In memory of Kurt Vonnegut


(system) #1

By Alexander Carpenter

I first read Kurt Vonnegut's Player Piano to save myself from a lackluster second semester in college. By my senior year I taught Cat's Cradle to Andrews University honors students. God bless you Mr. Vonnegut (11/11/1922 - 04/11/2007).

Here's a few of my favorite hits:

I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can't see from the center.

I really wonder what gives us the right to wreck this poor planet of ours.

I tell you, we are here on Earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you different.

People don't come to church for preachments, of course, but to daydream about God.

I am a humanist, which means, in part, that I have tried to behave decently without any expectation of rewards or punishments after I’m dead.

If what Jesus said was good, what can it matter if he was God or not?

If it weren’t for the message of mercy and pity in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, I wouldn’t want to be a human being. I would just as soon be a rattlesnake.

Some jerk infected the Internet with an outright lie. It shows how easy it is to do and how credulous people are.

True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.

We could have saved the Earth but we were too damned cheap.

I wish that people who are conventionally supposed to love each other would say to each other, when they fight, "Please— a little less love, and a little more common decency."

Let us devote to unselfishness the frenzy we once gave gold and underpants.

What should young people do with their lives today? Many things, obviously. But the most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/4288