July 21, 2016

“Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

Today is the first day fridge magnet-8x6

“Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”
Charles Dederich (1914-1997)
       Founder of
Synanon, the 1960s drug rehabilitation organization that morphed into a cult 
Most sources credit Charles Dederich with coining this well-known self-help mantra in the 1960s, around the time he founded Synanon. Clearly, it’s use by Dederich and Synanon as a slogan for recovering drug addicts helped popularize the saying. However, Dederich may or may not have created it. It’s one of those sayings that just seem to have been floating around in the 1960s. Many websites and books say it was coined by the legendary Hippie activist/theater group called The Diggers. It was also used by Yippie leader Abbie Hoffman in his 1968 book Revolution for the Hell of It (1968), as the title of a song in the obscure 1968 musical Love Match, and on on everything from head shop posters and greeting cards. I suspect that’s why some sources simply (and perhaps rightly) credit it to “Anonymous.” (Related post: “One day at a time”)

Steve Martin Twitter profile pic


“I thought yesterday was the first day of the rest of my life but it turns out today is.”
       Steve Martin
       American actor, comedian, musician and writer
       A tweet from his Twitter feed

Juicy Tomatoes book cover-8x6

“Do something outrageous, bold, unlike yourself. If the bathing suit doesn’t fit, skinny-dip. The clock ticketh. To adapt an old philosophy: Today is the youngest day of the rest of your life.”
Susan Swartz
       California-based journalist, author and public radio commentator
       Advice in her book
Juicy Tomatoes: Plain Truths, Dumb Lies, and Sisterly Advice about Life After 50 (2000)


“Today today is the first day of the rest of your life...and it too will suck.” 
T-shirt slogan (on Zazzle.com)


“Remember those posters that said, ‘Today is the first day of the rest of your life’? Well, that’s true of every day but one — the day you die.”
Kevin Spacey, as the character Lester Burnham
       A poignant quote from the 1999 film
American Beauty, spoken as a voiceover by Lester not long before he commits suicide.

botld-02 - Happy Zombie button-8x6

“To our newest undead recruits. Good moaning. Today is the first day of the rest of your afterlife.”
Virginia Reynolds (a.k.a. “MsCadavreExquis”)
       American author alleged to be the “love child of Marcel Duchamp and Victoria Woodhull”
       From the "Deadication" of her book
The Art of War for Zombies: Ancient Chinese Secrets of World Domination (2011)

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July 8, 2016

“Life is unfair…”

John F Kennedy life is unfair quote


“Life is unfair.”
       President John F. Kennedy (1917-1963)
       American Democratic politician who served as the 35th President of the United States       
       This famous pithy quote comes from comments Kennedy made in a press conference on March 21, 1962. It’s one of JFK’s most widely-cited quotations, though few people today are aware of the context. It was part of his response to a question about U.S. Army reservists who had publicly objected to being called up to serve as “military advisors” in Vietnam. Kennedy had recently increased the American military presence in Vietnam to nearly 10,000 troops. Some reservists had expressed their opposition by holding public demonstrations.
       When asked about those protests, Kennedy responded: “Some men are killed in a war and some men are wounded, and some men never leave the country, and some men are stationed in the Antarctic and some are stationed in San Francisco. It’s very hard in military or in personal life to assure complete equality. Life is unfair.”
       For more background see the entry about this quote on my ThisDayinQuotes.com site and Garson O’Toole’s post about it on his great QuoteInvestigator.com site.



“There’s a difference between the fact that the universe is inherently unfair on a cosmic level, and the fact that life is unfair because people are actively making it so.”
       John Scalzi
       American science fiction author 
       A comment Scalzi made in a post on his blog about homophobia. As he notes in the next sentence in that post: “There’s not much one can do about the former, but the latter is fixable.”

Steve Maraboli


“The only thing that makes life unfair is the delusion that it should be fair.”
       Steve Maraboli
       American behavioral scientist, motivational speaker and author 
       From his book Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience



“Life is unfair but remember sometimes it is unfair in your favor.”
       Attributed to Peter Ustinov (1921-2004)
       British actor and writer 
       This quip is attributed to Ustinov by hundreds of posts on the Internet, but none that I found gave any source. If you can confirm that it’s a real quote by Ustinov and know the source, please shoot me an email and let me know.

Rob Lowe autobiography


“Nothing in life is unfair. It’s just life.”
       Rob Lowe
       American actor
       In his autobiography Stories I Only Tell My Friends



“At her death the world looked for villains. It found only the troubling truths that life is unfair and cruel, that we see human despair too late, that courage is not always enough.” 
       From the narration for the classic 1966 documentary film The Legend of Marilyn Monroe, produced shortly after Marilyn’s death.
       Script by Theodore Strauss and Terry Sanders (who also directed the film). Actor John Huston is the narrator.

