Category : Various Text files
Archive   : PITHY.ZIP
Filename : PITHY.TEX

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I was one of a team of 3 economists who wrote a graphics system to help
in the preparation of the very-long-run regional economic projections prepared
quinquennially by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. While this system has
made the process much more efficient, it also made it bone-numbingly
tedious and very hard on the eyes. To remind analysts using the system to
take regular breaks, I put together a file of pithy quotations, one of which
is randomly popped onto the computer screen every 45 minutes, along with a
message telling the analyst that it is time for a break. This feature of the
program has been popular with the users of the system, and since some of the
quotations are amusing (and a few even insightful), I send the file for
your reading pleasure.
While I have tried to quote people accurately, some of these statements
are taken from secondary sources and apparently not everyone is as careful as
one would like. I have found and fixed some errors, though some may remain.

-- Gerry Aman

Nutritional tip:
Only Irish Coffee provides in a single glass all four
essential food groups: alchohol, caffeine, sugar, and fat.

I believe that professional wrestling is clean
and everything else in the world is fixed.

-- Frank Deford

Whatever their other contributions to society,
lawyers could be an important source of protein.

-- Guindon cartoon caption

The goal of all inanimate objects is to resist man
and ultimately defeat him.

-- Russell Baker

A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do.

-- Sylvester Stallone

If you can't laugh at yourself,
make fun of other people.

-- Bobby Slayton

Historical reminder:
Always keep Horace before Descartes.

Economists are people who work with numbers,
but who don't have the personality to be accountants.

No matter how cynical you get,
it is just impossible to keep up.

-- Lily Tomlin

I believe people would be alive today if there were a death penalty.

-- Nancy Reagan

Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

Be true to your teeth and they won't be false to you.

-- Soupy Sales

If you're gonna steal, steal from kin --
at least they're less likely to put the law on you.

-- Bret Maverick

It takes so little to ruin a perfect day:

a stone in the shoe;
a cockroach in the spaghetti sauce;
a woman's laugh.
-- H.L. Mencken

Time is the slippery, viscid, wavering tool of a
malignant prestidigitator with nineteen thumbs.

Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening all at once.

When the tides of life turn against you
And the current upsets your boat,
Don't waste those tears on what might have been,
Just lay on your back and float.
-- Ed Norton ("The Honeymooners")

Due to the shape of the North American elk's esophagus, even
if it could speak, it could not pronounce the word "Lasagna."

-- Cliff Clavin ("Cheers")

Did you hear about the two dyslexic theologians who
sat around arguing about the existence of Dog?

Working rule #23 :

Go through the motions anyway; you might get lucky.

If once a man indulges himself in murder, very soon he comes to think
little of robbing; and from robbing he next comes to drinking and
Sabbath-breaking, and from that to incivility and procrastination.

-- Thomas De Quincey

The difference between genius and stupidity is
that genius has its limits.

If it weren't for pickpockets, I'd have no sex life at all.

-- Rodney Dangerfield

If Shakespeare had been in pro basketball he never would have
had time to write his solliloquies. He would always have been
on a plane between Phoenix and Kansas City.

-- Paul Westhead, basketball coach

A team is a team. Shakespeare said that many times.

-- Dan Devine, football coach

A piano is a piano is a piano.

-- Gertrude Steinway

A little inaccuracy sometimes saves tons of explanation.

-- H. H. Munro (Saki)

I propose getting rid of conventional armaments and replacing
them with reasonably-priced hydrogen bombs that would be
distributed equally throughout the world.

-- Idi Amin

I don't want any yes-men around me. I want everybody
to tell me the truth even if it costs them their jobs.

-- Sam Goldwyn

I wasn't kissing her. I was whispering in her mouth.

-- Chico Marx

Work is of two kinds: first, altering the position of matter
at or near the earth's surface relative to other matter;
second, telling other people to do so.

-- Bertrand Russell

I have enough money to last me the rest of my life,
unless I buy something.

-- Jackie Mason

While you're saving your face you're losing your ass.

-- Lyndon B. Johnson

I have already given two cousins to the war and I stand
ready to sacrifice my wife's brother.
-- Artemus Ward

Isn't there any other part of the matzo you can eat?

-- Marilyn Monroe, upon being served
matzo ball soup 3 meals in a row.

