Americans spend an average of 29 hours a week watching television ... which means in a typical life span we devote 13 uninterrupted years to our TV sets! ... Cutting down just an hour a day would provide extra years of life — for music and family, exercise and reading, conversation and coffee.
--Michael Medved, radio talk-show host
Mother-love is not inevitable. The good mother is a great artist, ever creating beauty out of chaos.
--Alice Randall, novelist and first black woman to write a No. 1 country song
The wise healer endures the pain. Cry. Tears bring joy.
--Erykah Badu, musician
Hot allusions. Metaphors over easy. Side order of rhythm. Message: If you want to be a poet you've got to eat right.
--Nikki Giovanni, poet
When I began writing, the words that inspired me were these: 'A writer is someone who has written today.' If you want to be a writer, what's stopping you?
--J.A. Jance, crime novelist
Children are born with such a sense of fairness that they will accept no less than equal treatment for all. I know – I have three. I hope that as they grow, they keep that sense of justice and learn to challenge the old adage that life’s not fair. It should be, in so far as we have control of it.
--Beth Vanden Hoek, Starbucks assistant manager in St. Louis, Missouri
Why in moments of crisis do we ask God for strength and help? As cognitive beings, why would we ask something that may well be a figment of our imaginations for guidance? Why not search inside ourselves for the power to overcome? After all, we are strong enough to cause most of the catastrophes we need to endure.
--Bill Scheel, Starbucks customer from London, Ontario. He describes himself as a "modern day nobody."
Children are living in a world surrounded by media. If we can use television to teach tolerance and respect and promote healthy eating, we can indeed change the world.
--Gary E. Knell, President and CEO of Sesame Workshop, the producers of Sesame Street
Our greatest prejudice is against death. It spans age, gender and race. We spend immeasurable amounts of energy fighting an event that will eventually triumph. Though it is noble not to give in easily, the most alive people I’ve ever met are those who embrace their death. They love, laugh and live more fully.
--Andy Webster, hospice chaplain in Plymouth, Michigan
A mature person is one who can say: My parents may have made some mistakes raising me, but they did the best they could: now it’s up to me.
--Shannon Fry, Starbucks customer from Ann Arbor, Michigan
What would you do for someone you love?
Would you lie, cheat, steal? Break the law and call it justice?
Would you say yes? Scream no?
Would you kill? Would you give up your own life?
Would you move mountains, swallow fire, keep a promise?
Would you change the world?
Would you change yourself?
What would you do for someone you love?
--Jodi Picoult, novelist. Her most recent book is Nineteen Minutes
A very bad (and all too common) way to misread a newspaper: To see whatever supports your point of view as fact, and anything that contradicts your point of view as bias.
--Daniel Okrent, first ombudsman of The New York Times and author of Public Editor #1
Evolution as described by Charles Darwin is a scientific theory, abundantly reconfirmed, explaining physical phenomena by physical causes. Intelligent Design is a faith-based initiative in rhetorical argument. Should we teach I.D. in America’s public schools? Yes, let’s do it – not as science, but alongside other spiritual beliefs, such as Islam, Zoroastrianism and the Hindu idea that the Earth rests on Chukwa, the giant turtle.
--David Quammen, author. His books include The Song of the Dodo and The Reluctant Mr. Darwin
People don’t read enough. And what reading we do is cursory, without absorbing the subtleties and nuances that lie deep within – Wow, you’ve stopped paying attention, haven’t you? People can’t even read a coffee cup without drifting off.
--David Shore, creator and executive producer of the television drama House
How would you rather spend your time: by tirelessly working to curtail our freedoms, or by joyfully celebrating our differences?
--Anthony Rapp, actor best known for his role in Rent, and author of the memoir Without You
There is a great deal one can learn from their parents. One is eating your vegetables. It’s not that your parents are getting you to eat them, it’s that they are teaching you that not everything in life is going to be sweet.
--David Warstler, Starbucks customer from Massillon, Ohio
I used to think that going to the jungle made my life an adventure. However, after years of unusual work in exotic places, I realize that it is not how far off I go, or how deep into the forest I walk that gives my life meaning. I see that living life fully is what makes life – anyone’s life, no matter where they do or do not go – an adventure.
--Maria Fadiman, geographer, ethnobotanist and National Geographic Emerging Explorer
Scientists tell us we only use 5% of our brains. But if they only used 5% of their brains to reach that conclusion, then why should we believe them?
--Joseph Palm, Starbucks customer from Oshkosh, Wisconsin
People could become better than they are right now by doing one thing: reading! This neglected activity is a pathway to greatness. By reading, people open their minds to be mentored by others whom they may not have the pleasure to meet due to time and space differences. C.S. Lewis, Socrates and Billy Graham are all available to talk when I open a book to listen.
--Sarha Neri, reading teacher at Las Palmas Middle School in Covina, CA
Risk-taking, trust, and serendipity are key ingredients of joy. Without risk, nothing new ever happens. Without trust, fear creeps in. Without serendipity, there are no surprises.
--Rita Golden Gelman, author of Tales of a Female Nomad. She has had no permanent address since 1986.
Do not kiss your children so they will kiss you back but so they will kiss their children, and their children’s children.
--Noah benShea, poet, philosopher and author of Jacob the Baker, Jacob’s Journey and Remember This My Children
Have a good week, people.