Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Nikolai Gogol

Today our birthday boy and notable quotable is Nikolai Gogol

A little background on Mr. Gogol from the Internet:

Great Russian novelist, dramatist, satirist, founder of the so-called critical realism in Russian literature, best-known for his novel MERTVYE DUSHI I-II (1842, Dead Souls). Gogol's prose is characterized by imaginative power and linguistic playfulness. As an exposer of the defects of human character, Gogol could be called the Hieronymus Bosch of Russian literature.

Here are a few quotes pulled from ThinkExist.com and other sources:

“What is utterly absurd happens in the world”

“It is no use to blame the looking glass if your face is awry”

“Countless as the sands of the sea are human passions.”

“As you pass from the tender years of youth into harsh and embittered manhood, make sure you take with you on your journey all the human emotions!”

“Always think of what is useful and not what is beautiful. Beauty will come of its own accord.”

“Everywhere a man will be sure to meet at least once in his life something that is unlike anything he had happened to see before.”

“Let me warn you, if you start chasing after views, you'll be left without bread and without views.”

"The moon is made by some lame cooper, and you can see the idiot has no idea about moons at all. He put in a creosoted rope and some wood oil; and this has led to such a terrible stink all over the earth that you have to hold your nose. Another reason the moon is such a tender globe it that people just cannot live on it any more, and all that's left alive there are noses. This is also why we cannot see our own noses - they're all on the moon."
(from Diary of a Madman, 1835)

Cheers! - Jason

Monday, March 30, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Jethro Tull

Today's birthday boy is Jethro Tull

Clearly, there must be something interesting enough about him to warrant a rock bank using his name, so I pulled out a little background from

Tull was born in Basildon, Berkshire, to Jethro Tull Senior and Dorothy Buckridge, and baptised there on 30 March 1674. He grew up in Bradfield, Berkshire and matriculated at St John's College, Oxford at the age of 17 but appears not to have taken a degree. He was later educated at Gray's Inn.
He became ill with a pulmonary disorder, and as he went in a search for a cure he travelled Europe seeking more knowledge of agriculture. Influenced by the early Age of Enlightenment, he is considered to be one of the early proponents of a scientific (and especially empirical) approach to agriculture. He helped transform agricultural practices by inventing or improving numerous implements.
Jethro Tull invented the seed drill, a device for sowing seeds effectively.At the time his workers did not like the idea because they thought they were going to lose their jobs.
And now, as a twist of pace, here are quotes from songs by the band Jethro Tull:

“Lend me your ear, while I call you a fool.”

“He hears the silence howling catches angels as they fall, and the all time winner has got him by the fun.”

“The Christmas spirit is not what you drink.”

“Jump up, look around, find yourself some fun. No sense in sitting there hating everyone.”

“To tell the truth, I'd scare me too.”

“He's watching me watching you watching him watching me watching him watching.”

“The excrement bubbles, the century slime decays, and the brainwashing government lackeys would have us say it's under control.”

“Too many heroes stepping on too many toes, too many yes-men nodding when they really mean no.”

Cheers! - Jason

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Mark Twain Sunday

Welcome to another Mark Twain Sunday

Today, a couple of quick ones from
www.twainquotes.com about the stock market, which was no less a tempestuous topic in Twain's time than it seems today. (How's that for a little aliteration!?)

October: This is one of the peculiarly dangerous months to speculate in stocks in. The other are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August, and February.
- Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar

There are two times in a man's life when he should not speculate: when he can't afford it and when he can.
- Following the Equator, Pudd'nhead Wilson's New Calendar

Cheers! - Jason

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Michael Parkinson


Today's birthday boy and notable quotable is British television personality Michael Parkinson.

