It had always been Roth; from the moment he swaggered into that d- alley, where I'd been unsuccessfully fighting off a demon, it had been him for me. Maybe I'd been too blind to see that after he returned from the pits. Maybe I had been too angry with him after the way he initially acted.
Jennifer L. Armentrout
Do not try the parallels in that way: I know that way all along. I have measured that bottomless night, and all the light and all the joy of my life went out there. [Having himself spent a lifetime unsuccessfully trying to prove Euclid's postulate that parallel lines do not meet, Farkas discouraged his son Je¡nos from any further attempt.]
No one likes to be criticized, of course, but if the things we successfully strive for do not make our future selves happy, or if the things we unsuccessfully avoid do, then it seems reasonable (if somewhat ungracious) for them to cast a disparaging glance backward and wonder what the hell we were thinking.
Nearly all the Escapists in the long past have managed their own budget and their social relations so unsuccessfully that I wouldn't want them for my landlords, or my bankers, or my neighbors. They were valuable, like powerful stimulants, only when they were left out of the social and industrial routine.
It was my father who - after, at age 15, I had attempted unsuccessfully to drive the family car using a 'borrowed' key and knocked down a wall of the garage - convinced me over the telephone not to run away from home and who then came home from work not to punish me but rather to console and comfort me.
H. Robert Horvitz
our 'Physick' and 'Anatomy' have embraced such infinite varieties of being, have laid open such new worlds in time and space, have grappled, not unsuccessfully, with such complex problems, that the eyes of Vesalius and of Harvey might be dazzled by the sight of the tree that has grown out of their grain of mustard seed.
Thomas Henry Huxley
... our "Physick" and "Anatomy" have embraced such infinite varieties of being, have laid open such new worlds in time and space, have grappled, not unsuccessfully, with such complex problems, that the eyes of Vesalius and of Harvey might be dazzled by the sight of the tree that has grown out of their grain of mustard seed.
Please give it up. Fear it no less than the sensual passion, because it, too, may take up all your time and deprive you of your health, peace of mind and happiness in life. [Having himself spent a lifetime unsuccessfully trying to prove Euclid's postulate that parallel lines do not meet, Farkas discouraged his son Je¡nos from any further attempt.]
People hit the sauce in a big way all winter. Amidst blizzards they wrestle unsuccessfully with the dark comedy of their lives, laughter trapped in their frigid gizzards. Meanwhile, the mercury just plummets, like a migrating duck blasted out of the sky by some hunter in a cap with fur earflaps.
Many times he had tried unsuccessfully to let go his hold on her. They had many fine times together, fine talks between the loves of the white nights, but always when he turned away from her into himself he left her holding Nothing in her hands and staring at it, calling it many names, but knowing it was only the hope that he would come back soon.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
I tried a few times, unsuccessfully, to lose weight. It wasn't until I joined Weight Watchers that I was finally able to do it. I went to meetings and my son came with me. The best thing was that I could eat what I wanted and still lose weight. Slow and steady, I was getting my pre-pregnancy body back.
The photographer discovers himself/herself being photographed and we can guess he is uncomfortable. Unsuccessfully he/she tries to recompose his posture and to look like a photographer taking photos. But no, he is and continues to be a spectator. The momentous fact of being photographed leads him to becoming an actor. And, as always, actors must assume a role, which is only an elegant way of avoiding to say they must choose sides, choose a faction, take an option.
Of all the wars that have taken place wince then, none has endured so long as the conflict between knowledge and belief. For centuries now, knowledge has attempted, unsuccessfully, to supersede belief. But the entire clash stems from a misapprehension of the nature of belief. We can't not believe; and we won't ever know everything. We know this much: knowledge remains an endless advance toward an end point that endlessly recedes.
Adam Leith Gollner
It is easy to prescribe improvement for others; it is easy to organize something, to institutionalize this or that, to pass laws, multiply bureaucratic agencies, form pressure groups, start revolutions, change forms of government, tinker at political theory. The fact that these expedients have been tried unsuccessfully in every conceivable combination for 6,000 years has not noticeably impaired a credulous unintelligent willingness to keep on trying them again and again.
