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1. “If you watch close, history does nothing but repeat itself.”

2. “You had to risk your life to get love. You had to get right to the edge of death to ever be saved.”

3. “Letting history tell us how good or bad we are. Letting our past decide our future, or we can decide for ourselves.”

4. “Our real discoveries come from chaos, from going to the place that looks wrong and stupid and foolish.”

5. “No matter how much you think you love somebody, you’ll step back when the pool of their blood edges up too close.”

6. “If I could wake up in a different place, at a different time, could I wake up as a different person?”

7. “What I want is to be needed. What I need is to be indispensable to somebody. Who I need is somebody that will eat up all my free time, my ego, my attention. Somebody addicted to me. A mutual addiction.”

8. “It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.”

9. “We all die. The goal isn’t to live forever, the goal is to create something that will.”

10. “The only way to find true happiness is to risk being completely cut open.”

11. “You gain power by pretending to be weak. By contrast, you make people feel so strong. You save people by letting them save you.”

12. “People with their pain, they can’t leave it behind.”

13. “What makes earth feel like hell is our expectation that it should feel like heaven.”

14. “More and more, it feels like I’m doing a really bad impersonation of myself.”

15. “The unreal is more powerful than the real. Because nothing is as perfect as you can imagine it. Because it’s only intangible ideas, concepts, beliefs, fantasies that last.”


16. “You realize that our mistrust of the future makes it hard to give up the past.”

17. “The trick to forgetting the big picture is to look at everything close-up.”

18. “The lower you fall, the higher you’ll fly.”

19. “A person had to work hard for it, but a minute of perfection was worth the effort. A moment was the most you could ever expect from perfection.”

20. “At the time, my life just seemed too complete, and maybe we have to break everything to make something better out of ourselves.”

21. “I wanted to give up the idea that I had any control. Shake things up. To be saved by chaos. To see if I could cope. I wanted to force myself to grow again. To explode my comfort zone.”

22. “You have to be everything regular people aren’t. Where they fail, you have to go all the way.”

23. “Don’t do what you want. Do what you don’t want. Do what you’re trained not to want. Do the things that scare you the most.”

24. “When we don’t know who to hate, we hate ourselves.”

25. “The best way is not to fight it, just go. Don’t be trying all the time to fix things.”

26. “If you don’t know what you want, you end up with a lot you don’t.”

27. “Who I was before the accident is just a story now. Everything before now, before now, before now, is just a story I carry around. I guess that would apply to anybody in the world. What I need is a new story about who I am.”

28. “It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything.”

29. “You are not your job, you’re not how much money you have in the bank. You are not the car you drive. You’re not the contents of your wallet.”

30. “I don’t want to die without any scars.”

31. “Honest is how I want to look. The truth doesn’t glitter and shine.”

32. “This is your life, and it’s ending one moment at a time.”

33. “I wanted to destroy everything beautiful I’d never have.”

34. “May I never be complete. May I never be content. May I never be perfect.”

35. “The difference between how you look and how you see yourself, is enough to kill most people.”

36. “There’s that fallen heart feeling that you rushed right through the moments where you should’ve been paying attention.”

37. “Nothing is static, everything is evolving, everything is falling apart.”

38. “You are not special. You’re not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You’re the same decaying organic matter as everything else.”

39. “What people forget is a journey to nowhere starts with a single step, too.”

40. “If you don’t claim your humanity, you will become a statistic.”

41. “On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.”

42. “Everyone smiles with that invisible gun to their head.”

43. “If you could be either God’s worst enemy or nothing, which would you choose?”

44. “If I can’t be beautiful, I want to be invisible.”

45. “I feel my heart ache, but I’ve forgotten what that feeling means.”

46. “Your birth is a mistake you’ll spend your whole life trying to correct.”

47. “That’s why I write, because life never works except in retrospect. You can’t control life, at least you can control your version.”

48. “All human beings search for either reasons to be good, or excuses to be bad.”

49. “The one you love and the one who loves you are never, ever the same person.”

