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Including, perhaps, sprouts!

I don’t really collect things unless you count the parking tickets, empty water bottles, and half-used tubes of lip gloss that I’ve amassed in outrageous quantities in the back seat of my car.

I did try to collect things when I was little.  I started with scratch-and-sniff stickers, then graduated to baseball cards, then turned to rocks.

I lost interest in the stickers and the cards over time, but the rocks I stopped collecting because they made me mad.  When I picked them from the wet drainage pipe at the end of our street, they were streaked with brilliant colors and ribbons of black.  When I took them out of my pockets and rinsed them in the kitchen sink, they shimmered like fish.  But on the dry land of my bookshelf they turned chalky, like ordinary gravel.  I was embarrassed that I had thought them so magical, and I threw them away.

So I didn’t really collect things, but I did go through quite a lot of books.  I read and read, and when I was twenty I bought a small leather notebook and started copying my favorite sentences into it.

breakfast small

The notebook and I have lived in fifteen apartments since then.

I fetched it this morning and added these lines from “You Better Not Cry” by Augusten Burroughs:

“Much later, we would have a snack.  We would eat it wordlessly, standing side-by-side in the wedge of light that you are given when the refrigerator door is opened in the middle of the night.”

Perhaps you think it’s as lovely as I do?  Or perhaps you don’t, and that’s all right.  But I’m going to tell you a few more of the sentences in my journal because, well, every collection should get its moment on display, right?

cereal 2 small

So here we go.

Here’s a playful note from J.D. Salinger to his editor on the cover page of his book “Franny And Zooey”:

“As nearly as possible in the spirit of Matthew Salinger, age one, urging a luncheon companion to accept a cool lima bean, I urge my editor. . . lover of the long shot, protector of the unprolific, defender of the hopelessly flamboyant, most unreasonably modest of born great artist-editors, to accept this pretty skimpy-looking book.

Isn’t that marvelous? I have lots of favorites from that book.  For example:

“Mrs. Glass, who did some of her most inspired, most perpendicular thinking on the threshold of linen closets, had bedded down her youngest child on the couch between pink percale sheets, and covered her with a pale-blue cashmere afghan.”

Then there’s the best put-down of all time.  It’s from Hemingway’s “A Movable Feast”:

“He had a face that reminded me of a frog.  Not a bullfrog but just any frog, and Paris was too big a puddle for him.”

Zzzzzing!

My other Hemingway favorite, from “In Our Time”, is full of chronological flips and twists.  It goes:

“She had seemed much younger, in fact she had seemed not to have any age at all, when Elliot had married her after several weeks of making love to her after knowing her for a long time in her tea shop before he had kissed her one evening.”

And then there’s the most romantic sentence ever, by F. Scott Fitzgerald in “This Side of Paradise”:

“They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered.”

And finally, there’s this, by Thoreau:

“What a rich book could be written about buds, including, perhaps, sprouts!”

The word sprout should always be followed by an exclamation point, don’t you think? Sprout! Sprout! SPROUT!

Guess what’s not in today’s recipe but would make this transition a whole lot easier if it were?

Sprouts!

cauloflower salad small

But no, this is Yotam Ottolenghi’s roasted cauliflower and hazelnut salad.

I am not a frequent cooker or baker of the hazelnut, so I had no idea how amazing they are in salads.  The roasty, chocolaty flavor of the nuts makes the dish refreshingly unusual.  The dressing is mild, so you really taste the hazelnuts and enjoy the meat of the cauliflower, the crunch of the celery, and the half-tart, half-sweet pop of the grapes (which I substituted for pomegranate seeds because pomegranates aren’t in season).  Enjoy.

Roasted Cauliflower & Hazelnut Salad {Download & Print Recipe}
Adapted slightly from Jerusalem, by Yotam Ottolenghi, and told in my own words
My one note is this: this recipe makes a lot of food.  When you’ve prepared all the ingredients and you’re about to dump them all together and dress them, pause for a second. Toss together only what you think you’ll eat in that sitting.  Just eyeball it.  Then pour some dressing just into that bowl and serve it.   You don’t want to toss the whole salad and have some left over, because the hazelnuts will get soggy and your left-overs will be really disappointing the next day.  Keep the hazelnuts in a plastic baggy on the counter and keep the other ingredients separate in the fridge.  That way when you toss it the next day, it’ll be just as good and fresh as the first time you had it.