Albert J. Nock
So much of unhappiness, it seems to me, is due to nerves; and bad nerves are the result of having nothing to do, or doing a thing badly, unsuccessfully or incompetently. Of all the unhappy people in the world, the unhappiest are those who have not found something they want to do. True happiness comes to those who do their work well, followed by a refreshing period of rest. True happiness comes from the right amount of work for the day.
Go ahead. You're not going to walk in on anyone. I'm home alone." "The whole night?" Immediately, I realized it might not have been the smartest thing to say. "Dorothea will be coming soon." That was a lie. Dorothea was long gone. It was close to midnight. "Dorothea?" "Our housekeeper. She's old- but strong. Very strong." I tried to squeeze past him. Unsuccessfully. "Sounds frightening, " he said, retrieving the key from the lock. He held it out for me. " She can clean a toilet inside and out in under a minute. More like terrifying.
Out of the choked Devonian waters emerged sight and sound and the music that rolls invisible through the composer's brain. They are there still in the ooze along the tideline, though no one notices. The world is fixed, we say: fish in the sea, birds in the air. But in the mangrove swamps by the Niger, fish climb trees and ogle uneasy naturalists who try unsuccessfully to chase them back to the water. There are things still coming ashore.
He should have said something, why hadn't he? Costis wondered. In fact, the king had. He had complained at every step all the way across the palace, and they'd ignored it. If he'd been stoic and denied the pain, the entire palace would have been in a panic already, Eddisian soldiers on the move. He'd meant to deceive them, and he'd succeeded. It made Costis wonder for the first time just how much the stoic man really wants to hide when he unsuccessfully pretends not to be in pain.
Megan Whalen Turner
In the United States, where it has become almost impossible to use "liberal" in the sense in which I have used it, the term "libertarian" has been used instead. It may be the answer; but for my part I find it singularly unattractive. For my taste it carries too much the flavor of a manufactured term and of a substitute. What I should want is a word which describes the party of life, the party that favors free growth and spontaneous evolution. But I have racked my brain unsuccessfully to find a descriptive term which commends itself.
Friedrich August von Hayek
Halt eyed them balefully. They were all being so obvious about not mentioning his sudden reappearance that it was even worse than if they had commented on it... 'Oh, go on!' he said. 'Somebody say something! I know what you're thinking!' 'It's good to see you up and about, Halt, ' Selethen said gravely... Halt glared at the others and they quickly chorused their pleasure at seeing him back to his normal self. But he could see the grins they didn't quite manage to hide. He fixed a glare on Alyss. 'I'm surprised at you Alyss, ' he said. 'I expected no better of Will and Evanlyn, of course. Heartless beasts, the pair of them. But you! I thought you had been better trained!'... 'Halt, I'm sorry! It's not funny, you're right... Shut up, Will.' This last was directed at Will as he tried, unsuccessfully, to smother a snigger.
Many a person over the years has tried- both successfully and unsuccessfully, to get rid of their inner demons. Those who are successful are deemed artists, those who are not are call dreamers at best and lunatics at worse. But where exactly resides that line on which two worlds collide? Does somebody know? Is somebody fit to tell? Who's to say that those deemed lunatics are not just successes on the making? Who says that those who claim to be just a tad bit crazy are not just as crazy as those that had completely lost it? Maybe, and bear with me here... everyone is as crazy as the one before them and the next one could ever possibly be. Maybe at the end- it's just that some have mastered creating a fae§ade of calmness and collection while others don't bother going through all that trouble anymore, if they ever did. Perhaps we all have demons... it's just that some people have demons far more toxic and difficult to ignore than others.
Some secret of nurture withered a generation or two before I arrived, if it had ever existed before among the poor, marginalized people on the edges of Europe from whom I descend. Both my parents grew up with a deep sense of poverty that was mostly emotional but that they imagined as material long after they clambered into the middle class, and so they were more like a pair of rivalrous older siblings than parents who see their children as extensions of themselves and their hopes. They were stuck in separateness. I didn't realize anything was odd until I was already on my own and found out that not everyone's parents cut them off financially as soon as the law allowed. I tried to leave home unsuccessfully at fourteen and fifteen and sixteen and did so successfully at seventeen, heading off to another country, as far away as I could go, and once I got there I realized I was more on my own than I had anticipated: I was henceforth entirely repsonsible for myself and thus began a few years of poverty.
war is not inevitable. Nor has it always been with us. War is a human invention-an organized, deliberate action of an anti-social kind-and in the long span of human life on Earth, a fairly recent one. For more than 99 percent of the time that humans have lived on this planet, most of them have never made war. Many languages don't even have a word for it. Turn off CNN and read anthropology. You'll see. What's more, war is obsolete. Most nations don't make war anymore, except when coerced by the United States to join some spurious "coalition." The earth is small, and our time here so short. No other nation on the planet makes war as often, as long, as forcefully, as expensively, as destructively, as wastefully, as senselessly, or as unsuccessfully as the United States. No other nation makes war its business.
