Eclectic quotations accumulating in Hell's Kitchen, NY, USA.


"I'm just a girl from a trailer park who had a dream."
-- Hilary Swank

Image from Mega-Star.


"Instead of thinking about what you're missing, try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing."
-- Anonymous


"Here are the 16 rules I try to live by:

1. Get and stay out of your comfort zone. I believe that not much happens of any significance when we’re in our comfort zone. I hear people say, “But I’m concerned about security.” My response to that is simple: “Security is for cadavers.”

2. Never give up. Almost nothing works the first time it’s attempted. Just because what you’re doing does not seem to be working, doesn’t mean it won’t work. It just means that it might not work the way you’re doing it. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it, and you wouldn’t have an opportunity.

3. When you’re ready to quit, you’re closer than you think. There’s an old Chinese saying that I just love, and I believe it is so true. It goes like this: “The temptation to quit will be greatest just before you are about to succeed.”

4. With regard to whatever worries you, not only accept the worst thing that could happen, but make it a point to quantify what the worst thing could be. Very seldom will the worst consequence be anywhere near as bad as a cloud of “undefined consequences.” My father would tell me early on, when I was struggling and losing my shirt trying to get Parsons Technology going, “Well, Robert, if it doesn’t work, they can’t eat you.”

5. Focus on what you want to have happen. Remember that old saying, “As you think, so shall you be.”

6. Take things a day at a time. No matter how difficult your situation is, you can get through it if you don’t look too far into the future, and focus on the present moment. You can get through anything one day at a time.

7. Always be moving forward. Never stop investing. Never stop improving. Never stop doing something new. The moment you stop improving your organization, it starts to die. Make it your goal to be better each and every day, in some small way. Remember the Japanese concept of Kaizen. Small daily improvements eventually result in huge advantages.

8. Be quick to decide. Remember what the Union Civil War general, Tecumseh Sherman said: “A good plan violently executed today is far and away better than a perfect plan tomorrow.”

9. Measure everything of significance. I swear this is true. Anything that is measured and watched, improves.

10. Anything that is not managed will deteriorate. If you want to uncover problems you don’t know about, take a few moments and look closely at the areas you haven’t examined for a while. I guarantee you problems will be there.

11. Pay attention to your competitors, but pay more attention to what you’re doing. When you look at your competitors, remember that everything looks perfect at a distance. Even the planet Earth, if you get far enough into space, looks like a peaceful place.

12. Never let anybody push you around. In our society, with our laws and even playing field, you have just as much right to what you’re doing as anyone else, provided that what you’re doing is legal.

13. Never expect life to be fair. Life isn’t fair. You make your own breaks. You’ll be doing good if the only meaning fair has to you, is something that you pay when you get on a bus (i.e., fare).

14. Solve your own problems. You’ll find that by coming up with your own solutions, you’ll develop a competitive edge. Masura Ibuka, the co-founder of SONY, said it best: “You never succeed in technology, business, or anything by following the others.” There's also an old Asian saying that I remind myself of frequently. It goes like this: "A wise man keeps his own counsel."

15. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Lighten up. Often, at least half of what we accomplish is due to luck. None of us are in control as much as we like to think we are.

16. There’s always a reason to smile. Find it. After all, you’re really lucky just to be alive. Life is short. More and more, I agree with my little brother. He always reminds me: “We’re not here for a long time; we’re here for a good time.”

-- Bob Parsons, Hot Points! blog, February 15th, 2005.


"Nothing will ever fill that loss [of love that you never received from your past]. Stop getting high and learn to let yourself feel bad."
-- Susan Shapiro, Lighting Up, p 124.


"I think friendship is the most valuable relationship you can have in your life."
-- Lauren Bacall, on the recent death of a close personal friend.

"I go in and out of closets and drawers and try to get rid of things...It's a kind of aimlessness I find rather pleasant."
-- Lauren Bacall, on her weekends at home in New York.

(From To Have and Have Not, by Ginia Bellafante in The New York Times

Image from All Posters.


"Why is it that, as a culture, we are more comfortable seeing two men holding guns than holding hands?"
-- Ernest Gaines

"It always seemed to me a bit pointless to disapprove of homosexuality. It's like disapproving of rain."
-- Francis Maude

(As quoted by David on David's Life).