50. “For years now, I’ve wanted to fall asleep. The sort of slipping off, the giving up, the falling part of sleep. Now, sleeping is the last thing I want to do.”

51. “All God does is watch us and kill us when we get boring. We must never, ever be boring.”

52. “People have to really suffer before they can risk doing what they love.”

53. “Maybe you don’t go to hell for the things you do. Maybe you go to hell for the things you don’t do.”

54. “Game shows are designed to make us feel better about the random, useless facts that are all we have left of our education.”

55. “You realize you have no control over how you’re perceived.”

56. “Stone crumbles. Wood rots. People, well, they die. But, things as fragile as a thought, a dream, a legend, they can go on and on.”

57. “You know how they say, ‘You only hurt the ones you love?’ Well, it works both ways.”

58. “We’ll be remembered more for what we destroy than what we create.”

59. “If nothing else, there’s comfort in recognizing that no matter how much we fail and sin, death will limit our suffering.”

60. “Some people are just born human. The rest of us, we take a lifetime to get there.”

61. “Have your adventures, make your mistakes, and choose your friends poorly, all these make for great stories.”

62. “Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everyone I’ve ever known.”

63. “Everything you do shows your hand. Everything is a self-portrait. Everything is a diary.”

64. “The things you used to own, now they own you.”

65. “A good story should make you laugh, and a moment later breaks your heart.”

66. “I let go. Lost in oblivion. Dark, silent, and complete. I found freedom. Losing all hope was freedom.”

67. “If you are reading this, then this warning is for you. Every word you read of this useless fine print is another second off your life.”

68. “Hysteria is impossible without an audience. Panicking by yourself is the same as laughing alone in an empty room, you feel really silly.”

69. “Only after disaster can we be resurrected.”

70. “The damaged loves the damaged.”

71. “We’ll never be as young as we are tonight.”

72. “To merely observe your culture without contributing to it seems very close to existing as a ghost.”

73. “No matter how careful you are, there’s going to be the sense you missed something, the collapsed feeling under your skin that you didn’t experience it all.”

74. “’People just can’t stand not knowing something,’ she says. Especially men—can’t stand not climbing every mountain, mapping everywhere, labeling everything.”

75. “Parents are like God because you wanna know they’re out there, and you want them to think well of you, but you really only call when you need something.”

76. “Most times, it’s just a lot easier not to let the world know what’s wrong.”

77. “A child who is disillusioned abruptly, by his peers or siblings, being ridiculed for his faith and imagination, may choose never to believe in anything tangible or intangible again.”

78. “People are all over the world telling their one dramatic story and how their life has turned into getting over this one event.”

79. “People you love will die. Nothing you treasure will last forever, and I need to accept and embrace that fact.”

80. “The big reason why folks leave a small town is so they can moon over the idea of going back.”

81. “You have a choice. Live or die. Every breath is a choice.”

82. “And if you can’t learn yourself to love blood family, then you’ll never truly love.”

83. “If death meant just leaving the stage long enough to change costume, and come back as a new character, would you slow down or speed up?”

84. “A child who is never coached with Santa Claus may never develop an ability to imagine. To him, nothing exists except the literal and tangible.”

85. “Every time you don’t throw yourself down the stairs, that’s a choice. Every time you don’t crash your car, you reenlist.”

86. “Everyone wants to feel special—attain a special status among their peers.”

87. “The first time you meet someone special, you can count on them one day being dead and in the ground.”

88. “Crimes to end all crimes, wars and plagues, preached to be the end of the world. Every year of newspaper, announcing another new end of the world.”

89. “When you get famous, dinner isn’t food anymore; it’s 20 ounces of protein, 10 ounces of carbohydrates, salt-free, fat-free, sugar-free fuel.”

90. “It can only take a moment to waste the rest of your life.”

91. “Imagine how you’d feel if your whole life turned into a job you couldn’t stand.”

92. “Reality means you live until you die, the real truth is nobody wants reality.”

