"[I]n the late 1980s, Yakutsk musicians in the Arctic regions of Siberia became obsessed with the music of Pink Floyd. All the best young bands sounded like Pink Floyd except somehow more immediate and more authentic. It was a cargo-culture phenomenon. Asked to explain how a renegade copy of Dark Side of the Moon could galvanize an entire subculture, one musician said, ‘The sound reminded us of the snow.’”
"And when he was on the plane and Nellie buckled his seat belt over his overcoat, people would still be wondering who he was, the head of some African state lurching toward independence or something. There were times when Nellie looked at him and wanted to cry, not because she pitied him, but because she knew one day he would die and there was no one else like him in the world."
"In the nineteenth century, Rimbaud was already bored of the twentieth. […] The modern, for Rimbaud, finally meant gun-running — the pure world of business, the universe of spectacle."
“In 1986, I happened to have a trauma in my personal life and it made me very attuned to the world around me. Suddenly, I had no filters. I was parking the car one night and a leaf drifted by the window and I thought, ‘That’s so beautiful.’ It was framed by the windscreen, which is probably why I saw it as an image. So we did a leaf.”
"Robbing a bank presents more problems and unforeseen difficulties than stealing power in a coup d’état does. This explains why bank robberies are relatively rare, while coup d’états are relatively common. […] As far as I know, there has never been a soldier who has refused to take part in a firing squad, who has refused to shoot a comrade. The same is true during a coup d’état. This is why the soldiers who bring about the coup are thieves in the service of thieves, traitors in the service of traitors, cowards in the service of cowards: a coup is the least revolutionary thing in the world.”
"It’s believed that, in all, ten men from the American Revolution lived long enough to have their pictures taken. Elias Brewster Hillard tracked down many of them — including Samuel Downing, Adam Link, Daniel Waldo, William Hutchings and Alexander Milliner — and published the photographs and interviews in a book titled, fittingly, The Last Men of the American Revolution. The coats they wore, the composition of their hair: all of this gives us something.”
"[The cop] deplored these crimes, naturally, but still felt they deserved something more than the usual tabloid-headline form of appreciation. He imagined a Top Ten of crimes — the Most Audacious Felonies. He saw himself announcing the list on the radio, becoming a personality, a sensation. There would be a spin-off comic book with his name and face at upper left, ‘presenting’ the felonies to an eager public. In the meantime he got himself some sheets of oaktag and posted a list in the squad room."
"On arrival in 1968 at the [Turkish-Cypriot] enclave home of relatives, [Vamik] Volkan saw 16 parakeets divided among three cages. Later he noticed numerous caged parakeets in coffee houses, markets, and other homes. Intensely interested in the birds’ well-being, the owners delighted when new chicks were hatched and mourned those that died. The Turks saw nothing odd in their parakeet obsession. For Volkan, however, the caged birds symbolized the Turks trapped in their enclaves and, through their fecundity, the promise of continued and new life.
"In 1968 the Greeks allowed the Turks to move out of their enclaves. Within months the interest in parakeets had disappeared. Six years later, Volkan found no Turkish Cypriot who remembered the parakeet phenomenon in all its dimensions."
"Shane is a well-known musician with a reputation for drug and alcohol-fueled impropriety, so his landlady was, in fact, prepared for a certain amount of unsociable disturbance when she took him on as a tenant. The blood, however, alarmed her, along with the fact that in one hand he had been holding a half-eaten Beach Boys record, their Greatest Hits, Volume Three.”
"Besides my being black, it must have been my height — five feet eleven — that contributed to the fear I inspired in the children, whose parents were little more than five feet three. Perhaps too for that woman, a small woman living with small men, I was handsome precisely because of my height. So my height impressed them, but in different ways according to their age. It spread terror in the children, astonished the men, and was attractive to one woman who at that moment was probably summing up the opinion of all the other women. Two days later the radio station in Godthåb, the capital, announced the arrival of an African in the country in these terms: ‘He is a very tall man with hair like black wool, eyes that are not slanting but arched, and shaded with curling eyelashes.’”
THESE ARE MOSTLY
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