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June 19, 2016

“What does not kill me makes me stronger” – from Nietzsche and The Donald to Miley and Conan…


“What does not kill me makes me stronger.”
(“Was mich nicht umbringt macht mich stärker.”)
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)
       German philosopher and poet
       In the “Maxims and Arrows”
section of his book Twilight of the Idols (1888)
       This famous line by Nietzsche has been translated and paraphrased in various ways, often with Whatever or That which in place of the word What, doesn’t instead of does not, and destroy or some other verb in place of kill. Nietzsche used a similar line in Ecce Homo (written 1888, published 1908), the last book he wrote before going completely insane. In the chapter of Ecce Homo titled
“Why I Am So Wise,” he wrote that a person who has “turned out well” could be recognized by certain attributes, such as a knack for exploiting bad accidents to his advantage. Regarding such a man, Nietzsche said: “What does not kill him makes him stronger.” (“Was ihn nicht umbringt, macht ihn stärker.”)

trump-cartoon playing the media


“What doesn’t kill Trump makes him stronger. And louder.”
       Sarah Rense
       Assistant Editor at Esquire magazine
       In a post about FOX News anchor Megyn Kelly's feud with Donald Trump on the Esquire.com website. (Cartoon by Tom Stiglich, TomStiglich.com.)


“In our celebrity-obsessed culture, whatever outrageous act doesn’t manage to kill a celebrity’s career simply makes them a bigger celebrity.” 
       Comment posted by “JohnnyYuma” on the ABC News story about Miley Cyrus and her “twerking” performance on the August 2013 MTV Video Music Awards show


“You ask anybody what their number one fear is and it’s public humiliation. Multiply that on a global scale and that’s what I've been through. It changes you and makes you one tough motherf**ker. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. It’s really that simple.”
Mel Gibson 
       In a
January 2010 interview in The Telegraph 
       Commenting on what he learned after the publicity flap over his 2006 arrest for DUI and the anti-Semitic remarks he made to the cops who arrested him. Mel told The Telegraph the incident had a positive effect on his life and he had learned from his mistakes. The interview came out before his highly-publicized, ranting attacks on his former girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva, which made Mel even stronger (and even less marketable as an actor).


“I believe whatever doesn’t kill you simply makes you stranger.”
Heath Ledger, as the Batman villain The Joker, in the movie The Dark Knight (2008)


“quod me nutrit
  me destruit.”
Latin saying tattooed on Angelina Jolie’s lower abdomen
       In English, it means “What nourishes me also destroys me.”


“Whatever hurts you makes me stronger.”  
Leslie Stefanson, as the character Capt.
Elisabeth Campbell, in the movie The General’s Daughter (1999)


“That which does not kill us makes us stronger.”
       Quote shown at the beginning of the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie
Conan the Barbarian (1982) and also used as a quip by Clairee Belcher (actress Olympia Dukakis) in the movie Steel Magnolias (1989).

Here’s a link to another Quote/Counterquote post with variations on Nietzsche’s famous maxim.

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June 6, 2016

Faith, hope & charity – from the Bible, to American politics, to Dale Evans & Roy Rogers...

Saint Paul the Apostle


“And now abideth faith, hope, charity these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”
        Saint Paul (c. 5 A.D. - c. 67 A.D.)
        I Corinthians 13:13 (i.e., Chapter 13, Verse 13)
        I Corinthians, usually referred to as First Corinthians or the First Epistle to the Corinthians is a book in the Bible based on a letter written around 53 A.D. by Paul, an Apostle of Jesus (though not one of the first twelve). Much of the letter provides stern guidance to the congregation of Christians Paul established in Corinth, Greece. He’d heard they were violating some of the rules for followers of the new Christian faith that he helped create. So in his letter, he warned them about various sinful things, such as getting drunk, fornicating (which he mentions many times) and allowing women to go around without covering their head (a strange rule that Muslims and early Christians had in common).
       One of the less Puritanical and more inspiring parts of I Corinthians comes in Book 13. In that, Paul discusses the importance of being charitable. It ends with the line that includes the familiar triumvirate “faith, hope, charity” – of which, Paul says, the greatest is charity. 
       This line is preceded by two that include other famous Bible quotes about putting away childish things (Chap. 13, Verse 11) and seeing through a glass darkly (Chap. 13, Verse 12):
       When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
       For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
       And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

Franklin D. Roosevelt - June 27, 1936 speech


“We are poor indeed if this Nation cannot afford to lift from every recess of American life the dread fear of the unemployed that they are not needed in the world...In the place of the palace of privilege we seek to build a temple out of faith and hope and charity.”
       Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945)
       American Democratic politician elected to serve three terms as President of the United States
       In his acceptance speech after receiving the Democratic nomination for his second term as president, at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 27, 1936.

