Mason Cooley - Quotes

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Cure for an obsession: get another one.

Cure for an obsession: get another one.

Excuses change nothing, but make everyone feel better.

Excuses change nothing, but make everyone feel better.

The lonely become either thoughtful or empty.

The lonely become either thoughtful or empty.

Procrastination makes easy things hard, hard things harder. ---->>>

Love begins with an image; lust with a sensation. ---->>>

Innocence is thought charming because it offers delightful possibilities for exploitation. ---->>>

If you call failures experiments, you can put them in your resume and claim them as achievements. ---->>>

Moo may represent an idea, but only the cow knows. ---->>>

I know that I am what I am. But I am not sure what I am. ---->>>

Only the broken-hearted know the truth about love.

Only the broken-hearted know the truth about love.

Promiscuity is like never reading past the first page. Monogamy is like reading the same book over and over. ---->>>

Living alone makes it harder to find someone to blame.

Living alone makes it harder to find someone to blame.

Complainers change their complaints, but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining. ---->>>

The laughter of the aphorism is sometimes triumphant, but seldom carefree. ---->>>

Three meals plus bedtime make four sure blessings a day. ---->>>

Rage is exciting, but leaves me confused and exhausted. ---->>>

Psychology keeps trying to vindicate human nature. History keeps undermining the effort.

Psychology keeps trying to vindicate human nature. History keeps undermining the effort.

Travelers never think that they are the foreigners.

Travelers never think that they are the foreigners.

Lust and greed are more gullible than innocence. ---->>>

Ultimately, blind faith is the only kind.

Ultimately, blind faith is the only kind.

Magic trick: to make people disappear, ask them to fulfill their promises. ---->>>

Creativity makes a leap, then looks to see where it is. ---->>>

Compassion brings us to a stop, and for a moment we rise above ourselves. ---->>>

Art begins in imitation and ends in innovation. ---->>>

To confer dignity, forgive. To express contempt, forget.

To confer dignity, forgive. To express contempt, forget.

Worried about being a dull fellow? You might develop your talent for being irritating. ---->>>

When I prayed for success, I forgot to ask for sound sleep and good digestion. ---->>>

Observe decorum, and it will open a path to morality. ---->>>

Self-hatred and self-love are equally self-centered. ---->>>

Hypocrisy is the outside of cynicism. ---->>>

Even cats grow lonely and anxious.

Even cats grow lonely and anxious.

Women encourage men to be childish, then scold them. ---->>>

Irony regards every simple truth as a challenge. ---->>>

Melancholy is as seductive as Ecstasy. ---->>>

The shades of respectability begin to close about the greying head.

The shades of respectability begin to close about the greying head.

Every day begins with an act of courage and hope: getting out of bed.

Every day begins with an act of courage and hope: getting out of bed.

The time I kill is killing me.

The time I kill is killing me.

Romance is tempestuous. Love is calm.

Romance is tempestuous. Love is calm.

In the game of love, the losers are more celebrated than the winners. ---->>>

Forgiveness is like faith. You have to keep reviving it.

Forgiveness is like faith. You have to keep reviving it.

A happy arrangement: many people prefer cats to other people, and many cats prefer people to other cats.

A happy arrangement: many people prefer cats to other people, and many cats prefer people to other cats.

'Be faithful to your roots' is the liberal version of 'Stay in your ghetto.' ---->>>

After an argument, silence may mean acceptance or the continuation of resistance by other means. ---->>>

Faith moves mountains, but you have to keep pushing while you are praying. ---->>>

We are prepared for insults, but compliments leave us baffled. ---->>>

Good parties create a temporary youthfulness.

Good parties create a temporary youthfulness.

For many, immaturity is an ideal, not a defect. ---->>>

Friends are sometimes boring, but enemies never. ---->>>

Flattery and insults raise the same question: What do you want? ---->>>

I love you is the inscription on Pandora's box. ---->>>

Reality is the name we give to our disappointments. ---->>>

A sense of blessedness comes from a change of heart, not from more blessings. ---->>>

There are different rules for reading, for thinking, and for talking. Writing blends all three of them. ---->>>

As equality increases, so does the number of people struggling for predominance.

As equality increases, so does the number of people struggling for predominance.

No chaos, no creation. Evidence: the kitchen at mealtime. ---->>>

If you are going to break a Law of Art, make the crime interesting. ---->>>

Cynicism is full of naive disappointments. ---->>>

Bad faith likes discourse on friendship and loyalty. ---->>>

Innocence: I am only stepping on your face because it lies in my path. ---->>>

Humor does not rescue us from unhappiness, but enables us to move back from it a little.

Humor does not rescue us from unhappiness, but enables us to move back from it a little.

Mistakes are the only universal form of originality. ---->>>

Think carefully before asking for justice. Mercy might be safer. ---->>>

Dancing and running shake up the chemistry of happiness. ---->>>

A blocked path also offers guidance. ---->>>

Money: power at its most liquid.

Money: power at its most liquid.

