Quotes By 4 3 2 1

“The world wasn’t real anymore. Everything in it was a fraudulent copy of what it should have been, and everything that happened in it shouldn’t have been happening. For a long time afterward, Ferguson lived under the spell of this illusion, sleepwalking through his days and struggling to fall asleep at night, sick of a world he had stopped believing in, doubting everything that presented itself to his eyes.”


“...feelings were always feelings, subjectively true one hundred percent of the time...”


“That was the real difference, Ferguson concluded. Not too little money or too much money, not what a person did or failed to do, not buying a larger house or a more expensive car, but ambition. That explained why Brownstein and Solomon managed to float through their lives in relative peace—because they weren’t tormented by the curse of ambition.”


“the sage Lenny Millstein, who not only was an excellent basketball man but an excellent person as well, who knew how to handle fourteen-year-old boys because he understood that fourteen was the worst possible age on the calendar of human life, and therefore all fourteen-year-olds were confused and fractured beings, not one of them a child anymore and not one of them an adult, none quite right in the head or at home in his unfinished body, and in the furnace of that claustrophobic arena of”


“belligerent, bellowing partisans, the astute man with the curly blond hair and the jocular, no-discipline approach to running a team was shouting at his charges and reminding them how to break a full-court press, and before the boys put their right hands on top of Lenny’s right hand for a last Let’s go!, the thirty-four-year-old husband and father of two pointed to an exit door in the side wall of the gym and told the boys that no matter what happened in the next ten seconds, whether they won the game or lost the game, at the instant the final buzzer sounded they should all run for that door and jump into his station wagon parked at the curb because, as he put it, things are getting a little nuts in here, and he didn’t want anyone to be injured or killed in the mayhem that was sure to follow. Then the five hands and the one hand came together, Lenny barked the last Let’s go!, and Ferguson and the other starters trotted back onto the court. They”


“an exercise in the art of paying attention, and paying attention, Ferguson discovered, was the first step in learning how to be alive.”


“ambition meant never being satisfied, to be always hungering for something more, constantly pushing forward because no success could ever be big enough to quell the need for new and even bigger successes,”


“Ferguson was naked in that bed, too, and everything felt so good to him, so perfectly in accord with how he imagined it would feel, that for once in his life the real and the imagined were identical, absolutely and as never before once and the same thing, which had to make it the happiest moment of his life so far, he believed, since Ferguson was not someone who subscribed to the notion that desire fulfilled was desire disappointed, at least not in this case, where wanting Amy was no good without having Amy want him, and the miracle was that she did want him, and therefore desire fulfilled was in fact desire fulfilled, the chance to spend a few moments in the ephemeral kingdom of earthly grace.”


“The gods looked down from their mountain and shrugged.”


“because he was a man who had suffered but because he was a man who had suffered and could still crack jokes.”


“The best thing about being fifteen is that you don’t have to be fifteen for more than a year.”


“the protocols of such gatherings, the sophisticated hypocrisies of supposed art lovers coming to an art show in order to ignore the artworks on display,”


“the only one with an ear for prose who could follow his arguments about why Flannery O’Conner and Grace Paley were bolder, more inventive stylists than Bellow, Updike, or any other American man except perhaps Baldwin,”


“Such were the contradictions of manhood, Ferguson discovered. Your heart could be broken, but your gonads kept telling you to forget about your heart.”


“In the long run, stories are probably no less valuable than money, but in the short run they have their decided”


“In the long run, stories are probably no less valuable than money, but in the short run they have their decided limitations. The”


“Perhaps when we shrink down to almost nothing, we will at last find one another. Life is, after all, very difficult. Most of us die here simply because we forget to breathe.”


“guns were a complicated business, and once you pointed a weapon at someone, especially someone with a weapon of his own, the thing you were counting on to protect you was just as likely to turn you into a corpse.”


“knowing now that the job of writing was as much about removing words as adding them,”


“but a noble cause demanded noble behavior from its advocates, something finer and more self-controlled than run-of-the-mill insults and cheap, adolescent shots.”


“(...) Taking the journalist's vow of impartiality and objectivity was not unlike joining an order of monks and spending the rest of your life in a glass monastery - removed from the world of human affairs even as it continued to whirl around you on all sides. To be a journalist meant you could never be the person who tossed the brick through the window that started the revolution. You could only watch the man toss the brick, you could try to understand why he had tossed the brick, you could explain to others what significance the brick had in starting the revolution, but you yourself could never toss the brick or even stand in the mob that was urging the man to throw it.”


“...he wound up misbehaving in a manner so bold and outlandishly inappropriate that it wasn't clear to him if he had lost his mind or accidentally solved the mystery of the universe.”