Tracy Kidder · 277 pages
Rating: (13.5K votes)
“... "You may not see the ocean, but right now we are in the middle of the ocean, and we have to keep swimming.”
“In order to go on with our lives, we are always capable of making the ominous into the merely strange.”
“I do believe in God. I think God has given so much power to people, and intelligence, and said, 'Well, you are on your own. Maybe I'm tired, I need a nap. You are mature. Why don't you look after yourselves?' And I think He's been sleeping too much.”
“So many people, he thought, don't listen to the content of what you say but only to the noises you make.”
“He sniffed, and said as others had before him and others no doubt would again, "I have learned never to say, 'Never again.”
“He would come to feel that history, even more than memory, distorts the present of the past by focusing on big events and making one forget that most people living in the present are otherwise preoccupied, that for them omens often don't exist.”
“One shouldn't expect anyone to be complete at any given moment.”
“I stared at the faces of the dead students. “You know, Zacharie, just looking at them, I can’t tell you which ones were Tutsis, which Hutus.” “Exactly!” said Deo in a loud whisper. Evidently, one was supposed to whisper here. “And neither could the killers!” “The killers couldn’t see the difference, too,” whispered Zacharie. “So they ask. Because they can’t tell. We are the same people.”
“When too much is too much or too bad is too bad, we laugh as if it was too good.”
“Every great magic trick consists of three parts or acts. The first part is called "The Pledge". The magician shows you something ordinary: a deck of cards, a bird or a man. He shows you this object. Perhaps he asks you to inspect it to see if it is indeed real, unaltered, normal. But of course... it probably isn't. The second act is called "The Turn". The magician takes the ordinary something and makes it do something extraordinary. Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it, because of course you're not really looking. You don't really want to know. You want to be fooled. But you wouldn't clap yet. Because making something disappear isn't enough; you have to bring it back. That's why every magic trick has a third act, the hardest part, the part we call "The Prestige".”
“How do you know your Colossus is the genuine article in the first place?
I read his mind.
I matched his DNA.
I smelled him.
I also did that.”
“The complexities of the English language are such that even native speakers cannot always communicate effectively, as almost every American learns on his first day in Britain.”
“Wealth means nothing at all if you do not know, to the last penny, what your fortune is. You might as well be poor if you do not know what you have.”
“You’re not going to give up on this, are you?” “You’re my responsibility now. Mine to care for, to cherish, to protect.” He said the words simply as though it was the most normal thing in the world to have complete accountability for a woman he’d never met before that day. “If you’re hurting I can’t rest until I ease your pain. Understand, Olivia?” “All right.”
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