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Mignon McLaughlin

"People keep telling us about their love affairs, when what we really want to know is how much money they make and how they manage on it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"An artist usually has no friends except other artists, and usually they do not like his work."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"It's important to our friends to believe that we are unreservedly frank with them, and important to the friendship that we are not."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The know-nothings are, unfortunately, seldom the do-nothings."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We cough because we can't help it, but others do it on purpose."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"After he has had his tantrum, the neurotic expects those around him to feel friendly and relaxed; after all, he does."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"'Pull yourself together' is seldom said to anyone who can."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The trouble with women is men; the trouble with men, men."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"When the pressures really mount, the neurotic must choose: Shall he have a good cry, or set fire to his neighbor's house?"

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We can never understand other people's motives, nor their furniture."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The fault no child ever loses is the one he was most punished for."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Learning too soon our limitations, we never learn our powers."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"There are children born to be children, and others who must mark time till they can take their natural places as adults."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We lavish on animals the love we are afraid to show people. They might not return it; or worse, they might."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"If the second marriage really succeeds, the first one didn't really fail."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"No one has ever loved anyone the way everyone wants to be loved."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"No one can understand love who has not experienced infatuation. And no one can understand infatuation, no matter how many times he has experienced it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"A perfect marriage is one in which 'I'm sorry' is said just often enough."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We welcome passion, for the mind is briefly let off duty."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Boredom is often the cause of promiscuity, and always its result."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Beauty often fades, but seldom so swiftly as the joy it gives us."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The only mothers it is safe to forget on Mother's Day are the good ones."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Even in the same family, one child will always instinctively know when to ask for things, and another won't."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"When hope is hungry, everything feeds it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"If you see in your children most of your own faults, you have failed as a parent, but succeeded as a neurotic."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"No good neurotic finds it difficult to be both opinionated and indecisive."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Women are the right age for just a few years; men, for most of their lives."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The proud man can learn humility, but he will be proud of it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The neurotic would like to trust his analyst -- if only because he's paying him so much money. But he can't -- because if the analyst really cared, he'd be doing it for nothing."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Spite is never lonely; envy always tags along."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Women are good listeners, but it's a waste of time telling your troubles to a man unless there's something specific you want him to do."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Others follow patterns; we alone are unpredictable."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Even cowards can endure hardship; only the brave can endure suspense."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"There are always a few people you do a lot for, and a few who do a lot for you, but they're not the same people."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The first two days of a vacation are endless; then it flies."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Humiliation is a vast country of imprecise boundaries. If you think you're there, you are. The neurotic rule: when in doubt, go ahead and feel humiliated."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The best work is done with the heart breaking, or overflowing."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Love looks forward, hate looks back, anxiety has eyes all over its head."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"When we discuss those we love with those who do not love them, the end of love is near."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"When first we fall in love, we feel that we know all there is to know about life, and perhaps we are right."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"One of life's few really reliable pleasures: to have a family you love, and to leave them for a week."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Tragedy isn't getting something, or failing to get it; it's losing something you already have."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Make a habit of telling the truth, or make a habit of lying: to decide each case on its own merits is exhausting, and hardly ever worth it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The fault we admit to is seldom the fault we have, but it has a certain relationship to it, a somewhat similar shape, like that of a sleeve to an arm."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"If you can tell anyone about it, it's not the worst thing you ever did."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Courage can't see around corners, but goes around them anyway."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"At night, neurotics may toil not, but oh how they spin!"

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Revenge leads to an empty fullness, like eating dirt."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Not for nothing does the neurotic suffer -- but not for anything very much, either."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Hope is the feeling we have that the feeling we have is not permanent."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to weave."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Neurotic quarrels always have the same theme-song: Hate me and get it over with."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"If you made a list of the reasons why any couple got married, and another list of the reasons for their divorce, you'd have a hell of a lot of overlapping."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We are irritated by rascals, intolerant of fools, and prepared to love the rest. But where are they?"

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The hardest-learned lesson: that people have only their kind of love to give, not our kind."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"It must infuriate our children to see us always so much more forbearing with everybody else's."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Don't ask others to forgive in you a sin they're dying to commit themselves."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We are never more self-righteous than when giving up what we should have shunned all along."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Neurotics would like to sleep all the time, and to be awakened only when there is good news."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The three horrors of modern life -- talk without meaning, desire without love, work without satisfaction."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The first-rate mind is always curious, compassionate, original, and pessimistic."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"In the theater, as in life, we prefer a villain with a sense of humor to a hero without one."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"It's awesome to realize that if your greatest potential talent is for riding a bicycle upside down on a high wire, you will somehow discover it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Everybody can write; writers can't do anything else."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Theatre audiences can't be made to think and cry: at best, they can be made to think and laugh, or to feel and cry."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Many are saved from sin by being so inept at it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Despair is anger with no place to go."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Those who turn to God for comfort may find comfort but I do not think they will find God."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We'd all like a reputation for generosity, and we'd all like to buy it cheap."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The neurotic longs to touch bottom, so at least he won't have that to worry about any more."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"It's hard to feel middle-aged, because how can you tell how long you are going to live?"