93. “Do you ever wish you’d never been born?”

94. “I hate how I don’t feel real enough unless people are watching.”

95. “What if reality is nothing but some disease?”

96. “Make me into anything, but just love me.”

97. “In a world where billions believe their deity conceived a mortal child with a virgin human, it’s stunning how little imagination most people display.”

98. “Whether you clean a stain, a fish, a house, you want to think you’re making the world a better place, but really, you’re just letting things get worse.”

99. “It’s only in drugs or death we’ll see anything new, and death is just too controlling.”

100. “If you love something, set it free, but don’t be surprised if it comes back with herpes.”

101. “Today is just one of those days the sun comes out to really humiliate you.”

102. “What you want to think is your salvation.”

103. “The only person we’ll hate more than each other is ourselves.”

104. “We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But, we won’t, and we’re slowly learning that fact.”

105. “Maybe self-improvement isn’t the answer, maybe self-destruction is the answer.”

106. “Without pain, without sacrifice, we would have nothing—like the first monkey shot into space.”

107. “It’s not love or anything, but I think I like you, too.”

108. “When did the future switch from being a promise to being a threat?”

109. “Because beauty is power, the way money is power, the way a loaded gun is power.”

110. “What we don’t understand we can make mean anything.”

111. “It helps to know you’re not any more responsible for how you look than a car is. You’re a product just as much.”

112. “Your perception is all f*ck*d up. All you can talk about is trash that’s already happened. You can’t base your life on the past or the present. You have to tell me about your future.”

113. “The only reason why we ask other people how their weekend was, is so we can tell them about our own weekend.”

114. “I wish I had the courage not to fight and doubt everything. I wish, just once, I could say, ‘This—this is good enough.’”

115. “The best way to waste your life is by taking notes. The easiest way to avoid living is to just watch. Look for the details. Report. Don’t participate.”

116. “We are not special. We are not crap or trash, either. We just are. We just are, and what happens just happens.”

117. “The future you have tomorrow won’t be the same future you had, yesterday.”

118. “The world can be a lot bet­ter than we settle for, all you have to do is ask.”

119. “So, here I am. This is as good as it gets. Take it or leave it.”

120. “Find good in what the world says is evil.”

121. “Your past is just a story, and once you realize this, it has no power over you.”

122. “We all want to explain ourselves. Nobody wants to be forgotten.”

123. “Yes, terrible things happen, but sometimes, those terrible things—they save you.”

124. “You’re always haunted by the idea you’re wasting your life.”

125. “You can only hold a smile for so long, after that, it’s just teeth.”

126. “I need to rebel against myself, I need to do what I most fear.”

127. “You can’t fool people into loving you.”

128. “The truth is, you think what people want you to think.”

129. “It’s pathetic how we can’t live with the things we can’t understand. How we need everything labeled and explained and deconstructed.”

130. “This was supposed to be a writer’s retreat, it was supposed to be safe.”

131. “I am free to revise my story, to reinvent myself, my world, at any given moment.”

132. “Sometimes, your best way to deal with sh*t is not to hold yourself as such a precious little prize.”

133. “Recycling and speed-limits are b*llsh*t. They’re like someone who quits smoking on his deathbed.”

134. “The pleasures of writing include acting like exaggerations of your most extreme self.”

135. “You only ask people about themselves, so you can tell them about yourself.”

136. “When you don’t share your problems, you resent hearing the problems of other people.”

137. “Did perpetual happiness in the Garden of Eden maybe get so boring that eating the apple was justified?”

138. “I am an invisible monster, and I am incapable of loving anybody. You don’t know which is worse.”

139. “The most boring thing in the entire world is nudity. The second most boring thing is honesty.”

140. “She’s confused and afraid to commit to the wrong thing, so she won’t commit to anything.”

141. “If we can forgive what’s been done to us, if we can forgive what we’ve done to others, if we can leave all of our stories behind—our being villains or victims, only then can we maybe rescue the world.”