Ingredients: {serves at least 4}

1 head cauliflower, broken into small florets

5 Tbsp. olive oil, divided

2 celery stalks, cut on an angle

5 Tbsp. hazelnuts, with skins

1/2 c. parsley leaves, picked

1/3 c. pomegranate seeds OR 2 handfuls of green grapes

a generous 1/4 tsp. cinnamon

generous 1/4 tsp. allspice

1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar

1 1/2 tsp. real maple syrup

salt & pepper

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and move the oven rack to the top slot in the oven.

Toss the cauliflower with 3 Tbsp. of the olive oil, 1/2 tsp. of salt and some black pepper.  Spread the florets on a baking sheet and roast for about 30 minutes, stirring once, or until it’s crisp and parts of the florets are browned.  Transfer the cauliflower to a large bowl.

Lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees.  Spread the hazelnuts on a baking sheet and roast for 17 minutes.  Allow the nuts to cool a little and then coarsely chop them.

[See the headnote about how much salad to assemble if you don’t anticipate left-overs.  Otherwise, proceed.] Add the nuts to the cauliflower along with the celery, parsley, and grapes or pomegranate seeds.

In a small bowl, combine the remaining 2 Tbsp. of olive oil, the cinnamon, allspice, sherry vinegar and maple syrup.  Whisk together with a fork until the spices are no longer clumpy.  Pour the dressing over the cauliflower mixture and toss.  Taste the salad and season it with salt and pepper if it needs it.  Serve at room temperature.

~~~

ThunderThis face!

p.s.  Feel free to pass along lovely sentences if you have them.  I have many blank pages in this notebook of mine.

83 Comments Post a comment
  1. Oh Thunder! She’s the perfect end to your posts :) Give her a hug for me! Say, you wouldn’t be coming to TechMunch this weekend would you?

    March 5, 2013
    • TechMunch looks cool! But alas–I won’t be there. I’d be interested to hear your thoughts about the conference, though. I’m tempted to write a long treatise here about the last food blogging conference I went to and how I left feeling somewhat dispirited, but I won’t. Hopefully yours is as amazing as FoodBlogSouth was last year– I learned so much and met so many wonderful people! Hope it’s a blast.

      March 5, 2013
      • I’ve seen the lineup of speakers, I know half of them through the AFBA. It looks like I should pick up some new tricks. I will be blogging about it for sure :)

        March 5, 2013
  2. This is such a beautiful idea! I write down quotes but I’ve never had a specific book, I must acquire one :) My favourite quote from the Great Gatsby is ‘I was both within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life’. I could put all F. Scott Fitzgerald’s writing down frankly! Thunder and Seymour are so lovely too :) xxx

    March 5, 2013
    • Ah, Bex! I love that book–the line at the end–about the green light receding and the orgiastic future or something? Beautiful. I looked for it this morning on the bookshelves but I couldn’t find it. I was going to search for a description of a dog bone that’s melting in a bowl of water at an apartment party Nick goes to with Daisy, because it sums everything up perfectly. But I couldn’t find the book. That’s why I need to be sure to add them all to the notebook, so they’re all in one place. xo

      March 5, 2013
      • It’s just so eminently quotable! As I have nothing better to do with my evening I have found the quote :) ‘A reluctant elevator boy went for a box full of straw and some milk, to which he added on his own initiative a tin of large, hard dog biscuits- one of which decomposed apathetically in the saucer of milk all afternoon.’ The whole party chapter (no. 3?) is my favourite. Or Gatsby in the pool… Too much awesomness! Also I sympathise with the feeling of owning too many books not being able to find one! xxx

        March 6, 2013
        • Oh you are wonderful. Thank you. I just got out my book and wrote it down so that I’m never at a loss for it again. Thank you so much for looking it up!

          March 8, 2013
  3. Amy #

    How cool that you’ve had that notebook for so long…and that you continue to go back and read what’s in it! I feel like I started a ton of collections when i was younger as well…I liked to collect things but never use them. A hoarder if you will. Stickers, candy, money (bday presents, etc), you name it.Of course in the end, it all got thrown out, which made me realize I should have been using the items instead of just collecting them. Except the money didn’t get thrown out…most of that my brother managed to con me into using on things for “us” like the video games that only he played.

    Anyway, this salad looks great. I’ve never actually cooked with hazelnuts, I don’t think. I love parsley and celery though, and so I think I would really like this! (obviously since we seem to be tastebud twins)

