The Holiday Edition
“I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, ‘If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.’”—Kurt Vonnegut (1922-2007), writer, 2003
As part of my own personal “war on Christmas” (which a Utah state senator has offered legislation to outlaw), the WORD celebrates the season by going on hiatus until January,
and offers this collection of some favorites—our holiday gift to you.
May all our days be merry and bright, and here’s to
a safe, healthy and saner New Year.
“Of all the people expressing their mental vacuity, none has a better excuse for an empty head than the newspaperman: If he pauses to restock his brain, he invites onrushing deadlines to trample him flat. Broadcasting the contents of empty minds is what most of us do most of the time, and nobody more relentlessly than I.”
“On behalf of the newspaper industry (new, cost-cutting motto: ‘All the News That’) I wish to announce some changes we're making to serve you better. When I say ‘serve you better,’ I mean ‘increase our profits.’ We newspapers are very big on profits these days. We’re a business, just like any other business, except that we employ English majors.”
And English Journalists
“... the British media [are] as untroubled by logical inconsistency as they are by a shortage of facts, lack of knowledge, or deficiencies in spelling, punctuation, and grammar.”
“Well, I’ve worried some about, you know, why write books ... why are we teaching people to write books when presidents and senators do not read them, and generals do not read them. And it’s been the university experience that taught me that there is a very good reason, that you catch people before they become generals and presidents and so forth and you poison their minds with ... humanity, and however you want to poison their minds, it’s presumably to encourage them to make a better world.”
“A 19th century Irish immigrant named O’Reilly called the newspaper ‘a biography of something greater than a man. It is the biography of a DAY. It is a photograph, of twenty four hours’ length, of the mysterious river of time that is sweeping past us forever. And yet we take our year’s newspapers—which contain more tales of sorrow and suffering, and joy and success, and ambition and defeat, and villainy and virtue, than the greatest book ever written—and we use them to light the fire.’”