It is not true that life is one damn thing after another --
it is the same damn thing over and over.

-- Edna St. Vincent Millay

The less things change, the more they remain the same.

-- Sicilian proverb

The brotherhood of man is no mere poet's dream;
it is a most depressing and humiliating reality.

-- Oscar Wilde

Gaiety is the most outstanding feature of the Soviet Union.

-- Joseph Stalin

In Italy, for 30 years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder,
and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo Da Vinci, and the
Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had 500 years of
democracy and peace -- and what did they produce? The coockoo clock.
-- from the movie "The Third Man"

Historians have now definitely established that Juan Cabrillo,
discoverer of California, was not looking for Kansas, thus
setting a precedent that continues to this day.

-- Wayne Shannon

When a book and a head collide and there is a hollow sound,
is it always the book?

-- Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

Great Moments in Literature: In 1936, Ernest Hemingway, while
trout fishing, caught a carp and decided not to write about it.

-- Guindon cartoon caption

A boy can learn a lot from a dog: obedience, loyalty, and the
importance of turning around three times before lying down.

-- Robert Benchley

When you go into court you are putting your fate into the hands
of 12 people who weren't smart enough to get out of jury duty.

-- Norm Crosby

It matters not whether you win or lose;
what matters is whether I win or lose.

-- Daring Weinberg

It is easier to get forgiveness than permission.

-- Stewart's Law of Retroaction

Poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese.

-- G. K. Chesterton

Soderquist's paradox:
There are more horse's asses than there are horses.

The future is very much like the present, only longer.

-- Dan Quisenberry

It is better to deal with crooks than with fools,
because the crooks sometimes take a break.
-- Alexandre Dumas (the younger)

I can now afford all the things I never
had as a kid, if I didn't have kids.

-- Robert Orben

Life being what it is, one dreams of revenge.

-- Paul Gauguin

Computers are useless. They can only give you answers.

-- Pablo Picasso


Proof that cats are smarter than dogs:
You cannot get eight cats to pull a sled through snow.

In America, anyone can become president.
But that's one of the risks you have to take.

-- Adlai Stevenson

Most of our future lies ahead of us.

-- Denny Crum, Louisville basketball coach

You're never too old to do goofy stuff.

-- Ward Cleaver ("Leave It to Beaver")

You know what makes this country great? You don't have to be
witty or clever, as long as you can hire someone who is.

-- Ted Baxter ("The Mary Tyler Moore Show")

Actress Robin Givens has filed a libel suit against estranged
husband Mike Tyson, claiming he told a reporter that she was
after his money.... She's asking $125 million.
-- NBC News

You can get more with a kind word and a gun
than you can with a kind word alone.

-- Al Capone

If you have been in a poker game for 30 minutes and you
still don't know who the pigeon is, the pigeon is you.

Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend.
Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.

-- Groucho Marx

My neighbors down here in Barbour County, Alabama are
kindly, intelligent, educated, and refined.

-- George Wallace

Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler.

-- Albert Einstein

Success is having to worry about
every damn thing in the world,
except money.
-- Johnny Cash

I think I am beginning to understand something of it.

-- Auguste Renoir (his last words)

Do you think a man who knows his own value grants anyone
the right to criticize even his most trivial qualities?

-- Arnold Schoenberg

If there ain't no place to go, there's no way to take a trip.

-- "Dandy" Don Meredith

Society is merely everybody else,
and you don't owe everybody anything.

-- Thomas Berger

City ain't no place for a woman,
though a lot of pretty men go there.

-- W.C. Fields (in "The Fatal Glass of Beer")

Never kick a fresh turd on a hot day.

-- Harry S Truman

If you're good, you can do it anywhere --
even on the ground with a stick.

-- Alvin Doyle Moore

It is bad today, and it will be worse
tomorrow; and so on until the worst of all.

-- Arthur Schopenhauer

To ensure freshness, all foods are cooked from
scratch, which is subject to run out.

-- Dip's Country Kitchen (Chapel Hill, N.C.)

If you have to eat crow, eat it while it's hot.
-- Alben Barkley

Tome mucho cafe, fume un buen cigarro, y no se ocupe.
(Drink a lotta coffee, smoke a good cigar, and don't fret yourself)

-- The World's Oldest Living Peruvian (aged about 165)

Some people are so ignorant they wouldn't know how
to pour piss out of a boot -- even if the instructions
were printed on the heel.
-- Lyndon Baines Johnson

His Majesty does not know what the Band has
just played, but it never to be played again!
-- King George V

I guess when you turn off the main road, you have
to be prepared to see some funny houses.

-- Stephen King (from "Rage")

If I'd've hit that many singles, I'd've worn a dress.

-- Mickey Mantle, 1985, reflecting on
Pete Rose breaking Ty Cobb's record

The fact that many people prefer bad art to good art is not a matter
for criminal prosecution but an ingredient in the human comedy, one
by which other people will always know how to profit.
-- John Russell

What was was was! What is is is!

-- Sparky Anderson, 1986

Although our information is incorrect, we do not vouch for it.

-- Erik Alfred Leslie Satie

If you can kill a snake with it, it ain't art.

-- Orcenith Lyle Bonge

The only thing one can be proud of is of having worked
in such a way that an official reward for your labor
cannot be envisaged by anyone.
-- Jean Cocteau

I told Jimmy Carter that Reagan's got just what this
country wants: a good head o' hair and a mean line o' talk.

-- St. Eom of the Land of Pasquan

The only thing God didn't do to Job was give him a computer.

-- I. F. Stone

90 percent of the worst human beings I know are poets. Most
poets these days are so square they have to walk around the
block just to turn over in bed.
-- Kenneth Rexroth

The race is not always to the swift,
nor the battle to the strong --
but that's usually the way to bet.

-- Damon Runyon

What got you here will get you out of here.

-- Joe Garagiola

It is a fine thing when a man who thoroughly understands
a subject is unwilling to open his mouth.

-- Yoshida Kendo

On the BBC there has been a spate of XVIIIc English composers, perhaps
to show us why they are unknown; and a careful selection of the worst
pieces of J.C. Bach set off with nothings by Frederick the Great. As
for poerty -- and as for readers -- the squalor is repulsive.
-- Basil Bunting

What dull barbarians are not proud of their dullness and barbarism?

-- Thackeray

Tutti Frutti, good booty / If it don't fit, don't force it
You can grease it, make it easy ...

-- Richard Wayne Penniman, 1955

People know what they do; they frequently know why they do what
they do; but what they don't know is what what they do does.

-- Michel Foucault

The whole dream of democracy is to raise the proletarian
to the level of stupidity attained by the bourgeois.

-- Gustave Flaubert

For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors,
and laugh at them in our turn.
-- Jane Austen

I believe that if I ever had to practice cannibalism,
I might manage it if there were enough tarragon around.

-- James Beard

When one starts from a portrait and seeks by successive
eliminations to find pure form ... one inevitably ends
up with an egg.
-- Pablo Picasso

Each morning when I awake, I experience again a
supreme pleasure -- that of being Salvatore Dali.

-- Himself

Middle age is when you are faced with two temptations, and
you choose the one that will get you home by 9 o'clock.

-- Ronald Reagan

Whatever women do they must do twice as well as men to be
thought of as half as good. Luckily, this is not difficult.

-- Charlotte Whitton, Mayor of Ottawa

After ecstasy, the laundry.

-- Zen koan
(quoted in "Newsweek," 12/17/84)

Nothing we use or touch can be expressed in words that
equal what is given by the senses.

-- Hannah Arendt

I have a total irreverence for anything connected with society, except
that which makes the roads safer, the beer stronger, the food cheaper,
and the old men and women warmer in the winter and happier in the summer.

-- Brendan Behan

Ours is the age of substitutes: Instead of language we have jargon;
instead of principles, slogans; instead of genuine ideas, bright
-- Eric Bentley

Life -- the way it really is -- is a battle not between
Bad and Good but between Bad and Worse.

-- Joseph Brodsky

If you think that you can think about a thing, inextricably attached
to something else, without thinking of the thing it is attached to,
then you have a legal mind.
-- Thomas Reed Powell

I have spent all my life under a Communist regime, and I will tell
you that a society without any objective legal scale is a terrible
one indeed. But a society with no other scale but the legal one is
not quite worthy of man either.
-- Alexander Solzhenitsyn

The rain it raineth on the just
And also on the unjust fella;
But chiefly on the just, because
The unjust steals the just's umbrella.

