Glossary of Quotes

I’m guessing that someone who is at ease with delivering malignant language also has the facility for forgetting about it. Unhappily, the listener doesn’t have that luxury. All of the following has been remembered with exquisite clarity:

Dad’s quotes:

“What’s all this rubbish about committing suicide?”
     In First suicide attempt

“If you really wanted to commit suicide you’d do it properly and drink some Jeyes Fluid.”
     In Home again.

“You’re an animal!”
     In I am useless and good-for-nothing.

“If you’re that depressed, you won’t want to watch television will you!”
     In I am useless and good-for-nothing.

“I’d rather you and your brother had been killed in a car crash.”
     To Marianne following the death of one of his dogs, Mitzi.

“That’s lovely that is! You want to chop it up and put it in the freezer.”
     When he first met Marianne’s baby son, Jamie (ie. his grandson)

“Good! I’m glad!”
     The single word ‘good’ was insufficient to express his delight at the death of his niece (and her husband) in a car accident.

“I’ve a good mind to take that dog to the vets and have her put to sleep.”
     Occasionally said to Marianne about Sheba, an Alsatian which she had bought him for his birthday one year.

     Often said in celebration of someone else’s tragedy (for example, the death of his brother). Although it’s a fairly mild word, dad was able to weaponize it, expelling it from his vocal tract like a shell from an artillery piece.

“I only hope your children cause you as much trouble as you’ve caused us.”

“You’ll never amount to anything in life.”
     An accurate prediction in my case, but not especially helpful to a teenager already full of self-doubt.

“All that trouble you caused.”
     A five word dependent clause summarizing my difficulties of 1972. As in:
“I won’t forget about all that trouble you caused.”
“Do you ever stop to think about all that trouble you caused?”

“I think I’m being perfectly reasonable.”
     Occasionally followed one of the other quotes.

“You’re lazy, idle, useless and good-for-nothing. What are you?”
     Multiple variations on this theme.

“You’re nothing but a pair of cuckoos.”
     This was later extended to yield:
“You’re nothing but a pair of cuckoos sitting there with your beaks open.”

“I’ll be glad to see the back of the pair of you.”

“Do you think other people have such dreadful children?”
     Frequently said to mum in our presence, to which she never replied.

“I hate this place.”
     Repeatedly said about New College.

“You’re nothing but a waste of space.”

“I’m sick of the sight of you.”

“I’ve a good mind to throw you out on the streets in just the clothes you’re wearing.”

You’re not interested in anything I do, so I’m not interested in anything you do.”

“We can’t go running around after you, we’ve got a business to run.”

“We’ve got better things to do with our time than go running around after you.”

     The next set of quotes are lighter than the rest. For all I know, they might be the sort of things that some parents routinely say to children. They were ongoing, low-level, background radiation:
“All you ever think about is yourself.”
“I’ve never met anyone so completely selfish as you.”
“You think you can do what you like, when you like and how you like.”
“There’s one rule for you and another for everybody else.”
“You’re nothing but trouble.”
“I, I, I! That’s all you ever talk about.”

Mum’s quotes:

“We must always do … what … is … right.”
     In A family holiday

“We must always be cor-rect.
     In A family holiday

“Those psychiatrists don’t know anything.”
     In Home again

“How does that reflect on us?”

“We did everything we could to help you. Everything! And you just threw it back in our faces.”

“We would have done anything to help you. Anything!”

2 thoughts on “Glossary of Quotes

    1. Thanks Megan! There’s still a fair bit to add to this and previous posts. It actually feels quite strange to see it all written down in print.

      I hope you and your family are safe and well.


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