Here's a little background on Mr. Parkinson from
The Museum of Broadcast Communications:
MICHAEL PARKINSON. Born in Cudworth, Yorkshire, England, 28 March 1935. Attended Barnsley Grammar School. Married: Mary Heneghan; children: Andrew, Nicholas and Michael. Began career as newspaper journalist, local papers and The Guardian, The Daily Express and The Sunday Times; reporter and producer, Granada Television; executive producer and presenter, London Weekend Television, 1968; leading chat show host, 1970s; presented sporting documentaries among other programmes; chat show host, Channel 10, Australia, 1979-84; co-founder, TV-AM, 1983; presenter, LBC Radio, 1990.
And here is today's fun quote from ThinkExist.com:

“Even now a team of linguists is at work translating Don Revie's* writings on the game [of football] from the original gibberish into Arabic.”
* Don Revie was a British football (that's soccer to us Yanks) player and coached the English national squad from 1974-1977. Apparently, he left the English team under controversial circumstances to coach the United Arab Emirates. I assume Mr. Parkinson's comment was akin to today's offerings by David Letterman or Jay Leno in response to the news of the day.

Cheers! - Jason

Friday, March 27, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Artist Spotlight on Carl Barks

Our birthday boy is the man credited with turning Donald Duck and his family into the icons they are today: Carl Barks

I found a great, quick overview about Barks by
Borgem in his list of 26 favorite comics posted on Retrojunk:

Carl Barks is propably the most famous of all Disney comic-book artists. It was Barks that tranformed Donald Duck from the simple-minded hot-head of the cartoons into a complex and varied character that felt as real as any actual human being. Barks surrounded Donald and his nephews with heaps of new characters such as Gladstone Gander, Mr. Jones the neighbor, the Beagle Boys, Magica DeSpell, Flintheart Glomgold and last but not least Scrooge McDuck. The latter would replace Donald as the main-character in the long adventures Barks sent his ducks out on in the 50's. All of Bark's 'duck' comics from that time and onward are pure classics and deserve a place on any best comics list.

I loved Barks' style, and that he both wrote and drew the stories he produced. His love of the work shows in every panel, and he never seemed to take the easier path of pushing out formulaic material by simply regurgitating the established characters into contrived new settings and situations (can anyone say "cheapquel", it's the name I've heard for the recent Disney spin-off DVD sequels to their cartoon classics?). And there is no finer cartoon character than his Uncle Scrooge Mcduck.

A quick aside: When I recently spotlighted Hank Ketchum on Q(s)OTD I realized that there was more I could do with artists/cartoonists than just highlight their spoken quotes. So, with today's edition, I'm including a few more examples of the quotees' art and creating a new "label" - Artist Spotlight - to the ongoing list of posting types on this blog. Hope you enjoy the new addition to the mix. ...Oh, and I'm be going back, adding a few tweeks to the Ketchum posting, and relabeling it as well.

So, now's the time to sit back, pull up a snack and enjoy today's quotes from ThinkExist.com. And today you bet to follow it up with a little "dessert" - extra samples of Mr. Barks' classic cartoon style!

“I always felt myself to be an unlucky person like Donald, who is a victim of so many circumstances. But there isn't a person in the United States who couldn't identify with him. He is everything, he is everybody; he makes the same mistakes that we all make.”

“There was no difference between my characters and the life my readers were going to have to face.

“I read some of my stories recently and thought, 'How in the hell did I get away with that?' I had some really raw cynicism in some of them.”

“The thing that I consider most important about my work is this: I told it like it is. I told my readers that the bad guys have a little of good in them, and the good guys have a lot of bad in them, and that you can't depend on anything much; nothing is always going to turn out roses.”

“Ideas generally come in a
very complicated form, and you've got to strip them down to make them usable. Boil a gag down to its simplest form, and it is readily discernible to anybody who sees it.”

“I enjoyed doing the gag covers better than the story ones because they were usually simpler. A cover based on an incident in the plot took a great deal of staging to tell a little story that was still part of the book. And it had to make sense on its own.”

A Small Carl Barks Gallery

Cheers! - Jason

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Robert Frost

Today's focus is the esteemed American poet Robert Frost

No American student can get very far in his or her education without coming face-to-face with Frost's work, especially explorations of roads less traveled and conversations about the value of fences in neighborly relations. President John F. Kennedy said of Frost, "He has bequeathed his nation a body of imperishable verse from which Americans will forever gain joy and understanding."

