Pass the Olives

On Writing, Design, Life, and Other Odds & Ends

Category: Quotations

I love quotations. They are in and out of my head, however, so fast that I have to write them down. After reading them a bunch of times, I do remember them. Not exactly but almost. Having a list is reassuring.



As long as you have two or fewer, your ducks are always in a row.

The Covert Comic



On the problem of school library visits being limited to 3 books every 2 weeks when each book is finished in a day or two.

What I need are books that can survive me for two weeks.

Carolyn, age 8

The first follower is actually an underestimated form of leadership in itself. … The first follower is what transforms a lone nut into a leader.

New followers emulate the followers, not the leader.

Nurture the followers because that values the movement, not the leader.

Dereck Sivers from his TED Talk, How to Start a Movement

I do not mean any disrespect to Oprah. A friend of mine once meant disrespect to Oprah, and all his window treatments turned on him.

Alexandra Petri, Compost, Washington Post, 2011

Design is the first sign of human intention.

William McDonough

I don’t think I need a birthday this year. I seem to be quite tall enough.

A rather tall 3 year old on her upcoming 4th birthday

A committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled.

Sir Barnett Cocks (1907-1989)
Clerk of the House of Commons

When my thirteen-year-old daughter complained that her friend was being rude, my ten-year-old son asked, with no trace of irony,

“Then why don’t you just be rude back?”

“Because I’m not going to sink to her level.”

“Why not? You sink to mine all the time.”