The ravaged face in the mirror hides the enchanting youth that is the real me. ---->>>

Even the most fickle are faithful to a few bad habits. ---->>>

Human society sustains itself by transforming nature into garbage. ---->>>

In love, we worry more about the meaning of silences than the meaning of words. ---->>>

Money is to my social existence what health is to my body.

Money is to my social existence what health is to my body.

If the world would apologize, I might consider a reconciliation. ---->>>

An academic dialect is perfected when its terms are hard to understand and refer only to one another. ---->>>

Don't stare into a mirror when you are trying to solve a problem. ---->>>

Fantasy mirrors desire. Imagination reshapes it.

Fantasy mirrors desire. Imagination reshapes it.

The discontented believe that their regrets are about the past. ---->>>

The real secrets are not the ones I tell. ---->>>

Few friendships could survive the moodiness of love affairs. ---->>>

Sincerity: willingness to spend one's own money. ---->>>

When a man bores a woman, she complains. When a woman bores a man, he ignores her. ---->>>

Hatred of the mother is familiar, but the mother's hatred still comes as a surprise. ---->>>

It is possible to interpret without observing, but not to observe without interpreting. ---->>>

Outside books, we avoid colorful characters. ---->>>

Cats are inquisitive, but hate to admit it.

Cats are inquisitive, but hate to admit it.

Fail, and your friends feel superior. Succeed, and they feel resentful. ---->>>

I see what you mean, but I do not think what you think. ---->>>

Seeing my malevolent face in the mirror, my benevolent soul shrinks back. ---->>>

The man in the street is always a stranger. ---->>>

Ideology has shaped the very sofa on which I sit. ---->>>

If modesty disappeared, so would exhibitionism. ---->>>

In the street, the gaze of desire is furtive or menacing. ---->>>

Old age: I fall asleep during the funerals of my friends. ---->>>

People who abhor solitude may abhor company almost as much. ---->>>

Reputation runs behind the current state of affairs. ---->>>

Romantics consider common sense vulgar. ---->>>

Stated clearly enough, an idea may cancel itself out. ---->>>

The passion for money is never fickle. ---->>>

Unlike the actual, the fictional explains itself. ---->>>

I have learned to keep to myself how exceptional I am. ---->>>

My passions have never jumped out of the fireplace and set fire to the carpet. ---->>>

Opportunity knocks, but doesn't always answer to its name. ---->>>

Sloth, not ill-will, makes me unjust. ---->>>

The beloved is the ultimate fetish. ---->>>

Why do we never expect dull people to be rascals? ---->>>

Affection reproaches, but does not denounce. ---->>>

In psychoanalysis, only the fee is exactly what it seems to be. ---->>>

Kafka: cries of helplessness in twenty powerful volumes. ---->>>

My mind is led astray by every faint rustle. ---->>>

To understand someone, find out how he spends his money. ---->>>

Rescue someone unwilling to look after himself, and he will cling to you like a dangerous illness. ---->>>

While we are reading, we are all Don Quixote. ---->>>

To understand a literary style, consider what it omits. ---->>>

The man of sensibility is too busy talking about his feelings to have time for good deeds. ---->>>

The doctrine of the immortality of the soul has more threat than comfort. ---->>>

Office politics are bloody-minded, but weak on content. ---->>>

Logic teaches rules for presentation, not thinking. ---->>>

Even boredom has its crises. ---->>>

The passions are the same in every conflict, large or small. ---->>>

The power of lying is much less than the power of what is not to be discussed. ---->>>

At sixty, I know little more about wisdom than I did at thirty, but I know a great deal more about folly. ---->>>

The novel avoids the sublime and seeks out the interesting. ---->>>

In bridge clubs and in councils of state, the passions are the same. ---->>>

The wisdom of age: don't stop walking. ---->>>

Hatred observes with more care than love does. ---->>>

Lying just for the fun of it is either art or pathology. ---->>>

Poor but happy is not a phrase invented by a poor person. ---->>>

What lies behind appearance is usually another appearance. ---->>>

My thought has been shaped by books; my desires by pictures. ---->>>

Fears and lies intensify consciousness. ---->>>

The educated do not share a common body of information, but a common state of mind. ---->>>

A great reader seldom recognizes his solitude. ---->>>

After my spectacular failures, I could not be satisfied with an ordinary success. ---->>>

If I play hard to get, soon the phone stops ringing altogether. ---->>>

Most people regard getting their way as a matter of simple justice. ---->>>

Expensive advertising courts us with hints and images. The ordinary kind merely says, Buy. ---->>>

Cruelty is softened by fear, not pity. ---->>>

Fulfillment is often more trouble than it is worth. ---->>>

Kindness eases everything almost as much as money does. ---->>>

Most reputations are not ruined but forgotten. ---->>>

Families in which nothing is ever discussed usually have a lot not to discuss. ---->>>

Logic and fact keep interfering with the easy flow of conversation. ---->>>

Amazing that the human race has taken enough time out from thinking about food or sex to create the arts and sciences. ---->>>

