Dale's Collected Quips
Version 3.05, © 1999 - 2012 by Dale Cotton, all rights reserved.
On art and photography
- It's taken me years to learn when to come in out of a drought.
- All the signal processors in the world can't transmute pure static into pure symphony.
- When that vein of gold comes to an end it's hard to settle for mining silver or tin.
- When Mother Nature hands you one of her masterpieces on a silver platter and you happen to have your camera loaded and ready, you try not to argue and you try not to blow it.
- In real estate the key is location, location, location. In photography it's location at the right moment, location at the right moment, location at the right moment.
- Everything you are and everything you know is captured every time you release the shutter. Or turn it around: every successful picture puts the whole world in focus.
- The road to El Dorado is an unmarked footpath one thousand miles long.
- Just as we have to achieve enlightenment before we can recognize that our Buddha nature has always been there, so you will one day have an epiphany and realize that a particular thread runs through your work that is the "real" you.
- To truly hit your mark shoot from the heart and the hip at the same time.
- Art: a pleasant way to pass the time while waiting for your coffin to arrive.
- A great picture more often reveals the sanctity of the ordinary than the majesty of the big and the powerful.
- Art is to artists as pearls are to oysters.
- The first requirement of art is that it pierce the heart like a stiletto. Too many photographers mistake a sharp tool for accurate aim; others believe irony, intellect, or alienation will suffice for their targets. But the measure is as simple as it is ruthless: no one may escape great art unscathed.
- Presumably, the crow and the whippoorwill have similar things to say – it's just that I'd rather hear the whippoorwill say it.
On being human
- I never met a man so wretched he couldn't serve as a perfectly good bad example.
- Youth is a crime punishable by old age.
- Hard work buys you beer. Beer buys you happiness.
- There is a strong negative correlation between happiness and IQ.
- Cats and dogs are more on the same wavelength than are cats and cows. Sometimes it is better for two people to be cats and cows to each other than cats and dogs.
- When playing with egos, expect to get burnt.
- I haven't met any perfect human beings but rather find those who put other people on pedestals and those who put themselves on pedestals to be about equal in folly. Egos are like any other weighty object: what goes up must come down.
- When using the term "intelligence" in conjunction with the phrase "human being" or homo "sapiens", it may be safer to reserve comparatives for such things as door knobs, vegetables, and insects. I wouldn't risk a comparison to a bird or a mammal.
- No one is smart enough to solve the world; and therefore the
intellect is not the correct fraction of the psyche to wear the
captain's cap of the soul.
- We don't always get to choose our own stupidities: quite often they're gifted upon us by the gods.
- The older I get the more questionable fame and fortune seem as long term goals.
- Confronted with poverty the millionaire had a heart of gold. And if you listened closely enough you could hear it – clink, clink ... clink, clink ... clink, clink...
- Romance is like eating a meal backwards: the sweet part comes first, then the meat and potatoes, then the appetite to eat again.
- So many egos; so little tact.
- He who speak with tongue in cheek must enjoy the taste of toenails.
- There's nothing like a few years in hell to turn purgatory into paradise.
- The verbosity of the bureaucracy tends toward a maximum.
- Here in my old age it becomes increasingly clear to me that all the world's a mix of fools and knaves. Yet to try to rise above the universal mire is simply to fall into the folly of taking oneself seriously.
- Nature is ever cruel. Just as the fate of any herd animal that is a bit slower or weaker than the norm is death by evisceration; just as the moth willingly incinerates itself in a flame; so among homo sapiens anyone not sufficiently clever inevitably gets sucked into the death trap of a management position.
- Is there anything so inherently classless as class-consciousness?
- Ultimately, existence has been no kinder to the large corporation than it was 65 million years ago to the apatosaurus. Too much body; too little brain.
- You know what they say about immortality – the first trillion years are the hardest.
- before death, you think staying alive is the most important thing in the world. After that you don't think so any more.
On everything else
- When I came into the world it soon became apparent that I had been blessed with three gifts: talking, drawing ... and bungling my affairs.
- My grandfather was a photographer; my father, an engineer; and I'm an artsy-fartsy type, so creatively endowed that two plus two almost never equals the same thing twice in a row.
- Computer programs are not tiny geniuses in a box - they're tiny idiots in a box. (I say this as one who makes his living as a computer programmer.)
- Think redundancy ... then have second thoughts.
- Monday's glory; Tuesday's trash.
- The more variables in your equations the better the odds that some particularly nasty butterfly will turn around and bite you.