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Luck

  • ... luck's like the weather, it can change any minute.

  • That's the way the system works. Sometimes you get the bear, sometimes the bear gets you.

  • Everything is chance, or nothing is chance. If I believed the first, I would be unable to live on, but I am not yet fully convinced of the second.

  • There's good chances and bad chances, and nobody's luck is pulled only by one string.

  • If Paul ... had tar on the seat of his breeches, and sat down in a bushel of doubloons, not one of 'em would stick to him!

  • I have often noticed that when Fate has a phenomenal run of ill luck in store for you, she begins by dropping a rare piece of good fortune into your lap, thereby enhancing the artistic effect of the sequel.

  • Luck enters into every contingency. You are a fool if you forget it — and a greater fool if you count upon it.

  • If not for bad luck we'd have no luck at all.

  • ... there is undoubtedly something irritating about the favorites of fortune.

  • I don't really believe in 'lucky breaks.' Luck is the opportunity you have prepared for.

  • Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity.

    • Oprah Winfrey,
    • in Bill Adler, ed., The Uncommon Wisdom of Oprah Winfrey ()
  • According to bourgeois standards, those who are completely unlucky and unsuccessful are automatically barred from competition, which is the life of society. Good fortune is identified with honor, and bad luck with shame.

  • Bad and good, loving and unloving, ugly and handsome are not so separated as lucky and unlucky. She felt cold around the heart. Those miserable ones for whom nothing ever went right, whose stores burned down, whose wives had female diseases, whose children whined, who were themselves stricken with kidney disease, beaten in horse trades, burdened with cows that soured and tobacco that mildewed, who got sick on good whisky, broke wind in company and were constipated in private, this was the common run of mankind, and after tomorrow morning, he, who had lived in his pride of being above such men, would be right down in their midst.

  • In creative endeavors luck is a skill.

    • Twyla Tharp,
    • in Twyla Tharp with Mark Reiter, The Creative Habit ()
  • Generosity is luck going in the opposite direction, away from you. If you're generous to someone, if you do something to help him out, you are in effect making him lucky. This is important. It's like inviting yourself into a community of good fortune.

    • Twyla Tharp,
    • in Twyla Tharp with Mark Reiter, The Creative Habit ()
  • ... I've always thought you've got to believe in luck to get it.

  • 'Tis a curious fact that a generous act / Brings leisure and luck to a day.

  • ... though fortune's wheel is generally on the turn, sometimes when it gets into the mud, it sticks there.

  • Fortune is proverbially called changeful, yet her caprice often takes the form of repeating again and again a similar stroke of luck in the same quarter.

  • Chance is better than choice; it is more lordly. Chance is God, choice is man.

  • You can't wish a body any worse luck than to get what he wants.

  • ... there's no such thing as luck. Nothing ever just happens to anybody. ... nothing can really happen to a person till he lets it happen.

  • Luck is not chance — / It's Toil — / Fortune's expensive smile / Is earned — ...

    • Emily Dickinson,
    • c. 1875, in Thomas H. Johnson, ed., The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson ()
  • I am not lucky. I am the type who would go to Lourdes and drown in the waters.

    • Joan Rivers,
    • with Richard Merryman, Enter Talking ()
  • Fortune is always on the side of the big battalions.

    • Madame de Sévigné,
    • 1673, in M. Monmerqué, ed., Lettres de Madame de Sévigné, de sa famille et de ses amis, vol. 3 ()
  • The fact is, people who don't have any misfortunes are very irritating to their neighbours. No opportunities for popping in with condolences and new-laid eggs. No visits to the afflicted. No opportunities for the milk of human kindness to flow. Naturally it doesn't.

  • Green four-leaf clover / It's delightful how you grew / You were there two months, / And I never knew.

  • The book club selection of his first novel had catapulted him (no, jet-propelled was better) too swiftly into the stratosphere, he had no equipment for the flight or for the new atmosphere ... no editor could remedy the dreadful effect of early luck.

  • You is born lucky, and it's better to be born lucky than born rich, cause if you is lucky you can git rich, but if you is born rich and you ain't lucky you is liables to lose all you got.

  • The only time you run out of chances is when you stop taking them.

    • Patti LaBelle,
    • in Patti LaBelle and Laura Randolph Lancaster, Patti's Pearls ()
  • Many things would be changed for Americans if they would only admit that there is ill-luck in this world and that misfortune is not a priori a crime.

  • I've always believed that luck ranked right up there with brains.

  • ... how can you say luck and chance are the same thing? Chance is the first step you take, luck is what comes afterwards.

  • ... if something bad happens to me or to others with whom I identify, it is owing to brute luck, but if it happens to anyone else, it is owing to unwise choices.

  • ... the harder you work the luckier you get.

  • Luck is luck ... What we do with it determines whether it's good or bad.

  • Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.

  • All good fortune is a gift of the gods, and ... you don't win the favors of the ancient gods by being good, but by being bold.

    • Anita Brookner,
    • in George Plimpton, ed., Writers at Work: The Paris Review Interviews ()
  • Life is a gamble, a chance, a mere guess. Cast a line and reel in a splendid rainbow trout or a slippery eel.

  • Here's the thing about luck ... you don't know if it's good or bad until you have some perspective.

  • People always call it luck when you've acted more sensibly than they have.

  • I love to think about chance — about how one little overheard word, one pebble in a shoe, can change the universe.

  • ... it's smarter to be lucky than it's lucky to be smart.

  • In our imaginations, starvation, sickness and inferior social positions are someone else's fate.

  • Foolish are they indeed who trust to fortune!

  • Good luck needs no explanation.

  • Chance, that deity, which though blind, is often a powerful friend, did what she could not prevail on herself to do.

  • Luck was largely a matter of paying attention.

  • If you're born lucky, you don't have to be good.

  • In him I saw of what luck essentially consists — a subconscious that invites it, an organism that is obedient to it and a character that counts on it.

    • Georgette Leblanc,
    • 1898, in Janet Flanner, trans., Souvenirs: My Life With Maeterlinck ()
  • Luck happens when preparedness and opportunity get together.

  • It's dangerous to start attributing your fortunes to luck and your misfortunes to fate.

  • I've seen the smiling / Of Fortune beguiling; / I've felt all its favours, and found its decay: / Sweet was its blessing, / Kind its caressing; / But now 'tis fled — fled far away.

    • Alicia Cockburn,
    • "The Flowers of the Forest," in Frederic Rowton, The Female Poets of Great Britain ()
  • Luck? Sure. But only after long practice and only with the ability to think under pressure.