, Catch-22

“The awkwardness of getting reward in a well-off society is that the creation of appetite often requires undoing the work of satisfying appetite.”
George Ainslie

Chris Bohjalian
“A term came to her that they used on occasion at the shelter: the double bind...They used the expression in much the same way that they would use a term like catch-22.”
Chris Bohjalian, The Double Bind

Stewart Stafford
“White males can't win these days - if they have something, they're "privileged" and if they want something, they're displaying "entitlement.”
Stewart Stafford

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