Anonymous & Unattributed Quotations

It is morally wrong to let a sucker keep his money.

I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.
637 Best Things Anyone Ever Said

It is often said that the Air Force has the smartest enlisted personnel and the dumbest officers of any military service.
This is because it is the only service where the enlisted send the officers off to fight and die.


(To the tune of When the Saints Come Marching In)
Oh when the SCUDS,
Oh when the SCUDS,
Oh when the SCUDS come dropping in,
Oh I'll jump into my bunker,
When the SCUDS come dropping in.

Anonymous Marines from the 1st Marine Division in Saudi Arabia, 19 January 1991 SCUDS were surface to surface missiles used by Iraqi forces.

Hobson's Choice
. . . the phrase came into being as a result of the practice of English liveryman Thomas Hobson (1544-1631), who required his customers to take the horse he assigned, the one nearest the stable door, or none at all.
But things have changed in the past 350 years. According to the standard reference source we use, it is appropriate to describe the necessity of accepting two equally objectionable things as a Hobson's choice.
TIME Magazine, 24 September 1991

Every organization needs a Vice President of Rebellion:
Someone to ask, "Why the hell are we doing this?"

Always hire first class people because
first class people hire first class people,
second class people hire third class people,
and third class people hire fifth class people.

Source unknown

Passion has a price, but it can't be bought . . .
Passion is a stern master, and if you live in its house you will be its slave.

Savannah, prostitute character in the television series Key West, 9 February 1993

Trust flees authority.
Harvard Business Review, November/December 1986

  • If you don't make dust . . . you eat dust.
  • The scenery only changes for the lead dog.
  • Pick good people--talent never wears out.
  • Fans don't boo nobodies.
  • Beware of those wearing suspenders with belts.
  • People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.
  • Fact without theory is trivia. Theory without fact is bullshit.
  • If you think you can; or if you think you can't . . . you're right!
  • A banker is a fellow who lends you his umbrella when the sun is shining and wants it back the minute it begins to rain.
  • To get maximum attention, it's hard to beat a good, big mistake.
  • If you think OSHA is a small town in Wisconsin, you're in trouble.
  • Warning on a sports car, "The keys are on the seat next to the Doberman."
  • The drive-in bank was established so that the real owner of a car could get to see it once in a while.

IBM Customer Executive Conference Quotations, 1989

The trick is to stop thinking it is 'your' money.
IRS Auditor, IBM Customer Executive Conference Quotations, 1989

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch,
whose flame is the imprisoned lightening,
and her name Mother of Exiles.
From her beacon-hand glows world-wide welcome;
her mild eyes command the air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she with silent lips.
"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses
yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Etched beneath the Statue of Liberty in New York harbor

Just because your house is messy or your checkbook won't balance doesn't mean you don't have a streak of perfectionism somewhere that could be holding you back. Experts point to four behavior patterns that may indicate a deep down desire to be perfect:

Procrastination. You put off giving a dinner party until you have perfected a souffle recipe, installed new carpeting, and repaved the driveway for the big event.

Finished Product Thinking. You overlook the satisfaction from doing something, like organizing a fundraiser, and aren't happy until it's all over and the money's in the bank.

All-Or-Nothing Thinking. You slip on your diet and eat a plate of pierogies; you feel that one indulgence means you're weak, and you don't deserve to ever see your toes again.

Mental Filtering. You dwell on the bad reviews of your latest book and discount the success of your previous two that got you an honorary degree from a university and a spot on Johnny Carson's "Tonight" show.

PREVENTION Magazine, August 1986

The busiest people often fail to get their most important work done.
Reason: To escape from high-priority problems that trigger anxiety,
they retreat into time-consuming (and less threatening) activities.

Harvard Business Review

An example of why computers have such a difficult time understanding English that is not specifically formatted for them:

Fruit flies like apricots.  Time flies like an arrow.

The basics of penal reform in the 1800s were Solitude, Hard Labor, and Religion.
It was felt that solitude allowed the criminal to reflect upon his bad behavior.
That hard labor freed the mind through the value of the work and the exhaustion that comes from physical exertion.
And Religion's intended effect is obvious.
All Things Considered radio broadcast late May 1995

Office appearance often gives clues to the personality of the occupant.

People with clean desks and work spread out in an orderly fashion tend to make decisions in a logical, systematic manner.

Those who make decisions according to their own values, rather than those imposed by the company, tend to decorate with personal items meaningful to themselves.

Those who stack things in every available space think that decisions flow automatically if enough material is collected and studied.
Source Unknown

Common and frequent Solidarity Credit Union Board malaprops and creative pronunciations:

  • Irregardless (meaning regardless)
  • That's a mute point (meaning moot)
  • CUNA (pronounced like lunar)
  • This could set a president (meaning precedent)
  • This won't be an internship... I mean you won't be an intern president (meaning interim)

Buzkashi (grab the goat)
The central Asian game played by teams on horseback that attempt to carry a goat past the other team to their goal

Motorcyclist Magazine printed its position, one shared by a majority of bike enthusiasts, in its November 1983 issue:

To set the record straight, let us make it clear that our objection to mandatory helmet laws is a philosophical one, not a practical one. We firmly believe a helmet to be the single most important piece of safety equipment a rider can buy. We wear helmets whenever and wherever we ride, and we urge others to do the same.

Helmets are crucial to rider safety, and research has shown there is no negative side to their use. We oppose mandatory helmet laws simply because we believe in the individual's right to choose how safely or unsafely he wishes to live his life.

Solidarity - noun, A union of interests, purposes, or sympathies among members of a group; fellowship of responsibilities and interests.
The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language

Comments on risk and the public's rather peculiar reactions to it:

The typical citizen worries about high consequence, low probability events.
The typical citizen worries more about outrage than level of risk or frequency.
Risk is in the eye of the beholder.
Public Television broadcast on risk in Spring 1991

A new language is like a scar that heals over and eventually becomes a passable imitation of the original.
Source Unknown

Colonel, I'd call it a cluster fuck.
Gunnery Sergeant Highway's characterization of a mobilization drill in the film Heartbreak Ridge 1985

We sure liberated the hell out of this place.
American soldier in the ruins of a French village, 1944; quoted by Max Miller, The Far Shore

Surefire ways to stamp out innovation

  • We've never done it that way.
  • We're not ready for that yet.
  • We're doing all right without it.
  • We tried it once and it didn't work out.
  • It cost too much.
  • That's not our responsibility.
  • It won't work.

What is a customer?

  • A customer is the most important person in any business.
  • A customer is not dependent on us--we are dependent on him or her.
  • A customer is not an interruption of our work--but is the purpose of it.
  • A customer does us a favor when he or she calls--we are not doing the customer a favor by serving him or her.
  • A customer is a part of our business--not an outsider.
  • A customer is not a cold statistic--he or she is a flesh and blood human being with feelings and emotions like our own.
  • A customer is not someone to argue or match wits with.
  • A customer is a person who brings us his or her wants--it is our job to fill those wants.
  • A customer is deserving of the most courteous and attentive treatment we can give.
  • A customer is the person who makes it possible to pay your salary whether you are a teller, a loan processor, a computer operator, a manager or whatever.

Notice: I am a Quaker. In case of emergency please be quiet.
Contributed by Stu Reller


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