There's this thing in Hollywood about the sympathetic character and likability. I've never understood that because the people I love most in my life are not likable all the time. My wife is not always likable. I'm certainly not always likable. My dad is not always likable. We're human beings.
Lots of talk lately about the GREAT AMERICAN NOVEL that seems to be exclusively masculine. And how many of the characters in the GENIUS BOOKS are likable? Is Holden Caulfield likable? Is Meursault in The Stranger? Is Henry Miller? Is any character in any of these system novels particularly likable? Aren't they usually loathsome but human, etc., loathsome and neurotic and obsessed? In my memory, all the characters in Jonathan Franzen are total douchebags (I know, I know, I'm not supposed to use that, feminine imagery, whatever, but it is SO satisfying to say and think). How about female characters in the genius books? Was Madame Bovary likable? Was Anna Karenina? Is Daisy Buchanan likable? Is Daisy Miller? Is it the specific way in which supposed readers HATE unlikable female characters (who are too depressed, too crazy, too vain, too self-involved, too bored, too boring), that mirrors the specific way in which people HATE unlikable girls and women for the same qualities? We do not allow, really, the notion of the antiheroine, as penned by women, because we confuse the autobiographical, and we pass judgment on the female author for her terrible self-involved and indulgent life. We do not hate Scott Fitzgerald in 'The Crack-Up' or Georges Bataille in Guilty for being drunken and totally wading in their own pathos, but Jean Rhys is too much of a victim.
As we grow older, we should learn that these are two quite different things. Character is something you forge for yourself; temperament is something you are born with and can only slightly modify. Some people have easy temperaments and weak characters; others have difficult temperaments and strong characters. We are all prone to confuse the two in assessing people we associate with. Those with easy temperaments and weak characters are more likable than admirable; those with difficult temperaments and strong characters are more admirable than likable.
Sydney J. Harris
Personally I don't spend much time thinking about being funny. For me it's always been just a way to get by, a way to be likable yet to remain removed. When I speak up, it's not because I have any particular answers; rather, I have a desire to puncture the pretentiousness of those who seem so certain they do.
You feel as if everybody has been given an instruction manual on how to be likable, but you didn't get it. And they are all sold out now. And if you are what you eat, then you must have surely spent the last few years of your life eating dog food and cat shit. Because when you look in the mirror, it is all that you see.
You feel as if everybody has been given an instruction manual on how to be likable, but you didn't get it. And they all sold out now. And if you are what you eat, then you must have surely spent the last few years of your life eating dog food and cat shit. Because when you look in the mirror, it is all that you see.
I like having you around, Britt. That's the truth. I'm not leaving you. Even if you were a pain in the butt, I'd stay with you. It's the right thing to do. But it turns out I find you likable and interesting, and while I'm not glad you have to go through this, I'm glad we have each other.
Toronto's likable, but it could be a lot more, as I think Montreal is, lovable. What we need more than anything, I think, is a great pedestrian promenade. Pick a busy streetscape, close it to cars forever, and it will fill with people enjoying nothing more than the pleasure of their own company.
He saw the possibility of a radio niche for what you might call 'uplifting talk' that focuses on everyday life. He comes across as an extremely likable and credible guy, and when he's getting a point across or even reading the five key findings of a medical research study, you know that his heart's behind it.
Everyone likes everything nowadays. They like the television and the phonograph and the shampoo and the soda pop and the Cracker Jack. Everything becomes everything else and it's all nice and pretty and LIKABLE. Everything is fun in the sun! Where's the discernment? Where's the arbitration that separates what I LIKE from what I RESPECT, what I deem WORTHY, what has... listen to me now... SIGNIFICANCE.
Some men are deeply likable but have attitudes I don't like. Does that mean I should completely dismiss them? It's like saying: if someone votes Tory can you like them? And, yes, I can. I have friends who vote Tory, and I'm appalled, but that's not to say they're not great people in so many other ways. We have a tendency to oversimplify things.
Essayists must not only be succinct but have original ideas and, even harder to come by, or to fake, likable voices. Consciously or not, they endeavor to win us over by charm. If an essayist can not only charm but write the unforgettable sentence, one that reveals the heart in a few words, I'm her slave.
The internal sexism within womanhood is very predominant in Hollywood, because we all want to be successful. There's a plug to it: You all have to be skinny! You all have to be pretty! You all have to be likable, because that's the formula that works. On an executive level. On a power level. And it's not always the same working with black people, because of the internalized racism. The colorism.
I would hope that people didn't think I was anything like Joan! It's very hard for me because Joan says such cruel things all the time. It sort of makes me cringe every time I read them because I think, 'Who could be so horrible?' To be able to deliver those lines and do them with a coolness, yet still make her likable, is a bit of a challenge.