"... My mind is like a virgin page...waitin' to be writ on !"
-- Sandra Dee, 1942-2005, as Tammy, from Tammy and The Doctor.

Image from Fifties Web.
"I don't think anybody's ever played more performances of Broadway musicals than I have. I've never stopped... I'll sing as long as people want to hear me, and I'll be able to sing as long as I'm alive. If I can talk, I can sing."
-- John Raitt, 1917-2005.

Image from Epinions.


"Good times and bum times,
I've seen them all and, my dear,
I'm still here.
Plush velvet sometimes,
Sometimes just pretzels and beer,
But I'm here.

"I've stuffed the dailies
In my shoes.
Strummed ukuleles,
Sung the blues,
Seen all my dreams disappear,
But I'm here.

"I've slept in shanties,
Guest of the W.P.A.,
But I'm here.
Danced in my scanties,
Three bucks a night was the pay,
But I'm here.

"I've stood on bread lines
With the best,
Watched while the headlines
Did the rest.
In the Depression was I depressed?
Nowhere near.
I met a big financier
And I'm here.

"I've been through Gandhi,
Windsor and Wally's affair,
And I'm here.
Amos 'n' Andy,
Mah-jongg and platinum hair,
And I'm here.

"I got through Abie's
Irish Rose,
Five Dionne babies,
Major Bowes,
Had heebie-jeebies
For Beebe's
I lived through Brenda Frazier
And I'm here.

"I've gotten through Herbert and J. Edgar Hoover,
Gee, that was fun and a half.
When you've been through Herbert and J. Edgar Hoover,
Anything else is a laugh.
I've been through Reno.
I've been through Beverly Hills,
And I'm here.

"Reefers and vino,
Rest cures, religion and pills,
And I'm here
Been called a pinko
Commie tool,
Got through it stinko
By my pool.
I should have gone to an acting school.
That seems clear,
Still, someone said, 'She's sincere,'
So I'm here.

"Black sable one day.
Next day it goes into hock,
But I'm here.
Top billing Monday,
Tuesday you're touring in stock,
But I'm here.

"First you're another
Sloe-eyed vamp,
Then someone's mother,
Then you're camp.
Then you career from career
To career.
I'm almost through my memoirs.
And I'm here.

"I've gotten through 'Hey, lady, aren't you whoozis?
Wow! What a looker you were.'
Or, better yet, 'Sorry, I thought you were whoozis.
Whatever happened to her?'
Good times and bum times,
I've seen 'em all and, my dear,
I'm still here.

"Flush velvet sometimes,
Sometimes just pretzels and beer,
But I'm here.
I've run the gamut.
A to Z.
Three cheers and dammit,
C'est la vie.
I got through all of last year
And I'm here.
Lord knows, at least I was there,
And I'm here!
Look who's here!
I'm still here!"

-- Stephen Sondheim


"Quit alcohol now! Everything counts. You need to stop drinking... Because alcohol is addictive, has a lot of empty calories, and lowers your resistance to cigarettes, dope, and food".
-- Susan Shapiro, Lighting Up.


"[I had to] learn the difference between emotional and physical hunger... If I wanted more [to eat] I had to write down what else I wanted to eat. Next, I figured exactly what feeling was motivating this urge. Then... I had to wait one hour. If I still wanted the extra food, I could have it. Though I rarely still wanted it, all the scrawling and overthinking about what I could be consuming felt anal and ridiculous..."
-- Susan Shapiro, Lighting Up.


"The best year of our lives is not made up of days or weeks or months. It is made up of moments. Moments when we allow our separateness to melt away so we can be truly intimate with another; moments when we take a risk and express our love in an unexpected way; moments when we choose forgiveness over resentment; moments when we appreciate the perfection of where we are and who we are with. These are the moments that bring meaning to our lives and joy to our hearts."

-- Debbie Ford


"Let yourself know what you know."
-- Susan Shapiro, Lighting Up.


"Lost time is never found again."
-- Ben Franklin


"It is only a work of art. It has no purpose. It provides no symbol. It is just a work of art."

