Grandparents Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 92 quotes )
We have been cut off, the past has been ended and the family has broken up and the present is adrift in its wheelchair. ... That is no gap between the generations, that is a gulf. The elements have changed, there are whole new orders of magnitude and kind. [...]My grandparents had to live their way out of one world and into another, or into several others, making new out of old the way corals live their reef upward. I am on my grandparents' side. I believe in Time, as they did, and in the life chronological rather than in the life existential. We live in time and through it, we build our huts in its ruins, or used to, and we cannot afford all these abandonings.
We have no idea, now, of who or what the inhabitants of our future might be. In that sense, we have no future. Not in the sense that our grandparents had a future, or thought they did. Fully imagined cultural futures were the luxury of another day, one in which 'now' was of some greater duration. For us, of course, things can change so abruptly, so violently, so profoundly, that futures like our grandparents' have insufficient 'now' to stand on. We have no future because our present is too volatile. ... We have only risk management. The spinning of the given moment's scenarios. Pattern recognition
Most people of my grandparents' generation had an intuitive sense of agricultural basics ... This knowledge has vanished from our culture. We also have largely convinced ourselves it wasn't too important. Consider how many Americans might respond to a proposal that agriculture was to become a mandatory subject in all schools ... A fair number of parents would get hot under the collar to see their kids' attention being pulled away from the essentials of grammar, the all-important trigonometry, to make room for down-on-the-farm stuff. The baby boom psyche embraces a powerful presumption that education is a key to moving away from manual labor and dirt--two undeniable ingredients of farming. It's good enough for us that somebody, somewhere, knows food production well enough to serve the rest of us with all we need to eat, each day of our lives.
If I spoke to Rodman in those terms, saying that my grandparents' lives seem to me organic and ours what? hydroponic? he would ask in derision what I meant. Define my terms. How do you measure the organic residue of a man or a generation? This is all metaphor. If you can't measure it, it doesn't exist.
[After my mother died, I had a feeling that was] not unlike the homesickness that always filled me for the first few days when I went to stay at my grandparents'' house, and even, I was stunned to discover, during the first few months of my freshman year at college. It was not really the home my mother had made that I yearned for. But I was sick in my soul for that greater meaning of home that we understand most purely when we are children, when it is a metaphor for all possible feelings of security, of safety, of what is predictable, gentle, and good in life.
Make up your mind to this. If you are different, you are isolated, not only from people of your own age but from those of your parents' generation and from your children's generation too. They'll never understand you and they'll be shocked no matter what you do. But your grandparents would probably be proud of you and say: 'Theres a chip off the old block,' and your grandchildren will sigh enviously and say: 'What an old rip Grandma must have been!' and they'll try to be like you.
If, for example, I saw my grandparents or my daughter for an instant, would I recognize them? Probably not, because in looking so hard for a way to keep them alive, remembering them in the most minimal details, I have been changing them, adorning them with qualities they may not have had. I have given them a destiny much more complex than the ones they lived.
Perhaps history this century, thought Eigenvalue, is rippled with gathers in its fabric such that if we are situated, as Stencil seemed to be, at the bottom of a fold, it's impossible to determine warp, woof, or pattern anywhere else. By virtue, however, of existing in one gather it is assumed there are others, compartmented off into sinuous cycles each of which had come to assume greater importance than the weave itself and destroy any continuity. Thus it is that we are charmed by the funny-looking automobiles of the '30's, the curious fashions of the '20's, the particular moral habits of our grandparents. We produce and attend musical comedies about them and are conned into a false memory, a phony nostalgia about what they were. We are accordingly lost to any sense of continuous tradition. Perhaps if we lived on a crest, things would be different. We could at least see.
Most of the members of the convent were old-fashioned Satanists, like their parents and grandparents before them. They'd been brought up to it, and weren't, when you got right down to it, particularly evil. Human beings mostly aren't. They just get carried away by new ideas, like dressing up in jackboots and shooting people, or dressing up in white sheets and lynching people, or dressing up in tie-dye jeans and playing guitars at people. Offer people a new creed with a costume and their hearts and minds will follow. Anyway, being brought up as a Satanist tended to take the edge off it. It was something you did on Saturday nights. And the rest of the time you simply got on with life as best you could, just like everyone else.
Everyone will have gone then except us, because we're tied to this soil by a roomful of trunks where the household goods and clothing of grandparents are kept, and the canopies that my parenrs' horses used when they came to Macondo, fleeing from the war. We've been sown into this soil by the memory of the remote dead whose bones can no longer be found twenty fathoms under the earth. The trunks have been in the room ever since the last days of the war; and they'll be there this afternoon when we come back from the burial, if that final wind hasn't passed, the one that will sweep away Macondo, its bedrooms full of lizards and its silent people devastated by memories.
From Alan Lightman's intricate 1993 novel Einstein's Dreams; set in Berne in 1905:With infinite life comes an infinite list of relatives. Grandparents never die, nor do great-grandparents, great-aunts...and so on, back through the generations, all alive and offering advice. Sons never escape from the shadows of their fathers. Nor do daughters of their mothers. No one ever comes into his own...Such is the cost of immortality. No person is whole. No person is free.
Gogol remembers having to do the same thing when he was younger, when his grandparents died...He remembers, back then, being bored by it, annoyed at having to observe a ritual no one else he knew followed, in honor of people he had seen only a few times in his life...Now, sitting together at the kitchen table at six-thirty every evening, his father's chair empty, this meatless meal is the only thing that seems to make sense.
The world is full of Guses--good-looking boys and girls who've been dealt the best possible genetic hand by parents and grandparents and great-grandparents who have been doing neither well nor badly for generations; who engender these decent kids and give them just enough to survive in the world but no more--no spectacular beauty, no uncontainable brilliance, no kingly, unstoppable ambition. Isn't it the task of art to acclaim these people, to ennoble them? Consider Olympia. A girl of the streets becomes a deity.
The time of dangling insects arrived. White houses with caterpillars dangling from the eaves. White stones in driveways. You can walk at night down the middle of the street and hear women talking on the telephone. Warmer weather produces voices in the dark. They are talking about their adolescent sons. How big, how fast. The sons are almost frightening. The quantities they eat. The way they loom in doorways. These are the days that are full of wormy bugs. They are in the grass, stuck to the siding, hanging in the hair, hanging from the trees and eaves, stuck to the window screens. The women talk long-distance to grandparents of growing boys. They share the Trimline phone, beamish old folks in hand-knit sweaters on fixed incomes. What happens to them when the commercial ends?
Human beings look separate because you see them walking about separately. But then we are so made that we can see only the present moment. If we could see the past, then of course it would look different. For there was a time when every man was part of his mother, and (earlier still) part of his father as well, and when they were part of his grandparents. If you could see humanity spread out in time, as God sees it, it would look like one single growing thing--rather like a very complicated tree. Every individual would appear connected with every other.
Once we were blobs in the sea, and then fishes, and then lizards and rats, and then monkeys, and hundreds of things in between. This hand was once a fin, this hand once had claws! In my human mouth I have the pointy teeth of a wolf and the chisel teeth of a rabbit and the grinding teeth of a cow! Our blood is as salty as the sea we used to live in! When we're frightened, the hair on our skin stands up, just like it did when we had fur. We ARE history! Everything we've ever been on the way to becoming us, we still are. Would you like the rest of the story? I'm made up of the memories of my parents and my grandparents, all my ancestors. They're in the way I look, in the color of my hair. And I'm made up of everyone I've ever met who's changed the way I think.