Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Babylon Quotes Project

From Babylon 5 "Shadow Dancing" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "The thing is: sometimes people walk away because they want to be alone, sometimes they walk away because they want to see if you care enough to follow 'em into hell."
  • "It means, 'my words are inadequate to the burden of my heart.'"
  • "Well, who want's to live forever." "I do, actually."
  • "You go in there and you fight for what matters to you! Don't just walk away because it's easier."
  • "I want to do it all again."
  • "Now that we've shown them we can hurt 'em, how long until they come knocking at our front door?"
  • "I guess I found what I... what I needed, not what I wanted." "Which was?" "A short, sharp kick to the head." "Oh, well, hell, I coulda done that for you, all you had to do was ask." "Well, you would have enjoyed it too much."
  • "I realized that I always defined myself in terms what I wasn't. I wasn't a good soldier like my father. I wasn't the job. I wasn't a good prospect for marriage or kids. Always what I wasn't, never what I was. And when you do that you miss the moments. The moments are all we've got." ... "I can't go back, but I can appreciate what I have right now. And I can define myself by what I am instead of what I'm not." "And what are you?" "Alive. Everything else is negotiable."
  • "Hello... you must be Delenn."

From Babylon 5 "Za'ha'dum" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "Who are you?" "Who decides that the work day is from nine to five instead of eleven to four? Who decides that the hemlines will be below the knee this year and short again next year? Who draws up the borders, controls the currency, handles all of the decisions that happen transparently around us?" "I don't know." "Ah. I'm with them. Same group, different department."
  • "You bring two sides together, they fight, a lot of them die, but those who survive are stronger, smarter, and better."
  • "Why don't you just kill me?" "Doesn't work. Someone would just come around and replace you. That's always been the trouble with creating martyrs."
  • "It was the end of the Earth year 2260, and the war had paused, suddenly and unexpectedly. All around us it was as if the universe were holding its breath, waiting. All of life can be broken down into moments of transition or moments of revelation. This had the feeling of both."
  • "J'Quan wrote, 'There is a greater darkness than the one we fight. It is the darkness of the soul that has lost its way. The war we fight is not against powers and principalities, it is against chaos and despair. Greater than the death of flesh is the death of hope, the death of dreams. Against this peril we can never surrender. The future is all around us, waiting in moments of transition to be born in moments of revelation. No one knows the shape of that future, or where it will take us. We know only that it is always born in pain.'"

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Bookworming: 2013 Summary

This was a wild year for me, and it reflects in a shortened book list for the year. But first, let's go over the rating scale and the list:

My rating scale:
* I didn't care for it.
** Meh
*** Good for those who like that sort of thing.
**** Just plain good, likely to be read again some time.
***** Destined to be a personal favorite, likely to be read over and over again.

Christmas is Not Your Birthday, Mike Slaughter, ***
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories, Jeff VanderMeer, ***
Seawitch, Kat Richardson, ***
Cold Days, Jim Butcher, ****
The World Without Us, Alan Weisman, ****
Meditations, Marcus Aurelius, ***
The Irresistible Revolution, Shane Claiborne, ***
Suppressed Transmission: The First Broadcast, Kenneth Hite, ***
Leviathan Wakes, James S. A. Corey, ***
A Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin, ***
Possession, Kat Richardson, **

Down to eleven books this year, though I made it through several really dense reads and checked off a couple of classics that had been on my list for a long time. Whether the list will increase again next year remains up in the air. Oddly, should things finally settle down a little, more free time may translate not to more reading, but to more activities that aren't reading. But there is no predicting the future, except to say that the bookworming category is here to stay.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Babylon Quotes Project

From Babylon 5 "Grey 17 is Missing" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "Power beckons, and who among us is strong enough to ignore its siren song?"
  • "A religious zealot propelled by prophecy into a position of military and political power... always a bad idea."
  • "We're all recycled you know. Just molecules and atoms born in the stars and 'recycled' into carbon based life."
  • "I am a Ranger! We walk in the dark places no others will enter! We stand on the bridge and no one may pass! We live for the One, we die for the One!"
  • "Delenn, all we know is that we will die. It is only a matter of how, when, and whether or not it is with honor."
  • "You cherish life, life is your goal, but for the greater part to live, some must die, or be harmed in its defense and yours, there is no other way."
  • "The next time you want a revelation, could you possibly find a way that isn't quite so uncomfortable."

From Babylon 5 "And the Rock Cried Out, No Hiding Place" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "How he can be so annoying one moment and so comforting the next is beyond me."
  • "Big concerns grow from small concerns. You plant them, water them with tears, and fertilize them with unconcern. If you ignore them, they grow."
  • "So, you have been sitting here trying to think illogically about logical possibilities or logically about illogical possibilities." "Uh, yes, yes." "No wonder you are cranky."
  • "I'm having the kind of nightmares that make your hair stand on end." "Well, that would explain the Centauri."
  • "I'd rather do something and make a mistake than be frightened into doing nothing. That's the problem today back home. People have been conned into thinking they can't change the world, have to accept what is. I tell you something my friends, the world is changing every day. The only questions is who's doing it."
  • "This isn't going to be easy." "Nothing worthwhile ever is."
  • "I can only assume someone has been spray-painting the word idiot on my back again."
  • "When God comes knocking at your door, you won't need me or anyone else to tell you what that sound is."
  • "The dust, in the streets, the wind... Is it always like this now?" "Ever since the bombings. The wind never stops. They say it will take years for all the particulate matter to drift down out of the sky and back into the ground. The days and nights are colder. It never seems to feel warm anymore."
  • "I sometimes think they choose guards for the amount of bone content in their heads. Might as well hire Minbaris."