Image of Christo and Jeanne-Claude from SwissInfo.Org.


"It is a long, billowy saffron ribbon meandering through Central Park -- not a neat bow, but something that's very much a gift package to New York City. "The Gates," by Christo and his wife, Jeanne-Claude, was officially unveiled yesterday.

"Thousands of swaths of pleated nylon were unfurled to bob and billow in the breeze. In the winter light, the bright fabric seemed to warm the fields, flickering like a flame against the barren trees. Even at first blush, it was clear that "The Gates" is a work of pure joy, a vast populist spectacle of good will and simple eloquence, the first great public art event of the 21st century. It remains on view for just 16 days. Consider yourself forewarned. Time is fleeting.

"On a partly sunny, chilly morning, with helicopters buzzing overhead and mobs of well-wishers on hand, an army of paid helpers gradually released the panels of colored fabric from atop the 16-foot-tall gates, all 7,500 of them. The shifting light couldn't have been better to show off the effects of the cloth. Sometimes the fabric looked deep orange; at other times it was shiny, like gold leaf, or silvery or almost tan. In the breeze, the skirted gates also appeared to shimmy like dancers in a conga line, the cloth buckling and swaying."

-- Michael Kimmelman, A Billowy Gift to the City, in a Saffron Ribbon, The New York Times, published February 13, 2005.

Image from Christian Science Monitor


"As far as I'm concerned, every New Yorker is born with the inalienable right to grow up going regularly to the theatre. After all, if a city is fortunate enough to house an entire theatre district, shouldn't access to the stage life within it be what makes coming of age in New York different from any other American city?"
-- Wendy Wasserstein


"The job is to ask questions - it always was - and to ask them as inexorably as I can. And to face the absence of precise answers with a certain humility."
-- Arthur Miller, 1915-2005, Playwright

Image from Today in Literature.


"My great-grandmother was your great-great-grandfather's mistress, so how about it?"
--Camilla Parker-Bowles, her reputed opening line to Prince Charles at a polo match in 1970.

Image from Church of Ireland Gazette.


"You have to get quiet and listen to yourself to really know what's right for you, rather than assuming that you know what's right."
-- Sharon Good.


"Baltimore is actually a very safe city if you are not involved in the drug trade."
-- Dr. Peter Beilenson, Baltimore's health commissioner, in The New York Times.


"You're setting the direction in which you want your life to go, but you have to let go of your attachment to the results - you can't set out with teeth clenched , making sure it happens exactly the way you imagine it will. It's like pointing a vehicle in the right direction. You may come to a crossroads and one way will be better than you envisioned - but you never would have gotten there if you hadn't set out."
-- Sharon Good


"If you set and achieve goals, you get what you want. If you don't, you live your life by default - you let things happen to you and you just react. You can start to feel like a victim. Moreover, you get bored and feel a sense of malaise."
-- Sharon Good, Life Coach, as quoted in Time Out New York.


"People may have concerns of another wardrobe malfunction, but I can safely tell you that I won't."
-- Sir Paul McCartney

Image from the BBC.


"We knew that every time we got a job and every time we were onstage, America was looking to make judgments about all black folks on the basis of how you looked, how you sounded, how you carried yourself. So any role you had was a role that was involved in the struggle for black identification. You couldn't escape it."
-- Ossie Davis, 1917-2005, as quoted in The New York Times.

Image from PBS.


"The confirmation of Alberto Gonzales as attorney general yesterday was depressing. The president deserves a great deal of leeway in choosing his own cabinet. But beyond his other failings, Mr. Gonzales has come to represent the administration's role in paving the way for the abuse and torture of prisoners by American soldiers and intelligence agents. Giving him the nation's top legal post is a terrible signal to send the rest of the world, and to American citizens concerned with human rights."
-- Editorial, The Senate and Mr. Gonzales, The New York Times.


"How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man?
Yes, 'n' how many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes, 'n' how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they're forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind,
The answer is blowin' in the wind."

-- Bob Dylan


"Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together."
-- Vincent Van Gogh


"To see and acknowledge the negative in a situation and embrace whatever positive is there­that is the true definition of courage".
-- Anonymous