Today is Dorothy Parker’s birthday, and that is one of most famous quotes.
She was born in 1893, and died in 1967, and is probably if not the greatest wit of all time, at least she’s in the top five!
She was a writer, poet, screen writer, and wit. She’s also one of my favorite historical characters.
Here are some of the things she left for us:
“Their pooled emotions wouldn’t fill a teaspoon.”
“You can lead a horticulture, but you can’t make her think.”
Beauty is only skin deep, but ugly goes clean to the bone.”
“Men seldom make passes at girls who wear glasses.”
“If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re still happy.”
“I’d like to have money. And I’d like to be a good writer. Theses two can come together, and I hope they will, but if that’s too adorable, I’d rather have money.”
“I hate writing, I love having written.”
“The two most beautiful words in the English language are ‘cheque enclosed’.” (This quote is attributed to Parker is a paraphrase. In 1932. The New York Herald Tribune asked her for a list of the most beautiful words. Dorothy said, “To me, the most beautiful words in the English language is cellar-door. Isn’t it wonderful? The ones I like, though, are cheque and enclosed.”
“There’s a hell of a distance be wise-cracking and wit. With has trughtin it;wise-cracking is simply calisthenics with words.”
“One more drink and I’ll be under the host.”
“I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.”
“When asked if she was going to join Alcoholics Anonymous: “Certainly not. They want me to stop NOW!”
“Money can’t buy health, but I’d settle for a diamond-studded wheelchair.”
“I don’t know much about being a millionaire, but I’ll bet I’d be darling at it.”
When she was offended by the amount of money a producer offered her to write a script: “You can’t take it with you, and even if you did, it would probably melt.”
“Better be left by twenty dears
Than lie in a love-less bed;
Better a loaf that’s wet with tears,
Than cold, unsalted bread.”
“The best way to keep children at home is to make the home atmosphere pleasant, and let the air out of the tires.”
“It serves me right for putting all my eggs in one bastard.”
“Excuse my dust.” Parker suggested that this be used as an epitaph on her tombstone – and it was!