Grow up, Bailey." "That is precisely what I'm doing," Bailey says. "I don't care if you don't understand that. Staying here won't make me happy. It will make you happy because you're insipid and boring, and an insipid, boring life is enough for you. It's not enough for me. It will never be enough for me. So I'm leaving. Do me a favor and marry someone who will take decent care of the sheep.
Grow up, Bailey." "That is precisely what I'm doing, " Bailey says. "I don't care if you don't understand that. Staying here won't make me happy. It will make you happy because you're insipid and boring, and an insipid, boring life is enough for you. It's not enough for me. It will never be enough for me. So I'm leaving. Do me a favor and marry someone who will take decent care of the sheep.
It is universally allowed that, though nothing can be more interesting in itself than the conversation of two lovers, yet nothing can be more insipid in detail - just as the heavenly fragrance of the rose becomes vapid and sickly under all the attempts made to retain and embody its exquisite odor.
Susan Edmonstone Ferrier
Sometimes I go to the beach and stand facing the wind, which I wish were icy, colder than we know it in these parts. I wish it would blow all the hackneyed words, all the insipid habits of language out of me so that I could come back with a cleansed mind, cleansed of the banalities of the same talk.
The gratification of curiosity rather frees us from uneasiness than confers pleasure; we are more pained by ignorance than delighted by instruction. Curiosity is the thirst of the soul; it inflames and torments us, and makes us taste every thing with joy, however otherwise insipid, by which it may be quenched.
There is no lasting pleasure but contemplation; all others grow flat and insipid upon frequent use; and when a man hath run through a set of vanities, in the declension of his age, he knows not what to do with himself, if he cannot think; he saunters about from one dull business to another, to wear out time; and hath no reason to value Life but because he is afraid of death.
To others, the universe seems decent because decent people have welded eyes. That is why they fear lewdness. They are never frightened by the crowing of a rooster or when strolling under a starry heaven. In general, people savor the "pleasures of the flesh" only on the condition that they may be insipid.
And the New York Journal of Commerce, half-playfully, half-seriously, wrote: "Let us go to war. The world has become stale and insipid, the ships ought all to be captured, and the cities battered down, and the world burned up, so that we can start again. There would be fun in that, Some interest, - something to talk about.
There's something retro about your persona. It's like the pre-World War II generation of reporters - those unpretentious, working-class guys who hung around saloons and used rough language. Now they've all been replaced with these effete Ivy League elitists who swarm over the current media. Nerds - utterly dull and insipid.
Atheism can benefit no class of people; neither the unfortunate, whom it bereaves of hope, nor the prosperous, whose joys it renders insipid, nor the soldier, of whom it makes a coward, nor the woman whose beauty and sensibility it mars, nor the mother, who has a son to lose, nor the rulers of men, who have no surer pledge of the fidelity of their subjects than religion.
FranÃ§ois-RenÃ© de Chateaubriand
I will not adopt that ungenerous and impolitic custom so common with novel writers, of degrading by their contemptuous censure the very performances, to the number of which they are themselves adding?joining with their greatest enemies in bestowing the harshest epithets on such works, and scarcely ever permitting them to be read by their own heroine, who, if she accidentally take up a novel, is sure to turn over its insipid leaves with disgust.
For wisest ends this universal Power Gave appetites, from whose quick impulse life Subsists, by which we only live, all life Insipid else, unactive, unenjoy'd. Hence to this peopled earth, which, that extinct, That flame for propagation, soon would roll A lifeless mass, and vainly cumber heaven.
He was the man who of all modern, and perhaps ancient poets, had the largest and most comprehensive soul. . . . He was naturally learn'd; he needed not the spectacles of books to read Nature; he looked inwards, and found her there. . . . He is many times flat, insipid; his comic wit degenerating in to clenches, his serious swelling into bombast. But he is always great, when some occasion is presented to him.
A genius is the man in whom you are least likely to find the power of attending to anything insipid or distasteful in itself. He breaks his engagements, leaves his letters unanswered, neglects his family duties incorrigibly, because he is powerless to turn his attention down and back from those more interesting trains of imagery with which his genius constantly occupies his mind.
The real meaning of persona is a mask, such as actors were accustomed to wear on the ancient stage; and it is quite true that no one shows himself as he is, but wears his mask and plays his part. Indeed, the whole of our social arrangements may be likened to a perpetual comedy; and this is why a man who is worth anything finds society so insipid, while a blockhead is quite at home in it.
