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Calvin College—my Alma Mater

Michigan State University—I went here for grad school.

Quote Collection

Lord grant me the strength to change what I can, the ability to accept what I can't, and the capacity to tell the difference. ??? John Calvin ???

People always get what they ask for; the only trouble is that they never know, until they get it, what they have asked for. Aldous Huxley

In language, clarity is everything. Confucius

Great things can be reduced to small things, and small things can be reduced to nothing. Chinese Proverb

God created the integers; all the rest is the work of man. Leopold Kronecker

Yea, from the table of my memory, I'll wipe away all trivial fond records. Shakespeare, Hamlet

[Pointers] are like jumps, leaping wildly from one part of data structure to another. Their introduction into high-level languages has been a step backward from which we may never recover. C. A. R. Hoare

I think that I shall never see A poem lovely as a tree. Joyce Kilmer, Trees

An average English word is four letters and a half. By hard, honest labor I've dug all the large words out of my vocabulary and shaved it down till the average is three and a half... Mark Twain

Wer zuletzt lacht, lacht am besten. (He who laughs last, laughs best.)

Wenn die Katze aus dem Haus ist, tanzen die Mäuse. (When the cat's away, the mice will play.)

What we have to learn to do we learn by doing. Aristotle

There was things which he strechted, but mainly he told the truth. Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn

Mathematicians are like Frenchmen: whenever you say something to them, they translate it into their own language, and at once it is something entirely different. Goethe

Woe to the author who always wants to teach! The secret of being a bore is to tell everything. Voltaire

Important references are given in boldface. Italicized numbers indicate fleeting references, wheras numbers in parentheses refer to mere implications or unwarranted extrapolations. Asterisks are used to identifiy particularly distasteful passages. Peter Schickele, The Definitive Biography of P.D.Q. Bach

All such expressions as \sqrt(-1), \sqrt(-2)... are neither nothing, nor greater than nothing, nor less than nothing, which necessarily constitutes them imaginary or impossible. L. Euler

We have more useless information than ignorance of what is useful. Vauvenargues

I can only assume that a "Do Not File" document is filed in a "Do Not File" file. Senator Frank Church

Programming graphics in X is like finding \sqrt(\pi) using roman numerals.

Von guten Maechten wunderbar geborgen, erwarten wir getrost, was kommen mag. Gott ist mit uns am Abend und am Morgen, und ganz gewiss an jedem neuen Tag. Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love. Albert Einstein

It's only work if somebody makes you do it. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

Life's disappointments are harder to take when you don't know any swear words. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

People think it must be fun to be a super genius, but they don't realize how hard it is to put up with all the idiots in the world. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

There's an inverse relationship between how good something is for you, and how much fun it is. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

There's no problem so awful that you can't add some guilt to it and make it even worse. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

That's the remarkable thing about life. No matter how bad it gets, it can always get worse. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

Calvin: Boy, what a day...I went to school, played outside, and did my homework. I'm exhausted. [To dad:] You know what time it is now?
Dad: Uh, 7:35.
Calvin: It's Miller Time...
Calvin and Hobbes

Calvin: What's it like to fall in love?
Hobbes: Well...Say the object of your affection walks by. First, your heart falls into your stomach and splashes your innards. All the moisture makes you sweat profusely. This condensation shorts the circuits to your brain, and you get all woozy. When your brain burns out altogether, your mouth disengages and you babble like a cretin until she leaves.
Calvin: That's love?!?
Hobbes: Medically speaking.
Calvin: Heck, that happened to me once, but I figured it was cooties!
Calvin and Hobbes

Hobbes: Did you ask your Mom if you could jump off the roof?
Calvin: Questions I know the answers to, I don't need to ask, right?
Calvin and Hobbes

Hobbes: How come we play war and not peace?
Calvin: Too few role models.
Calvin and Hobbes

The Lord bless and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26 (NIV)

Applicants must also have extensive knowledge of Unix, although they should have sufficiently good programming taste to not consider this an achievement. MIT AI Lab job ad in Comm. of the ACM, vol. 35, no. 6, June 1992, pp. 160

You are what you think, not what you do.

