Quotes, Procrastination, and Quotes About Procrastination

Dear friends,

I am composing this message to you in notes on my iPhone, standing in a lavender smelling model home that is so air conditioned I feel like I’m in an industrial strength refrigerator.

I can tell you, as I sneak bites of my free pretzel and Australian coffee, that this was not what I intended for my post to be about. But here we are.

What I intended my post to be about was quotes. Which it still will be, I promise, but let’s figure out how we got here first.
Between my job, internships, meetings, church, writing gigs, sports, and all life in-between, even with my super cool hipster kid planner, I tend to forget due dates. Which is why when I agreed this weekend to take two 8-5 shifts at a housing company grand opening, I thought I was home free (bad-umsh). As event staff in a house decorated down to the last detail answering questions about floor plans and kitchen upgrades, somewhere between the upgraded granite counter-tops and walk-in closets I realized oh wait yes I actually have a writing deadline.

So basically that explains why I’m hiding behind drapery and in the pantries to make this post. This has made for some interesting conversation with the realtors who occasionally check in on me, not to mention some of the more chatty guests.

Now what I really wanted to write about was quotes and the way quotes affect me. Chalk that one up to procrastination, too. I am going to be an orientation leader and one of our tasks is to decorate a clip board for our orientation partner. We were told about this assignment the short short time ago of about four months so naturally I have yet to start it. But I knew for sure I was going to decorate the board with quotes: creative writing majors, hey, seems to fit. So another thing that I’ve been doing today between trying to figure out the difference between tandem and adjacent homes is looking up some good ol’ inspirational quotes to decorate the clipboard.

There’s something to be said about quotes. Are there quotes about quotes?

“Maybe our favorite quotations say more about us than the stories and people we’re quoting.”

Thanks, John Green, for letting me know there is literally something to be said about quotes. Anyway, another thing to be said about quotes is that they’re really a genre all on their own. They’re obviously not prose, not really. But they’re not poetry either, at least not in the traditional sense. They’re in a category of their own, little snippets of wisdom and advice that we can carry with us in our heads.

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela
“Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself.” -Coco Chanel
“If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.” -Ellen Sirleaf

These sentences are all shorter than some people’s names I know, but pack a big punch. That’s what knocks the wind out of me when I read a good quote. That sense of resolve that hits when a really impactful sentence heads your way, that little spark of “that’s what I needed to hear right now.” There’s nothing else that quite inspires that sense.

Since I’m all about coming full circle and I’m trying to make sense of the mess that is this post, right outside my model home, I found this plaque, which reads (because my photography skills are somewhat lacking):

I want to see the world.
Follow a map to its edges
And then keep going
Forgo the plans and
Trust my instincts
Let curiosity be my guide
I want to change hemispheres
Sleep under unfamiliar stars
And let the journey
Unfold before me
Maybe it’s because it was hot enough to bake a cookie on the sidewalk outside and cold even for penguins inside that messed with with my head, but these words struck me. I want to sleep under unfamiliar stars – it’s like a life mantra all rolled up into one fun quote package. Another reason I was struck was probably because I’m quite particularly obsessed with stars:
There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep on rolling under the stars. -Jack Kerouac
(Hi again John Green)
So as I walked home from the park past that sign thinking oh shoot I have a post to write, well, a quote helped me along the way.
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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Zoe Zhang says:

    Quotes~~~ shorter and more impactful than a novel can be, at times. Especially when you don’t have time for a novel but you have time for a message. I love stars, too.

    Like

  2. Hm…you are obsessed with stars — Calliope camping trip in the future? 😀

    Like

  3. dani neiley says:

    that jack kerouac quote is one of my favorites – lovely post!

    Like

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