    March 5, 2013
    • Amy, how about those bath beads–the oils that came in those dissolvable gelatin casings in various shapes, like spheres, hearts, and stars? I had so many of those with various scents, but I never used them because I was SAVING THEM. Like, guarding them with my life. For what, I don’t know. Girls gave gift baskets from bath and body shops as birthday presents for YEARS when I was growing up. These days, scrubbing the (rather clean) tub out thoroughly enough for a relaxing bath is just. . . not something I want to do.

      March 5, 2013
      • Amy #

        hahahah! omg, I totally know what you’re talking about. Do they even make them anymore? I don’t think I saved those but that reminds but that I did (and still do) save all those little mini lotions that come in gift baskets or hotel rooms…and I never use them!!! What in god’s name am I saving them for?!

        March 5, 2013
        • I can tell you why I save them: I keep thinking “someday we will have lots of guests! Guest after guest after guest. They will stay in our guest room and before they arrive I will lay out fresh towels and a hotel soap, a hotel shampoo, and a hotel conditioner. And they will feel so special!”

          In the past year, we’ve had maybe 3 guests. Most of them have brought their own bath products. Gah!!!
          I did leave a bar of soap out for Scott’s sister, but Seymour gnawed on it before she got here so it conveyed the opposite message (“uh, welcome???” from what I’d been going for (“welcome!!!!”)

          March 8, 2013
  4. You may find it shocking, but I’m reading my first Hemingway soon. My book club reads at least one classic each year, and this one is Hemingway. Now I’m really looking forward to it!

    P.S. Currently reading “Paris Wife” as a bit of preparation for Hemingway. Good book.

    March 5, 2013
    • I have not read Paris Wife! But I’m glad to hear it’s good. I am on an Augusten Burroughs kick. I just started “Running with Scissors.” It makes me glad that I didn’t see the movie they made of it, because it’s wonderfully funny to read.

      There are so many authors I haven’t read. I’ve hit the Hemingway pretty hard, but I’m severely lacking on others. If only there we had more time to read!

      March 8, 2013
      • Never enough time to do the things you love. I’m mostly-retired and I still feel that way.

        And, yes, I hate reading books after a movie….

        March 8, 2013
      • Augusten Burroughs is laugh-out-loud funny while being tragically heartbreaking. I adore him! I couldn’t possibly watch a movie made from his books. The characters would never match my imagination. (I’d say that’s true of most books I love that have been made into movies.) Bet you’ll add a lot more quotes to your fabulous notebook reading Mr. Burroughs.

        March 9, 2013
  5. I think collecting sentences/quotes is a fantastic idea.. I just dog-ear my poor books. I love this sort of dish, this is a recipe I’ve just got to try! xx

    March 5, 2013
    • Barbara, I dog-ear my books too. That way I can theoretically find my favorite passages. It’s terrible, but I don’t often get books from the library. I want to KEEP them–not just any copy of the book, but THE copy I read!

      March 8, 2013
  6. I have lurked around on this blog without commenting for a long, long time now (I love the mixture of anecdotes, inspiring recipes and photos of the adorable Thunder) but I have to un- lurk to say that the idea of collecting sentences went straight to my heart. I’m going to get me a notebook …

    March 5, 2013
    • Anneli, you kindred spirit, thank you. I lurk on other people’s sites, too, because it would take too much time to comment on them all. So I feel lucky that you commented here because this little note made me sigh a happy sigh!

      March 8, 2013
  7. Loving your post – thanks so much for sharing:) My favorite book is Alice in Wonderland – here is a quote that I love by Alice – What is the use of a book, without pictures or conversations? Happy Tuesday!

    March 5, 2013
    • Alice in Wonderland! I had the most beautiful hard-back illustrated copy of that when I was little. To be honest, the story scared me a little. It gave me an uneasy feeling that I can never quite shake when I think about it. I must have been too young when I read it. So I’m glad you reminded me of it–when I’m home next in Virginia in my old bedroom, I’ll have another read. I know exactly where the book is! Happy Friday to you.

      March 8, 2013
  8. I love hazelnuts in salads! And I enjoyed all of those collected sentences immensely.

