Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Why I Love Kurt Vonnegut

I figure it's a fitting post since he recently passed away. I was happy to hear that his passing has resulted in some new interest in his work. Here are a some quotes that offer a taste of his brilliance:

  • Maturity is a bitter disapointment for which no remedy exists, unless laughter can be said to remedy anything. - Cat's Cradle
  • We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be. - Mother Night
  • Another flaw in the human character is that everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance. - Hocus Pocus
  • We all see our lives as stories, it seems to me, and I am convinced that psychologists and sociologists and historians and so on would find it useful to acknowledge that. - Deadeye Dick
  • All time is all time. It does not change. It does not lend itself to warnings or explanations. It simply is. Take it moment by moment, and you will find that we are all, as I've said before, bugs in amber. - Slaughterhouse-Five

  • Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith, I consider a capacity for it terrifying and absolutely vile!
  • If you can do a half-assed job of anything, you're a one-eyed man in a kingdom of the blind.

I am eternally grateful to Simon for introducing me to Vonnegut by way of gifting me Deadeye Dick several Christmases ago. I hope that my offering, Fifth Business, inspired in him the same love for Robertson Davies that Deadeye Dick inspired in me for Vonnegut as I voraciously read everything Vonnegut that I could get my hands on afterwards. While Slaughterhouse Five may be his most acclaimed work, I will always have a soft spot for Deadeye Dick.

No comments: