“The best kind of exercise is the kind you actually do.” — Unknown.
“That which does not kill you gives you a lot of unhealthy coping mechanisms and a really dark sense of humor.” — Unknown.
“I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, that when looked at in the right way didn’t become still more complicated.” — Poul Anderson
“Our own age is not one which can afford to call its ancestors savage.” — Poul Anderson, The Broken Sword
“I think most human misery is due to well-meaning fanatics like him.” — Poul Anderson, Time Patrol
“The last thing any sane person wants is a jihad.” — Poul Anderson, The Star Fox
“He’d seen too often how little of the universe is designed for man to neglect any safety measure.” — Poul Anderson, The Star Fox
‘“That,” replied Hardin, “is the interesting thing. The analysis was the most difficult of the three by all odds. When Houk, after two days of steady work, succeeded in eliminating meaningless statements, vague gibberish, useless qualifications—in short all the goo and dribble—he found he had nothing left. Everything canceled out. Lord Dorwin, gentlemen, in five days of discussion didn’t say one damn thing, and said it so that you never noticed. There are the assurances you had from your precious Empire.”’ — Salvor Hardin, a character in Isaac Asimov’s Foundation
“Hell must be isothermal; for otherwise the resident engineers and physical chemists (of which there must be some) could set up a heat engine to run a refrigerator to cool off a portion of their surroundings to any desired temperature.” — Henry Albert Ben. Quoted in When the Universe was twice as hot.
“The universe is simmering down, like a giant stew left to cook for four billion years. Sooner or later we won’t be able to tell the carrots from the onions.” — Arthur Bloch
“The person who loves their dream of community will destroy community, but the person who loves those around them will create community.” — Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together
“The Universe will decline from here on in, sliding gently into old age. The Universe has basically sat down on the sofa, pulled up a blanket and is about to nod off for an eternal doze.” — Simon Driver. Quoted in Charting the Slow Death of the Universe.
“If someone points out to you that your pet theory of the universe is in disagreement with Maxwell’s equations – then so much the worse for Maxwell’s equations. If it is found to be contradicted by observation – well these experimentalists do bungle things sometimes. But if your theory is found to be against the second law of thermodynamics I can give you no hope; there is nothing for it but to collapse in deepest humiliation.” — Sir Arthur Eddington
“Blind faith is no faith; it is blindness.” — David Frangquist, 1966
“Merely corroborative detail, intended to give artistic verisimilitude to an otherwise bald and unconvincing narrative.” — W.S. Gilbert, The Mikado, 1885
“Waking a person unnecessarily should not be considered a capital crime. For a first offense, that is.” — Robert A. Heinlein, The Notebooks of Lazarus Long
“Gentlemen, You Can’t Fight In Here! This is The War Room.” — Stanley Kubrick, Dr. Strangelove
“When correctly viewed, everything is lewd” — Tom Lehrer, “Smut,” 1965. Counterexample (!)
“For there is surely nothing more beautiful in this world
Than the sight of a lone man facing single-handedly
A half a ton of angry pot roast!” — Tom Lehrer, “In Old Mexico,” 1959.
“There’s always an Arquillian Battle Cruiser, or a Korilian Death Ray, or an intergalactic plague that is about to wipe out all life on this miserable planet. The only way these people can get on with their happy lives is that they “do not know about it!” — Kay, Men in Black, 1997.
“A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals and you know it.” — Kay, Men in Black, 1997.
“With four parameters I can fit an elephant, and with five I can make him wiggle his trunk.” — John von Neumann
“There is no such thing as too much garlic.” — Dr. Robert Passovoy.
“Eat food. not too much. mostly plants.” — Michael Pollan.
“When four men sit down to talk revolution, three are police spies and the other a fool.” — Mack Reynolds, Code Duello, 1968.
“There is a dangerous temptation to link destruction levels together in the interests of tidiness and economy, but history is seldom tidy or notably economical, however it may be with philosophy. This is one of the reasons why history should not be written by philosophers or sociologists.” — N.K Sandars, The Sea Peoples. Also Writing history
“The difference between screwing around and science is writing it down.” — Adam Savage.
“Atreus: ‘Who would reject the flood of fortune’s gifts?’
Thyestes: ‘Anyone who has experienced how easily they flow back.’” — Seneca, Thyestes, 536, quoted in The Daily Stoic
“Glendower: ‘I can call on spirits from the vasty deep!’
Hotspur: ‘Why so can I, and so can any man,
but do they come when you do call them?'” — Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part 1.
[In response to the assertion that ninety percent of science fiction is crap.] “Ninety percent of everything is crap.” — Theodore Sturgeon. This is now usually referred to as Sturgeon’s Law, but I learned it as “Sturgeon’s Revelation” from one of the works of Poul Anderson.
“Happiness; we don’t know what it means, how to measure it, or how to reach it, but we know extremely well how to avoid unhappiness.” — Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Bed of Procrustes
“If you haven’t found something strange during the day, it hasn’t been much of a day.” — John Archibald Wheeler
“A language is a dialect with an army and a navy” — Max Weinreich