The print does not always have the same shape as the body that impressed it, and it doesn't always derive from the pressure of a body. At times it reproduces the impression a body has left in our mind: it is the print of an idea.
("The Name of the Rose")
More Quotes from Umberto Eco:'Sir,' Saint-Savin replied, 'the first quality of an honest man is contempt for religion, which would have us afraid of the most natural thing in the world, which is death and would have us hate the one beautiful thing destiny has given us, which is life. We should rather aspire to a heaven where only the planets live in eternal bliss, receiving neither rewards nor condemnations, but enjoying merely their own eternal motion in the arms of the void.'
I did not know then what Brother William was seeking, and to tell the truth, I still do not know today, and I presume he himself did not know, moved as he was solely by the desire for truth, and by the suspicion - which I could see he always harbored - that the truth was not what was appearing to him at any given moment.
He had prepared his death much earlier, in his imagination, unaware that his imagination, more creative than he, was planning the reality of that death.
We stopped to browse in the cases, and now that William - with his new glasses on his nose - could linger and read the books, at every title he discovered he let out exclamations of happiness, either because he knew the work, or because he had been seeking it for a long time, or finally because he had never heard it mentioned and was highly excited and titillated. In short, for him every book was like a fabulous animal that he was meeting in a strange land.
What did I really think fifteen years ago? A nonbeliever, I felt guilty in the midst of all those believers. And since it seemed to me that they were in the right, I decided to believe, as you might decide to take an aspirin: It can't hurt and you might get better.
Today I realize that many recent exercises in 'deconstructive reading' read as if inspired by my parody. This is parody's mission it must never be afraid of going too far. If its aim is true, it simply heralds what others will later produce, unblushing, with impassive and assertive gravity.
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Do you know what the overhead is of the Medicare system? One-point-zero-five percent. Do you know what - private insurance is 30 percent in overhead and profits? Given a choice how I'm going to improve health care, I'm going to take it away from private insurance profits and overhead. Wouldn't you?
On learning to swim: I'm too big to have some woman hold my stomach and say 'Now kick your feet.'
Half the joy of life is in little things taken on the run... but let us keep our hearts young and our eyes open that nothing worth our while shall escape us.