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  • Writer's pictureJerry Della Femina


“I won’t say ours was a tough high school, but we had our own coroner.”

-Lenny Bruce

I love quotations, and I found the perfect book. It’s called “Garner’s Quotations: A Modern Miscellany,” by Dwight Garner, and it’s a hoot. It’s a lot more fun than the old “Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations.”

Here are some of my favorite quotes from Garner’s Quotations:

1) “If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.”

-Dorothy Parker

2) “Fox News did to our parents what they thought video games would do to us.”

-Ryan Scott on Twitter

3) “Perhaps it would be a good idea for public statues to be made with disposable heads that can be changed with every change of popular fashion.”

-Auberon Waugh, “The Diaries of Auberon Waugh”

4) “I love children, especially when they cry, for then someone takes them away.”

-Nancy Mitford, “Decca: The Letters of Jessica Mitford”

5) “I like children–fried.”

-W.C. Fields

6) “If you can’t annoy somebody…there’s little point in writing.”

-Kingsley Amis

7) “My dad was the town drunk. Usually that’s not so bad, but New York City?”

-Henny Youngman

8) “An alcoholic is someone you don’t like who drinks as much as you do.”

-Dylan Thomas

9) “Thank you for your invitation to host a fundraising dinner in the private room of a top London restaurant. I would rather die.”

-Harold Pinter

10) “You know massa, Bugs Bunny wasn’t nothing but Br’er Rabbit with a better agent.”

-Paul Beatty, “The Sellout”

11) “After four movies, three concerts and two-and-a-half museums, you sleep with him. It seems the right number of cultural events.”

-Lorrie Moore, “How To Be the Other Woman”

12) “That was some weird shit.”

-George W. Bush on Donald Trump’s inauguration speech

13) “Elvis may have been the King of rock ‘n’ roll, but I am the Queen.”

-Little Richard

14) “Why do born-again people make you wish they’d never been born the first time?”

-Katharine Whitehorn

15) “Whenever a friend succeeds, a little something in me dies.”

-Gore Vidal

16) “It serves me right for putting all my eggs in one bastard.”

-Dorothy Parker

17) “One square foot less and it would be adulterous.”

-Robert Benchley on the tiny office he shared with Dorothy Parker

18) “Show me a woman who cries when trees lose their leaves in autumn and I’ll show you a real asshole.”

-Nora Ephron

19) “He’s so dumb he thinks cunnilingus is an Irish airline.”

-Arno Schmidt

20) “Say what you will about Charles Manson; he really empowered women to pursue excellence in traditionally male-dominated fields.”

-Caitlin Flanagan in “The Atlantic”

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