James Thurber

United States humorist and cartoonist who published collections of essays and stories (1894-1961)

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I do not have a psychiatrist and I do not want one, for the simple reason that if he listened to me long enough, he might become disturbed.
A husband should not insult his wife publicly, at parties. He should insult her in the privacy of the home.
All human beings should try to learn before they die what they are running from, and to, and why.
But what is all this fear of and opposition to Oblivion? What is the matter with the soft Darkness, the Dreamless Sleep?
Early to rise and early to bed makes a male healthy and wealthy and dead.
Early to rise and early to bed Makes a male healthy, wealthy and dead
He knows all about art, but he doesn't know what he likes.
He who hesitates is sometimes saved.
Her own mother lived the latter years of her life in the horrible suspicion that electricity was dripping invisibly all over the house.
Human Dignity has gleamed only now and then and here and there, in lonely splendor, throughout the ages, a hope of the better men, never an achievement of the majority.
Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility.
I always begin at the left with the opening word of the sentence and read toward the right and I recommend this method.
I hate women because they always know where things are.
I loathe the expression "What makes him tick." It is the American mind, looking for simple and singular solution, that uses the foolish expression. A person not only ticks, he also chimes and strikes the hour, falls and breaks and has to be put together again, and sometimes stops like an electric clock in a thunderstorm.
I loathe the expression What makes him tick. It is the American mind, looking for simple and singular solution, that uses the foolish expression. A person not only ticks, he also chimes and strikes the hour, falls and breaks and has to be put together again, and sometimes stops like an electric clock in a thunderstorm.
I used to wake up at 4 A.M. and start sneezing, sometimes for five hours. I tried to find out what sort of allergy I had but finally came to the conclusion that it must be an allergy to consciousness.
If a playwright tried to see eye to eye with everybody, he would get the worst case of strabismus since Hannibal lost an eye trying to count his nineteen elephants during a snowstorm while crossing the Alps.
It had only one fault. It was kind of lousy.
It is better to have loafed and lost than never to have loafed at all.
It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers.
It's a na?ve domestic Burgundy without any breeding, but I think you'll be amused by its presumption.
Its better to know some of the questions, than all of the answers.
Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness.
Let us not look back in anger, or forward in fear, but around us in awareness.
Nowadays men lead lives of noisy desperation.
Philosophy offers the rather cold consolation that perhaps we and our planet do not actually exist; religion presents the contradictory and scarcely more comforting thought that we exist but that we cannot hope to get anywhere until we cease to exist. Alcohol, in attempting to resolve the contradiction, produces vivid patterns of Truth which vanish like snow in the morning sun and cannot be recalled; the revelations of poetry are as wonderful as a comet in the skies -- and as mysterious. Love, which was once believed to contain the Answer, we now know to be nothing more than an inherited behavior pattern.
The only rules comedy can tolerate are those of taste, and the only limitations those of libel.
The wit makes fun of other persons the satirist makes fun of the world the humorist makes fun of himself, but in so doing, he identifies himself with people--that is, people everywhere, not for the purpose of taking them apart, but simply revealing their true nature.
The wit makes fun of other persons the satirist makes fun of the world the humorist makes fun of himself.
The wit makes fun of other persons; the satirist makes fun of the world; the humorist makes fun of himself, but in so doing, he identifies himself with people --that is, people everywhere, not for the purpose of taking them apart, but simply revealing their true nature.
The wit makes fun of other persons; the satirist makes fun of the world; the humorist makes fun of himself, but in so doing, he identifies himself with people--that is, people everywhere, not for the purpose of taking them apart, but simply revealing their true nature.
There are two kinds of light -- the glow that illumines, and the glare that obscures.
There are two kinds of light--the glow that illuminates, and the glare that obscures.
There is no safety in numbers, or in anything else.
Why do you have to be a nonconformist like everybody else?

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