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Jane Wagner

  • Reality is a crutch for people who can't cope with drugs.

  • Remember, we're all in this alone.

  • We don't care. We don't have to. We're the phone company.

  • I worry that drugs have forced us to be more creative than we really are.

  • Does your mind feel more and more like teflon? Nothing sticks to it.

  • The other day I bought a wastebasket and I carried it home in a paper bag. And when I got home, I put the paper bag in the wastebasket.

  • I worry that the person who thought up musak may be thinking up something else.

  • ... I worry about being a success in a mediocre world.

  • Sex is such a personal thing — why do we insist on sharing it with another person?

  • I may not be great at geometry but I know one theorum. The longest distance between two points is you and your parents.

  • This whole society is like slow-dancing. Then men get to lead and the women get stepped on.

  • Ahhhhhhhh. There is nothing natural about natural childbirth. It is as close to a freak accident as anything I can think of. Why I picked a time like this to go off drugs.

  • To think we have the garment industry instead of nature to thank for the zipper concept when it would have come in so handy for childbirth.

  • ... I feel like my life is just passing me by like two ships in the night. And I have missed both boats.

  • Sometimes, Bobbi, I feel like I am a figment of my own imagination.

  • Of all the things we've learned, we still haven't learned where did this desire to want to know come from?

  • ... frankly, goin' crazy was the best thing that ever happened to me. I don't say it's for everybody; some people couldn't cope.

  • ... what is reality anyway? Nothin' but a collective hunch.

  • I made some studies, and reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it. I can take it in small doses, but as a lifestyle I found it too confining.

  • I worry that humanity has been 'advanced' to its present level of incompetency because evolution works on the Peter Principle.

  • One thing I have no worry about is whether God exists. But it has occurred to me that God has Alzheimer's and has forgotten we exist.

  • I worry no matter how cynical you become, it's never enough to keep up.

  • All my life I've always wanted to be somebody. But I see now I should have been more specific.

  • It's not that I lack ambition. I am ambitious in the sense that I want to be more than I am now. But if I were truly ambitious, I think I'd already be more than I am now.

  • A sobering thought, Eileen: What if, right at this very moment, I am living up to my full potential?

  • What goes up must come down. But don't expect it to come down where you can find it.

  • If evolution was worth its salt, by now it should've evolved something better than survival of the fittest. Yeah, I told 'em I think a better idea would be survival of the wittiest. At least, that way, the creatures that didn't survive could've died laughing.

  • Our ability to delude ourselves may be an important survival tool.

  • I personally think we developed language because of our deep inner need to complain.

  • ... you're not so damn Zen, after all; you're passive-aggressive. Somehow, we both mistook that for spirituality.

  • ... at the moment you are most in awe of all there is about life that you don't understand, you are closer to understanding it all than at any other time.

  • Nothing makes you realize you don't know what you want more than getting what you want.

  • The hardest part about being a kid is knowing you have got your whole life ahead of you.

  • ... what you try to bury just ends up burying you.

  • Childhood comes at a time in your life when you are too young to understand what you are going through. And you're too young to understand that you are too young to understand.

  • If you are a human being, you might as well face it. You are going to rub a lot of people the wrong way.

  • My mom says I have to be more positive, and I say life has to be more positive too or it's just not going to work.

  • Our lives are like soap operas. We can go for months and not tune into them; then six months later we look in and the same stuff is going on.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Delusions of grandeur make me feel a lot better about myself.

    • Jane Wagner
  • If I'd have known what having it all was going to be like, I'd have settled for less.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Infinity: Time on an ego trip.

    • Jane Wagner
  • You don't know what it's like! Hyperactive twins! When they turned three, my doctor prescribed Ritalin — I wouldn't dream of giving a drug to my children, but it does help when I take it myself.

    • Jane Wagner
  • You'd think by now evolution could've at least evolved us to the place where we could change ourselves.

    • Jane Wagner
  • I even worry about reflective flea collars. Oh, sure, drivers can see them glow in the dark, but so can the fleas.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Having everything can sometimes make you stop wanting anything. It's called 'Rich People's Burn-Out.'

    • Jane Wagner
  • ... it's hard to be politically conscious and upwardly mobile at the same time.

    • Jane Wagner
  • I am sick of being the victim of trends I reflect but don't even understand.

    • Jane Wagner
  • I used to try to make something special out of the day. But I found it was taking up too much of the day.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Unless you are at a picnic, life is no picnic.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Just think: your family are the people most likely to give you the flu.

    • Jane Wagner
  • This morning I threw up at a board meeting. I was sure the cat was out of the bag, but no one seemed to think anything about it; apparently it's quite common for people to throw up at board meetings.

    • Jane Wagner
  • I worry sometimes, maybe Bob has gotten too much in touch with his feminine side. Last night, I'm pretty sure, he faked an orgasm.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Why is it when we talk to God, we're said to be praying — but when God talks to us, we're schizophrenic?

    • Jane Wagner
  • There will be sex after death — we just won't be able to feel it.

    • Jane Wagner
  • For fast-acting relief, try slowing down.

    • Jane Wagner
  • If you read a lot of books, you're considered well-read. But if you watch a lot of TV you're not considered well-viewed.

    • Jane Wagner
  • If love is the answer, could you please rephrase the question?

    • Jane Wagner
  • The trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat.

    • Jane Wagner
  • Things are going to get a lot worse before they get worse.

    • Jane Wagner
  • If truth is beauty, how come no one has her hair done at the library?

    • Jane Wagner

Jane Wagner, U.S. writer, actor, director, producer


Note: Jane Wagner and Lily Tomlin have been professional and personal partners (they’re married) for decades. Many lines that Jane wrote for Lily are attributed to and associated with Lily. For now I’m giving most of the credit for the writing to Jane, but do check under Lily Tomlin’s name for more. Any help with accurate attributions would be welcome.