Barry Goldwater autobiography 1988


“Freedom has been the watchword of my political life...I believe in faith, hope, and charity. But none of these is possible without freedom.”
       Barry Goldwater (1909-1998)
       Republican politician who served U.S. Senator from Arizona for many years and was the Republican Party's nominee for President in 1964 
       The quote is from his autobiography Goldwater, first published in 1988



“America's greatness and variety, its perpetual newness and variety, its bedrock of faith, hope and charity is all too easy to forget. Yet it is always there, rising above the cloud banks of cheap and easy rhetoric like the Rockies above the fruited plain.”
       Paul Greenberg
       Pulitzer Prize-winning political commentator
       Commenting on the uniquely bizarre 2016 presidential campaign in an editorial originally published in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, May 27, 2016

George Orwell at typewriter


“Now abideth faith, hope, money; but the greatest of these is money.”
       George Orwell (1903-1950)
       English novelist, essayist and journalist
       One of his lines from the epigraph he wrote that appears at the beginning of his novel Keep The Aspidistra Flying (1936)

Dale Evans DC Comics cover


“Have faith, hope and charity
That's the way to live successfully
How do I know, the Bible tells me so.”

       Dale Evans (1912-2001)
       Lyrics from the song “The Bible Tells Me So”
       Words and music by Dale Evans
       Evans wrote the song to perform with her husband Roy Rogers on The Roy Rogers Show. They sang it as a duet in the episode “Ginger Horse,” which originally aired on March 27, 1955. That year it was recorded and further popularized by singer Nick Noble and bandleader Don Cornell. It eventually became one of Dale’s signature songs.

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May 27, 2016

“Children of the night. What music they make!”

Dracula 1931 Bela Lugosi - children of the night WM


“Listen to them, the children of the night. What music they make!” [1924 novel]
“Listen to them. Children of the night. What music they make!” [1931 movie]
       One of his most famous lines in the novel by Bram Stoker and the popular Universal Studios movie adaptation 
       In Stoker’s novel and the 1931 film Dracula, starring Bela Lugosi as Count Dracula, the title character says the “children of the night” lines about the wolves howling outside his castle in Transylvania. The book and movie versions of the quotation are almost identical, with the exception of the word the in front of children in the book.
       Dracula says the lines to Jonathan Harker, a British legal solicitor who is sent to Dracula’s home to facilitate the Count’s purchase of a property in England. The quote comes early in the book (in Chapter 2) and in the movie, as do two other famous quotes that are well known to Dracula fans.
       As Harker enters the Count’s spooky castle, Dracula greets him with the words: “I am Dracula, and I bid you welcome.” In the 1931 movie, this is broken into two lines, separated by a comment by Harker.
       In the movie, as Dracula is standing on the huge stone stairway after welcoming Harker, they hear the wolves howling and Lugosi speaks the famous “children of the night” lines. Shortly thereafter, in the next scene, Dracula serves some food to Harker, then pours him a glass of “very old wine.”
       “Aren’t you drinking?” asks Harker. Lugosi, smiling, says a third line immortalized by the movie: “I never drink – wine.”
       This chuckleworthy nod to the fact that Dracula survives solely by drinking human blood is not in the novel. In that, as Harker is preparing to eat, Dracula apologizes for not joining him, saying: “I have dined already, and I do not sup.” He does offer Harker some “very old tokay wine.” But he says nothing about never drinking wine himself.

Love at First Bite - shut up quote WM


“Children of the night – shut up!”
       Actor George Hamilton as Dracula, in the comedy movie Love at First Bite (1979)
       Hamilton says the line in the opening of the movie as he’s playing the piano and the howling of wolves interrupts and annoys him.

Dead and Loving It - children of the night mess quote WM

“Children of the night. What a mess they make.”
       Actor Leslie Nielsen, as Dracula, in Dead and Loving It (1995)
       In this campy version, Nielsen says the line after pointing to some bats flying above him as he stands on the stone stairway of his castle. The camera briefly shows a dollop of bat poop on one of the stone steps. Then we see Nielsen’s shoe step on the poo, causing him to slip and fall down the stairs.

Twilight sucks - Robert Pattinson


“Fame has bitten Robert Pattinson...His mere arrival at a promotional autograph session is enough to set off a sonic frenzy of squeals and shrieks. Tweens, teens and Twilight moms scream en masse with pent-up desire and devotion, delighted to just gaze upon their idol in the flesh. Listen to them. Children of the night. What a racket they make.”
       Susan Wloszczyna
       American movie reviewer
       In an article about Pattinson in USA TODAY published in 2008, at a time when the first movie in the Twilight series was suddenly making him a huge celebrity – at least among teenage movie fans.
       Pattinson has suggested he’s not personally a fan of the movies that made him world famous. In one interview, when asked what his view of the series might be if he weren't in it, he responded: “I would just mindlessly hate it.”

Dracula 3D graphic


“The entertainment value in Argento’s sad, befuddled decline wears thin before long; after that it’s just boring. It isn’t until the 70-minute mark that the promise of the opening credits – ‘and Rutger Hauer as Van Helsing’ – is fulfilled, and by then it’s too late for anything to salvage the wreck. Listen to the children of the night! What garbage they make.”
       Eric D. Snider
       American movie reviewer
       In his review of Dario Argento’s movie Dracula 3D, posted on Movies.com site on May 20, 2012 

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