Impending Quotes (displaying: 1 - 24 of 24 quotes )
Or rather, it made him into two people. He was by nature a cheerful almost irrepressible person with a great zest for life. He loved good talk and physical activity. He had a deep sense of humour and a great capacity for making friends. But from now onwards there was to be a second side, more private but predominant in his diaries and letters. This side of him was capable of bouts of profound despair. More precisely, and more closely related to his mother's death, when he was in this mood he had a deep sense of impending loss. Nothing was safe. Nothing would last. No battle would be won for ever.
Why do I have a sense of impending disaster? (He reflects) Sonders is after my niece and has discovered the secret address where I am sending her to the safe keeping of my sister-in-law Miss Blumenblatt, who has never laid eyes on him, or, for that matter, on Marie either since she was a baby—while I have to leave my business in the charge of my assistant and an apprentice, and follow my new servant, whom I haven't had time to introduce to anyone, to town to join the parade and take my fiance to dinner in a uniform I can't sit down in. One false move and we could have a farce on our hands.
Yet he looks--and doesn't he know it--better than nearly all of his age-mates at this gym. Not because they're in such bad shape--they are healthy enough specimens. What's wrong with them is their fatalistic acceptance of middle age, their ignoble resignation to grandfatherhood, impending retirement and golf. George is different from them because, in some sense which can't quite be defined but which is immediately apparent when you see him naked, he hasn't given up. He is still a contender, and they aren't. Maybe it's nothing more mysterious than vanity which gives him this air of a withered boy? Yes, despite his wrinkles, his slipped flesh, his graying hair, his grim-lipped, strutting spryness, you catch occasional glimpses of a ghostly someone else, soft-faced, boyish, pretty. The combination is bizarre, it is older than middle age itself, but it is there.
He emphasised basic truths: you are not dying yet, you have to live your life until you are. Underpinning them was the belief that the grim reality of impending death can be talked away by trying to invest in the present reality of life. I didn’t believe that at the time, but now I do. By definition, you have to live until you die. Better to make that life as complete and enjoyable an experience as possible, in case death is shite, which I suspect it will be.
Books have always been my escape - where I go to bury my nose, hone my senses, or play the emotional tourist in a world of my own choosing... Words are my best expressive tool, my favorite shield, my point of entry...When I was growing up, books took me away from my life to a solitary place that didn't feel lonely. They celebrated the outcasts, people who sat on the margins of society contemplating their interiors. . . Books were my cure for a romanticized unhappiness, for the anxiety of impending adulthood. They were all mine, private islands with secret passwords only the worthy could utter. If I could choose my favorite day, my favorite moment in some perfect dreamscape, I know exactly where I would be: stretched out in bed in the afternoon, knowing that the kids are taking a nap and I've got two more chapters left of some heartbreaking novel, the kind that messes you up for a week.
I shared a vagrant optimism that some of us were making real progress, that we had taken an honest road, and that the best of us would inevitably make it over the top. At the same time, I felt that the life we were leading was a lost cause, that we were all actor, kidding ourselves on a senseless odyssey. It was the tension between those two poles - a restless idealism on one hand and a sense of impending doom on the other - that kept me going.
Like most others, I was a seeker, a mover, a malcontent, and at times a stupid hell-raiser. I was never idle long enough to do much thinking, but I felt somehow that some of us were making real progress, that we had taken an honest road, and that the best of us would inevitably make it over the top. At the same time, I shared a dark suspicion that the life we were leading was a lost cause, that we were all actors, kidding ourselves along on a senseless odyssey. It was the tension between these two poles - a restless idealism on one hand and a sense of impending doom on the other - that kept me going.
It is worth mentioning, for future reference, that the creative power which bubbles so pleasantly in beginning a new book quiets down after a time, and one goes on more steadily. Doubts creep in. Then one becomes resigned. Determination not to give in, and the sense of an impending shape keep one at it more than anything.
Under the strain of this continually impending doom and by the sleeplessness to which I now condemned myself, ay, even beyond what I had thought possible to man, I became, in my own person, a creature eaten up and emptied by fever, languidly weak both in body and mind, and solely occupied by one thought: the horror of my other self.
There were times when the fact of impending death seemed as palpable as the bed they lay on, and they would cling together with a sort of despairing sensuality, like a damned soul grasping at his last morsel of pleasure when the clock is within five minutes of striking. But there were also times when they had the illusion not only of safety but of permanence.
I have absolutely no pleasure in the stimulants in which I sometimes so madly indulge. It has not been in the pursuit of pleasure that I have periled life and reputation and reason. It has been the desperate attempt to escape from torturing memories, from a sense of insupportable loneliness and a dread of some strange impending doom.
If man merely sat back and thought about his impending termination, and his terrifying insignificance and aloneness in the cosmos, he would surely go mad, or succumb to a numbing sense of futility. Why, he might ask himself, should he bother to write a great symphony, or strive to make a living, or even to love another, when he is no more than a momentary microbe on a dust mote whirling through the unimaginable immensity of space? Those of us who are forced by their own sensibilities to view their lives in this perspective? who recognize that there is no purpose they can comprehend and that amidst a countless myriad of stars their existence goes unknown and unchronicled? can fall prey all too easily to the ultimate anomie. The world's religions, for all their parochialism, did supply a kind of consolation for this great ache.
Men can imagine their own deaths, they can see them coming, and the mere though of impending death acts like an aphrodisiac. A dog or rabbit doesn't behave like that. Take birds -- in a lean season they cut down on the eggs, or they won't mate at all. They put their energy into staying alive themselves until times get better. But human beings hope they can stick their souls into someone else, some new version of themselves, and live on forever. As a species were doomed by hope, then? You could call it hope. That, or desperation. But we're doomed without hope, as well, said Jimmy. Only as individuals, said Crake cheerfully.