    One of my friends who is an aspiring short story writer and I used to talk all the time about how some people are plot people, some people are paragraph people, and some people are beautiful sentence people, who just can’t get enough of beautiful sentences. I definitely fall into that last category. It takes me forever to read anything by Virginia Woolf, partially because it’s so stream-of-conscious-y, but also partially because there are so many beautiful sentences that I need to stop and re-read!

    March 5, 2013
    • Allison, I’m exactly the same way with Virginia Woolf! When I finished To The Lighthouse, I didn’t want to read another book for a long time. Or Orlando. Have you read that one? It’s so amazing. Any author I picked up for months after that just *wouldn’t DO.* I wanted the total immersion and twirly floating along in a vivid dream-state of language that wasn’t present in anything but her writing. I enjoy all kinds of books, but if there are no sentences that I want to read over and over and write down, then I know it wasn’t MY kind of book, no matter how much I was entertained while reading it.

      March 8, 2013
      • Yes yes, so you’re a beautiful sentence person, too! :)

        I haven’t (yet!) read To The Lighthouse, but I absolutely loved Orlando. I read it for the first time back in high school or college, and read it all in one weekend, while listening to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons on repeat, for some reason… (So now it’s like some sort of Pavlovian response with me or something: I’ll be out somewhere and suddenly start thinking about that book, and then I’ll realize that the place I’m in is playing Vivaldi in the background!)

        March 10, 2013
  9. stephbo93 #

    I have the same disappointment you have with the rocks and seashells I find while walking along the beach. I still pick them up and bring them home anyway. And I’ve been keeping quote books ever since I was in college. I’m on number 4 right now. I love looking back at them and remembering where I was physically and emotionally when a particular quote spoke to me.

    March 5, 2013
    • Oh yes, yes. For some books or sentences I remember how I was sitting and in what room when I first read them. For others, I know why I wrote the line down–because I was heart-broken, or inspired by a particular professor or friend in college, or kind of depressed and trying to write a song on the guitar (Classic 20-year-old move, eh? I never did get good at the guitar and the lyrics, in retrospect, were preposterous.) Happy quote hunting to you, my friend. I hope I someday have 4 volumes as well!

      March 8, 2013
  10. cirtnecce #

    You know there might be something to the Karmic connection thing…I too started copying out phases in a special notebook when I turned 20…still have the notebook and still copy passages! ;)…My current favourite is something, I belive one of your other readers also wrote from The Great Gatsby “I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life” and “Let us learn to show our friendship for a man when he is alive and not after he is dead”! Enjoy!

    March 5, 2013
    • After reading these lines I simply MUST find my Great Gatsby copy and read it again. I always loved the paragraph at the beginning of the chapter with the huge party at Jay’s house, where it describes the food. The amazing food!

      You are wonderful to leave these sentences here for me to read. Thank you!

      March 8, 2013
  11. Kristen #

    Love, Love, Love J.D. Salinger and Franny and Zooey in particular! Thanks for the reminder.

    March 5, 2013
    • Kristen, I wish wish wish he had written more, don’t you?

      March 8, 2013
  12. Ouida Lampert #

    Um, about the rocks, should you ever decide to collect them again…oil them! It takes a bit (actually soaking them works well), and you have to wipe them down (ick), but it makes them lovely.

    March 5, 2013
    • Ouida, this is awesome. How I wish I knew this before! I WILL start collecting them again. And–even better than that–I will tell my friend with the 5 children. I’m sure one of them will start collecting rocks one of these days. I’ll make up for lost time, in a way, by passing this information along to them.

      March 8, 2013
  13. I found the same disappointment with my rock collection until I discovered clear nail polish — et voila! They looked wet and shiny but magically didn’t leave spots on the furniture. And thank you for the tip about assembling only as much salad as you will eat!

    March 5, 2013
    • Jennifer, what great idea about the nail polish! To think I’d been using clear nailpolish on just my nails or to keep runs from stockings from creeping any further down my leg! All this time, I could have been assembling a lovely rock collection! Gah. I’m glad I know, now. I feel like this might come in handy in the future.

      March 8, 2013
  14. jenny_o #

    Instead of lovely sentences, I collect quotes that tell me how to better myself … oops. I might be doing it wrong :)

    How do you keep Thunder so beautifully white? She has the most exquisite face.