142. “Okay. You f*ck me, then snub me. You love me, you hate me. You show me a sensitive side, then you turn into a total *ssh*l*. Is this a pretty accurate description of our relationship?”

143. “For the record, knowing when people are only pretending to like you isn’t such a great skill to have.”

144. “Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken!”

145. “Without access to true chaos, we’ll never have true peace. Unless everything can get worse, it won’t get any better.”

146. “The world will always punish the few people with special talents, the rest of us don’t recognize as real.”

147. “I just want one person I can rescue, and I want one person who needs me—who can’t live without me. I want to be a hero, but not just one time.”

148. “There’s an opposite to déjà vu. They call it ‘jamais vu.’ It’s when you meet the same people or visit places, again and again, but each time is the first. Everybody is always a stranger. Nothing is ever familiar.”

149. “Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy sh*t we don’t need.”

150. “Until you find something to fight for, you settle for something to fight against.”

151. “It’s funny how you never think about the women you’ve had. It’s always the ones who get away that you can’t forget.”

152. “People don’t want their lives fixed. Nobody wants their problems solved. Their dramas, their distractions, their stories resolved, their messes cleaned up. Because what would they have left? Just the big scary unknown.”

153. “Maybe it’s just a daughter’s job to piss off her mother.”

154. “Oh love me, love me, love me, love me, love me, love me, love me, love me. I’ll be anybody you want me to be.”

155. “Nothing was solved when the fight was over, but nothing mattered.”

156. “Those who can forget the past are way ahead of the rest of us.”

157. “The hardest part of crying is when I can’t stop.”

158. “You’ll need to suffer to make any real art.”

159. “In the end, it’s never what you worry about that gets you.”

160. “When you understand what you’re telling is just a story, it isn’t happening anymore. When you realize the story you’re telling is just words, when you can just crumble up and throw your past in the trash can, then we’ll figure out who you’re going to be.”

161. “You’re a different human being to everybody you meet.”

162. “Love and life belong to great risk.”

163. “You always kill the one you love.”

164. “Find out what you’re afraid of, and go live there.”

165. “But, if you tell folks you’re a college student, folks are so impressed. You can be a student in anything and not have to know anything. Just say toxicology or marine biokinesis, and the person you’re talking to will change the subject to himself. If this doesn’t work, mention the neural synapses of embryonic pigeons.”

166. “We remember almost none of our real childhoods, but we remember everything that happened to sitcom families.”

167. “Give me lust, baby. Give me malice. Give me detached existentialist ennui. Give me rampant intellectualism as a coping mechanism.”

168. “Even if crazed zombies grabbed me in some dark hall one night, even if they tore me apart, at least that wouldn’t be the absolute end.”

169. “If you’re going to read this, don’t bother.”

170. “Las Vegas looks the way you’d imagine heaven must look at night.”

171. “Kill myself? ‘Thanks,’ I say. No thanks. Let’s not rush anything here.”

172. “Just keep asking yourself—what would Jesus not do?”

173. “Just for the record, she still loves you. She wouldn’t bother to torture you if she didn’t.”

174. “I see in the fight club the strongest and smartest men who’ve ever lived.”

175. “Just for the record, the weather today is partly suspicious with chances of betrayal.”

176. “It’s easy to cry when you realize that everyone you love will reject you or die.”

177. “We can spend our lives letting the world tell us who we are.”

178. “You have to keep recycling yourself.”

179. “All the effort in the world won’t matter if you’re not inspired.”

180. “Everyone’s in their own personal coma.”

181. “Anything you can acquire is only another thing you’ll lose.”

182. “Sex pretty much cures everything.”

183. “Please know that there are much better things in life than being lonely, or liked, or bitter, or mean, or self-conscious. We are all full of sh*t. Go love someone just because. I know your heart may be badly bruised, or even the victim of numerous knifings, but it will always heal even if you don’t want it to—it keeps going. There are the most fantastic beautiful things, and people out there. I promise. It’s up to you to find them.”

