Quotes from Factotum

Charles Bukowski ·  208 pages

Rating: (43.6K votes)


“If you're going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don't even start. This could mean losing girlfriends, wives, relatives and maybe even your mind. It could mean not eating for three or four days. It could mean freezing on a park bench. It could mean jail. It could mean derision. It could mean mockery--isolation. Isolation is the gift. All the others are a test of your endurance, of how much you really want to do it. And, you'll do it, despite rejection and the worst odds. And it will be better than anything else you can imagine. If you're going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It's the only good fight there is.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“My ambition is handicapped by laziness”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“It was true that I didn’t have much ambition, but there ought to be a place for people without ambition, I mean a better place than the one usually reserved. How in the hell could a man enjoy being awakened at 6:30 a.m. by an alarm clock, leap out of bed, dress, force-feed, shit, piss, brush teeth and hair, and fight traffic to get to a place where essentially you made lots of money for somebody else and were asked to be grateful for the opportunity to do so?”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“Baby," I said, "I'm a genius but nobody knows it but me.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“She was desperate and she was choosey
at the same time and, in a way, beautiful, but she didn't have quite enough going for her to become what
she imagined herself to be.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum



“I was a man who thrived on solitude; without it I was like another man without food or water. Each day without solitude weakened me. I took no pride in my solitude; but I was dependent on it. The darkness of the
room was like sunlight to me.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“How in the hell could a man enjoy being awakened at 8:30 a.m. by an alarm clock, leap out of bed, dress, force-feed, shit, piss, brush teeth and hair, and fight traffic to get to a place where essentially you made lots of money for somebody else and were asked to be grateful for the opportunity to do so? ”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“It was like the beginning of life and laughter. It was the real meaning of the sun”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“Nothing is worse than to finish a good shit, then reach over and find the toilet paper container empty. Even the most horrible human being on earth deserves to wipe his ass.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“For each Joan of Arc there is a Hitler perched at the other end of the teeter-totter.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum



“That was all a man needed: hope. It was lack of hope that discouraged a man.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“jan was an excellent fuck...she had a tight pussy and she took it like it was a knife that was killing her.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“People don't need love. What they need is success in one form or another. It can be love but it needn't be.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“What? You’d dare drink right after getting out of jail for intoxication?”
That’s when you need a drink the most.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“I drank for some time, three or four days. I couldn't get myself to read the want ads. The thought of sitting
in front of a man behind a desk and telling him that I wanted a job, that I was qualified for a job, was too
much for me. Frankly, I was horrified by life, at what a man had to do simply in order to eat, sleep, and keep himself clothed. So I stayed in bed and drank. When you drank the world was still out there, but for
the moment it didn't have you by the throat. ”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum



“It was the first time i had been alone for five days. I was a man who thrived on solitude; without it I was like another man without food or water. Each day without solitude weakened me. I took no pride in my solitude; but I was dependent on it. The darkness of the room was like sunlight to me.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“I remembered my New
Orleans days, living on two five-cent candy bars a day for weeks at a time in order to have leisure to
write. But starvation, unfortunately, didn't improve art. It only hindered it. A man's soul was rooted in
his stomach. A man could write much better after eating a porterhouse steak and drinking a pint of
whiskey than he could ever write after eating a nickel candy bar. The myth of the starving artist was a
hoax.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“I always started a job with the feeling that I'd soon quit or be fired, and this gave ma a relaxex manner that was mistaken for intelligence or some secret power.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“She was perfect, pure maddening sex, and she knew it, and she played on it, dripped it, and allowed you to suffer for it.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“I got up and walked back to my roominghouse. The moonlight was bright. My footsteps echoed in the empty street and it sounded as if somebody was following me, I looked around. I was mistaken. I was quite alone.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum



“Frankly, I was horrified by life, at what a man had to do simply in order to eat, sleep, and keep himself clothed. So I stayed in bed and drank. When you drank the world was still out there, but for the moment it didn't have you by the throat.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“Someday,” I told Jan, “when they demonstrate that the world has four dimensions instead of just three, a man will be able to go for a walk and just disappear. No burial, no tears, no illusions, no heaven or hell. People will be sitting around and they’ll say, ‘What happened to George?’ And somebody will say, ‘Well, I don’t know. He said he was going out for a pack of cigarettes.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“That scene in the office stayed with me. Those cigars, the fine clothes. I thought of good steaks, long
rides up winding driveways that led to beautiful homes. Ease. Trips to Europe. Fine women. Were they
that much more clever than I? The only difference was money, and the desire to accumulate it.
I'd do it too! I'd save my pennies. I'd get an idea, I'd spring a loan. I'd hire and fire. I'd keep whiskey in
my desk drawer. I'd have a wife with size 40 breasts and an ass that would make the paperboy on the
corner come in his pants when he saw it wobble. I'd cheat on her and she'd know it and keep silent in
order to live in my house with my wealth. I'd fire men just to see the look of dismay on their faces. I'd
fire women who didn't deserve to be fired.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“You bitch," I whispered, "I love you." Then I came.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“A woman is a full time job. You have to choose your profession.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum



“I kept telling myself that all the women in the world weren´t whores, just mine.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“Yes?’ he asked, looking at me over the sheet.
‘I’m a writer temporarily down on my inspirations.’
‘Oh, a writer, eh?’
‘Yes.’
‘Are you sure?’
‘No, I’m not.’
‘What do you write?’
‘Short stories mostly. And I’m halfway through a novel.’
‘A novel, eh?’
‘Yes.’
‘What’s the name of it?’
‘”The Leaky Faucet of My Doom.”‘
‘Oh, I like that. What’s it about?’
‘Everything.’
‘Everything? You mean, for instance, it’s about cancer?’
‘Yes.’
‘How about my wife?’
‘She’s in there too.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“Even the most horrible human being on earth deserves to wipe his ass.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“Baby," I said, "I’m a genius but nobody knows it but me."

She looked down at me. "Get up off the floor you damn fool and get me a drink.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum


“She was desperate and she was choosey at the same time and, in a way, beautiful, but she didn’t have quite enough going for her to become what she imagined herself to be.”
― Charles Bukowski, quote from Factotum



About the author

Charles Bukowski
Born place: in Andernach, Germany
Born date August 16, 1920
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