Jeffrey Eugenides’ “Middlesex” Quotes (60 Quotes)


    I was beginning to understand something about normality. Normality wasn't normal. It couldn't be. If normality were normal, everybody could leave it alone. They could sit back and let normality manifest itself. But people-and especially doctors- had doubts about normality. They weren't sure normality was up the job. And so they felt inclined to give it a boost.

    Though the weather was cool, the beach at Herringsdorf was dotted with quite a few diehard nudists. Primarily men, they lay walrus-like on towels or boosterously congregated.


    Normality wasn't normal. It couldn't be. If normality were normal, everybody could leave it alone. They could sit back and let normality manifest itself.



    The essential matrimonial facts: that to be happy you have to find variety in repetition; that to go forward you have to come back to where you begin.

    I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974.

    We Greeks get married in circles, to impress upon ourselves the essential matrimonial facts: that to be happy you have to find variety in repetition; that to go forward you have to come back where you began.


    Now all the mute objects of my life seem to tell my story, to stretch back in time, if I look closely enough.


    The last thing the hockey ball symbolized was Time itself, the unstoppability of it, the way we're chained to our bodies, which are chained to Time.

    I'm the final clause in a periodic sentence, and that sentence begins a long time ago, in another language, and you to read it from the beginning to get to the end, which is my arrival.



    Now I've given up any hope of lasting fame or literary perfection. I don't care if I write a great book anymore, but just one which, whatever its flaws, will leave a record of my impossible life.


    The mind self-edits. The mind airbrushes. It's a different thing to be inside a body than outside. From outside, you can look, inspect, compare. From inside there is no comparison.

    Is there anything as incredible as the love story of your own parents? Anything as hard to grasp as the fact that those two over-the-hill players, permanently on the disabled list, were once in the starting lineup? It's impossible to imagine my father, who in my experience was aroused mainly by the lowering of interest rates, suffering the acute, adolescent passions of the flesh.

    When I think back about my immediate reaction to that redheads girl, it seems to spring from an appreciation of natural beauty. I mean the heart pleasure you get from looking at speckled leaves or the palimpsested bark of plane trees in Provence. There was something richly appealing to her color combination, the ginger snaps floating in the milk-white skin, the golden highlights in the strawberry hair. it was like autumn, looking at her. It was like driving up north to see the colors.

    After all the screaming in our house, there reigned, that winter on Middlesex, only silence. A silence so profound that, like the left foot of the President's secretary, it erased portions of the official record.


    Everyone struggles against despair, but it always wins in the end. It has to. It's the thing that lets us say goodbye.

    The only way we know it's true is that we both dreamed it. That's what reality is. It's a dream everyone has together.


    Where else would she feel more comfortable than in this subterranean realm where people wrote down what they couldn't say, where they gave voice to their most shameful longings and knowledge?

    After the Second World War, San Francisco was the main point of re-entry for sailors returning from the Pacific. Out at sea, many of these sailors had picked up amatory habits that were frowned upon back on dry land. So these sailors stayed in San Francisco . . .

    Planning is for the world's great cities, for Paris, London, and Rome, for cities dedicated, at some level, to culture. Detroit, on the other hand, was an American city and therefore dedicated to money, and so design had given way to expediency.

    He was filled with embarrassment: embarrassment for the human race, its preoccupation with money, it love of swindle.



    More Jeffrey Eugenides Quotations (Based on Topics)


    Time - Life - Death & Dying - Facts - Mind - Wisdom & Knowledge - Money & Wealth - World - Love - Suffering - Emotions - Happiness - Sense & Perception - Water - Language - Morning - Fathers - Light - Sisters - View All Jeffrey Eugenides Quotations

    More Jeffrey Eugenides Quotations (By Book Titles)


    - Middlesex
    - The Virgin Suicides

    Related Authors


    Charles Dickens - V. S. Naipaul - Tom Clancy - Katherine Dunn - Jack Higgins - J. D. Salinger - Honore de Balzac - Elizabeth Gilbert - Boris Pasternak - Arthur Koestler


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