    March 5, 2013
    • You know what? Seymour licks her face before they go to bed. How freaking cute is that? Sometimes if she gets muddy we run a baby wipe through the wrinkles on her face. Otherwise, she just loves rubbing her face in blankets–I think that’s how she keeps herself so white!

      March 8, 2013
      • jenny_o #

        Sounds like a group effort is required!

        March 8, 2013
  15. Mary #

    You could make this salad with sprouts! Roasted brussel sprouts and roasted cauliflower have similar flavors. Now I’m torn, which variation should I try first?

    March 5, 2013
    • Mary, that does sound amazing–what a good idea! I adore brussels sprouts. I’m tempted to do a balsamic dressing but otherwise keep the ingredients the same, but with sprouts. Yum.

      March 8, 2013
  16. Beautiful! Beautiful! Beautiful! How privileged we are for you to share your collection with us. I enjoyed every gathered and cherished word running eagarly ahead to the next exhibit to see what it would be.
    I have a similar book(s) to this day. My collection is quotes though (you’d probably already guessed that though.)
    Thank you again :)

    March 6, 2013
    • I don’t doubt you have many of lovely book of quotes–you always have such wonderful starts to your posts!

      I am so excited to read this weekend. Sharing these lines with you all has lit an unexpected fire under me. I just want to read, read, read!

      March 8, 2013
  17. HargravesRyan #

    I fancy jotting as well. One day, if not already, writers pens will bleed in notebooks inspirational lines from Eggton. Great post. Keep up your exceptional work!

    March 6, 2013
  18. Oh, to write such memorable lines! That’s the holy grail for those of us who write or want to write. A well-turned sentence, full of beautiful, unexpected imagery. Love these!

    March 6, 2013
    • Yes, yes! The holy grail indeed. (I say with a sigh of mixed jealousy and adoration).

      March 8, 2013
  19. mallory #

    I don’t have any particularly good ones off the top of my head, but I *do* have a tumblr to share that you might find yourself going down the rabbit hole of, if you are like me. I think I read every one of the 8 or 9 pages in one sitting, when I found it… http://bestbookquotes.tumblr.com

    March 6, 2013
    • Oh. My. Goodness.

      Mallory, I *love* that tumblr site. Thank you. I really like the quote on there from “The Marriage Plot” by Jeffrey Eugenides. I haven’t read it yet and I think I might try to get my hands on it. I loved his book “Midlesex”. . .

      March 8, 2013
  20. Anna F. #

    I’ve been putting hazelnuts in your bittersweet chocolate and orange cookies. It was a last minute decision the first time, but they’re so yummy that I keep doing it.

    March 6, 2013
    • Oh what a wonderful idea! I just this morning ran out of the roasted hazelnuts I’ve been keeping on the counter. I’ve been adding them to salad, yogurt–everything. I made a mediocre poppy seed pound cake a few days ago. I saved it by eating it with hazelnuts, actually–I’d put a bite of cake in my mouth and pop a hazelnut in there, too, and it tasted amazing (or, at least, far better than the cake alone).

      I realize that is not normal behavior and I might be developing a hazelnut problem.

      March 8, 2013
  21. I love your notebook. And, of course, Thunder.

    March 6, 2013
    • Sandy Sue, Thunder is dozing because she spent the better half of this morning fighting with. . . wait for it: an empty bucket (!) at the dog park this morning.

      March 8, 2013
      • Oh, God, this made me LAUGH. I can see it. And I’m still LAUGHING.

        March 9, 2013
  22. You make me want to start collecting quotes, you have quite an ear for them, the ‘cool lima bean’ is my favorite! And I love the salad, roasted cauliflower and hazelnuts are a great pairing, I never thought about it. I especially like roasted hazelnuts when the skin gets all brittle and bitter. Isn’t that cookbook incredible?

    March 6, 2013
    • Since I know nothing about hazelnuts, when I read the recipe, I thought to myself “is he SURE he wants us to add the skins of the hazelnuts, too? We’re not supposed to rub them off?” But how delightful it is to dump the whole thing right in there!

      The cool lima bean is *so* neat, isn’t it? Just. . . the image! I can’t get over it.

      March 8, 2013
  23. Oh my freaking G: “They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered.”

    Thank you girl!!!

    I also have a couple of notebooks that have traveled through the apartments and years with me. I’ll try to remember to send a favorite sentence or two. Thank you again!

    March 6, 2013
  24. That salad is amazing, as is the quote from Burroughs. Nothing compares with Thunder’s lovely face, of course.

    March 6, 2013
    • Isn’t the Burroughs quote lovely? What makes it especially touching is the fact that his best friend, his lover, his “everything” is dying in the portion of the book that contains this sentence. So when he says “the wedge of light you are given,” I felt like he used the word “given” because he fells lucky to have this moment, like not taking any time for granted. Aye, me.

      March 11, 2013
  25. Franny and Zooey and Raise High the Roofbeam, Carpenter got me through high school. How nice to see it/them appreciated.

    March 6, 2013
    • Cindy, I love knowing that they mean something to you too.

      March 11, 2013
  26. I am so glad someone else had the same experience with rocks as I did! I was the exact same way when I was a kid.

    I too, am a collector of sentences, although mine are not nearly as organized as yours – I tend to just jot them down on whatever is handy.

    “Every one suspects himself of at least one of the cardinal virtues, and this is mine: I am one of the few honest people that I have ever known.” Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

    “Death belongs to God alone. By what right do men touch that unknown thing?” Hugo, Les Miserables

    Also from Les Mis (and my favorite of these I’m listing for you): ““The soul helps the body, and at certain moments raises it. It is the only bird that sustains its cage.”

    Also loved Franny and Zooey. I’ve been meaning to re-read it for years – thanks for the reminder!

    March 6, 2013
  27. cj #

    Per usual: a wonderful post. Thank you for sharing those exquisite bits of books that touched your heart. Here’s one of my favorites: “The kiss of his memory made pictures of love and light against the wall. Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see.” Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God.

    March 6, 2013
  28. Ottolenghi is a genius with salads. I don’t have Jerusalem, but it seems to be the “it” book right now in the cooking world. Unfortunately, most of the book quotes I’ve got floating in my head right now come from children’s books. “Sam sat on Mat” doesn’t quite have the same ring to it as Thoreau.

    March 6, 2013
  29. texascritter #

    Loved Franny & Zooey! Never read Catcher in the Rye and I adore Fitzgerald, especially Great Gatsby, haven’t read any Hemingway and you make me want to pick up a book of his tonight with all those lovely lines! Here’s one of my favorite quotes, not from a book but from a print ad for a Todd Rundgren album 20 years ago:

    “So we listen as we can for repetitive sounds that make differences apparent that are not at first clear, to give order to the cadence of lost days and the rhythm of irregular years.”

    I used to store quotes in a text file on my computer back when everyone had quotes in their signatures on email, still have it somewhere but haven’t added to it in recent years.

    March 6, 2013
    • Kristen #

      Please read Catcher in the Rye, you will not regret it! We don’t know each other but trust me! :)

      March 6, 2013
  30. Marcia #

    I collect song lyrics. One of my favorites is from the Amos Lee song Sweat Pea:

    Sweet pea
    Keeper of my soul
    I know sometimes I’m out of control
    You’re the only reason I keep on coming home

    It’s fun to hear from so many other people who collect words. Fitzgerald is one of my favorite authors as well. Thank you for sharing so many beautiful words, pictures, and recipes on your blog. It’s one of my favorites.

    March 7, 2013
  31. Among my memories of you from college: your parking-ticket-habit and (more important) wonderful taste in lit. and poetry! Will definitely try this recipe. Also, had to tell you that we made your glazed carrots and couscous last night and it was delicious! Huge hit.

    March 8, 2013
  32. I’ve been collecting quotes, like you, for years! Not always from books, but also movies and music and people around me. Recently, I took a photo of this page in War and Peace (which I’m still making my way through – only about 90 pages left!!!) because it resonated with me. “…Pierre did not know this; entirely absorbed in what lay before him, he was suffering the anguish men go through when they persist in undertaking a task impossible for them – not because of its inherent difficulties, but because of its incompatibility with their own nature.”

    March 8, 2013
  33. I collected scratch and sniff stickers. There was this one my teacher put on my spelling test in grade 3 – it was a mug of root beer that smelled like a pint of A & W. I sniffed it addictively and kept it until I graduated. University. I also collected words that I loved for the way they made me feel I could live inside them: rambling, cozy, ochre, garrett, are a few I remember. You’ve inspired me to start a new notebook. And reading everyone’s comments has made me want to re-read Catcher in the Rye and The Great Gatsby (both of which I LOVED).

    March 9, 2013
  34. I hear ya on the rocks – and now that I think about it, I’m wondering why I didn’t ever think to seal my beauties with clear nail polish. (Since I basically sealed everything else I owned with clear nail polish.) I collect buttons and cookbooks now. Very satisfying and rarely disappointing.

    Also, I like to collect words and phrases on my iPhone. If anyone ever finds it, I’ll look like a complete loser.

    March 10, 2013
  35. Mischa #

    The quote that got me started on my own quote book:

    It is hard enough at any time being shut up in the dark with nothing to do; but the prospect of being a human sacrifice at the end of it just made the whole situation incomparably worse. 
    –from The Stolen Lake by Joan Aiken

    March 10, 2013
  36. This salad looks fantastic and I have just added it to this week’s menu (it’s so easy to do that when the menu only lives in my head!).
    In the spirit of great insults:
    “I’ve had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn’t it.” — Groucho Marx
    “He has the attention span of a lightning bolt.” –Robert Redford

    March 11, 2013
    • I love these, Tina, and I had never heard of them! They are *such* good zingers–so glad you shared.

      March 15, 2013
  37. You all are my kindred spirits today! I love all the quotes – here is my favorite from Gatsby (it is even my favorite quotation on my Facebook):

    “And as I sat there, brooding on the old, unknown world, I thought of Gatsby’s wonder when he first picked out Daisy’s light at the end of his dock. He had come such a long way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close he could hardly fail to grasp it. But what he did not know was that it was already behind him, somewhere in the vast obscurity beyond the city, where the dark fields of the republic rolled on under the night.”
    – F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 9

    And the republic rolled on under the night:) Thanks for the Salinger quotes and your wonderful blog today….

    March 11, 2013
    • Gosh, Kitty. I’ve read that paragraph so many times before but it still gets my rapt attention now. You are so kind to type it out here–I just can’t tear myself away from the screen and will probably sit here another ten minutes reading it over and over. It’s just so. . . so epic. In the last sentence maybe it’s the alliteration of the republic rolling, or all the words that connote place (behind, somewhere, beyond, where, on, under), and time–dunno–but it just strikes me as so big and devastating and beautiful.

      March 15, 2013
      • Thanks for responding – yes…it is so epic. It is all that unrequited love and such hope in spite of everything:) Keep those blogs comin’!

        March 15, 2013
  38. Coach #

    You are generous to daylight your hoard and, not surprisingly, everything you’ve shared is awesome. “But nevertheless the fish are dead and the chair is broken” rolls around in my head a lot, from Kerouac and On the Road. A simple sentence that shouldn’t make sense, except that you understand finality from its cadence. Sometimes I catch myself about it slip it into everyday conversation like a proverb, but like a proverb that NO ONE identifies with. This is what comes from collecting quotes.

    March 12, 2013
    • What a sentence, man. It’s going in my book.

      March 15, 2013
  39. I used to write down my fav quotes too LOL – I thought it was just me – here’s a couple of mine
    ee cummings

    (i do not know what it is about you that closes and opens;only something in me understands the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses) nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands

    and Rosetti

    If only I could recollect it! Such
    A day of days! I let it come and go
    As traceless as a thaw of bygone snow.
    It seemed to mean so little, meant so much!
    If only now I could recall that touch,
    First touch of hand in hand! – Did one but know!

    March 15, 2013
  40. Heather Sutherland #

    I highly recommend you read Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard if you haven’t already. It’s amazing. I couldn’t find you a quote from it, there is no way to choose.

    March 17, 2013
  41. Heather Sutherland #

    I found one:
    “After the one extravagant gesture of creation in the first place, the universe has continued to deal exclusively in extravagances, flinging intricacies and colossi down aeons of emptiness, heaping profusions on profligacies with ever-fresh vigor. The whole show has been on fire from the word go. I come down to the water to cool my eyes. But everywhere I look I see fire; that which isn’t flint is tinder, and the whole world sparks and flames.”
    ― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

    March 18, 2013

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