Yes, an actual full-sized camel. If you find that confusing, just think how the criosphinx must have felt. Where did the camel come from, you ask? I may have mentioned Walt's collection of amulets. Two of them summoned disgusting camels. I'd met them before, so I was less than excited when a ton of dromedary flesh flew across my line of sight, plowed into the sphinx, and collapsed on top of it. The sphinx growled in outrage as it tried to free itself. The camel grunted and farted. 'Hindenburg, ' I said. Only one camel could possibly fart that badly. 'Walt, why in the world-?' 'Sorry!' he yelled. 'Wrong amulet!' The technique worked, at any rate. The camel wasn't much of a fighter, but it was quite heavy and clumsy. The criosphinx snarled and clawed at the floor, trying unsuccessfully to push the camel off; but Hindenburg just splayed his legs, made alarmed honking sounds, and let loose gas. I moved to Walt's side and tried to get my bearings.
From space, astronauts can see people making love as a tiny speck of light. Not light, exactly, but a glow that could be mistaken for light-a coital radiance that takes generations to pour like honey through the darkness to the astronaut's eyes. In about one and a half centuries-after the lovers who made the glow will have long been laid permanently on their backs-metropolises will be seen from space. They will glow all year. Smaller cities will also be seen, but with great difficulty. Shtetls will be virtually impossible to spot. Individual couples, invisible. The glow is born from the sum of thousands of loves: newlyweds and teenagers who spark like lighters out of butane, pairs of men who burn fast and bright, pairs of women who illuminate for hours with soft multiple glows, orgies like rock and flint toys sold at festivals, couples trying unsuccessfully to have children who burn their frustrated image on the continent like the bloom a bright light leaves on the eye after you turn away from it. Some nights, some places are a little brighter. It's difficult to stare at New York City on Valentine's Day, or Dublin on St. Patrick's. The old walled city of Jerusalem lights up like a candle on each of Chanukah's eight nights... We're here, the glow... will say in one and a half centuries. We're here, and we're alive.
Jonathan Safran Foer
What did we talk about? I don't remember. We talked so hard and sat so still that I got cramps in my knee. We had too many cups of tea and then didn't want to leave the table to go to the bathroom because we didn't want to stop talking. You will think we talked of revolution but we didn't. Nor did we talk of our own souls. Nor of sewing. Nor of babies. Nor of departmental intrigue. It was political if by politics you mean the laboratory talk that characters in bad movies are perpetually trying to convey (unsuccessfully) when they Wrinkle Their Wee Brows and say (valiantly-dutifully-after all, they didn't write it) "But, Doctor, doesn't that violate Finagle's Constant?" I staggered to the bathroom, released floods of tea, and returned to the kitchen to talk. It was professional talk. It left my grey-faced and with such concentration that I began to develop a headache. We talked about Mary Ann Evans' loss of faith, about Emily Bronte«'s isolation, about Charlotte Bronte«'s blinding cloud, about the split in Virginia Woolf's head and the split in her economic condition. We talked about Lady Murasaki, who wrote in a form that no respectable man would touch, Hroswit, a little name whose plays "may perhaps amuse myself, " Miss Austen, who had no more expression in society than a firescreen or a poker. They did not all write letters, write memoirs, or go on the stage. Sappho-only an ambiguous, somewhat disagreeable name. Corinna? The teacher of Pindar. Olive Schriener, growing up on the veldt, wrote on book, married happily, and ever wrote another. Kate Chopin wrote a scandalous book and never wrote another. (Jean has written nothing.). There was M-ry Sh-ll-y who wrote you know what and Ch-rl-tt- P-rk-ns G-lm-an, who wrote one superb horror study and lots of sludge (was it sludge?) and Ph-ll-s Wh-tl-y who was black and wrote eighteenth century odes (but it was the eighteenth century) and Mrs. -nn R-dcl-ff- S-thw-rth and Mrs. G-rg- Sh-ld-n and (Miss?) G-rg-tt- H-y-r and B-rb-r- C-rtl-nd and the legion of those, who writing, write not, like the dead Miss B-l-y of the poem who was seduced into bad practices (fudging her endings) and hanged herself in her garter. The sun was going down. I was blind and stiff. It's at this point that the computer (which has run amok and eaten Los Angeles) is defeated by some scientifically transcendent version of pulling the plug; the furniture stood around unknowing (though we had just pulled out the plug) and Lady, who got restless when people talked at suck length because she couldn't understand it, stuck her head out from under the couch, looking for things to herd. We had talked for six hours, from one in the afternoon until seven; I had at that moment an impression of our act of creation so strong, so sharp, so extraordinarily vivid, that I could not believe all our talking hadn't led to something more tangible-mightn't you expect at least a little blue pyramid sitting in the middle of the floor?