City people make most of the fuss about the charms of country life. ---->>>

Eternity eludes us, even as a thought. ---->>>

Language is the friendliest of the things from which we cannot escape. ---->>>

Preserving tradition has become a nice hobby, like stamp collecting. ---->>>

Rereading, we find a new book. ---->>>

The beginning of self-knowledge: recognizing that your motives are the same as other people's. ---->>>

The gods are watching, but idly, yawning. ---->>>

The higher the moral tone, the more suspect the speaker. ---->>>

Young men preen. Old men scheme. ---->>>

Many gloat over their own troubles. ---->>>

The horse stares at its captor, barely remembering the free kicks of youth. ---->>>

Thinking about the universe has now been handed over to specialists. The rest of us merely read about it. ---->>>

Totem poles and wooden masks no longer suggest tribal villages but fashionable drawing rooms in New York and Paris. ---->>>

A real idea keeps changing and appears in many places. ---->>>

An omnipotent God is the only being with no reason to lie. ---->>>

Art seduces, but does not exploit. ---->>>

Children use all their wiles to get their way with adults. Adults do the same with children. ---->>>

Consciousness is our only reprieve from Time. ---->>>

Death is frightening, and so is Eternal Life. ---->>>

Documents create a paper reality we call proof. ---->>>

Every literary critic believes he will outwit history and have the last word. ---->>>

Fastidious taste makes enjoyment a struggle. ---->>>

I did not know I was in my prime until afterwards. ---->>>

I read less and less. I have not forgiven books for their failure to tell me the truth and make me happy. ---->>>

Listening to people keeps them entertained. ---->>>

Middle age went by while I was mourning for my lost youth. ---->>>

Mind and body obstruct one another's pleasures. ---->>>

Never try to leap from a standstill. ---->>>

Old and young disbelieve one another's truths. ---->>>

Some loves are like a vice that has ceased to give pleasure. ---->>>

The body has a mind of its own. ---->>>

The only peace is being out of earshot. ---->>>

The sage belongs to the same obsolete repertory as the virtuous maiden and the enlightened monarch. ---->>>

We are more tied to our faults than to our virtues. ---->>>

While there's life, there's fear. ---->>>

Who would not give up wit for power and beauty? ---->>>

Young poets bewail the passing of love; old poets, the passing of time. There is surprisingly little difference. ---->>>

Journalism never admits that nothing much is happening. ---->>>

The aim of literary ambition is to demonstrate one's greatness of soul. ---->>>

Children now expect their parents to audition for approval. ---->>>

Other people's beliefs may be myths, but not mine. ---->>>

If we think about the obvious long enough, it dissolves. ---->>>

I'm being treated like a sex object, cried the lady. No matter. I will take care of it, said Time soothingly. ---->>>

To be successful be ahead of your time, but only a little. ---->>>

My parents wanted me to solace them for sorrows they denied having had. ---->>>

Talk about yourself as much as you like, but do not expect others to listen. ---->>>

Few artists can afford artistic temperament. ---->>>

First literature came to refer only to itself, the literary theory. ---->>>

In every death, a busy world comes to an end. ---->>>

Never ask a bore a question. ---->>>

Philosophy likes to keen common sense on the run. ---->>>

Well-behaved: he always speaks as if his mother might be listening. ---->>>

Often, when I want to consult my impulses, I cannot find them. ---->>>

Staid middle age loves the hurricane passions of opera. ---->>>

When sages commend excess, Desire is sick. ---->>>

A blunt statement can be as false as any other. ---->>>

Conscious thought is the tidying up at the end. ---->>>

Critic's delight: scolding the Mighty Dead. ---->>>

Events are called inevitable only after they have occurred. ---->>>

Folly always knows the answer. ---->>>

General statements omit what we really want to know. Example: some horses run faster than others. ---->>>

If beggars do not hate the rest of us, they are even more abject than I had imagined. ---->>>

If success is a habit, it is a hard one to acquire. ---->>>

Imagination has rules, but we can only guess what they are. ---->>>

Malice is always authentic and sincere. ---->>>

Minds will wander even during the Last Judgment. ---->>>

People believe that photographs are true and therefore cannot be art. ---->>>

Reason enables us to get around in the world of ideas, but cannot prescribe our thoughts. ---->>>

Self-reform is the only kind that works. ---->>>

Taste refers to the past, imagination to the future. ---->>>

Without civilization, we would not turn into animals, but vegetables. ---->>>

Writers mean more than they say and say more than they mean. ---->>>

Biography

Nationality: American
Born: 06-21, 2015
Birthplace:
Die: 06-21, 2015
Occupation: Writer
Website:

Mason Cooley (1927 – July 25, 2002) was an American aphorist known for his witty aphorisms. One of these such aphorisms Cooley developed was "The time I kill is killing me." He was professor emeritus of French, speech and world literature at the College of Staten Island. He was also an assistant professor of English at Columbia University from 1959 to 1967 and an adjunct professor from 1980 to 1988 (wikipedia)