“Life, too, is senseless unless you know who you are, what you want, and which way the wind blows.”
“Smiling without good reason is demeaning.”
“The poor are crazy, the rich just eccentric. - James Shin Hoo”
“I remember the will said, 'May God thy gold refine.' That must be from the Bible."
"Shakespeare," Turtle said. All quotations were either from the Bible or Shakespeare.”
“Your trouble comes from years of wearing the wrong kind of shoes. - Jake Wexler”
“Grace sat down where the chair wasn't.”
“Angela could not be the bomber, not that sweet, pretty thing. Thing? Is that how she regarded that young woman, as a thing? And what had she ever said to her except "I hear you're getting married, Angela" or "How pretty you look, Angela." Had anyone asked her about her ideas, her hopes, her plans? If I had been treated like that I'd have used dynamite, not fireworks; no, I would have just walked out and kept right on going. But Angela was different.”
“Sunset Towers faced east and had no towers.”
“Friday was back to normal, if the actions of suspicious would-be heirs competing for a two-hundred-million-dollar prize could be considered normal.”
“Jake Wexler, standing or sitting when not lying down”
“You can't read my shorthand because I wrote in Polish.”
“The sun sets in the west (just about everyone knows that), but Sunset Towers faced east. Strange!”
“All quotations were either from the Bible or Shakespeare.”
“Can you stand on your legs?” Sydelle Pulaski asked. “Can you walk at all?”
People never asked Chris those questions; they whispered them to his parents behind his back. “N-n-no. Why?”
“What better disguise for a thief or a murderer than a wheelchair, the perfect alibi.”
Chris enjoyed being taken for the criminal type. Now they really were friends.”
“Sandy fidgeted with his pen. “There’s something I didn’t write down. Maybe I shouldn’t tell you, you being a judge and all, but, well, Jake Wexler… he’s a bookie.”
No, he should not have told her. “A small-time operator, I’m sure, Mr. McSouthers,” the judge replied coldly. “It can have no bearing on the matter before us. Sam Westing manipulated people, cheated workers, bribed officials, stole ideas, but Sam Westing never smoked or drank or placed a bet. Give me a bookie any day over such a fine, upstanding, clean-living man.”
“She could have been an interior decorator, a good one, too, if it wasn’t for the pressing demands of so on and so forth.”
“Hey Chris, bet you don't know the Latin name of the red-headed woodpecker."
That was a hard one. Chris had to say Melanerpes erythrocephalus very slowly.”
“You, too, may strike it rich who dares to play the Westing game.”
“The poor are crazy, the rich just eccentric,”
“Hello, Jake, I'm glad you could come," Sunny (as Madame Hoo was now called) said, shaking the hand of the chairman of the State Gambling Commission.
"Boom!" Jake Wexler replied.”
“daughter of the servants.” “Gee, you must have been lonely, Judge, having nobody to play with.” “I played with Sam Westing—chess. Hour after hour I sat staring down at that chessboard. He lectured me, he insulted me, and he won every game.” The judge thought of their last game: She had been so excited about taking his queen, only to have the master checkmate her in the next move. Sam Westing had deliberately sacrificed his queen and she had fallen for it. “Stupid child, you can’t have a brain in that frizzy head to make a move like that.” Those were the last words he ever said to her. The judge continued: “I was sent to boarding school when I was twelve. My parents visited me at school when they could, but I never set foot in the Westing house again, not until two weeks ago.” “Your folks must have really worked hard,” Sandy said. “An education like that costs a fortune.” “Sam Westing paid for my education. He saw that I was accepted into the best schools, probably arranged for my first job, perhaps more, I don’t know.” “That’s the first decent thing I’ve heard about the old man.” “Hardly decent, Mr. McSouthers. It was to Sam Westing’s advantage to have a judge in his debt. Needless to say, I have excused myself from every case remotely connected with”
“HOO JAMES SHIN HOO. Born: James Hoo in Chicago. Age: 50. Added Shin to his name when he went into the restaurant business because it sounded more Chinese. First wife died of cancer five years ago. Married again last year. Has one son: Douglas. SUN LIN HOO. Age: 28. Born in China. Immigrated from Hong Kong two years ago. Gossip: James Hoo married her for her 100-year-old sauce. DOUGLAS HOO (called Doug). Age: 18. High-school track star. Is competing in Saturday’s track meet against college milers. Westing connection: Hoo sued Sara Westing over the invention of the disposable paper diaper. Case never came to court (Westing disappeared). Settled with the company last year for $25,000. Thinks he was cheated. Latest invention: paper innersoles.”