One is conscious of no brave and noble earnestness in it, of no generalized passion for intellectual and spiritual adventure, of no organized determination to think things out. What is there is a highly self-conscious and insipid correctness, a bloodless respectability submergence of matter in manner--in brief, what is there is the feeble, uninspiring quality of German painting and English music.
H. L. Mencken
I'll never make another Hardy picture . . . I'm fed up with these dopey, insipid parts. How long can a guy play a jerk kid? I'm 27 years old. I've been divorced once and separated from my second wife. I have two boys of my own. I spent almost two years in the army. It's time Judge Hardy went out and bought me a double-breasted suit.
Sometimes, in the course of my hopeless quest, I would pick up and dip into one of the ordinary books that lay strewn around the castle. Whenever I did, it seemed so insipid and insubstantial that I flew into a rage and hurled it at the wall after reading the first few sentences. I was spoilt for any other form of literature, and the mental torment I endured was comparable to the agony of unrequited love compounded by the withdrawal symptoms associated with a severe addiction.
Every place is a goldmine. You have only to give yourself time, sit in a teahouse watching the passers-by, stand in a corner of the market, go for a haircut. You pick up a thread - a word, a meeting, a friend of a friend of someone you have just met - and soon the most insipid, most insignificant place becomes a mirror of the world, a window on life, a theatre of humanity.
All men have heard of the Mormon Bible, but few except the "elect" have seen it, or, at least, taken the trouble to read it. I brought away a copy from Salt Lake. The book is a curiosity to me, it is such a pretentious affair, and yet so "slow," so sleepy; such an insipid mess of inspiration. It is chloroform in print. If Joseph Smith composed this book, the act was a miracle "" keeping awake while he did it was, at any rate.
When I have neither pleasure nor pain and have been breathing for a while the lukewarm insipid air of these so-called good and tolerable days, I feel so bad in my childish soul that I smash my rusty lyre of thanksgiving in the face of the slumbering god of contentment and would rather feel the most devilish pain burn in me than this warmth of a well-heated room. - Harry Haller
Television programming for children need not be saccharine or insipid in order to give to violence its proper balance in the scheme of things.... But as an endless diet for the sake of excitement and sensation in stories whose plots are vehicles for killing and torture and little more, it is not healthy for young children. Unfamiliar as yet with the full story of human response, they are being misled when they are offered perversion before they have fully learned what is sound.
Dorothy H Cohen
Every instance in my life, I've felt like the exact opposite of Superman. Except this time, this moment right now. I don't care. I don't feel like a weak, insipid sissy. Because right now I know I would save the girl. I know that I would rather risk the planet than let harm befall Eliza Wishart. I would save her in a second. Because I can imagine her and me huddled safe together while the earth falls under evil designs, but I can't imagine the world without her in it.
Death is not earnest in the same way the eternal is. To the earnestness of death belongs precisely that remarkable capacity for awakening, that resonance of a profound mockery which, detached from the thought of the eternal, is an empty and often brash jest, but together with the thought of the eternal is just what it should be, utterly different from the insipid solemness which least of all captures and holds a thought with tension like that of death.
If I had my life over again I should form the habit of nightly composing myself to thoughts of death. I would practice, as it were, the remembrance of death. There is no other practice which so intensifies life. Death, when it approaches, ought not to take one by surprise. It should be part of the full expectancy of life. Without an ever-present sense of death life is insipid. You might as well live on the whites of eggs.
If I had my life over again I should form the habit of nightly composing myself to thoughts of death. I would practice, as it were, the remembrance of death. No other practice so intensifies life. Death, when it approaches, ought not to take one -surprise. It should be part of the full expectancy of life. Without an ever-present sense of death, life is insipid. You might as well live on the whites of eggs.
The more we have known of the really good things, the more insipid the thin lemonade of later literature becomes, sometimes almost to the point of making us sick. Do you know a work of literature written in the last, say, fifteen years that you think has any lasting quality? I don't. It is partly idle chatter, partly propaganda, partly self-pitying sentimentality, but there is no insight, no ideas, no clarity, no substance and almost always the language is bad and constrained. On this subject I am quite consciously a laudator temporis acti.
The writer is a definite human phenomenon. He is almost a type - as pugilists are a type. He may be a bad writer - an insipid one or a clumsy one - but there is a bug in him that keeps spinning yarns; and that bulges his brow a bit, narrows his jaws, weakens his eyes and gives him girl children instead of boys. Nobody but a writer can write. People who hang around writers for years - as producers did - who are much smarter and have much better taste, never learn to write.
