Meaningless Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 238 quotes )
New York! The white prisons, the sidewalks swarming with maggots, the breadlines, the opium joints that are built like palaces, the kikes that are there, the lepers, the thugs, and above all, the ennui, the monotony of faces, streets, legs, houses, skyscrapers, meals, posters, jobs, crimes, loves... A whole city erected over a hollow pit of nothingness. Meaningless. Absolute meaningless.
They just sat there looking back at me. The orange queen was clacking her typewriter. Cop talk was no more treat for her than legs to a dance director. They had the calm weathered faces of healthy men in hard condition. They had the eyes they always have, cloudy and grey like freezing water. The firm set mouth, the hard little wrinkles at the corners of the eyes, the hard hollow meaningless stare, not quite cruel and a thousand miles from kind. The dull ready-made clothes, worn without style, with a sort of contempt; the look of men who are poor and yet proud of their power, watching always for ways to make it felt, to shove it into you and twist it and grin and watch you squirm, ruthless without malice, cruel and yet not always unkind. What would you expect them to be? Civilization had no meaning for them. All they saw of it was the failures, the dirt, the dregs, the aberrations and the disgust.
If you have never spent whole afternoons with burning ears and rumpled hair, forgetting the world around you over a book, forgetting cold and hunger--If you have never read secretly under the bedclothes with a flashlight, because your father or mother or some other well-meaning person has switched off the lamp on the plausible ground that it was time to sleep because you had to get up so early--If you have never wept bitter tears because a wonderful story has come to an end and you must take your leave of the characters with whom you have shared so many adventures, whom you have loved and admired, for whom you have hoped and feared, and without whose company life seems empty and meaningless--If such things have not been part of your own experience, you probably won't understand what Bastian did next.
Mr. Constant," he said, "right now you’re as easy for the Bureau of Internal Revenue to watch as a man on a street corner selling apples and pears. But just imagine how hard you would be to watch if you had a whole office building jammed to the rafters with industrial bureaucrats—men who lose things and use the wrong forms and create new forms and demand everything in quintuplicate, and who understand perhaps a third of what is said to them; who habitually give misleading answers in order to gain time in which to think, who make decisions only when forced to, and who then cover their tracks; who make perfectly honest mistakes in addition and subtraction, who call meetings whenever they feel lonely, who write memos whenever they feel unloved; men who never throw anything away unless they think it could get them fired. A single industrial bureaucrat, if he is sufficiently vital and nervous, should be able to create a ton of meaningless papers a year for the Bureau of Internal Revenue to examine.
Nearly all our older poetry was written and read by men to whom the distinction between poetry and rhetoric, in its modern form, would have been meaningless. The 'beauties' which they chiefly regarded in every composition were those which we either dislike or simply do not notice. This change of taste makes an invisible wall between us and them.
But what force in the galaxy is stronger than she is?"Indifference." Jerusha surprised herself with the answer. "Indifference, Gundhalinu, is the strongest force in the universe. It makes everything it touches meaningless. Love and hate don't stand a chance against it. It lets neglect and decay and monstrous injustice go unchecked. It doesn't act, it allows. And that's what gives it so much power.
They were offered the choice between becoming kings or the couriers of kings. The way children would, they all wanted to be couriers. Therefore there are only couriers who hurry about the world, shouting to each other - since there are no kings - messages that have become meaningless. They would like to put an end to this miserable life of theirs but they dare not because of their oaths of service.
A strange thing happens when you interview a robot. You feel an urge to be profound: to ask profound questions. I suppose it’s an inter-species thing. Although if it is I wonder why I never try and be profound around my dog. ‘What does electricity taste like?’ I ask. ‘Like a planet around a star,’ Bina48 replies. Which is either extraordinary or meaningless - I’m not sure which
Until i die there will be these moments, moments seeming to rise up out of the ground like Macbeth's witches, when his face will come before me, that face in all its changes, when the exact timbre of his voice and tricks of his speech will nearly burst my ears, when his smell will overpower my nostrils. Sometimes, in the days which are coming--God grant me the grace to live them--in the glare of the grey morning, sour-mouthed, eyelids raw and red, hair tangled and damp from my stormy sleep, facing, over coffee and cigarette smoke, last night's impenetrable, meaningless boy who will shortly rise and vanish like the smoke, I will see Giovanni again, as he was that night, so vivid, so winning, all of thelight of that gloomy tunnel trapped around his head.
Joelle cuts off his interjection and says that but that her trouble with it is that ‘But For the Grace of God’ is a subjunctive, a counterfactual, she says and can make sense only when introducing a conditional clause, like e. g. ‘But For the Grace of God I would have died on Molly Notkin’s bathroom floor,’ so that an indicative transposition like […] she says, literally senseless, and regardless of whether she hears it or not it’s meaningless.
She believed, and was entitled to believe, I must say, that all human beings were evil by nature, whether tormentors or victims, or idle standers-by. They could only create meaningless tragedies, she said, since they weren't nearly intelligent enough to accomplish all the good they were meant to do.
The place where french-postmodernism has been really harmful is the Third World. Because Third World intellectuals are badly needed in popular movements, they can make contributions. And a lot of them is drawn away from this: antropologists, sociologists and others. They are drawn away in this arcane, and in my view, mostly meaningless discourses and are disassociated from popular struggles. And you can see the impact. They really indicate that the level of irrationality that grows out of this undermines the oportunities for doing something really significant and important. It is like consumerism because it diverts people from concentrating in a serious way and doing something about their own problems.