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"There is always some specific moment when we realize our youth is gone; but years after, we know it was much later."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Traditions are group efforts to keep the unexpected from happening."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"The past is strapped to our backs. We do not have to see it; we can always feel it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"My thoughts, I guess, are bitter: who but the bitter have thoughts?"

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Age is a slowing down of everything except fear."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"In retrospect, our triumphs could as easily have happened to someone else; but our defeats are uniquely our own."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Anything you do from the heart enriches you, but sometimes not till years later."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Throughout our lives, we see in the mirror the same innocent trusting face we have seen there since childhood."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Learn a little of anything, and you're ready to proselytize."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"What you can't get out of, get into wholeheartedly."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"We are seldom happy with what we now have, but would go to pieces if we lost any part of it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"No matter how brilliantly an idea is stated, we will not really be moved unless we have already half-thought of it ourselves."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Every society honors its live conformists, and its dead troublemakers."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"One day you are an apprentice, and everybody's pet; the next, you are coldly expected to deliver. There is never sufficient warning that the second day is coming."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"In the arithmetic of love, one plus one equals everything, and two minus one equals nothing."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"No matter how many Christmas presents you give your child, there's always that terrible moment when he's opened the very last one. That's when he expects you to say, 'Oh yes, I almost forgot,' and take him out and show him the pony."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"No one really listens to anyone else, and if you try it for a while you'll see why."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"When a man falls in love, he wants to go to bed. When a woman falls in love, she wants to talk about it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"We often pray to be better, when in truth we only want to feel better."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"What you have become is the price you paid to get what you used to want."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"For the happiest life, days should be rigorously planned, nights left open to chance."

Mignon McLaughlin, in Atlantic (1965)

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"Things are never so bad that they can't get worse. But they're sometimes so bad they can't get better."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Likely as not, the child you can do the least with will do the most to make you proud."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Nobody knows the trouble we've seen -- but we keep trying to tell them."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Failure can get to be a rather comfortable old friend."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Neurotics are sure that no one understands them, and they wouldn't have it any other way."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"If you are brave too often, people will come to expect it of you."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"A good executive is one who makes people contentedly settle for less than they meant to get, in return for more than they meant to give."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"The fear of being laughed at makes cowards of us all."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"The young are generally in full revolt, and are often pretty revolting about it."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Character is what emerges from all the little things you were too busy to do yesterday, but did anyway."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"If only we could be old and sick while we're still young and healthy enough to put up with it!"

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Neurotics expect you to remember all the things that they tell you, and many that they don't."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"It's the most unhappy people who most fear change."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"I know which side my bread is buttered on: the side which falls on the carpet."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"There are a handful of people whom money won't spoil, and we all count ourselves among them."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"We're all born brave, trusting, and greedy, and most of us remain greedy."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Money: in its absence, we are coarse; in its presence, we are vulgar."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"A car is useless in New York, essential everywhere else. The same with good manners."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Healthy parakeets have the nervous energy of tennis players."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Don't look for God where He is needed most; if you didn't bring Him there, He isn't there."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Most sermons sound to me like commercials -- but I can't make out whether God is the Sponsor or the Product."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"When you let money speak for you, it drowns out anything else that you meant to say."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"There are so many things that we wish we had done yesterday, so few that we feel like doing today."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Creative work is one of life's greatest pleasures, and the only one we will gladly interrupt."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"It took man thousands of years to put words down on paper, and his lawyers still wish he wouldn't."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"To talk easily with people, you must firmly believe that either you or they are interesting. And even then it's not easy."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Neurotics have plenty of non-neurotic friends, but not for long."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"A bore: one who knows as well as you do what he is going to say next."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Most of us become parents long before we have stopped being children."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Most of us would rather risk catastrophe than read the directions."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"If I knew what I was so anxious about, I wouldn't be so anxious."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"The only courage that matters is the kind that gets you from one moment to the next."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"The next voice you hear will undoubtedly be your own."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"The time to begin most things is ten years ago."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"It's innocence when it charms us, ignorance when it doesn't."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"My doctor is nice; every time I see him I'm ashamed of what I think about doctors in general."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"Our strength is often composed of the weakness that we're damned if we're going to show."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"The head never rules the heart, but just becomes its partner in crime."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"We always prefer war on our own terms to peace on someone else's."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Men who don't like girls with brains don't like girls."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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"Life is a mixed blessing, which we vainly try to unmix."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook (1966)

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"We are all such a waste of our potential, like three-way lamps using one-way bulbs."

Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook (1963)

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Mignon McLaughlin, U.S. writer, humorist
(1913 - 1983)