-- Sam Ervin

It may be that we have all lived before and died, and
this is hell.
-- A.L. Prusick

Always look out for Number One
and be careful not to step in Number Two.

-- Rodney Dangerfield

Men are superior to women. For one thing, they can
urinate from a speeding car.
-- Will Durst

I have known more men destroyed by the desire to have
wife and child and to keep them in comfort than I have
seen destroyed by drink and harlots.
-- William Butler Yeats

If a woman has to choose between catching a fly ball and saving
an infant's life, she will choose to save the infant's life
without even considering if there are men on base.

-- Dave Barry

I go from stool to stool in singles bars hoping to get
lucky, but there's never any gum under any of them.
-- Emo Philips

This gum tastes funny.

-- Sign on a condom machine.

I married the first man I ever kissed. When I tell
my children that, they just about throw up.

-- Barbara Bush

Being head of state is an extremely thankless job.

-- Bokassa I, former emperor of the
Central African Republic, while on trial for
infanticide, cannibalism, and torture.

Baseball would be a better game if more third basemen
got hit in the mouth by line drives.

-- Dan Jenkins

Making duplicate copies and computer printouts of things
no one wanted even one of in the first place is giving
America a new sense of purpose.
-- Andy Rooney

I don't want to achieve immortality by being
inducted into baseball's Hall of Fame. I want
to achieve immortality by not dying.

-- Leo Durocher at eighty-one.

Time flies like an arrow.
Fruit flies like a banana.

-- Lisa Grossman

Some guy hit my fender, and I said to him, "Be fruitful
and multiply," but not in those words.
-- Woody Allen

Capital punishment is our society's recognition of
the sanctity of human life.
-- Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah

When dealing with the insane, the best method
is to pretend to be sane.
-- Hermann Hesse

A society made up of individuals who were capable of
original thought would probably be unendurable. The
pressure of ideas would simply drive it frantic.

-- H.L. Mencken

When a true genius appears in the world, you may
know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in
confederacy against him.
-- Swift

Yes, there will be sex after death;
we just won't be able to feel it.

-- Lily Tomlin

Boredome is the bitter fruit of too much routine,
or none at all.
-- Brendan Francis

When you watch television, you never see people watching
television. We love television because it brings us a
world in which television does not exist.
-- Barbara Ehrenreich

Baseball is what we were; football is what we have become.

-- Mary McGrory

If Jesus was Jewish, how come he has a Mexican name ?

Some mornings it just doesn't seem worth it to
gnaw through the leather straps.
-- Emo Philips

A criminal is a person with predatory instincts without
sufficient capital to form a corporation.
-- Howard Scott

Why should we take up farming when there are so many
mongongo nuts in the world ?

-- African Bushman, quoted by Jared Diamond

I feel sorry for people who don't drink, because when
they get up in the morning, they're not going to feel
any better all day.
-- Frank Sinatra

I never took hallucinogenic drugs, because I never wanted
my consciousness expanded one unnecessary iota.

-- Fran Lebowitz

People hate me because I am a multifaceted, talented,
wealthy, internationally-famous genius.

-- Jerry Lewis

As she fell face down into the black muck of the mud-wrestling pit,
her sweaty, 300-pound opponent muttering soft curses in Latin on
top of her, Sister Marie thought, "There is no doubt about it; the
Pope has betrayed me."
-- entry in San Jose State's bad writing contest, 1983

Having your book turned into a movie is like seeing
your oxen turned into bouillon cubes.
-- John LeCarre

Nebraska is proof that Hell is full, and the dead walk the earth.

-- Liz Winston

When Madonna grabs her crotch,
the social order is effectively transgressed.

-- Chip Wells, on his Ph.D. dissertation, "Like a Thesis:
A Postmodern Reading of Madonna Videos."

Human beings were invented by water as a
means of transporting itself from place to place.

-- Tom Robbins

  3 Responses to “Category : Various Text files
Archive   : PITHY.ZIP
Filename : PITHY.TEX

  1. Very nice! Thank you for this wonderful archive. I wonder why I found it only now. Long live the BBS file archives!

  2. This is so awesome! 😀 I’d be cool if you could download an entire archive of this at once, though.

  3. But one thing that puzzles me is the “mtswslnkmcjklsdlsbdmMICROSOFT” string. There is an article about it here. It is definitely worth a read: