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Minimalists get it

“A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” –Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Perfection is not when there is no more to add, but no more to take away” –Bruce Lee

It’s only fun if you don’t know

“I don’t feel that it is necessary to know exactly what I am. The main interest in life and work is to become someone else that you were not in the beginning. If you knew when you began a book what you would say at the end, do you think that you would have the courage to write it?

What is true for writing and for love relationships is true also for life. The game is worthwhile insofar as we don’t know where it will end.” –Michel Foucault

Don’t ask for guarantees

“The books are to remind us what asses and fools we are.  They’re Caesar’s praetorian guard, whispering as the parade roars down the avenue, ‘Remember, Caesar, thou art mortal.’  Most of us can’t rush around, talk to everyone, know all the cities of the world, we haven’t time, money or that many friends.  The things you’re looking for, Montag, are in the world, but the only way the average chap will ever see ninty-nine per cent of them is in a book.  Don’t ask for guarantees.  And don’t look to be saved in any one thing, person, machine, or library.  Do your own bit of saving, and if you drown, at least die knowing you were headed for shore.”

Faber, in Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury

On fancying it up

“I can get books.”

“You’re running a risk.”

“That’s the good part of dying; when you’ve nothing to lose, you run any risk you want.”

“There, you’ve said an interesting thing,” laughed Faber, “without having read it!”

“Are things like that in books?  But it came off the top of my mind!”

“All the better. You didn’t fancy it up for me or anyone, even yourself.”

-Guy Montag and Faber in Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury

Good rain and black loam

So now do you see why books are hated and feared?  They show the pores in the face of life.  The comfortable people want only wax moon faces, poreless, hairless, expressionless.  We are living in a time when flowers are trying to live on flowers, instead of growing on good rain and black loam.  Even fireworks, for all their prettiness, come from the chemistry of the earth.  Yet somehow we think we can grow, feeding on flowers and fireworks, without completing the cycle back to reality.  Do you know the legend of Hercules and Antaeus, the giant wrestler, whose strength was incredible so long as he stood firmly on the earth?  But when he was held, rootless, in midair, by Hercules, he perished easily.  If there isn’t something in that legend for us today, in this city, in our time, then I am completely insane.  Well there we have the first thing I said we need.  Quality, texture of information.

— Faber in Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury