Thursday, August 25, 2011

Love and be loved if at all possible.

All quotes by author David Nicholls

"What are you going to do with your life?" In one way or another it seemed that people had been asking her this forever; teachers, her parents, friends at three in the morning, but the question had never seemed this pressing and still she was no nearer an answer... "Live each day as if it's your last', that was the conventional advice, but really, who had the energy for that? What if it rained or you felt a bit glandy? It just wasn't practical. The trick of it, she told herself, is to be courageous and bold and make a difference. Not change the world exactly, just the bit around you. Go out there with your double-first, your passion and your new Smith Corona electric typewriter and work hard at … something. Change lives through art maybe. Write beautifully. Cherish your friends, stay true to your principles, live passionately and fully and well. Experience new things. Love and be loved if at all possible.”
--'One Day'

"This is me.’" He handed her the precious scrap of paper. ‘Call me or I’ll call you, but one of us will call, yes? What I mean is it’s not a competition. You don’t lose if you phone first"
--'One Day'

"She was reaching the limits of how much its possible to change a man."
--'One Day'

"Em, we've known each other five or six years now, but two years properly, as, you know, 'friends', which isn't that long but I think I know a bit about you and I think I know what your problem is. Here it is. I think you're scared of being happy, Emma. I think you think that the natural way of things is for your life to be grim and grey and dour and to hate your job, hate where you live, not to have success or money or God forbid a boyfriend. In fact, I think I'll go further and say that I think you actually get a kick out of being disappointed and under-achieving, because it's easier, isn't it? Failure and unhappiness is easier because you can make a joke out of it."
--'One Day'

"She sometimes wondered what her twenty-two-year-old self would think of today's Emma Mayhew. Would she consider her self-centered? Compromised? A bourgeois sell-out, with her appetite for home ownership and foreign travel, clothes from Paris and expensive haircuts? Would she find her conventional, with her new surname and hopes for a family life? Maybe, but then the twenty-two-year-old Emma Morley wasn't such a paragon either: pretentious, petulant, lazy, speechifying, judgmental. Self-pitying, self-righteous, self-important, all of the selfs except self-confident, the quality that she always needed most."
--'One Day'

"You know what I can't understand? You have all these people telling you all the time how great you are, smart and funny and talented and all that, I mean endlessly, I've been telling you for years. So why don't you believe it? Why do you think people say that stuff, Em? Do you think it's a conspiracy, people secretly ganging up to be nice about you?"
--'One Day'

"...you feel a little bit lost right now about what to do with your life, a bit rudderless and oarless and aimless but that's okay that's alright because we're all meant to be like that at twenty-four."
--'One Day'

"Oh you know me. I have no emotions. I'm a robot. Or a nun. A robot nun."
--'One Day'

"And then some days you wake up and everything's perfect."
--'One Day'

"She had never been a proficient flirt. Her spasms of kittenish behaviour were graceless and inept, like normal conversation on roller skates."
--'One Day'

"Independence is the luxury of all those people who are too confident, and busy, and popular, and attractive to be just plain old lonely. And make no mistake, lonely is absolutely the worst thing to be. Tell someone that you've got a drink problem, or an eating disorder, or your dad died when you were a kid even, and you can almost see their eyes light up with the sheer fascinating drama and pathos of it all, because you've got an issue, something for them to get involved in, to talk about and analyse and discuss and maybe even cure. But tell someone you’re lonely and of course they’ll seem sympathetic, but look very carefully and you'll see one hand snaking behind their back, groping for the door handle, ready to make a run for it, as if loneliness itself were contagious. Because being lonely is just so banal, so shaming, so plain and dull and ugly."
--'Starter for Ten'

"No matter how predictable, banal and listless the rest of my life might be, you can guarantee that there'll always be something interesting going on with my skin."
--'Starter for Ten''

"If she does have a failing, and it's obviously only a tiny one, it's that she doesn't seem particularly curious about other people, or me, anyway."
--'A Question of Attraction: A Novel'

1 comment:

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