Faded icon of the gilded halo, Once illuminating, inspiring; Admirers, enemies, lovers, family, A distant memory trodden under foot. Evanescent existence; flickering fame, A quintessence of reflections Incidentally etched on ancient relics. Can we conjure your presence? We barely remember Joseph Warren as the person who dispatched Paul Revere on his famous ride, and as the hero of the Battle of Bunker Hill, where he was killed in action. It wasn't always that way. For almost a century Warren was one of the most important and remembered founders of the fledgling American nation. John Trumbull's painting 'Death of General Warren at the Battle of Bunker's Hill, ' a renowned icon of American history, dates from that period. In it scarlet uniformed British soldiers, heavily armed and personally led by their officers, have just overwhelmed American entrenchments atop Breed's Hill, within sight across the Mystic River of Boston. In the background loom the eponymous Bunker Hill and the village of Charlestown, its houses and churches aflame, a smoky cloud framing the battlefield. The Americans, a motley amalgam of raw militia, countrymen and workers, try unsuccessfully to fend off the onslaught. New England's Pine Tree flag still stands within the American dirt fort in the unseasonably hot and breezeless early summer afternoon. The red coated attackers, brandishing the colors of the United Kingdom, will take it down in a moment. It is June 17, 1775: The defenders of an embryonic American Liberty are about to be defeated in a British Pyrrhic victory. In the forefront, Colonel William Prescott commands the Americans while rotund General Israel Putnam vainly shouts orders in the background. British Generals Burgoyne and Clinton command the British attackers as Major John Pitcairn, leader of the marines falters, mortally wounded, yet still supported by a soldier. British and Americans have fallen indiscriminately on the field among the detritus of battle. In the foreground, a finely dressed figure lies prostrate, his sword dropped to the earth. Prescott wards off a bayonet thrust by an onrushing British infantryman. It is a thrust the enemy's own superior officer, Colonel Small, curiously appears to want deflected. But the targeted figure already lies supine, looking skyward in a saintly blank stare. He is suspended momentarily in a halo of tranquility amongst the mayhem. This dying man can no longer smell the acrid, dense black powder smoke that hangs low in the windless oppressive heat, obscuring the afternoon sun. He pays no heed to the shouts of men nor the eerie lull in the previously deafening gunfire. The animation, his admonishments of others to action, the thrill and fear of battle, all suddenly calm. A single bullet annihilates in an instant inspiring words, the force of personality, the martial spirit in action, the reality and complexity of a human being. Dr. Joseph Warren, the central figure, moves from life to legend. Trumbull's iconic painting raises unanswered questions about its subject. How did a physician come to assume such a responsible role in this engagement? How did he meet his fate within sight of his home town? Why was he famous throughout the young United States as a model for involved citizenship? Was there any truth to the cynicism of his political enemies? Most compelling of all-why has this once beloved leader been so long and unjustifiably forgotten? This biography of Joseph Warren answers these and other questions. It utilizes modern analytical methods, uncovers new material, and sheds new light on 'established' facts... Please join me in getting to know Joseph Warren, accompanying him on his lifetime's journey to Bunker Hill, and considering the fate of his reputation and memory long after his heroic demise.