Scott A. Mitchell

Scott A. Mitchell's favorite quotes


Marmot pictures by Noah Mitchell, my nephew.
Here are some quotes that I've become fond of:

For every complicated problem, there is a solution that is short, simple,
and wrong.
H.L. Mencken

-
Some problems are so complex that you have to be
highly intelligent and well informed just to be undecided about them.
Laurence J. Peter

-
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
But, in practice, there is.
Jan L.A. van de Snepscheut
(the original variation was probably by Yogi Berra)

-
For a successful technology,
reality must take precedence over public relations,
for nature cannot be fooled.
Richard P. Feynman

-
You can't criticize geometry.
It's never wrong.
Paul Rand

-
Ubi materia, ibi geometria
Where there is matter, there is geometry
Johannes Kepler

-
Architecture is geometry in space
Music is geometry in time.
Arthur Honegger (music)

-
Now, here, you see,
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 Carol, Red Queen, in "Through the Looking Glass"

-
You must do
what others don't
to achieve
what others won't.
Laura Mitchell's ceiling

-
Work and hope. But never hope more than you work.
Beryl Markham's father, in "West Into the Night"

-
Be the change you wish to see in the world.
Gandhi

-
All men dream; but not equally.
Those who dream by night in the dusty
recesses of their minds
Awake to find that it was vanity;
But the dreamers of day are dangerous men.
That they may act their dreams with open
eyes to make it possible.
T. E. Lawrence (a.k.a. Lawrence of Arabia)

-
Men wanted for hazardous journey.
Small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness,
constant danger, safe return doubtful.
Honour and recognition in case of success.
Sir Ernest Shackleton (apocryphal)

-
Proceed as the way opens.
William Least Heat-Moon, in "River-Horse"

-
These are the hard times in which a genius would wish to live.
Abigail Adams

-
If you can answer "yes" to these three questions, then you probably have a good job (and manager):
Do I know what is expected of me?
Do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day?
Does someone at work care about me?

-
Either what we do everyday is important, or nothing is.
George Sheehan

-
The bicycle is a simple solution to some of the worlds most complicated problems.
The bicycle is the most efficient form of human transportation.
It can combat climate change, ease urban congestion, and build human fitness.
It brings us together, yet allows us to escape.
And it takes us places we would never see any other way.
Trek blog/marcom

-
Where is the rare one? Where is the saint?
Who has the words of beauty?
Bobby McFerrin

-
Where'd all the good people go?
I've been changing channels I don't see them on the tv shows
Where'd all the good people go?
We've got heaps and heaps of what we sow
Jack Johnson

-
Somewhere in the world there is a defeat for everyone.
Some are destroyed by defeat, and some made small and mean by victory.
Greatness lives in one who triumphs equally over defeat and victory.
John Steinbeck, The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights

-
Life is to be lived, not controlled;
and humanity is won by continuing to play in face of certain defeat.
Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man

-
Take someone who doesn't keep score,
who's not looking to be richer, or afraid of losing,
who has not the slightest interest even
in his own personality: he's free.
Jalaluddin Rumi

-
It's amazing what you can accomplish when you don't care who gets the credit.
Harry S. Truman

-
See everything; judge little; forgive much.
Richard Rohr

-
Reflect upon your present blessings -- of which every man has many --
not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.
Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol and Other Christmas Writings

-
Let us turn our thoughts today to Martin Luther King
and recognize that there are ties between us, all men and women living on the Earth.
Ties of hope and love, sister and brotherhood, that we are bound together
in our desire to see the world become a place in which our children can grow free and strong.
We are bound together by the task that stands before us and the road that lies ahead.
James Taylor in "Shed a Little Light"

-
The arc of the moral universe is long,
but it bends toward justice.
- Theodore Parker, 1857, paraphrased; made famous by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

-
Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful,
or believe to be beautiful.
William Morris

-
A human being should be able to
change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog,
conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet,
balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone,
comfort the dying, take orders, give orders,
cooperate, act alone, solve equations,
analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer,
cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.
Specialization is for insects.
Robert A. Heinlein

-
The ant is knowing and wise; but
he doesn't know enough to take a vacation.
Clarence Day


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Scott A. Mitchell
Last modified: Jan 2007