Jailbird Quotes

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Jailbird Jailbird by Kurt Vonnegut
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Jailbird Quotes (showing 1-30 of 45)
“You can't just eat good food. You've got to talk about it too. And you've got to talk about it to somebody who understands that kind of food.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
tags: food
“I still believe that peace and plenty and happiness can be worked out some way. I am a fool.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“Never have I risked my life, or even my comfort, in the service of mankind. Shame on me.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“It's all right,' she said. 'You couldn't help it that you were born without a heart. At least you tried to believe what the people with hearts believed- so you were a good man just the same.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“We are here for no purpose, unless we can invent one. Of that I am sure. The human condition in an exploding universe would not have been altered one iota if, rather than live as I have, I had done nothing but carry a rubber ice-cream cone from closet to closet for sixty years.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“She believed, and was entitled to believe, I must say, that all human beings were evil by nature, whether tormentors or victims, or idle standers-by. They could only create meaningless tragedies, she said, since they weren't nearly intelligent enough to accomplish all the good they were meant to do.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“She read my books the way a young cannibal might eat the hearts of brave old enemies. Their magic would become hers.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“Life goes on- and a fool and his self respect are soon parted...”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“He gave me the key, which I later discovered would open practically every door in the hotel. I thanked him, and I made a small mistake we irony collectors often make: I tried to share an irony with a stranger. It can’t be done. I told him I had been in the Arapahoe before—in Nineteen-hundred and Thirty-one. He was not interested. ”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
tags: irony
“We are all here for no purpose, unless we can invent one. Of that I am sure. The human condition in an exploding universe would not have been altered one iota if, rather than live as I have, I had done nothing but carry a rubber ice-cream cone from closet to closet for sixty years.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“Body sizes can be remarkable for their variations from accepted norms, but still explain almost nothing about the lives led inside those bodies.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“And contrast Mary Kathleen, if you will, with my wife Ruth, the Ophelia of the death camps, who believed that even the most intelligent human beings were so stupid that they could only make things worse by speaking their minds. It was thinkers, after all, who had set up the death camps. Setting up a death camp, with its railroad sidings and its around-the-clock crematoria, was not something a moron could do. Neither could a moron explain why a death camp was ultimately humane.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“It is a hard daydream to let go of—that one has friends.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“I was making my mind as blank as possible, you see, since the past was so embarrassing and the future so terrifying.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“There was more. There was always more.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“By the time I reached the coffee-shop door, however, my self-confidence had collapsed. Panic had taken its place. I believed that I was the ugliest, dirtiest little old bum in Manhattan. If I went into the coffee shop everybody would be nauseated. They would throw me out and tell me to go to the Bowery, where I belonged.
But I somehow found the courage to go in anyway - and imagine my surprise! It was a though I had died and gone to heaven! A waitress said to me, "Honeybunch, you sit right own, and I'll bring you your coffee right away." I hadn't said anything to her.
So I did sit down, and everywhere I looked I saw customers of every description being received with love. To the waitress everybody was "honeybunch" and "darling" and "dear". It was like an emergency ward after a great catastrophe. It did not matter what race or class the victims belonged to. They were all given the same miracle drug, which was coffee. The catastrophe in this case, of course, was that the sun had come up again.
I had the feeling that if Frankenstein's monster crashed into the coffee shop through a brick wall, all anybody would say to him was, "You sit down here, Lambchop, and I'll bring your coffee right away.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“To give an extra dimension to the scolding she gave me: The word “twerp” was freshly coined in those days, and had a specific definition—it was a person, if I may be forgiven, who bit the bubbles of his own farts in a bathtub.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“Now I, too, I thought, had served my country in uniform, had at every moment for two years done precisely what my country had asked me to do. It had asked me to suffer. It had not asked me to die. There”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“And I am now compelled to wonder if wisdom has ever existed or can ever exist. Might wisdom be as impossible in this particular universe as a perpetual-motion machine?”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“World War One were simply additional places of hideously dangerous work, where a few men could supervise the wasting of millions of lives in the hopes of making money. It”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“I was speechless. Never had I dreamed that the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America and the enchanting technology of a motion-picture camera would be combined to form such an atrocity.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“Two top drawers in the dresser easily accepted all I owned, but I looked into all the other drawers anyway. Then I discovered that the bottom drawer contained seven incomplete clarinets - without cases, mouthpieces, or bells. Life is like that sometimes.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“This piece of groping wisdom impresses me still. A sensible prayer people could offer up from time to time, it seems to me, might go something like this: “Dear Lord—never put me in the charge of a frightened human being.” Kenneth”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“We had had many joggers in prison. I found them smug.
About the young man and his radio. I decided that he had bought the thing as a prosthetic devices, as an artificial enthusiasm for the planet. He paid as little attention to it as I paid to my false front tooth. I have since seen several young men like that in groups - with their radios tuned to different stations, with the radios engaged in a spirited conversation. The young men themselves, perhaps having been told nothing but "shut up" all their lives, had nothing to say.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“The most embarrassing thing to me about this autobiography, surely, is its unbroken chain of proofs that I was never a serious man. I have been in a lot of trouble over the years, but that was all accidental. Never have I risked my life, or even my comfort, in the service of mankind. Shame on me. People”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“You can now sell your considerable skills, Mr. Starbuck, for their true value in the open marketplace of the Free Enterprise System. Happy hunting! Good luck!”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“My nose, thank god, had conked out by then. Noses are merciful that way. They will report that something smells awful. If the owner of a nose stays around anyway, the nose concludes that the smell isn't so bad after all. It shuts itself off, deferring to superior wisdom.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“I performed what was perhaps the most obscenely intimate physical act of my life. I gave birth to a broken, querulous little old man by doing this: by putting on my civilian clothes. There”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“You are yet another nincompoop, who, by being at the wrong place at the wrong time,” he said, “was able to set humanitarianism back a full century! Begone!” Strong stuff.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird
“Thus do I capitalize years as though they were proper names.”
Kurt Vonnegut, Jailbird

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