According to
Frost drifted through a string of occupations after leaving school [Harvard], working as a teacher, cobbler, and editor of the Lawrence Sentinel. His first professional poem, "My Butterfly," was published on November 8, 1894, in the New York newspaper The Independent.
From there, he built an impressive body of work which has been recognized with four Pulitzer Prizes and garnished worldwide notoriety. Here are a few thoughts from Frost pulled from ThinkExist.com:

“The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep.”

“There are two kinds of teachers: the kind that fill you with so much quail shot that you can't move, and the kind that just gives you a little prod behind and you jump to the skies.”

“There's nothing I'm afraid of like scared people”

“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life. It goes on.”

“Freedom lies in being bold.”

“The best way out is always through.”

“Forgive me my nonsense as I also forgive the nonsense of those who think they talk sense”

“I'm not a teacher, but an awakener”

Cheers! - Jason

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Urban let's smokin' guitars loose in fog City

Last year, I had the chance to see Keith Urban in concert for the first time. Being a hard-rockin' fool myself, I didn't expect much but oh boy, was I surprised!

I should start by telling you that my wife, Carrie, is a true country-music girl at heart and together we've enjoyed some great concerts by the Judd's, Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill. My tastes tend toward Van Halen (the Sammy version), Nickelback, AC/DC, Collective Soul, Pink Floyd (or solo Roger Waters), Neil Young and the like which tend to have one thing in common: heavy on the guitars.

Carrie and our boys are also regular American Idol watchers, so when Carrie Underwood was coming to town... we'll we got four tickets. Underwood was opening for Keith so we started listening to his music in the weeks leading up to the show. His music was good, but seeing him in person was a hard-rocking, rollicking ride. By the time he got off stage at the HP Arena in San Jose, we were hooked.

So when we heard that Keith was doing a special show in San Francisco to get ready for his Defying Gravity release at the end of the month, we signed up to win tickets. Since we aren't Verizon customers (they are the the sponsor for the tour - but we can't use Verizon because we're both hooked on our iPhones) we figured our chances were slim. Thinking we were out of luck after the winners were notified, Carrie trolled the ticket boards and posted a plea for tickets on Craig's List. And while we found them, it was going to cost us $150 per ticket which isn't really a good way for us to spend our currently limited budget (that pesky jobless thing getting in the way again) so we resigned ourselves to buying the new album instead.

Much to our surprise, Carrie got an email on Sunday letting her know we would have two tickets at will call.

The show was last night at the Fillmore, and I have to say it was a great venue for this show. I hadn't been to the Fillmore in 15+ years when I last went to see Chris Isaak. Hasn't changed much, and it's still one of the smokiest venues I've ever been in. But talk about cool - we spent the whole show no more than 20 feet from center stage where Keith worked the crowed the whole night.

Sure, Keith is a country music guy, but all his songs are well written and tightly scored. And the riffs he pulls off keep a guitar-loving guy like me cheering along. He did over 2 hours in front of a standing room that was into it from the start. He worked through most of his "best of..." catalog and mixed in stuff from the new album. He tipped his hat to the local crowd with some nods to San Francisco songs and bands, and he even fired off a series of classic rock riffs from his "formative years." The one thing he didn't bring was the humongous video screen, which worked great in San Jose but would have been out of place at the Fillmore. Overall, a tight, intimate show that let his personality come through. Gotta say, it made for one of my best birthdays ever, and I've now had many more than I care to fess up to.

Do yourself a favor, pick up Keith's new album when it comes out. And if he comes to your town you should really check him out. Just think of Carrie and/or me if you need anyone to go with you.

Cheers! - Jason

The MMOB Daily Quote - Flannery O'connor

Today, we have another birthday girl - notable author Flannery O'Connor
Here's a little background on Ms. O'Connor from