Saturday, December 14, 2013

The Babylon Quotes Project

From Babylon 5 "Walkabout" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "It's a strange thing, but every sentient race has its own version of these Swedish meatballs. I suspect it's one of those great universal mysteries which will either never be explained, or which would drive you mad if you ever learned the truth."
  • "We are all Kosh." "Well, he's a Vorlon all right."
  • "Why is everything around here a long story? Why isn't anything ever a short story? A paragraph?"
  • "You spend your days and nights living someone else's agendas, fighting someone else's battles, and you're doing the work you're supposed to be doing, but every day there's less and less of you in it all, 'til one day, you come to a fork in the road, and because you're distracted, you're not thinking, you lose yourself. You go right and the rest of you, the really important part of you, goes left. And you don't even know you've done it 'til you realize, you finally realize, that you don't have any idea who you are when you're not doing all those things."
  • "Unfortunately, war doesn't tolerate ambiguities."
  • "My mom always told me to marry a doctor. I just could never find one with the right equipment."
  • "It's easy to fight when you have a lot of ships to work with. The real crunch comes when you're down to almost nothing. Then you either pay it safe and you probably lose it all or you take a chance."
  • "This time it is possible he could be wrong." "Yeah, it's possible, but you don't follow an order because you know for sure it's gonna work out. You do what you're told because your CO has the moral authority that says you may not come back, but the cause is just and fair and necessary."

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Babylon Quotes Project

From Babylon 5 "War Without End Part 1" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "He is the closed circle. He is returning to the beginning."
  • "There are no coincidences, Captain."
  • "So you believe this?" "I believe it." "If En'til'za believes it, I believe it." "I'll be in the car."
  • "Do you understand?" "Zathras understand. No, Zathras not understand, but Zathras do. Zathras good at doings, not understandings."
  • "Can not say. Saying, I would know. Do not know, so can not say."
  • "Zathras is used to being beast of burden to other peoples' needs. Very sad life. Probably have very sad death, but at least there is symmetry."
  • "Why do your people always ask if someone is ready right before you're going to do something massively unwise?" "Tradition."

From Babylon 5 "War Without End Part 2" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "Our son is safe, that's all that matters."
  • "The war is never completely won. There are always new battles to fight against the darkness. Only the names change."
  • "Treasure the moments you have, savor them for as long as you can for they will never come back again."
  • "Do not go to Za'ha'dum!"
  • "No one ever listens to Zathras. Quite mad, they say. It is good that Zathras does not mind, has even grown to like it, yes."
  • "Can not run out of time. There is infinite time. You are finite, Zathras is finite, this... is wrong tool."
  • "You're The One who was. You are The One who is. You are The One who will be. You are the beginning of the story, the middle of the story, and the end of the story, that creates the next great story."
  • "I am called Valen, and we have much work ahead of us."

Sunday, December 8, 2013

The Babylon Quotes Project

From Babylon 5 "Ship of Tears" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "He who controls information controls the world."
  • "Give me one good reason why I shouldn't blow you out of the sky." "Because you're curious? Kill me and you'll never know what brought me all the way out here. I think if you weigh that against the brief satisfaction of blowing me out of the sky, you'll do the right thing. [a pause] Captain?" "I'm thinking it over."
  • "I can only wait so long." "I thought your patience was infinite." "Since space and time are curved, the infinite sooner or later bends back upon itself and ends up where it began, and so have I."
  • "I was expecting the Captain." "He sent me." "Did he? He has a better sense of humor than I thought."
  • "Are you sure you want to do this?" "Want to? No. Have to? Yes."
  • "Get the hell out of my chair."
  • "And some day, when all of this is over, perhaps you will find it in your heart to forgive me." "Perhaps. But not today."
  • "Do not thump The Book of J'Quan, it is disrespectful."

From Babylon 5 "Interludes and Examinations" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "When the Vorlon goes to ground, I worry."
  • "If you violate the terms of our agreement, my associates may turn their eye toward your home world." "Then we shall pluck it out."
  • "Anything I can do to help?" "Short of dying, no, can't think of a thing."
  • For three years now, you've been pulling everyone's strings, getting us to do all the work, and you haven't done a damn thing but stand there and look cryptic!"
  • "You said you wanted to teach me to fight legends, well you're a legend too!"
  • "Unless your people get off their encounter-suited butts and do something, I've got nothing to lose!"
  • "I will do as you ask. But there is a price to pay."
  • "You do not understand, but you will."
  • "Gods, Vir, I feel happy! I'd almost forgotten what it was like."
  • "Good news can wait. Bad news will refuse to leave."
  • "Everyone around me dies, Mr. Morden, except the ones that most deserve it."
  • "I was so obsessed with fixing other peoples' problems because I was afraid to look at my own."

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Babylon Quotes Project

From Babylon 5 "A Late Delivery from Avalon" written by J. Michael Straczynski
  • "I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, wouldn't it be much worse if life were fair and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them. So now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe."
  • "What manner of men prey on the weak and the poor, hmm, stealing from old women? Cowards I think!"
  • "By J'Quan, I can't recall the last time I was in a fight like that! No moral ambiguity! No hopeless battle against ancient and overwhelming forces! They were the bad guys, as you say, we were the good guys, and they made a very satisfying thump when they hit the floor."