A Long Way Down Quotes
How do people, like, not curse? How is it possible? There are these gaps in speech where you just have to put a "fuck." I'll tell you who the most admirable people in the world are: newscasters. If that was me, I'd be like, "And the motherfuckers flew the fucking plane right into the Twin Towers." How could you not, if you're a human being? Maybe they're not so admirable. Maybe they're robot zombies.
A man who wants to die feels angry and full of life and desperate and bored and exhausted, all at the same time; he wants to fight everyone, and he wants to curl up in a ball and hide in a cupboard somewhere. He wants to say sorry to everyone, and he wants everyone to know just how badly they've all let him down.
Hard is trying to rebuild yourself, piece by piece, with no instruction book, and no clue as to where all the important bits are supposed to go.
You're fucked. You thought you were going to be someone, but now it's obvious you're nobody. You haven't got as much talent as you thought you had, and there was no Plan B, and you got no skills and no education, and now you're looking at forty or fifty years of nothing. Less than nothing, probably. That's pretty heavy. That's worse than having the brain thing, because what you got now will take a lot longer to kill you. You've got the choice of a slow, painful death, or a quick, merciful one.
We all spend so much time not saying what we want, because we know we can't have it. And because it sounds ungracious, or ungrateful, or disloyal, or childish, or banal. Or because we're so desperate to pretend that things are OK, really, that confessing to ourselves they're not looks like a bad move. Go on, say what you want. ... Whatever it is, say it to yourself. The truth will set you free. Either that or it'll get you a punch in the nose. Surviving in whatever life you're living means lying, and lying corrodes the soul, so take a break from the lies for just one minute.
The trouble with my generation is that we all think we're fucking geniuses. Making something isn't good enough for us, and neither is selling something, or teaching something, or even just doing something; we have to be something.
Telling me I can do anything I want is like pulling the plug out of the bath and then telling the water it can go anywhere it wants. Try it, and see what happens.
When you're unhappy, I guess everything in the world - reading, eating, sleeping - has something buried somewhere inside it that just makes you unhappier.
That’s the thing with the young these days, isn’t it? They watch too many happy endings. Everything has to be wrapped up, with a smile and a tear and a wave. Everyone has learned, found love, seen the error of their ways, discovered the joys of monogamy, or fatherhood, or filial duty, or life itself. In my day, people got shot at the end of films, after learning only that life is hollow, dismal, brutish, and short.
Most people have a rope that ties them to someone, and that rope can be short or it can be long. (Be long. Belong. Get it?) You don't know how long, though. It's not your choice.
And another way of explaining it is to say that shit happens, and there's no space too small, too dark and airless and fucking hopeless, for people to crawl into.
And it isn't that I'm so unhappy I don't want to live anymore. That's not what it feels like. It feels more like I'm tired and bored and the party's gone on too long and I want to go home. I feel flat and there doesn't seem to be anything to look forward to, so I'd rather call it a day.
Once you stop pretending that everything's shitty and you can't wait to get out of it...then it gets more painful, not less. Telling yourself life is shit is like an anesthetic, and when you stop taking the Advil, then you really can tell how much it hurts, and where, and it's not like that kind of pain does anyone a whole lot of good.
Sometimes it's moments like that, real complicated moments, absorbing moments, that make you realize that even hard times have things in them that make you feel alive. And then there's music, and girls, and drugs, and homeless people who've read Pauline Kael, and wah-wah pedals, and English potato chip flavors, and I haven't even read Martin Chuzzlewit yet... There's plenty out there.
I was still owed an explanation, I thought, but so what? What good was it going to do me? It wouldn't have made me any happier. It was like scratching when you have chicken pox. You think it's going to help, but the itch moves over, and then moves over again. My itch suddenly felt miles away, and I couldn't have reached it with the longest arms in the world. Realizing that made me scared that I was going to be itchy forever, and I didn't want that.
I'd stay there, or not, and I'd eat, or not, and I'd drink, or not, and go home, or not, and what I did or didn't do wouldn't matter to anyone at all. And I walked for most of the day. Do people get sad on holiday sometimes? I can imagine they do, having all that time to think.
A middle-aged woman who looked like someone's cleaning lady, a shrieking adolescent lunatic and a talkshow host with an orange face... It didn't add up. Suicide wasn't invented for people like this. It was invented for people like Virginia Woolf and Nick Drake. And Me. Suicide was supposed to be cool.
Why does reading freak people out so much? Sure, I could be pretty anti-social when we were on the road, but if I was playing a Gameboy hour after hour, no one would be on my case. In my social circle, blowing up space monsters is socially acceptable in a way that American Pastoral isn't.
There isn't so much to be afraid of, out there. I can remember thinking it was funny to find that out, on the last night of my life; I'd spent the rest of it being afraid of everything.
I may not know the weight of those things, but I could feel the weight of that one, so I kept it to myself. You know that things aren't going well for you when you can't even tell people the simplest fact about your life, just because they'll presume you're asking them to feel sorry for you. I suppose it's why you feel so far away from everyone, in the end; anything you can think of to tell them just ends up making them feel terrible.
«The fuck?» means «What the fuck?» In America, they’re so busy that they don’t have time to say the «what».
Asking the head I have now to explain its own thinking is as pointless as dialing your own telephone number on your own telephone: Either way, you get an engaged signal. Or your own answer message, if you have that kind of phone system.
If you haven't heard him...man, it's like he boiled down down all the melancholy in the world, all the bruises and all the fucked-up dreams you've let go, and poured the essence into a little tiny bottle and corked it up.
Jess thought for a moment. 'You know those films where people fight up the top of the Empire State Building or up a mountain or whatever? And there's always that bit when the baddie slips off and the hero tries to save him, but, like, the sleeve of this jacket tears off and goes over and you hear him all the way down. Aaaaaaaaagh. That's what I want to do.' 'You want to watch me plunge to my doom.' 'I'd like to know that I've made the effort. I want to show people the torn sleeve.
I had wanted to kill myself, not because I hated living, but because I loved it. And the truth of the matter is, I think that a lot of people who think about killing themselves feel the same way. They love live but it's all fucked up for them We were up on that roof because we couldn't find a way back into life, and being shut out of it like that...It just fucking destroys you, man.
We all spend so much time, not saying what we want, because we know we can't have it. And because it sounds ungracious, or ungrateful, or disloyal, or childish, or banal. Or because we're too desperate to pretend that things are OK, really, that confessing to ourselves they're not looks like a bad move.
I don't think you can call it stalking when it's just phone calls and letters and emails and knocking on the door.
You know that things aren’t going well for you when you can’t even tell people the simplest fact about your life, just because they’ll presume you’re asking them to feel sorry for you. I suppose it’s why you feel so far away from everyone, in the end; anything you can think of to tell them just ends up making them feel terrible.
The trouble with my generation is that we all think we're fucking geniuses. Making something isn't good enough for us, and neither is selling something, or teaching something, or even just doing something; we have to be something. It's our inalienable right, as citizens of the twenty-first century. If Christina Aguilera or Britney or some American Idol jerk can be something, then why can't I? Where's mine, huh?.