An important voice in American literature, O'Connor wrote two novels and 32 short stories, as well as a number of reviews and commentaries. She was a Southern writer who often wrote in a Southern Gothic style and relied heavily on regional settings and -- it is regularly said -- grotesque characters. But she remarked, "anything that comes out of the South isgoing to be called grotesque by the northern reader, unless it is grotesque, in which case it is going to be called realistic." Her texts usually take place in the South and revolve around morally flawed characters, while the issue of race often appears in the background. One of her trademarks is bluntforeshadowing, giving a reader an idea of what will happen far before it happens. Most of her works feature disturbing elements, though she did not like to be characterized as cynical. "I am tired of reading reviews that call A Good Man brutal and sarcastic," she writes. "The stories are hard but they are hard because there is nothing harder or less sentimental than Christian realism... when I see these stories described as horror stories I am always amused because the reviewer always has hold of the wrong horror."
Her two novels were Wise Blood (1952) and The Violent Bear It Away (1960). She also published two books of short stories: A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories (1955) and Everything That Rises Must Converge (published posthumously in 1965).

And now, Flannery in her own words:

“I find that most people know what a story is until they sit down to write one.”

“The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it.”

“It is better to be young in your failures than old in your successes.”

“Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them.”

“When in Rome, do as you done in Milledgeville”

“There's many a bestseller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.”

“It seems that the fiction writer has a revolting attachment to the poor, for even when he writes about the rich, he is more concerned with what they lack than with what they have.”

“Conviction without experience makes for harshness.”

“The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that does not require his attention.”

Cheers! - Jason

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Erich Fromm

Today we take a philosophical tact with birthday boy and notable quotable Erich Fromm.

One of the reasons I love pulling together these daily compilations of interesting quotes is that it forces me to extend myself and often learn about interesting people and thinkers, some of whom I know little or nothing about. While I'd heard passing references to Fromm over the years, he was always as a sidebar to the more traditional voices of Freud, Jung, Piaget or Maslow. So, for my own benefit, and now yours, here's the
biography on Erich Fromm pulled from a fine electronic textbook on Personality Theories created by Dr. C George Boeree. I recommend you look up the full text to get an even fuller accounting of this accomplished thinker.

Erich Fromm was born in 1900 in Frankfurt, Germany. His father was a business man and, according to Erich, rather moody. His mother was frequently depressed. In other words,... his childhood wasn't very happy.
Like Jung, Erich came from a very religious family, in his case orthodox Jews. Fromm himself later became what he called an atheistic mystic.
In his autobiography, Beyond the Chains of Illusion, Fromm talks about two events in his early adolescence that started him along his path. The first involved a friend of the family's:
Maybe she was 25 years of age; she was beautiful, attractive, and in addition a painter, the first painter I ever knew. I remember having heard that she had been engaged but after some time had broken the engagement; I remember that she was almost invariably in the company of her widowed father. As I remember him, he was an old, uninteresting, and rather unattractive man, or so I thought (maybe my judgment was somewhat biased by jealousy). Then one day I heard the shocking news: her father had died, and immediately afterwards, she had killed herself and left a will which stipulated that she wanted to be buried with her father.
As you can imagine, this news hit the 12 year old Erich hard, and he found himself asking what many of us might ask: why? Later, he began finding some answers -- partial ones, admittedly -- in Freud.
The second event was even larger: World War I. At the tender age of 14, he saw the extremes that nationalism could go to. All around him, he heard the message: We (Germans, or more precisely, Christian Germans) are great; They (the English and their allies) are cheap mercenaries. The hatred, the "war hysteria," frightened him, as well it should.
So again he wanted to understand something irrational -- the irrationality of mass behavior -- and he found some answers, this time in the writings of Karl Marx.
To finish Fromm's story, he received his PhD from Heidelberg in 1922 and began a career as a psychotherapist. He moved to the U.S. in 1934 -- a popular time for leaving Germany! -- and settled in New York City, where he met many of the other great refugee thinkers that gathered there, including Karen Horney, with whom he had an affair.
Toward the end of his career, he moved to Mexico City to teach. He had done considerable research into the relationship between economic class and personality types there. He died in 1980 in Switzerland.

I realize this is more than I usually reprint from others, but I thought you might like a little more detail as context for today's slate of quotes, which a pulled from

“There is only one meaning of life: the act of living itself.”

“Education makes machines which act like men and produces men who act like machines”

“To spare oneself from grief at all cost can be achieved only at the price of total detachment, which excludes the ability to experience happiness”

“Love means to commit oneself without guarantee, to give oneself completely in the hope that our love will produce love in the loved person. Love is an act of faith, and whoever is of little faith is also of little love.”