Auto da Fay reveals the trickles of a creative sensibility that later became a tide, but essentially, Weldon the writer emerges only at the very end of this volume, in conjunction with her finding and marrying her husband of 30 years, Ron Weldon. In this sense, it is half a memoir, the private background story to the public future. (...) The reader is forced to re-evaluate the spectacular weirdness of Weldon's fiction: having lived such a life any other kind would seem insipid.
The way in which we experience and interpret the world obviously depends very much indeed on the kind of ideas that fill our minds. If they are mainly small, weak, superficial, and incoherent, life will appear insipid, uninteresting, petty, and chaotic. It is difficult to bear the resultant feeling of emptiness, and the vacuum of our minds may only too easily be filled by some big, fantastic notion - political or otherwise - which suddenly seem to illumine everything and to give meaning and purpose to our existence. It needs no emphasis that herein lies one of the great dangers of our time.
E. F. Schumacher
It was not for me, after these last seventy-two hours, to reject as too outlandish the possibility that the situation for him here had driven George crazy. Yet I did reject it. It was just too insipid a conclusion. Not everybody was cray. Resolute is not crazy. Deluded is not crazy. To be thwarted, vengeful, terrified, treacherous-this is not to be crazy. Not even fanatically held illusions are crazy, and deceit certainly isn't crazy-deceit, deviousness, cunning, cynicism, all of that is far from crazy... and there, that, deceit, there was the key to my confusion. Of course!
We need the conflagration of Love to change the world, we need the fire of love to illuminate the society. The cold, insipid and complicated codes don't change anything, don't transform anything. All the best social projects and the best political principles are useless if they are not written with the fire of Love. The real revolution is the result of transformation, only the storms of Love can transform the individual and the society.
Samael Aun Weor
When we seek a textbook case for the proper operation of science, the correction of certain error offers far more promise than the establishment of probable truth. Confirmed hunches, of course, are more upbeat than discredited hypotheses. Since the worst traditions of "popular" writing falsely equate instruction with sweetness and light, our promotional literature abounds with insipid tales in the heroic mode, although tough stories of disappointment and loss give deeper insight into a methodology that the celebrated philosopher Karl Popper once labeled as "conjecture and refutation.
Stephen Jay Gould
When I have neither pleasure nor pain and have been breathing for a while the lukewarm insipid air of these so called good and tolerable days, I feel so bad in my childish soul that I smash my moldering lyre of thanksgiving in the face of the slumbering god of contentment and would rather feel the very devil burn in me than this warmth of a well-heated room. A wild longing for strong emotions and sensations seethes in me, a rage against this toneless, flat, normal and sterile life. I have a mad impulse to smash something, a warehouse, perhaps, or a cathedral, or myself, to commit outrages, to pull off the wigs of a few revered idols...
Boredom presents a very real, if insidious peril. To quote Blaine Harden from the Washington post:'Boredom kills, and those it does not kill, it cripples, and those it does not cripple, it bleeds like a leech, leaving its victims pale, insipid, and brooding. Examples abound... Rats kept in comfortable isolation quickly become jumpy, irritable, and aggressive. Their bodies twitch, their tails grow scaly." The backcountry traveler, then, in addition to developing such skills as the use of a map and compass, or the prevention and treatment of blisters, must prepare mentally and materially to cope with boredom, lest his tail grow scaly.
What you have made me see, ' answered the Lady, 'is as plain as the sky, but I never saw it before. Yet is has happened every day. One goes into the forest to pick food and already the thought of one fruit rather than another has grown up in one's mind. Then, may it be, one finds a different fruit and not the fruit one thought of. One joy was expected and another is given. But this I had never noticed before-that the very moment of the finding there is in the mind a kind of thrusting back, or setting aside. The picture of the fruit you have not found is still, for a moment, before you. And if you wished-if it were possible to wish-you could keep it there. You could send your soul after the good you had expected, instead of turning it to the good you had got. You could refuse the real good; you could make the real fruit taste insipid by thinking of the other.
