Jeremy Cohen

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See all 4 books that Jeremy is reading…
Book cover for The Song Machine: Inside the Hit Factory
The song reportedly was “Maps” by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. “I said, ‘Ah, I love this song,’ and Max was like, ‘If they would just write a damn pop chorus on it!’ It was driving him nuts, because that indie song was sort of on six, going to ...more
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Virginia Woolf
“What is the meaning of life? That was all- a simple question; one that tended to close in on one with years, the great revelation had never come. The great revelation perhaps never did come. Instead, there were little daily miracles, illuminations, matches struck unexpectedly in the dark; here was one.”
Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse

George Saunders
“Humor is what happens when we're told the truth quicker and more directly than we're used to.”
George Saunders, The Braindead Megaphone

George Saunders
“This [oatmeal] represents your soul in its pure state. Your soul on the day you were born. You were perfect. You were happy. You were good.
Now, enter Concept Number Two: crap. Don't worry, folks. I don't use actual crap up here. Only imaginary crap. You'll have to supply the crap, using your mind. Now, if someone came up and crapped in your nice warm oatmeal, what would you say? Would you say: 'Wow, super, thanks, please continue crapping in my oatmeal'? Am I being silly? I'm being a little silly. But guess what, in real life people come up and crap in your oatmeal all the time--friends, co-workers, loved ones, even you kids, especially your kids!--and that's exactly what you do. You say, 'Thanks so much!' You say, 'Crap away!' You say, and here the metaphor breaks down a bit, 'Is there some way I can help you crap in my oatmeal?”
George Saunders
tags: humor

Donald Barthelme
“--Why are we fighting them?
--They're mad. We're sane.
--How do we know?
--That we're sane?
--Yes.
--Am I sane?
--To all appearances.
--And you, do you consider yourself sane?
--I do.
--Well, there you have it.
--But don't they also consider themselves sane?
--I think they know. Deep down. That they're not sane.
--How must that make them feel?
--Terrible, I should think. They must fight ever more fiercely, in order to deny what they know to be true. That they are not sane.”
Donald Barthelme
tags: war

Donald Barthelme
“Mother, have you noticed that this society we’re in tends to be a little…repressive?”
“What does that mean, Eugenie? What does that mean, that strange new word, ‘repressive,’ that I have never heard before?”
“It means…it’s like when you decide to do something, and you get up out of your chair to do it, and you take a step, and then become aware of frosty glances being directed at you from every side.”
“Frosty glances?”
“Your desires are stifled.”
“What desires are you talking about?”
“Just desires in general. Any desires. It’s a whole…I guess atmosphere is the…word…a tendency on the part of the society…”
“You’d better sew some more pillow cases, Eugenie.”
Donald Barthelme , Sixty Stories

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