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" I cannot escape the feeling that I was, at best, a cancer tourist, that my survival means I dabbled. "
" There is nothing so cleansing or reassuring as a vicarious sadness. "
" 'Play It Again Sam's opening shot is the same as 'Purple Rose's final one: a close-up of a face, rapt in a movie house. I've certainly felt that in my life. I've been known to cry watching Gene Kelly. "
" A secondhand wardrobe hand clothes doesn't make one an artist. Neither do a hair-trigger temper, melancholic nature, propensity for tears, hating your parents, or HIV. I hate to say it - none of these make one an artist. They can help, but just as being gay doesn't make one witty... the only thing that makes one an artist is making art. "
" I had a beautiful childhood and a lovely childhood. I just didn't like being a child. I didn't like the rank injustice of not being listened to. I didn't like the lack of autonomy. "
" I can see a great beauty in acknowledging the fact that the world is dark. "
" My salvation lies in time spent alone with an X-Acto knife and commercial-grade adhesive. "
" Arts and crafts, or getting to be in a play with people, or making a little short film, that's pure sugar, because the stakes are so low. "
" I do not go outdoors... As far as I'm concerned, the whole point of living in New York City is indoors. You want greenery? Order the spinach. "
" When people give you a writing assignment, they're asking what you think. That's the very opposite of being an actor. When you're an actor, no one wants to hear what you think. "
" I have no problem with animals, I just like people more. "
" I aspire to write what are called 'familiar essays.' They begin in the personal and end in the universal. It's not for me to say if I have been successful at it. But that is the hope. "
" If you don't have your experiences in the moment, if you gloss them over with jokes or zoom past them, you end up with curiously dispassionate memories. "
" It's rare that I'm not at work on some sort of craft project. I've often enthused about the need to make things; how it employs a unique set of muscles - physical, intellectual, spiritual - that I can attain a state of flow when making something that I almost never can when writing. "
" Everybody's got something. In the end, what choice does one really have but to understand that truth, to really take it in, and then shop for groceries, get a haircut, do one's work; get on with the business of one's life. That's the hope, anyway. "
" Pessimists are born, true, but they also can be made. "
" Those weeks before diagnosis can be among the most torturous times. There is a reason you're called a patient once the plastic bracelet goes on. "
" Deprived of the opportunity to judge one another by the cars we drive, New Yorkers, thrown together daily on mass transit, form silent opinions based on our choices of subway reading. Just by glimpsing the cover staring back at us, we can reach the pinnacle of carnal desire or the depths of hatred. Soul mate or mortal enemy. "
" Here's the thing: I'm not beautiful. I mean, I'm a perfectly normal-looking Jewish guy. My face has never been my fortune, nor has my body... physical beauty has never been part of my equation. It's just not on my shopping list. "
" About the only thing that I have - or had, because it's failing me lately - is my memory. I had a really good memory. I was always terribly protective of that fact. "
" Altruism is innate, but it's not instinctual. Everybody's wired for it, but a switch has to be flipped. "
" The rigors of creativity - the self-doubt, the revising, the solitude - do require a kind of self-consumption. It comes at a cost; a cost that isn't for everyone. "
" I was going to say that writing is about disclosure and acting is about obfuscation, but that's such a little lie. Both of them are about obfuscation and masking oneself. "
" I find writing extraordinarily difficult and not very pleasurable, though I find having done it very pleasurable. I won't lie about that. "
" There's nothing particularly wrong with being more pessimistic than optimistic. Optimism is broad-based, non-detail-oriented thinking; pessimism is detail-oriented thinking. "
" Everyone I vote for never wins. Welcome to America. "
" I'm not sure. But that bless-his/her-heart kind of melancholic humor is among my favorite things in the world. I guess it exposes a kind of humanity - or that's the hope, at least - a kind of grudging respect for human frailty. Unless it's actually kicking human frailty while it's down - I'm not sure. "
" I have let half-decades elapse between books because books have to be writte and writing is awful, but if you are the type of person who makes things, there is no profit in worrying about how or why or when the next project will come into being beyond simply acknowledging that it is inevitable that it will be very soon. "
" It's the false moral component behind blind animal love that so frosts me. The faulty logic that believes that the capacity to adore a nonhuman creature is somehow a purer form of love. "
" I don't particularly consider myself an actor. I have no training. I love doing it, but I would never consider myself to be a colleague of an actual actor. That would be stepping way up in class on my part. "
" I'm anti-religious. I don't like people telling me what to do. "