Wisdom and Wit

Assorted quotes:

The attributions are not perfect - deal with it. They are meant to give the source credit for its quote, not the quote credit for its source.


  • "I was dying. That much was certain. The rest is just fiction." ~Memory Theater, Simon Critchley
  • "Tonight your life will be one day shorter. It won't seem like much at the time. Days add up. Get off your ass and do something" ~ Mark Twight
  • "Over do it, or do it over" ~ Jay Knower
  • "They sicken of the calm, who knew the storm." ~ Dorothy Parker
  • "A goal without a plan is just a wish." ~ Andrea Ager
  • "Pain shows you what's left to investigate." ~ Byron Katie
  • "The moment we want to be something, we are no longer free." ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti
  • "The best climber in the world is the one who's having the most fun!" ~ Alex Lowe
  • "The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender." ~ Vince Lombardi
  • "Go all the way with it. Do not back off. For once, go all the goddamn way with what matters." ~ Hemingway
  • "Inspiring passion in family and friends has more enduring value than just staying alive for them." ~ Alex Lowe
  • "No one actually believes they can lift a car off a baby..." ~ Mark Twight
  • "Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all." ~ Helen Keller
  • "Some men are in prison even though they walk the streets at night." ~ Daly City Train, Rancid
  • "...The Tao that can be told is not the real Tao according to the ancient Chinese, and the point of tiptoeing along some summit ridge, strung out above the clouds a million miles from home, cannot be adequately explained either. It is only by experience that a climber can know what it is that takes him beyond himself - to risk his life, to come alive in an environment where every step of the way is more difficult than the last, stripped of all but the basic necessities for survival, putting earthly life in the lap of the gods, and yet with the calm persistence that all will be well; climbing up beyond suffering, fear and ego; not knowing where it will end - maybe on the summit and, if not, then as long as it is at the limit of endurance, that will have to be enough to satisfy the soul an liberate the spirit; to bring *it* all back home; to face up to daily life but now with renewed enthusiasm and objectivity until *it* is lost and becomes a distant memory, but always a reference point for what is possible." ~ Postscript to Himalayan Climber, Doug Scott
  • "Heaven ain't bad, but you don't get nothin' done." ~ You Are Not Needed Now, Townes Van Zandt
  • “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread” ~An Essay on Criticism, 1711, Alexander Pope
  • “Le mieux est l’ennemi du bien.” translated as “The best [perfect] is the enemy of the good.” ~La B├ęgueule, 1772, Voltaire
  • "I don't know exactly what a prayer is. I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass, how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields, which is what I have been doing all day. Tell me, what else should I have done? Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon? Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” ~The Summer Day, Mary Oliver
  • "We live for just these twenty years. Do we have to die for the fifty more?" ~Young Americans, David Bowie


  • On sunscreen - "Why insulate yourself from the very thing that gives you life?" ~ Jay Knower
  • "If you can't tie knots; tie lots." ~ Anon
  • "Everybody knows removing your shirt makes you climb one letter grade harder." ~ Anon

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