184. “Imagine your emotions, your loves and hates, and rivalries and victories, played out again and again until life is nothing more than a melodramatic soap opera.”

185. “For sure, they don’t teach you this in history class, but in colonial times, the person who got left in the stocks overnight was nothing less than fair game for everybody to nail. Men or women, anybody bent over had no way of knowing who was doing the ram job, and this was the real reason you never wanted to end up here unless you had a family member or a friend who’d stand with you the whole time. To protect you. To watch your *ss, for real.”

186. “I’m really glad that I spent my 20’s messing around and having disaster after disaster, with people who were doing likewise, because it’s really my greatest treasure now.”

187. “I think we’re in an age starved for genuine experiences, instead of cathartic phony experiences through the media, structured, engineered experiences. And those are the fast food, the masturbation of experience. They don’t really exhaust any aspect of ourselves; they don’t make us any stronger.”

188. “Somehow people have been sold on the idea that only professionals can entertain them, that only professionals can sing or tell jokes. And people are cut out of this creativity loop, and creativity is being limited to these large, centralized voices.”

189. “I hate how on TV they have to fill so many minutes. It means they have to put in anything, and by doing so they sort of trivialize news; news becomes this commodity that they need to fill dead time between commercials with.”

190. “When nobody will look at you, you can stare a hole in them. Picking out all the little details you’d never stare long enough to get if they’d even just return your gaze, this, this is your revenge.”

191. “Nothing drives people crazier than seeing someone have a good f*ck*ng life.”

192. “I admire addicts. In a world where everybody is waiting for some blind, random disaster or some sudden disease, the addict has the comfort of knowing what will most likely wait for him down the road. He’s taken some control over his ultimate fate, and his addiction keeps the cause of his death from being a total surprise.”

193. “And maybe the reason don’t die is because they can never see themselves in photographs or mirrors.”

194. “Here, in your mind, you have complete privacy. Here, there’s no difference between what is and what could be.”

195. “Just for the record, the weather today is calm and sunny, but the air is full of b*llsh*t.”

196. “To a certain extent, everybody has a certain sort of way of being a persona that they learn how to be when they’re really little. They figure out that if they’re really funny, or really pretty, or if they work really, really hard or are really smart, then that’s what’s going to get them by. That is what is going to make people like them.”

197. “I think America is just so in love with conflict.”

198. “If you worry about disaster all the time, that’s what you’re going to get.”

199. “Discovering the ‘impossible’ ending to a new book makes me sick with joy and relief.”

200. “Screenwriters get paid a hell of a lot more money but their level of frustration seems to be so high that I don’t want that.”

201. “The rules that I adhere to are the rules of minimalism. And those rules kind of force writing to be more filmic, to have the immediacy and accessibility of film, so that the reader really has to fill in a lot of the details.”

202. “Imagine books, and music, and movies being filtered and homogenized. Certified. Approved for consumption. People will be happy to give up most of their culture for the assurance that the tiny bit that comes through is safe and clean. White noise.”

203. “For the most part, my friends can always be more entertaining than the tube ever can be.”

204. “Language is what books do very well, and movement is what movies do very well.”

205. “I am a writer and the greatest compliment I can get is to know that I’ve contributed language to the culture, that I’ve defined something, given it a name. So I think that is one of the great things a writer can do.”

206. “I want out of the labels. I don’t want my whole life crammed into a single word. A story. I want to find something else unknowable, some place to be that’s not on the map. A real adventure. A sphinx. A mystery. A blank. Unknown. Undefined.”

207. “The first step—especially for young people with energy and drive and talent, but not money—the first step to controlling your world is to control your culture. To model and demonstrate the kind of world you demand to live in. To write the books. Make the music. Shoot the films. Paint the art.”

208. “I have to have everything in my life completely fixed, and perfect, and cleaned up, and I have to be complete with everyone in my life and I have seven days in which to do that. So I might make it to day three or four, but I’ve never made it all the way to day seven.”

209. “The only difference between a suicide and a martyrdom really is the amount of press coverage.”


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