Posts tagged with “quotations”

"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge…

Written by Laura Brown

"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create".

Albert Einstein

Found on an abandoned free hosting Pagan site.

"Inaction will cause a man to sink into the slough of despond and…

Written by Laura Brown

"Inaction will cause a man to sink into the slough of despond and vanish without a trace."

Farley Mowat, 1921 - 2014. Canadian writer and environmentalist.

"And now that you don't have to be perfect you can be good".

Written by Laura Brown

"And now that you don't have to be perfect you can be good".

Quote by John Steinbeck East of Eden, published in 1952.

"The love of knowledge is a kind of madness" – C.S. Lewis

Written by Laura Brown

"The love of knowledge is a kind of madness" – C.S. Lewis

Photographing the Vanishing Quote

Written by Laura Brown

I noticed this quote on an abandoned Blogger site today.

"Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on Earth which can make them come back again." - Henri Cartier-Bresson

It applies to almost everything photographed. From a smiling child to the sun itself. Nothing stays exactly the same forever and the photographer won't be standing in the same spot, with that same angle, at that same time either. Something will be different, maybe just the weather. Maybe how the photographer feels or gets different perspective. Life is about change, but a photograph can capture what was there, while it was there.

This is what rephotography can showcase. The changes over time and other changes to our culture.

Don’t buy that old house — not if it has any historical or architectural…

Written by Laura Brown

Don’t buy that old house — not if it has any historical or architectural merit. Let it die gracefully amidst the shady maples and crowding lilacs. That is, unless you are that rare species of owner whose restoration would be harmonious with the aims of the original builder.

But too often is an early 19th-century house bought by “city” people, in search of the proverbial “old stone house”, unhappily destined to become a bastard composition of half old, half new; half country, half city. Out come the old small-paned windows, and on go the aluminum storms. Picture windows reign triumphant (right). Off comes the old cast or wrought iron hardware, and on go the new “rustic” artsy-craftsy hinges, which take up half the door.

In rooms where delicate mantel mouldings complemented the painted walls and trim, now raw new pine covers up all traces of the glowing rose colors, blue-grey trims, and gay foliage of the old wallpaper. In our enthusiasm for those “pioneer” days, we have forgotten that most of our existing old houses are post 1812 War, in a day when bare wood panelling had been out of style for 60 years or more. Where split lath and plaster had discreetly covered up the rafter and joist construction of the ceiling, we expose it and call it “open beam”. A Regency gentleman, haunting his 1830 home in 1971, might quickly yearn for the grave again.

Tired of modern mass-produced high-rises and prefabs, we long for an old lived-in home. Yet the first thing we do upon achieving our dream is to plane smooth all those wear marks on the house. We sand down all the floors, and remove the bumps and signs of human habitation, until we get the surface of “straight from the factory” pine boards.

Forgetting that spinning wheels were relegated to the upper hail or attic, we sit it out on the front lawn, only to complement the wagon wheel fence, a feature which our ancestors never dreamed of.

I don’t mean to suggest I am advocating 19th-century living at least, not totally. The benefits from central heat over fireplaces and woodstoves can be attested to by anyone who has sat in front of a raging fire, and roasted his front, while freezing his back. Not to mention the questionable value in those early morning nature excursions to the privy in our Canadian winters. But one should consider the best type of heating system for an old house. At least with electric heat, you are not tempted to add those awful brick exterior chimneys to get rid of the fumes from a furnace. The bathroom can be discreetly located in a less important room, such as a storeroom or small bedroom.

In rooms which once glowed with the soft flickering light of candles, fire places or oil lamps, we unmercifully illuminate with fluorescent or over head light. Electric table lamps can be much more pleasant to eat by or to converse by, due to their softer lighting effect.

If you do have the privilege and pleasure of redoing an old house, go slowly. Initial enthusiasm can destroy all signs of unusual features of the house, such as the original floor lay out, bake-ovens stenciled walls, and so on. Try to assimilate the aspirations of the original owner. Was his mood predominantly folk-builder tradition, neoclassic, Regency or Victorian? How was this expressed in his building?

While we are willing to invest thousands of dollars in an old house, as we are impressed by the rising value of all things antique, we are not willing to invest the time in doing proper research on the period of the house, or to invest the money in hiring a sympathetic restoration designer to advise us.

Therefore, do not invade the countryside with your sheets of knotty pine to rape and plunder, but rather let those once proud country seats die inviolate.

I found an article by Jennifer McKendry. She is a history enthusiast in Kingston, Ontario. On her site she has written about antiques, architecture, old houses, and researching historic properties.

Source: In Praise of Older Houses - Jennifer McKendry (1971)

Rubbing Yourself Out and Getting Worn Down

Written by Laura Brown

I found this quote by Amy Tan:

“I did not lose myself all at once. I rubbed out my face over the years washing away my pain, the same way carvings on stone are worn down by water.”

People ask if you are sad or tired. I could say yes to those but neither is quite right. I am worn down, like a stone in a river. I try to hold on, be stoic and strong but I'm eroding all the time.

I feel this way more often as I get older. None of us are getting any younger of course. But, I don't think we should have to feel worn down. Does it happen from others or do we do it to ourselves. I'm trying to figure that out for myself.

I found this quote on an old site by Laurie Pawlik. She writes about writing, relationships, travel and living in a camper van. I started reading that post, first.

Second Hand Books are Wild

Written by Laura Brown

Do you remember BookCrossing? It's been years since I last logged in. Funny that I was thinking of the book which I had last read the last time I was at the site. I couldn't remember the author or the title, but there it was, first on my profile page.

"Second hand books are wild books, homeless books; they have come together in vast flocks of variegated feather, and have a charm which the domesticated volumes of the library lack."

  • Virginia Woolf

A friend who joined the site with me, Skye Truheart, I have not heard from for many years. Each time I find something, a link to her somewhere, like her old Blogger account, or now this, I try again to find her. No luck. I'm sure I had her name and address to send a Christmas card but I've lost it long ago. I'd like to find her and know she is doing ok.

There are Times in Life When you Just Have to Kill your Babies

Written by Laura Brown

This quote is about the break between having the dream and living with it. But, you can read so much into a few words.

I’m a fan of writer Ann Patchett, whose book, Truth and Beauty, is one of my favourites. This week, thanks to the website, Brain Pickings, I came across a fantastic Patchett quotation that hit very close to home, especially the last line:

“The journey from the head to hand is perilous and lined with bodies. It is the road on which nearly everyone who wants to write — and many of the people who do write — get lost… Only a few of us are going to be willing to break our own hearts by trading in the living beauty of imagination for the stark disappointment of words.”

The stark disappointment of words is something I know a little too much about. So often the idea in my head, which initially seems so good, falls apart once I begin to try to assemble the words on paper. Suddenly my remarkable idea becomes frustratingly ordinary.

Source: Lindy Mechefske

This quote makes me think about writers having to kill their babies. That was a quote I read about editing your writing. Your words and phrases being taken out of existence. Deleting unnecessary wordage. Editing.

But, I find in life, the idea of editing things or deleting them, or exterminating... there are lots of good words for it... is an important skill to have. All things but in moderation. If you can master that in life you will save yourself a lot of stress, have more space (physically and mentally) and save money too.

Of course, no one should literally kill babies, or other children. At least let them get to adulthood, or the age of 20, and be guilty of something on the extreme side, first. Its ok to be a little dramatic, just not too literal about it.