Time means a lot to me, paperwork wastes it, and I have always been a firm believer in my right to do anything I cannot be stopped from doing. Which sometimes entails not getting caught at it. This is not quite so bad as it sounds, as I am a decent, civilized, likable guy. So, shading my eyes against the blue and fiery afternoon, I began searching for ways to convince the authorities of this. Lying, I decided, was probably best.
The people are immensely likable"" cheerful, extrovert, quick-witted, and unfailingly obliging. Their cities are safe and clean and nearly always built on water. They have a society that is prosperous, well ordered, and instinctively egalitarian. The food is excellent. The beer is cold. The sun nearly always shines. There is coffee on every corner. Life doesn't get much better than this.
Being Jewish myself, I somehow didn't see the problem: who cares what a mentally ill (but strangely likable) individual says? If he didn't make some money at chess, I could see him becoming a street person, shaking his fists at cars as they passed by his corner of the block. Isn't it preferable to have him in a self-sufficient position rather than as a liability of the state?
Funny bones, to me, are more important than funny lines. If a comedian is just not likable and doing the lines, you could read them yourself. Whereas if someone [you like] shambles out, and they tell you what a bad day they've had, they don't have to say anything. I love them. I want to hug them because they've been through something. And it comes back to empathy, always empathy.
I thought I was investing in myself and my brand, like Kim Kardashian. When she buys these clothes, she's investing in herself, because she is a big brand and is likable. I thought I had that potential. My ego got too big. To think I could be someone like that when I was the most hated girl ever.
Rather than put ourselves down continually, we must work hard to concentrate on our positives, focusing on that which makes us unique and likable. We all have things that we would change if we could. Even people who we think have it all, don't. Nobody has it all because no one is perfect. We all realize this and yet continue to criticize and insult ourselves. Now is the time to stop this nonsense! Change what you can change and accept the rest as a necessary part of your own unique humanity. Make peace with who you are.
You're better looking than me. You're more intelligent than me. Your personality is more likable than mine. You make more money than me. Your family is nicer than mine. Your religion is better than mine. You've seen more beaches than me. You've been to more cities than me. Your automobile is nicer than mine. Your significant other is better looking than mine. Your candidate won. Your home team won. You're number one. But life is a tie. We all die.
Jason Daniel Chaplin
I don't know where people got the idea that characters in books are supposed to be likable. Books are not in the business of creating merely likeable characters with whom you can have some simple identification with. Books are in the business of creating great stories that make you're brain go ahhbdgbdmerhbergurhbudgerbudbaaarr.
I worry about you. You're good with people, I've seen it. You like them. But there's a limit for you.' He opened his mouth to protest but she held up her hand to silence him. 'I know. You do care. But inside the framework of a project. Right now it's your studies. Later it'll be roads and bridges. But people around you-their lives go on outside the framework. They're not just tools to your hand, even likable tools. Your life should go on, too. You should have more than roads to live for. Because if something does go wrong, you'll need what you're feeling to matter, to someone somewhere, anyway.
The fraudulence paradox was that the more time and effort you put into trying to appear impressive or attractive to other people, the less impressive or attractive you felt inside - you were a fraud. And the more of a fraud you felt like, the harder you tried to convey an impressive or likable image of yourself so that other people wouldn't find out what a hollow, fraudulent person you really were.
David Foster Wallace
Sylvia Day spins a gorgeous adventure in A Touch of Crimson that combines gritty, exciting storytelling with soaring lyricism. Adrian is my favorite kind of hero--an alpha male angel determined to win the heart of his heroine, Lindsay, while protecting her from his lethal enemy. Lindsay is a gutsy, likable woman with paranormal abilities of her own, as well as a dedication to protecting humanity against a race of demonic monsters. This is definitely a book for your keeper shelf.
Unconditional parental love is the indespensible nutrient for the child's healthy emotional growth. The first task is to create space in the child's heart for the certainty that she is precisely the person the parents want and love. She does not have to do anything or be any different to earn that love - in fact, she cannot do anything, since that love cannot be won or lost... The child can be ornery, unpleasant, whiny, uncooperative, and plain rude, and the parent still lets her feel loved. Ways have to be found to convey the unacceptability of certain behaviors without making the child herself feel unaccepted. She has to be able to bring her unrest, her least likable characteristics to the parent and still receive the parent's absolutely satisfying, security-inducing unconditional love.
