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Quotations about Places


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You can fall in love at first sight with a place as with a person. And I had fallen in love with Tahiti before ever I had set foot in it. ~Alec Waugh, 1930


I have written much about many good places. But the best places of all, I have never mentioned. ~Edward Abbey


New stones, new steeples are comely things; but the human heart clings to places that hold association and reminiscence. ~Christopher Morley, "To a New Yorker a Hundred Years Hence," 1921


Some places speak distinctly. Certain dark gardens cry aloud for a murder; certain old houses demand to be haunted; certain coasts are set apart for shipwreck. ~Robert Louis Stevenson


How hard it is to escape from places. However carefully one goes they hold you — you leave little bits of yourself fluttering on the fences — little rags and shreds of your very life. ~Katherine Mansfield


Las Vegas looks the way you'd imagine heaven must look at night. ~Chuck Palahniuk


The worst of a modern stylish mansion is, that it has no place for ghosts. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes


California's a wonderful place to live — if you happen to be an orange. ~Author unknown


Such, then, was our welcome to the Yosemite.... [I]f any single scene could in itself sum up all the chief beauties and marvels of our American West, this was the scene. Here was poetically epitomized and digested within the compass of a picture-frame much of the cliff-grandeur of the Arizona Canyon, the fascination of Yellowstone waterfalls, the call of Colorado's "silent peaks of aged snow," the charm of the huge park-like forests of the Pacific shore. It was the West at a glance. ~Robert Haven Schauffler, Romantic America, 1913


The night before I left Las Vegas I walked out in the desert to look at the moon. There was a jeweled city on the horizon, spires rising in the night, but the jewels were diadems of electric and the spires were the neon of signs ten stories high. ~Norman Mailer


I had looked at the lights of Broadway by night.... I had looked, not without joy, at that long kaleidoscope of coloured lights arranged in large letters and sprawling trade-marks, advertising everything, from pork to pianos, through the agency of the two most vivid and most mystical of the gifts of God; colour and fire. ~G.K. Chesterton, "A Meditation in Broadway," What I Saw in America, 1922


I grew up in the suburbs. I guess most people think of the suburbs as a place with all the disadvantages of the city and none of the advantages of the country. And vice versa. ~The Wonder Years, "Pilot," 1988, written by Neal Marlens and Carol Black  [S1, E1, Narrator Kevin]


You're not dumb, you're just from California. ~Joe Clemente, to Guy Fieri, 2016  [Said in New Jersey at Dolce & Clemente's while filming an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, because Guy did not know the word "pockety," which apparently is large rigatoni pasta. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]


Maps are a way of organizing wonder. ~Peter Steinhart, 1986


A boy is a boy and he is the place he inhabits.... those mountains and deserts live in me still and when I go back into that country my heart surges with sudden blood. The past hurls itself at me at times. My bones remember the water and the stones. I grew my body from that mountain earth, and my cells remember the cactus and pines, the lilies and grasses. ~Patrick Lane, What the Stones Remember: A Life Rediscovered, 2004  [Okanagan, Canada –tg]


Traveling underground and living in a skyscraper may increase the New Yorker's difficulty in making both ends meet. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor


Las Vegas: all the amenities of modern society in a habitat unfit to grow a tomato. ~Jason Love


GLOBE  An all-round proposition which has furnished its shareholders a living for several thousand years, though its stock is two-thirds water. ~Charles Wayland Towne, The Foolish Dictionary, Executed by Gideon Wurdz, Master of Pholly, Doctor of Loquacious Lunacy, etc., 1904


I'm thinking of my child, my little one, who's under the roots of the grass. Those others have still got them in the flesh walking about, yet they've gone off to look for a better place. But for me, all that was dear to me has become the grass and water of this place, and I'll stay here until I become part of this earth as well. ~Jean Giono (1895–1970), Regain, 1930, translated from the French by Henri Fluchè and Geoffrey Myers, Harvest, 1939 [a little altered –tg]


Gloria to Tony: The first noble truth is: life is suffering. But the Buddha preached joyful participation in the sorrows of the world.
Tony to Dr. Melfi, (later): Well, I am improving. I mean, you gotta participate joyfully in the suffering of the world.
Dr. Melfi: Your thoughts have a kind of Eastern flavor to them.
Tony: Well, I've lived in Jersey my whole life.
~Michael Imperioli, The Sopranos, "The Telltale Moozadell," original airdate 2001 April 22nd


But we ask you to look kindly on this our city of wonder, the city of amazing beauties which is also (to any man of quick imagination) an actual hell of haste, din, and dishevelment. ~Christopher Morley, "To a New Yorker a Hundred Years Hence," 1921  [New York City —tg]


And how we loved this strange, mad city of ours, which we knew in our hearts was, to the clear eye of reason and the pure, sane vision of poetry, a bedlam of magical impertinence, a blind byway of monstrous wretchedness. And yet the blacker it seemed to the lamp of the spirit, the more we loved it with the troubled eye of flesh. ~Christopher Morley, "To a New Yorker a Hundred Years Hence," 1921  [New York City —tg]


There is always a sneer in Las Vegas. The mountains around it sneer. The desert sneers. And arrogant in the middle of its wide valley, dominating those diligent sprawling suburbs, the downtown city sneers like anything. ~Jan Morris


Men make houses; women make homes; necessity makes boarding-places, and flats happen. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1903, George Horace Lorimer, editor


A cemetery is a strangely comforting place. Sure it's sad, but there's also something else here — a kind of peace and refuge that you can't find anywhere else. Here, you can hide from the world for a while. Here, nobody approaches you for anything. You can spend hours here and you'll be left alone because people respect the fact that anyone in a cemetery, whether dead or alive, should be left alone. Not even time exists here, or it at least seems to stand still. It's generous. It doesn't urge you on. It lets you be. ~Jenny Torres Sanchez, Death, Dickinson, and the Demented Life of Frenchie Garcia, 2013  [a little altered —tg]


Growing up in a small town was great because you knew everybody, and it was horrible because everybody knew you — like having a town full of parents. ~John Atkins [On growing up in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania. Interview with Sean Marquette, aired after Schooled, "Glascott Mascot," 2019. A little altered. –tg]


A filing-cabinet of human lives
Where people swarm like bees in tunneled hive,
Each to his own cell in the towered comb,
Identical and cramped—we call it home.
~Gerald Raftery (1905–1986), "Apartment House," 1968


Alone in the Big Sur
I felt a chance to merge with the ghost of cliff and pine-tree...
~William Pillin, "The Blue Fear," 1957


There are some towns so small that your second best friend is your third worst enemy. ~FDA member, May 1976


Poetry in New York! In California it is, in a way, part of our life, with the sunshine and flowers, but you might as well expect orchids to grow on the walls of the sky scrapers as hope to find a soil for poetry in sterile and soulless Manhattan. ~A Californian, anonymous open letter to Miss Vera Fitch, 1910 October 29th


Teacher says that Mississippi
Is the Indian name for "Father of Waters."
Why don't they call it Mister-sippi?
And is Miss-ouri one of his daughters?
~A.D. Condo, "A Puzzled Geographer," in St. Nicholas, February 1906


[T]his is California. Blondes are like the state flower or something. ~From the television show Beverly Hills 90210, spoken by the character Steve Sanders


It's a corny old gag about Las Vegas, the temporal city if there ever was one, trying to camouflage the hours and retard the dawn, when everybody knows that if you're feeling lucky you're really feeling time in its rawest form, and if you're not feeling lucky, they've got a clock at the bus station. ~Michael Herr


Las Vegas is the only town in the world whose skyline is made up neither of buildings, like New York, nor of trees, like Wilbraham, Massachusetts, but signs. ~Tom Wolfe


Do you know, this country seems almost an impertinence. It is a respectable golf course. It is a piece of jewelry. Illeria is the setting, and Tania the gem. Arizona could wear the thing in her watch-chain and not feel the weight of it. A few mountains and defiles, — a furlong or two of vineyards, and a mile or so of sea-coast, a wonderful sapphire sky, — that is all. Add to this innumerable ruins falling beneath the iconoclastic pick of the archæologist... It ought to be transported bodily and made a permanent feature of the Buffalo Fair. Any wide-awake firm of contractors could do it in six months. ~Laura L. Livingstone (Herbert Dickinson Ward), Lauriel: The Love Letters of an American Girl, 1901  [Illyria —tg]


I believe God was having a good day when he made Alaska. ~Bob Ross, "Not Quite Spring," The Joy of Painting, 1992


Everything native to Oklahoma was tough and warlike. Only the strong survived here. Our snakes came with venom and a warning signal. Our insects were armored against predators and dehydration. Our birds possessed talons, telescopic vision, and hollow bones. These animals were designed for hardship. All weakness and softness had been beaten out of their genetic lineage by the dust storms, the droughts, and the tornadoes. Disaster was as much a part of life in Oklahoma as the weather-worn sky. The crayfish were plated with complex carapaces. The coyotes were shy and clever, as elusive as dreams. The groundhogs dug deep burrows, safe from heat and wind. The turtles and frogs lived a halfway existence, dipping between tepid water and balmy air. The porcupines carried weaponry on their backs. The mule deer had lightning reflexes. The alligators were stupid but heavily armed. I was jealous of them all — their savage strength and vivid senses, their power and tenaciousness. The way they were born was the best way to be. ~Abby Geni, The Wildlands, 2018 [How well this also applies to Arizona! –tg]


The tracks of the L Train are the manly stubble on the ruggedly handsome face of Chicago. ~Jason Sweeney, @sween, tweet, 2010


What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. ~Jeff Candido and Jason Hoff, advertising slogan written for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, 2002


There isn't any night club in the world you can sit in for a long time unless you can at least buy some liquor and get drunk. Or unless you're with some girl that really knocks you out. ~J. D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye, 1951


[A] duel in France, is not like one in England; the former is a matter of course; a trifle of common occurrence; one makes an engagement to fight, in the same breath as an engagement to dine; but the latter is a thing of state and solemnity—long faces—early rising—and will making. ~Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton (1803–1873), Pelham; or, The Adventures of a Gentleman, 1828


Vermont? You don't mean that narrow, pinched-up little state on the wrong side of Boston? ~Dark Victory, 1939, written by Casey Robinson, based on a 1932 play In Time's Course by George Brewer, Jr. & Bertram Bloch, spoken by the character Judith Traherne


What a dear old wall that is that runs along by the river there! I never pass it without feeling better for the sight of it. Such a mellow, bright, sweet old wall; what a charming picture it would make, with the lichen creeping here, and the moss growing there, a shy young vine peeping over the top at this spot, to see what is going on upon the busy river, and the sober old ivy clustering a little farther down! There are fifty shades and tints and hues in every ten yards of that old wall. If I could only draw, and knew how to paint, I could make a lovely sketch of that old wall, I'm sure. I've often thought I should like to live at Hampton Court. It looks so peaceful and so quiet, and it is such a dear old place to ramble round in the early morning before many people are about. ~Jerome K. Jerome, Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog), 1889


Disneyland is the only people trap operated by a mouse. ~Author unknown



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