He knew not what to say and so he swore. Alfred Lord Tennyson

Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve. Benjamin Franklin

The fault finder will find fault even in paradise. Henry David Thoreau

After silence, that which can come nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music. Aldous Huxley

Little things affect little minds. Benjamin Disraeli

When you have nothing to say, say nothing. Charles Caleb Colton

Humor is the spiciest condiment in the feast of existence. Laugh at your mistakes but learn from them, joke over your troubles but gather strength from them, make a jest of your difficulties but overcome them. Isn't that worth learning? L. M. Montgomery

We live, as we dream--alone. Joseph Conrad

Our happiness or unhappiness depends solely on the quality of the object we love. Unknown

It is much easier to suppress a first desire than to satisfy those which follow. de La Rouchefoucauld

There is no such thing in anyone's life as an unimportant day. Alexander Woollcott

For anything worth having one must pay, and the price is always work, patience, love and self-sacrifice. John Burroughs

It is the height of absurdity to sow little but weeds in the first half of one's lifetime and expect to harvest a valuable crop in the second half. Percy Johnston

You shall judge a man by his foes as well as by his friends. Joseph Conrad

All excellent things are as difficult as they are rare. Benedict Spinoza

We learn to live by living with others. Thomas Merton

I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. Unknown

Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there. Arthur Godfrey

To know what is right and not to do it is the worst cowardice. Confucius

I can usually judge a fellow by what he laughs at. Wilson Mizner

No God, no peace; know God, know peace. Unknown

Some walls have ears, but some ears have walls. Unknown

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (NIV)

Do the best you can for your neighbor. Never forget from where you come. And see if you can improve the lot of your fellow man. Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill

The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers. Shakespeare, Henry VI, Part 2, Act 4, Scene 2

Als je je kont verbrand dan moet je op de blaren zitten. (If you burn your butt, then you have to sit on the blisters.) old Dutch saying

Hoge bomen vangen veel wind. (Tall trees catch a lot of wind.) old Dutch saying

My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular. Adlai Stevenson

In India, "cold weather" is merely a conventional phrase and has come into use through the necessity of having some way to distinguish between weather which will melt a brass door-knob and weather which will only make it mushy. Mark Twain

It's not denial. I'm just very particular about the reality I choose to accept. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

There are three possible parts to a date, of which at least two must be offered: entertainment, food, and affection. It is customary to begin a series of dates with a great deal of entertainment, a moderate amount of food, and the merest suggestion of affection. As the amount of affection increases, the entertainment can be reduced proportionately. When the affection IS the entertainment, we no longer call it dating. Under no circumstances can the food be omitted. Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behaviour

To me, a lawyer is basically the person that knows the rules of the country. We're all throwing the dice, playing the game, moving our pieces around the board, but if there is a problem the lawyer is the only person who has read the inside of the top of the box. Jerry Seinfeld

That's one small step for [a ?] man, one giant leap for mankind. Neil Armstrong, 20 July 1969

A man is handsome all his life, but a woman is only sexy until she's your wife. Al Bundy

Strive for perfection in everything. Take the best that exists and make it better. If it doesn't exist, create it. Accept nothing nearly right or good enough. Sir Henry Royce, co-founder of Rolls-Royce

There's never enough time to do all the nothing you want. Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes

As we acquire more knowldege, things do not become more comprehensible, but more mysterious Albert Schweitzer

When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years. Mark Twain

The fashion wears out more apparel than the man. Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing, III, iii, 147

When you hire people that are smarter than you are, you prove you are smarter than they are. R. H. Grant

A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out. Walter Winchell

What we say is important...for in most cases the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. Jim Beggs

...it takes all the running you can do to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that! Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

The best way to convince a fool that he is wrong is to let him have his own way. Josh Billings

It is completely unimportant. That is why it is so interesting. Agatha Christie, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd

A distributed system is one in which I cannot get something done because a machine I've never heard of is down. Leslie Lamport

We judge others by their actions, but we judge ourselves by our intentions. Jerry Wunder

One test is worth a thousand expert opinions. Bill Nye, the Science Guy

Progress is made by lazy men looking for easier ways to do things. Lazarus Long in Time Enough for Love by Robert Heinlein

If you can't explain something to a six-year-old, you really don't understand it yourself. Albert Einstein

Education is what survives when what has been learnt has been forgotten. B.F. Skinner, "Education in 1984", New Scientist, May 21, 1964, p. 484

Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. Franklin Delano Roosevelt, First Inaugural Address, 1933

Imagination is more important than knowledge. Albert Einstein

The greatest lesson in life is to know that even fools are right sometimes. Winston Churchill

I dare not speak ill of any man behind his back, but I believe the man is an attorney. Samuel Johnson

The computer is unbeatable for dashing quick thoughts off to strangers [and] as a way of procrastinating sending messages to friends. Judith Martin (Miss Manners)

It is better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and erase all doubt. Mark Twain

A mathematician is a machine for turning coffee into theorems. Paul Erdos

O! This learning, what a thing it is. Shakespeare, The Taming of the Shrew

Brevity is the soul of lingerie. Dorothy Parker

Knowledge itself is power. Francis Bacon

In religion and politics, people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second hand, and without examination. Mark Twain

Love: a temporary insanity, curable by marriage. Ambrose Bierce

It is never too late to give up your prejudices. Henry David Thoreau, Walden

...A fine lass, of nice ways and orderly conduct, none ever seeing her drunk above four days in the seven. Mark Twain, The Prince and the Pauper

Math was always my bad subject. I couldn't convince my teachers that many of my answers were meant ironically. writer Calvin Trillin

By all means marry. If you have a good wife, you will be happy. If you have a bad wife, you will become a philosopher. Socrates

An expert is just somebody from out of town. Mark Twain

Behind every successful man, there stands a proud wife and a surprised mother-in-law. Harry S. Truman

He who is bent on doing evil can never want occasion. Publilius Syrus, ca. 1st century BC, Maxims

Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself. Mark Twain

The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time. Bertrand Russell

Nobody on his deathbed ever said: "I wish I'd spent more time at the office." Peter Lynch, former manager of the Magellan Fund, who left his job in 1990 at 46 (the age at which his father died), to devote time to his family and his favorite Boston charities. (quoted in Money 1993)

I have lifted this speech from Bartlett's Familiar Quotations. If more people would acknowledge that they got their pearls of wisdom from that book instead of the original, it might clear the air. Kurt Vonnegut, Hocus Pocus

Do all the good you can
By all the means you can
In all the ways you can
In all the places you can
To all the people you can
As long as ever you can.
John Wesley (1703-91), founder of Methodism

A straight line may be the shortest distance between two points, but it is by no means the most interesting. Dr. Who

Eliminate the impossible and what ever remains, no matter how improbable, is the truth. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)

Education is not the filling of a bucket but the starting of a fire. W.B. Yeats

From: qotd-request@ensu.ucalgary.ca (Quote of the day)
To: qotd@ensu.ucalgary.ca (Quote of the day mailing list)
Subject: Quote of the day
Date: Fri, 29 Aug 1997 03:50:02 -0600

I know the day it happens. On August 29, 1997 it's going to feel pretty fucking real to you too. Anybody not wearing two million sun block is going to have a real bad day. Get it?

Sarah Conner (played by Linda Hamilton), in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, offers a cheery thought for today. [In the film, an unfortunate computer glitch leads to the near-destruction of the Earth on this day. -ed.]

Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum videtur. (Everything said in Latin sounds lofty.)

A computer scientist is someone who, when told to "Go to Hell," sees the "go to," rather than the destination, as harmful.

You never know where you're going 'til you get there Daffy Duck

There is nothing in the world, I venture to say, that would so effectively help one to survive even the worst conditions, as the knowledge that there is a meaning in one's life. One can find meaning in life in three different ways: by creating a work or doing a deed; by experiencing something or encoutering someone; and by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering. We must never forget that we may also find meaning in life even when confronted with a hopeless situation. I bear witness to the unexpected extent to which man is capable of defying and braving even the worst conditions conceivable. Viktor E. Frankl, who survived Auschwitz and three other Nazi concentration camps while losing his parents and other family members. He later developed the "Third Vienna School" of psychotherapy (after Freud and Adler) known as logotherapy, in which man's primary motivational force is his search for meaning. (Quoted in newswire obituaries -- Frankl died Sept. 2, 1997.)

In the arithmetic of love, one plus one equals everything, and two minus one equals nothing. Ninon de L'Enclos

My Brushes with Fame