When we start being too impressed by the results of our work, we slowly come to the erroneous conviction that life is one large scoreboard where someone is listing the points to measure our worth. And before we are fully aware of it, we have sold our soul to the many grade-givers. That means we are not only in the world, but also of the world. Then we become what the world makes us. We are intelligent because someone gives us a high grade. We are helpful because someone says thanks. We are likable because someone likes us. And we are important because someone considers us indispensable. In short, we are worthwhile because we have successes. And the more we allow our accomplishments - the results of our actions - to become the criteria of our self-esteem, the more we are going to walk on our mental and spiritual toes, never sure if we will be able to live up to the expectations which we created by our last successes. In many people's lives, there is a nearly diabolic chain in which their anxieties grow according to their successes. This dark power has driven many of the greatest artists into self-destruction.
Henri J.M. Nouwen
Under fun's new administration, writing fiction becomes a way to go deep inside yourself and illuminate precisely the stuff you don't want to see or let anyone else see, and this stuff usually turns out (paradoxically) to be precisely the stuff all writers and readers share and respond to, feel. Fiction becomes a weird way to countenance yourself and to tell the truth instead of being a way to escape yourself or to present yourself in a way you figure you will be maximally likable. This process is complicated and confusing and scary, and also hard work, but it turns out to be the best fun there is. The fact that you can now sustain the fun of writing only by confronting the very same unfun parts of yourself you'd first used writing to avoid or disguise is another paradox, but this one isn't any kind of bind at all. What it is is a gift, a kind of miracle, and compared to it the reward of strangers' affection is as dust, lint.
David Foster Wallace
As for Sturridge, he comes across as quite possibly the most likable man to ever wear the Liverbird. The chicken teriyaki enthusiast has been defying expectations and unfounded prejudice since he arrived at the club to a lukewarm fan response. He was a troublemaker, you see. He had a poor attitude and was a he Big Time Charlie, don't you know? The Chelsea guys said so and Jose Mourinho has never been anything other than ethical and sincere, right? Right? "The England front man was quick to disabuse dubious fans of their misguided assumptions. From his first interview he spoke with a candour and earnest enthusiasm that were utterly endearing. His performance on the pitch has been nothing short of remarkable and his prodigious tally of 35 goals in 49 appearances to date is worthy of far more adulation than he has received. Doubtless the dancing striker has suffered by comparison with the frankly unequalled brilliance of a certain now-departed flesh gourmand, but the Birmingham native is worthy of so much more praise and, with time on his side, he has the potential to become the nonpareil of Liverpool's recent strikers.
The Oscar-nominated documentary The Act of Killing tells the story of the gangster leaders who carried out anti-communist purges in Indonesia in 1965 to usher in the regime of Suharto. The film's hook, which makes it compelling and accessible, is that the filmmakers get Anwar -one of the death-squad leaders, who murdered around a thousand communists using a wire rope-and his acolytes to reenact the killings and events around them on film in a variety of genres of their choosing. In the film's most memorable sequence, Anwar-who is old now and actually really likable, a bit like Nelson Mandela, all soft and wrinkly with nice, fuzzy gray hair-for the purposes of a scene plays the role of a victim in one of the murders that he in real life carried out. A little way into it, he gets a bit tearful and distressed and, when discussing it with the filmmaker on camera in the next scene, reveals that he found the scene upsetting. The offcamera director asks the poignant question, 'What do you think your victims must've felt like?' and Anwar initially almost fails to see the connection. Eventually, when the bloody obvious correlation hits him, he thinks it unlikely that his victims were as upset as he was, because he was 'really' upset. The director, pressing the film's point home, says, 'Yeah but it must've been worse for them, because we were just pretending; for them it was real.' Evidently at this point the reality of the cruelty he has inflicted hits Anwar, because when they return to the concrete garden where the executions had taken place years before, he, on camera, begins to violently gag. This makes incredible viewing, as this literally visceral ejection of his self and sickness at his previous actions is a vivid catharsis. He gagged at what he'd done. After watching the film, I thought-as did probably everyone who saw it-how can people carry out violent murders by the thousand without it ever occurring to them that it is causing suffering? Surely someone with piano wire round their neck, being asphyxiated, must give off some recognizable signs? Like going 'ouch' or 'stop' or having blood come out of their throats while twitching and spluttering into perpetual slumber? What it must be is that in order to carry out that kind of brutal murder, you have to disengage with the empathetic aspect of your nature and cultivate an idea of the victim as different, inferior, and subhuman. The only way to understand how such inhumane behavior could be unthinkingly conducted is to look for comparable examples from our own lives. Our attitude to homelessness is apposite here. It isn't difficult to envisage a species like us, only slightly more evolved, being universally appalled by our acceptance of homelessness. 'What? You had sufficient housing, it cost less money to house them, and you just ignored the problem?' They'd be as astonished by our indifference as we are by the disconnected cruelty of Anwar.