“TURTLE SPENT THE night at the bedside of eighty-five-year-old Julian R. Eastman. T. R. Wexler had a master’s degree in business administration, an advanced degree in corporate law, and had served two years as legal counsel to the Westing Paper Products Corporation. She had made one million dollars in the stock market, lost it all, then made five million more.”
“Read it out loud, dear,” Grace ordered, as Angela opened the card tied to the yellow-ribboned box. To the bride-to-be in the kitchen stuck, An asparagus cooker and lots of luck. from Cookie Barfspringer “Thank you,” Angela said, wondering which one was the Barfspringer. The next gift was an egg poacher. The box in pink ribbons contained another asparagus cooker. “I sure hope Doctor Deere likes asparagus,” someone remarked.”
“Hello, Jake, I’m so glad you could come,” Sunny (as Madame Hoo was now called) said, shaking the hand of the chairman of the State Gambling Commission.”
“I am rewarding you, and I am punishing you. For a reward for your courage, your bravery, you will never die. And for punishment, for having seen what cannot be seen, you will never return to this place.”
“I sensed immediately that he'd once been overweight. He moved with a fat person's tiptoey apology.”
“The penance is the most important part. It shows everyone that he’s serious. You know, it’s almost like a kind of ceremony. It proves the strength of his conviction. It shows everyone that he doesn’t care how much he may suffer, he’ll still beat the crap out of anyone who threatens you.”
“But I don’t like the idea of someone else being whipped on my account.”
“some things are not going to move, and we are the smaller ship that must adjust our course and steer in a different direction if we are going to make it.”
“FACING THE MUSIC Many years ago a man conned his way into the orchestra of the emperor of China although he could not play a note. Whenever the group practiced or performed, he would hold his flute against his lips, pretending to play but not making a sound. He received a modest salary and enjoyed a comfortable living. Then one day the emperor requested a solo from each musician. The flutist got nervous. There wasn’t enough time to learn the instrument. He pretended to be sick, but the royal physician wasn’t fooled. On the day of his solo performance, the impostor took poison and killed himself. The explanation of his suicide led to a phrase that found its way into the English language: “He refused to face the music.”2 The cure for deceit is simply this: face the music. Tell the truth. Some of us are living in deceit. Some of us are walking in the shadows. The lies of Ananias and Sapphira resulted in death; so have ours. Some of us have buried a marriage, parts of a conscience, and even parts of our faith—all because we won’t tell the truth. Are you in a dilemma, wondering if you should tell the truth or not? The question to ask in such moments is, Will God bless my deceit? Will he, who hates lies, bless a strategy built on lies? Will the Lord, who loves the truth, bless the business of falsehoods? Will God honor the career of the manipulator? Will God come to the aid of the cheater? Will God bless my dishonesty? I don’t think so either. Examine your heart. Ask yourself some tough questions. Am I being completely honest with my spouse and children? Are my relationships marked by candor? What about my work or school environment? Am I honest in my dealings? Am I a trustworthy student? An honest taxpayer? A reliable witness at work? Do you tell the truth . . . always? If not, start today. Don’t wait until tomorrow. The ripple of today’s lie is tomorrow’s wave and next year’s flood. Start today. Be just like Jesus. Tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.”
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