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Marisha Pessl
“I remembered what Dad said once, that some people have all of life's answers worked out the day they're born and there's no use trying to teach them anything new. "They're closed for business even though, somewhat confusingly, their doors open at eleven, Monday through Friday," Dad said. And the trying to change what they think, the attempt to explain, the hope they'll come to see your side of things, it was exhausting, because it never made a dent and afterward you only ached unbearably. It was like being a Prisoner in a Maximum-Security Prison, wanting to know what a Visitor's hand felt like (see Living in Darkness, Cowell, 1967). No matter how desperately you wanted to know, pressing your dumb palm against the glass right where the visitor's hand was pressed on the opposite side, you never would know that feeling, not until they set you free.”
Marisha Pessl, Special Topics in Calamity Physics

Marisha Pessl
“Dad on Child-rearing: "There's no education superior to travel. Think of The Motorcycle Diaries, or what Montrose St. Millet wrote in Ages of Exploration: 'To be still is to be stupid. To be stupid is to die.' And so we shall live. Every Betsy sitting next to you in a classroom will only know Maple Street on which sits her boxy white house, inside of which whimper her boxy white parents. After your travels, you'll know Maple Street, sure, but also wilderness and ruins, carnivals and the moon. You'll know the man sitting on an apple crate outside a gas station in Cheerless, Texas, who lost his legs in Vietnam, the woman in the tollboth outside Dismal, Delaware, in possession of six children, a husband with black lung but no teeth. When a teacher asks the class to interpret Paradise Lost, no one will be able to grab your coattails, sweet, for you will be flying far, far out in front of them all. For them, you will be a speck somewhere above the horizon. And thus, when you're ultimately set loose upon the world..." He shrugged, his smile lazy as an old dog. "I suspect you'll have no choice but to go down in history.”
Marisha Pessl, Special Topics in Calamity Physics

Douglas Coupland
“There are a number of things a woman can tell about a man who is roughly twenty-nine years old,
sitting in the cab of a pickup truck at 3:37 in the afternoon on a weekday, facing the Pacific,
writing furiously on the back of pink invoice slips. Such a man may or may not be employed, but
regardless, there is mystery there. If this man is with a dog, then that's good, because it means he's
capable of forming relationships. But if the dog is a male dog, that's probably a bad sign, because
it means the guy is likely a dog, too. A girl dog is much better, but if the guy is over thirty, any
kind of dog is a bad sign regardless, because it means he's stopped trusting humans altogether. In
general, if nothing else, guys my age with dogs are going to be work.
Then there's stubble: stubble indicates a possible drinker, but if he's driving a van or a pickup
truck, he hasn't hit bottom yet, so watch out, honey. A guy writing something on a clipboard
while facing the ocean at 3:37 P.M. may be writing poetry, or he may be writing a letter begging
someone for forgiveness. But if he's writing real words, not just a job estimate or something
business-y, then more likely than not this guy has something emotional going on, which could
mean he has a soul.”
Douglas Coupland, Hey Nostradamus!

Kate Jacobs
“So this was it. You take a wrong step and you end up wearing yesterday's underwear, sitting on the carpet trying to teach yourself how to knit. And even that doesn't work. She never expected it to be so hard. Life.”
Kate Jacobs, The Friday Night Knitting Club

Meg Jay
“For the most part, "naturals" are myths. People who are especially good at something may have some innate inclination, or some particular talent, but they have also spent about ten thousand hours practicing or doing that thing.”
Meg Jay, The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter - And How to Make the Most of Them Now

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