Monday, December 28, 2015

A Christmas Carol

Charles Dickens Christmas StoriesCharles Dickens Christmas Stories by Charles Dickens

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“...Scrooge! a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner!”

“...the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave,”

“... twenty pair of partners; people who were not to be trifled with; people who would dance, and had no notion of walking.” - Fezziwig's Ball, A Christmas Carol

Ghost of Christmas Past: “He has spent but a few pounds of your mortal money; three or four perhaps. Is that so much that he deserves this praise?”
Scrooge: “It isn't that, Spirit. He has the power to render us happy or unhappy; to make our service light or burdensome; a pleasure or a toil. Say that his power lies in words and looks; in things so slight and insignificant that it is impossible to add and count 'em up; what then? The happiness he give is quite as great as if it cost a fortune.”

“This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased.” - The Ghost of Christmas Present, A Christmas Carol

I saw three or four different film versions of A Christmas Carol this year; all very good, but all left out some wonderful things. Only by reading the original do you get the full benefit of Dicken's prose and wisdom.

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Monday, December 21, 2015



noun: harsh criticism or censure.

"Palmer said he would not have shot Cecil if he knew the lion had a name. His dental practice closed temporarily due to vociferous protests, with the opprobrium prompting regulators to look at new ways to curb trophy hunting."

Wednesday, December 16, 2015


\ˈse-jə-ləs\ adjective
1:involving or accomplished with careful perseverance <sedulous craftsmanship>
2:diligent in application or pursuit <a sedulous student>

"Miss Bartlett sedulously denied disapproving of any one, and added: " I am afraid you are finding me a very depressing companion." - E.M. Forster, A Room With a View

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Word of the Day



adjective: showing a lack of courage or determination; timid.

"But you always were a bull-shitter, Ollie, you pusillanimous little cock-stain.” - Neil Gaiman, Black Dog

Monday, December 07, 2015

Quotes from Brave Enough

" Reading Brave Enough several times in a row alters the molecular structure of your cowardice." - Theo Pauline Nestor

" Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. That nothing could vanquish me. Insisting on this story was a form of mind control, but for the most part it worked. Every time I felt something horrible cohering in my imagination, I pushed it away. I simply did not let myself become afraid. Fear begets fear. Power begets power. I willed myself to beget power. And it wasn’t long before I actually wasn’t afraid." - Cheryl Strayed

“Right before [the movie] Wild premiered… I went into the bathroom and looked at myself in the mirror and said, ‘You are not allowed to think anything negative about your body, your weight, or your looks anymore. If you think those things, push them out of my mind.’” - Cheryl Strayed

“Self-pity is a dead-end road. You make the choice to drive down it. It’s up to you to decide to stay parked there or to turn around and drive out.” - Cheryl Strayed

“The first question I have them answer is ‘What’s the question at the core of your work?'” she said. Then she shared that hers was “How can I live without my mother?” She said that after her students form this first question, she asks them to come up with a second question–a universal one that asks “What question are you trying to answer for others?” Cheryl said that the universal question for her work has been “How do we go on when we’ve lost the essential thing?” The second question, she explained, is how the work becomes not just about the writer but about everyone as “we’ve all– at some point in our lives–lost the essential thing.”

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Have Courage

" Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake." | Victor Hugo

Fear & Faith

" Fear is the glue that keeps you stuck. Faith is the solvent that sets you free." | Shannon L. Alder


" Moral indignation is jealousy with a halo." -  H.G. Wells