Ghostwritten

Access to memories does not guarantee access to truth.

Always, it is the poor people who pay. And always, it is the poor people's women who pay the most.

A weapon men use against women is the refusal to take them seriously.

Folks with most to complain about seldom complain most.

Go on, my dear," urges the snake. "Take one. Hear it? 'Pluck me,' it's saying. That big, shiny red one. 'Pluck me, pluck me now and pluck me hard.' You know you want to."

"But God," quotes Eve, putting out feelers for an agent provacateur, clever girl, "expressly forbids us to eat the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge."

"Ah yessssss, God ... But God gave us life, did He not? And God gave us desire, did He not? And God gave us taste, did He not? And who else but God made the damned apples in the first place? So what else is life for but to tassste the fruit we desire?"

Eve folds her arms schoolgirlishly. "God expressly forbade it. Adam said."

The snake grins through his fangs, admiring Eve's playacting. "God is a nice enough chap in His way. I daresay He means well. But between you and The Tree of Knowledge, He is terribly insecure."

"Insecure? He made the entire bloody universe! He's omnipotent."

"Exactly! Almost neurotic, isn't it? All this worshiping, morning, noon, and night. It's 'Oh Praise Him, Oh Praise Him, Oh Praise the Everlassssting Lord.' I don't call that omnipotent. I call it pathetic. Most independent authorities agree that God has never sufficiently credited the work of virtual particles in the creation of the universssse. He raises you and Adam on this diet of myths while all the really interesting information is locked up in these juicy apples. Seven days? Give me a break.

Have you noticed," said John, "how countries call theirs 'sovereign nuclear deterrents,' but call the other countries' ones 'weapons of mass destruction'?

How about this? Hong Kong had been appropriated by British drug pushers in the 1840s. We wanted Chinese silk, porcelain, and spices. The Chinese didn't want our clothes, tools, or salted herring, and who can blame them? They had no demand. Our solution was to make a demand, by getting large sections of the populace addicted to opium, a drug which the Chinese government had outlawed. When the Chinese understandably objected to this arrangement, we kicked the fuck out of them, set up a puppet government in Peking that hung signs on parks saying NO DOGS OR CHINESE, and occupied this corner of their country as an import base. Fucking godawful behavior, when you think about it. And we accuse them of xenophobia. It would be like the Colombians invading Washington in the early twenty-first century and forcing the White House to legalize heroin. And saying, "Don't worry, we'll show ourselves out, and take Florida while we're at it, okay? Thanks very much.

Humans live in a pit of cheating, exploiting, hurting, incarcerating. Every time, the species wastes some part of what it could be. This waste is poisonous.

I added 'writers' to my list of people not to trust. They make everything up.

I am going to tell you a secret. Everything is about wanting. Everything. Things happen because of people wanting. Watch closely, and you’ll see what I mean.

If you’re in your life, chance. Viewed from the outside, like a book you’re reading, it’s fate all the way.

Integrity is a bugger, it really is. Lying can get you into difficulties, but to really wind up in the crappers try telling nothing but the truth.

I pass through many Me's in the course of my day, each one selfish with his time. The Lying-in-Bed me and the Enjoying-the-Hot-Shower Me are particularly selfish. The Late Me loathes the pair of them.

Italians give their city sexes, and they all agree that the sex for a particular city is quite correct, but none of them can explain why. I love that. London's middle-aged and male, respectably married but secretly gay.

It was a morning for Ella Fitzgerald. There are fine things in the world, after all. Dignity, refinement, warmth and humour, where you'd never expect to find them. Even as an old woman, an amputee in a wheelchair, Ella sang like a girl who could still be at high school, falling in love for the first time".

Little girls are like old cats. If they don't like you nothing on Earth will make them pretend to.

Memories are their own descendents masquerading as the ancestors of the present.

Right, my phone. When these things first appeared, they were so cool. Only when it was too late did people realize they are as cool as electronic tags on remand prisoners.

Sometimes language can't even read the music of meaning.

Taro taught me that people respect spirit, but even cowards don't respect cowards.

The act of memory is an act of ghostwriting.

The her that lived in her looked out through her eyes, through my eyes, and at the me that lives in me.

The human world is made of stories, not people. The people the stories use to tell themselves are not to be blamed

There are so many cities in every single city.

The silences after his last gasp were sung together by a blackbird. I lay there, my eyes unable to close. His were unable to open. I listed the places where I hurt, and how much. My loins felt ripped. Something inside had torn. There were seven places on my body where he had sunk his fangs into my skin and bitten. He'd dug his nails into my neck, and twisted my head to one side, and clawed my face. I hadn't made a noise. He had made all the noise for both of us. Had it hurt him?

Two old people in a room devoid of furniture, steam rising from their teacups. They were motionless and expressionless. Waiting for something. I wish I could go into their room and sit down with them. I'd give them my Rolex for that. I wish they would smile, and pour me a cup of jasmine tea. I wish the world was like that.

We all think we're in control of our own lives, but really they're pre-ghostwritten by forces around us.

What is it that ties shapes of land to the human heart, Mo?

Who was blowing on the nape of my neck.

You have to know someone intimately to be able to love them. So love at first sight is a contradiction in terms. Unless in that first sight there's some sort of mystical gigabyte downloading of information from one mind into the other.