and if a rainy morning deprived them of other enjoyments, they were still resolute in meeting in defiance of wet and dirt, and shut themselves up, to read novels together. Yes, novels; for I will not adopt that ungenerous and impolitic custom so common with novel-writers, of degrading by their contemptuous censure the very performances, to the number of which they are themselves adding - joining with their greatest enemies in bestowing the harshest epithets on such works, and scarcely ever permitting them to be read by their own heroine, who, if she accidentally take up a novel, is sure to turn over its insipid pages with disgust. Alas! If the heroine of one novel be not patronized by the heroine of another, from whom can she expect protection and regard? I cannot approve of it. Let us leave it to the reviewers to abuse such effusions of fancy at their leisure, and over every new novel to talk in threadbare strains of the trash with which the press now groans. Let us not desert one another; we are an injured body. Although our productions have afforded more extensive and unaffected pleasure than those of any other literary corporation in the world, no species of composition has been so much decried. From pride, ignorance, or fashion, our foes are almost as many as our readers. And while the abilities of the nine-hundredth abridger of the History of England, or of the man who collects and publishes in a volume some dozen lines of Milton, Pope, and Prior, with a paper from the Spectator, and a chapter from Sterne, are eulogized by a thousand pens - there seems almost a general wish of decrying the capacity and undervaluing the labour of the novelist, and of slighting the performances which have only genius, wit, and taste to recommend them. 'I am no novel-reader - I seldom look into novels - Do not imagine that I often read novels - It is really very well for a novel.' Such is the common cant. 'And what are you reading, Miss - ?' 'Oh! It is only a novel!' replies the young lady, while she lays down her book with affected indifference, or momentary shame. 'It is only Cecilia, or Camilla, or Belinda'; or, in short, only some work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed, in which the most thorough knowledge of human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusions of wit and humour, are conveyed to the world in the best-chosen language. Now, had the same young lady been engaged with a volume of the Spectator, instead of such a work, how proudly would she have produced the book, and told its name; though the chances must be against her being occupied by any part of that voluminous publication, of which either the matter or manner would not disgust a young person of taste: the substance of its papers so often consisting in the statement of improbable circumstances, unnatural characters, and topics of conversation which no longer concern anyone living; and their language, too, frequently so coarse as to give no very favourable idea of the age that could endure it.
Tonight, however, Dickens struck him in a different light. Beneath the author's sentimental pity for the weak and helpless, he could discern a revolting pleasure in cruelty and suffering, while the grotesque figures of the people in Cruikshank's illustrations revealed too clearly the hideous distortions of their souls. What had seemed humorous now appeared diabolic, and in disgust at these two favourites he turned to Walter Pater for the repose and dignity of a classic spirit. But presently he wondered if this spirit were not in itself of a marble quality, frigid and lifeless, contrary to the purpose of nature. 'I have often thought', he said to himself, 'that there is something evil in the austere worship of beauty for its own sake.' He had never thought so before, but he liked to think that this impulse of fancy was the result of mature consideration, and with this satisfaction he composed himself for sleep. He woke two or three times in the night, an unusual occurrence, but he was glad of it, for each time he had been dreaming horribly of these blameless Victorian works... It turned out to be the Boy's Gulliver's Travels that Granny had given him, and Dicky had at last to explain his rage with the devil who wrote it to show that men were worse than beasts and the human race a washout. A boy who never had good school reports had no right to be so morbidly sensitive as to penetrate to the underlying cynicism of Swift's delightful fable, and that moreover in the bright and carefully expurgated edition they bring out nowadays. Mr Corbett could not say he had ever noticed the cynicism himself, though he knew from the critical books it must be there, and with some annoyance he advised his son to take out a nice bright modern boy's adventure story that could not depress anybody. Mr Corbett soon found that he too was 'off reading'. Every new book seemed to him weak, tasteless and insipid; while his old and familiar books were depressing or even, in some obscure way, disgusting. Authors must all be filthy-minded; they probably wrote what they dared not express in their lives. Stevenson had said that literature was a morbid secretion; he read Stevenson again to discover his peculiar morbidity, and detected in his essays a self-pity masquerading as courage, and in Treasure Island an invalid's sickly attraction to brutality. This gave him a zest to find out what he disliked so much, and his taste for reading revived as he explored with relish the hidden infirmities of minds that had been valued by fools as great and noble. He saw Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte« as two unpleasant examples of spinsterhood; the one as a prying, sub-acid busybody in everyone else's flirtations, the other as a raving, craving maenad seeking self-immolation on the altar of her frustrated passions. He compared Wordsworth's love of nature to the monstrous egoism of an ancient bellwether, isolated from the flock.