Quotes By The Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul (Dirk Gently, 2)

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.”


“The impossible often has a kind of integrity to it which the merely improbable lacks.”


“A life that is burdened with expectations is a heavy life. Its fruit is sorrow and disappointment.”


“Words used carelessly, as if they did not matter in any serious way, often allowed otherwise well-guarded truths to seep through.”


“People who need to bully you are the easiest to push around.”


“It was his subconscious which told him this---that infuriating part of a person's brain which never responds to interrogation, merely gives little meaningful nudges and then sits humming quietly to itself, saying nothing.”


“I don't go to mythical places with strange men.”


“Yes, it is true that sometimes unusually intelligent and sensitive children can appear to be stupid. But stupid children can sometimes appear to be stupid as well. I think that's something you might have to consider.”


“Rather than arriving five hours late and flustered, it would be better all around if he were to arrive five hours and a few extra minutes late, but triumphantly in command.”


“The idea was fantastically, wildly improbable. But like most fantastically, wildly improbable ideas it was at least as worthy of consideration as a more mundane one to which the facts had been strenuously bent to fit.”


“The room was not a room to elevate the soul. Louis XIV, to pick a name at random, would not have liked it, would have found it not sunny enough, and insufficiently full of mirrors. He would have desired someone to pick up the socks, put the records away, and maybe burn the place down. Michelangelo would have been distressed by its proportions, which were neither lofty nor shaped by any noticeable inner harmony or symmetry, other than that all parts of the room were pretty much equally full of old coffee mugs, shoes and brimming ashtrays, most of which were sharing their tasks with each other. The walls were painted in almost precisely that shade of green which Rafaello Sanzio would have bitten off his own right hand at the wrist rather than use, and Hercules, on seeing the room, would probably have returned half an hour later armed with a navigable river.”


“Nobody got murdered before lunch. But nobody. People weren't up to it. You needed a good lunch to get both the blood-sugar and blood-lust levels up.”


“Insofar as she recognized at all that she was dreaming, she realized that she must be exploring her subconscious mind. She had heard it said that humans are supposed only to use about a tenth of their brains, and that no one was really clear what the other nine tenths were for, but she had certainly never heard it suggested that they were used for storing penguins.”


“Dennis Hutch had stepped up into the top seat when its founder had died of a lethal overdose of brick wall, taken while under the influence of a Ferrari and a bottle of tequila.”


“He had a tremendous propensity for getting lost when driving. This was largely because of his method of “Zen” navigation, which was simply to find any car that looked as if it knew where it was going and follow it. The results were more often surprising than successful, but he felt it was worth it for the sake of the few occasions when it was both.”


“I am a private detective. I am paid to be inquisitive and presumptuous.”


“I've had the sort of day that would make St. Francis of Assisi kick babies.”


“Ok," he said, "I don't like to disturb you at what I know must be a difficult and distressing time for you, but I need to know first of all if you actually realize that this is a difficult and distressing time for you.”


“Dirk turned on the car wipers, which grumbled because they didn't have quite enough rain to wipe away, so he turned them off again. Rain quickly speckled the windscreen. He turned on the wipers again, but they still refused to feel that the exercise was worthwhile, and scraped and squeaked in protest.”


“Nobleness was one word for making a fuss about the trivial inevitabilities of life, but there were others.”


“What was the Sherlock Holmes principle? ‘Once you have discounted the impossible, then whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.’ ”

“I reject that entirely,” said Dirk sharply. “The impossible often has a kind of integrity to it which the merely improbably lacks. How often have you been presented with an apparently rational explanation of something that works in all respects other than one, which is that it is hopelessly improbable?...The first idea merely supposes that there is something we don’t know about, and...there are enough of those. The second, however, runs contrary to something fundamental and human which we do know about. We should therefore be very suspicious of it and all its specious rationality.”


“When the girl sitting at the next table looked away from a moment, Dirk leaned over and took her coffee. He knew that he was perfectly safe doing this because she would simply not be able to believe that this had happened.”


“The impossible often has a kind of integrity to it which the merely improbable lacks. How often have you been presented with an apparently rational explanation of something that works in all respects other than one, which is just that it is hopelessly improbable? Your instinct is to say, 'Yes, but he or she simply wouldn't do that.”


“In the past the whales had been able to sing to each other across whole oceans, even from one ocean to another because sound travels such huge distances underwater. But now, again because of the way in which sound travels, there is no part of the ocean that is not constantly jangling with the hubbub of ships’ motors, through which it is now virtually impossible for the whales to hear each other’s songs or messages.

So fucking what, is pretty much the way that people tend to view this problem, and understandably so, thought Dirk. After all, who wants to hear a bunch of fat fish, oh all right, mammals, burping at each other?

But for a moment Dirk had a sense of infinite loss and sadness that somewhere amongst the frenzy of information noise that daily rattled the lives of men he thought he might have heard a few notes that denoted the movements of gods.”


“But for a moment Dirk had a sense of inifinite loss and sadness that somewhere among the frenzy of information noise that daily rattled the lives of men he thought he might have heard a few notes that denoted the movements of gods.”


“There were three of them, three police cars left askew across the road in a way that transcended mere parking. It sent out a massive signal to the world saying that the law was here now taking charge of things, and that anyone who just had normal, good and cheerful business to conduct in Lupton Road could just fuck off.”


“No private detective looks like a private detective. That's one of the first rules of private detection."
"But if no private detective looks like a private detective, how does a private detective know what it is he's supposed not to look like? Seems to me there's a problem there.”


“It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on Earth has ever produced the expression "as pretty as an airport". Airports are ugly. Some are very ugly. Some attain a degree of ugliness that can only be the result of a special effort. This ugliness arises because airports are full of people who are tired, cross, and have just discovered that their luggage has landed in Murmansk (...) and the architects have on the whole tried to reflect this in their designs.
They have sought to highlight the tiredness and crossness motif with brutal shapes and nerve jangling colours, to make effortless the business of separating the traveller from his or her luggage or loved ones, to confuse the traveller with arrows that appear to point at the windows, distant tie racks, or the current position of the Ursa Minor in the night sky, and wherever possible to expose the plumbing on the grounds that it is functional, and conceal the location of the departure gates, presumably on the grounds that they are not".”