#BEDM Day 4: Eminently Quotable
Favourite quote (from a person, from a book, etc) and why you love it.
Almost my entire brain is quotes. Every witticism, bon mot or amusing piece of swearing originated somewhere else. There are literally innumerable quotes I could toss out, usually from Bottom, or somewhere like that. Or there’s the line that still, a quarter of a century after first hearing it, makes me well up:
“Megatron must be stopped. No matter the cost.”
The death and destruction rained down on the Autobots in the first five minutes of Transformers: The Movie was and is shocking, especially for an under-10. Prime knew that what he was going to have to do he probably wasn’t going to walk away from but he sticks his chin-plate out and does it anyway. Oh Christ, I think I’ve got something in my eye…
Or maybe there’s the simple line from the fable about the great King who asks his wise men to present him with something that can make sad men happy and happy men sad. They put their heads together and finally present him with a simple ring. Etched along the band are the words:
“This too shall pass”
Something to mull over, that one.
But no, the one I’m going to leave you with is from one of my favourite writers, acknowledged as one of the greatest living authors, who started writing a silly fantasy that became something the accumulated insight and simple wisdom of which I believe should be taught in schools. I started reading Terry Pratchett when I was in my early teens. I sometimes wonder what I would be like if I hadn’t. I don’t think I would have liked to have met that me because I genuinely believe that reading the Discworld books has made me a better person. And the quote is from Granny Weatherwax who so often mirrors the beliefs and feelings of Terry himself. When discussing the nature of sin, another character states “…it’s not a black and white issue. There are so many shades of gray.” Granny replies:
“There’s no greys, only white that’s got grubby… And sin, young man, is when you treat people like things. Including yourself. That’s what sin is.”
This is a quote I have to remind myself of at regular intervals. I have a tendency to forget that other people are actually people, and not just cameo roles in my own personal superhero action movie. It also sums up pretty much everything I believe about our capacity to do bad things to each other. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about that particular line. I think more people should.