“Love is the only sane and satisfactory answer to the problem of human existence.”

“Greed is a bottomless pit which exhausts the person in an endless effort to satisfy the need without ever reaching satisfaction.”

“Mother's love is peace. It need not be acquired, it need not be deserved.”

“Only the person who has faith in himself is able to be faithful to others.”

“Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties.”

Cheers! - Jason

Monday, March 23, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Wernher von Braun

Today's birthday boy and notable quotable is Wernher von Braun

This "rocket man" was an important figure in the 20th Century and here's just a little tease from
Wernher Magnus Maximilian Freiherr von Braun (March 23, 1912 – June 16, 1977), a German rocket physicist and astronautics engineer, became one of the leading figures in the development of rocket technology in Germany and the United States. Wernher von Braun is sometimes said to be the preeminent rocket engineer of the 20th century.
And now the quotes:

“Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing.”

“We can lick gravity, but sometimes the paperwork is overwhelming.”

“Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft, and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor”

“Our sun is one of 100 billion stars in our galaxy. Our galaxy is one of billions of galaxies populating the universe. It would be the height of presumption to think that we are the only living things in that enormous immensity.”

"All of man's scientific and engineering efforts will be in vain unless they are performed and utilized within a framework of ethical standards commensurate with the magnitude of the scope of the technological revolution. The more technology advances, the more fateful will be its impact on humanity."

"If the world's ethical standards fail to rise with the advances of our technological revolution, the world will go to hell. Let us remember that in the horse-and-buggy days nobody got hurt if the coachman had a drink too many. In our times of high-powered automobiles, however, that same drink may be fatal...."

On Adolf Hitler: "I began to see the shape of the man – his brilliance, the tremendous force of personality. It gripped you somehow. But also you could see his flaw — he was wholly without scruples, a godless man who thought himself the only god, the only authority he needed."

Cheers! - Jason

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Mark Twain Sunday

Welcome to another Mark Twain Sunday here on The MMOB Daily Quote.

Today's words of wisdom from the man in white are focused on
DOGS and are all pulled from www.twainquotes.com:

""Let a sleeping dog lie." It is a poor old maxim, & nothing in it: anybody can do it, you don't have to employ a dog."
- inscription written in copy of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn to Margery Clinton, August 18, 1908

"Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in."
- Mark Twain, a Biography

"If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man."
- Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar

"A composite dog is a dog that's made up of all the valuable qualities that's in the dog breed--kind of a syndicate; and a mongrel is made up of the riffraff that's left over."
- Mark Twain in Eruption, p. 222. Used in "His Grandfather's Old Ram" speech.

"The dog is a gentleman; I hope to go to his heaven, not man's."
- Letter to W. D. Howells, 4/2/1899

Cheers! - Jason

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The MMOB Daily Quote - Howard Cosell

Today's colorful character is Howard Cosell.

A little background pulled from the
American Sportscasters Hall of Fame:

During his nearly 40 years in broadcasting, the late Howard Cosell did more to popularize television sports than any other sportscaster in this century. Mr. Cosell is probably best known for his 13 years of expert commentary on ABC's Emmy Award winning "Monday Night Football". In 1977, he became a commentator on ABC's "Monday Night Baseball". Cosell gained worldwide recognition and fame as the voice of boxing including most of Muhammad Ali's major bouts.

And, no, I will NOT be presenting the statements that caused such a big stir when he uttered them on Monday Night Football. I guess you would now say he pulled a "Don Imus", but it's sad that such a unique broadcaster and beloved curmudgeon besmirched his own reputation.

And now, today's quotes pulled from

"Down Goes Frazier! Down Goes Frazier! Down Goes Frazier!"

"I'm just telling it like it is."

“Sports is the toy department of human life.”

“The ultimate victory in competition is derived from the inner satisfaction of knowing that you have done your best and that you have gotten the most out of what you had to give.”

“What's right isn't always popular. What's popular isn't always right.”

“Mommy, why does daddy cuss the TV and call it Howard?”

Cheers!- Jason