In life, you have to take lots of decisions and if you don't take decisions you would never do anything because you would spend all your time choosing between things you could do.
And because there is something they can't see people think it has to be special, because people always think there is something special about what they can't see, like the dark side of the moon, or the other side of a black hole, or in the dark when they wake up at night and they're scared.
Everyone has learning difficulties, because learning to speak French or understanding relativity is difficult.
It was 7 minutes after midnight. The dog was lying on the grass in the middle of the lawn in front of Mrs. Shears's house.
And herein lies the key to the brilliance of Mark Haddon's choice of narrator: The most wrenching of emotional moments are chronicled by a boy who cannot fathom emotion. The effect is dazzling, making for a novel that is deeply funny, poignant, and fascinating in its portrayal of a person whose curse and blessing is a mind that perceives the world literally.
He had dreadlocks, which is what some black people have, but he was white, and dreadlocks is when you never wash your hair and it looks like old rope.
Most murders are committed by someone who is known to the victim. In fact, you are most likely to be murdered by a member of your own family on Christmas day.
And I go out of Father's house and I walk down the street, and it is very quiet even thought it is the middle of the day and I can't hear any noise except birds singing and wind and sometimes buildings falling down in the distance, and if I stand very close to traffic lights I can hear a little click as the colors change.
He was asking too many questions and he was asking them too quickly. They were stacking up in my head like loaves in the factory where Uncle Terry works. The factory is a bakery and he operates the slicing machines. And sometimes a slicer is not working fast enough but the bread keeps coming and there is a blockage. I sometimes think of my mind as a machine, but not always as a bread-slicing machine. It makes it easier to explain to other people what is going on inside it.
Mother used to say it meant Christopher was a nice name because it was a story about being kind and helpful, but I do not want my name to mean a story about being kind and helpful. I want my name to mean me.
And it means that sometimes thing are so complicated that it is impossible to predict what they are going to do next, but they are only obeying really simple rules.
I cooked his meals. I cleaned his clothes. I looked after him every weekend. I look after him when he was ill. I took him to the doctor. I worried myself sick everytime he wandered off somewhere at night. I went to school every time he got into a fight. And you? What? You wrote him some fucking letters.
People think computers are different from people because they don't have minds, even though, in the Turing test, computers can have conversations with people about the weather and wine and what Italy is like, and they can even tell jokes.
And it's best if you know a good thing is going to happen, like an eclipse or getting a microscope for Christmas. And it's bad if you know a bad thing is going to happen, like having a filling or going to France. But I think it is worst if you don't know whether it is a good thing or a bad thing which is going to happen.
I did know what it meant when you say you promise something. You have to say that you will never do something again and then you must never do it because that would make the promise a lie.
Siobhan also says that if you close your mouth and breathe out loudly through your nose it can mean that you are relaxed, or that you are bored, or that you are angry and it all depends on how much air comes out of your nose and how fast and what shape your mouth is when you do it and how you are sitting and what you just said before and hundreds of other things which are too complicated to work out in a few seconds.
And people who believe in God think God has put human beings on the earth because they think human beings are the best animal, but human beings are just an animal and they will evolve into another animal, and that animal will be cleverer and it will put human beings into a zoo, like we put chimpanzees and gorillas into a zoo.
I do not like strangers because I do not like people I have never met before. They are hard to understand.
Siobhan said that when you are writing a book you have to include some descriptions of things. I said that I could take photographs and put them in the book. But she said the idea of a book was to describe things using words so that people could read them and make a picture in their own head.
And Siobhan says people go on holidays to see new things and relax, but it wouldn't make me relaxed and you can see new things by looking at earth under a microscope or drawing the shape of the solid made when 3 circular rods of equal thickness intersect at right angles. And I think that there are so many things just in one house that it would take years to think about all of them properly. And also, a thing is interesting because of thinking about it and not because of it being new.
I like dogs. You always know what a dog is thinking. It has four moods. Happy, sad, cross and concentrating. Also, dogs are faithful and they do not tell lies because they cannot talk.
Some people think the Milky Way is a long line of stars, but it isn't. Our galaxy is a huge disk of stars millions of light-years across, and the solar system is somewhere near the outside edge of the disk.
And then I thought that I had to be like Sherlock Holmes and I had to detach my mind at will to a remarkable degree so that I did not notice how much it was hurting inside my head.
I sniffed the air to see if I could see what the air in the garden smelled like. But I couldn't smell anything. It smelled of nothing. And this was interesting, too.
Sometimes we get sad about things and we don't like to tell other people that we are sad about them. We like to keep it a secret. Or sometimes, we are sad but we really don't know why we are sad, so we say we aren't sad but we really are.
Being clever was when you looked at how things were and used the evidence to work out something new.
I think people believe in heaven because they don't like the idea of dying, because they want to carry on living and they don't like the idea that other people will move into their house and put their things into the rubbish.
Then he asked if I didn't like things changing. And I said I wouldn't mind things changing if I became an astronaut, for example, which is one of the biggest changes you can imagine, apart from becoming a girl or dying.
But I don't feel sad about it. Because Mother is dead. And because Mr. Shears isn't around anymore. So I would be feeling sad about something that isn't real and doesn't exist. And that would be stupid.
More Mark Haddon Quotations (Based on Topics)
Books - Children - People - Writing - Dogs - Thought & Thinking - Life - Education - Mind - Imagination & Visualization - Boredom - Reading - World - Emotions - Mothers - Secrets - Christianity - Death & Dying - Jokes & Humor - View All Mark Haddon Quotations
More Mark Haddon Quotations (By Book Titles)
- The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Leo Tolstoy - V. S. Naipaul - Tom Clancy - Nathaniel Hawthorne - Katherine Dunn - Honore de Balzac - Fyodor Dostoevsky - Emily Bronte - Elizabeth Gilbert - Arthur Koestler