Every so often I would look at my women friends who were happily married and didn't cook, and I would always find myself wondering how they did it. Would anyone love me if I couldn't cook? I always thought cooking was part of the package: Step right up, it's Rachel Samstat, she's bright, she's funny and she can cook!
Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up.
Oh, how I regret not having worn a bikini for the entire year I was twenty-six. If anyone young is reading this, go, right this minute, put on a bikini, and don't take it off until you're thirty-four.
Maintenance is what you have to do just so you can walk out the door knowing that if you go to the market and bump into a guy who once rejected you, you won't have to hide behind a stack of canned food. I don't mean to be too literal about this.
I look out the window and I see the lights and the skyline and the people on the street rushing around looking for action, love, and the world's greatest chocolate chip cookie, and my heart does a little dance.
So many of the conscious and unconscious ways men and women treat each other have to do with romantic and sexual fantasies that are deeply ingrained, not just in society but in literature. The women's movement may manage to clean up the mess in society, but I don't know whether it can ever clean up the mess in our minds.
It struck me that the movies had spent more than half a century saying, They lived happily ever after and the following quarter-century warning that they'll be lucky to make it through the weekend. Possibly now we are now entering a third era in which the movies will be sounding a note of cautious optimism: You know it just might work.
Well, I'm gonna get out of bed every morning... breathe in and out all day long. Then, after a while I won't have to remind myself to get out of bed every morning and breathe in and out... and, then after a while, I won't have to think about how I had it great and perfect for a while. - Sleepless in Seattle
Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there. And I also hope that you will choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women.
I definitely divide my life into decades. Almost every ten years, something in my work life has changed. My twenties were my journalistic phase, then there was my screenwriting phase, then I became a director, then I started doing some plays...
It's always hard to remember love - years pass and you say to yourself, Was I really in love, or was I just kidding myself? Was I really in love, or was I just pretending he was the man of my dreams? Was I really in love, or was I just desperate?
If pregnancy were a book, they would cut the last two chapters. The beginning is glorious, especially if you're lucky enough not to have morning sickness and if, like me, you've had small breasts all your life. Suddenly they begin to grow, and you've got them, you've really got them, breasts, darling breasts, and when you walk down the street they bounce, truly they do, they bounce bounce bounce.
When you're attracted to someone, it just means that your subconscious is attracted to their subconscious, subconsciously. So what we think of as fate is just two neuroses knowing that they are a perfect match. - Sleepless in Seattle
I've just surfaced from spending several days in a state of rapture: I was reading a book... I felt alive and engaged and positively brilliant, bursting with ideas, brimming with memories of other books I've loved.
It's always hard to remember love - years pass and you say to yourself, Was I really in love, or was I just kidding myself? Was I really in love, or was I just pretending he was the man of my dreams? Was I really in love, or was I just desperate~?
I have always thought it was a terrible shame that the women's movement didn't realise how much easier it was to reach people by making them laugh than by shaking a fist and saying, 'Don't you see how oppressed you are',
If there is a Nora Ephron signature anything it is that there's slightly too much food. I have a friend whose mantra is: You must choose. And I believe the exact opposite: I think you should always have at least four desserts that are kind of fighting with each other.
To state the obvious, romantic comedies have to be funny and they have to be romantic. But one of the most important things, for me anyway, is that they be about two strong people finding their way to love.
Women are being considered as candidates for vice-president of the United States because it is the worst job in America. It's amazing that men will take it. A job with real power is first lady. I'd be willing to run for that. As far as the men who are running for president are concerned, they aren't even people I would date.
The realization that I may have only a few good years remaining has hit me with real force, and I have done a lot of thinking as a result. I would like to have come up with something profound, but I haven't.
... the state of rapture I experience when I read a wonderful book is one of the main reasons I read; but it doesn't happen every time or even every other time, and when it does happen, I am truly beside myself.
... when I finish reading People, I always feel that I have just spent four days in Los Angeles. Women's Wear Daily at least makes me feel dirty; People makes me feel that I haven't read or learned or seen anything at all.
[Hollywood] is a very male business, and it has in vast portions of it - the whole action movie part of it might as well be the United States Army in 1943 in that the ethics of it are, you know, boot camp and action movies and guns and explosions and all the rest of it, and that - so that means that about 50% of the business is not only pretty much closed off to women, but women don't even wanna be in it!
[I] had gotten to the point where I simply could not make a bad vinaigrette, this was not exactly the stuff of drama. (Even now, I cannot believe Mark would want to risk losing that vinaigrette. You just don't bump into vinaigrettes that good.)
[On George W. Bush:] How is it possible that the president is off on vacation and the vice president is, too? Not that it matters that much if the president is on vacation; on some level, the president is always on vacation.
A lot of college graduates approach me about becoming screenwriters. I tell them, 'Do not become a screenwriter, become a journalist,' because journalists go into worlds that are not their own. Kids who go to Hollywood write coming-of-age stories for their first scripts, about what happened to them when they were sixteen. Then they write the summer camp script. At the age of twenty-three they haven't produced anything, and that's the end of the career.
And so, Thanksgiving. Its the most amazing holiday. Just think about it " it's a miracle that once a year so many millions of Americans sit down to exactly the same meal as one another, exactly the same meal they grew up eating, and exactly the same meal they ate a year earlier. The turkey. The sweet potatoes. The stuffing. The pumpkin pie. Is there anything else we all can agree so vehemently about? I don't think so.
Another thing you end up doing when you get older, is you spend so much time sort of trying desperately to keep from just looking just a little older. You're just constantly putting stuff on your face and having things removed from yourself and opening up copies of "Vogue" so that you can find new ways to throw whatever money you've managed to save into the arms of some doctor who has just come up with a new way of lasering your face that feels like electroshock and all these things.
Consciousness-raising is at the very least supposed to bring about an intimacy, but what it seems instead to bring about are the trappings of intimacy, the illusion of intimacy, a semblance of intimacy.
Everybody dies. There's nothing you can do about it. Whether or not you eat six almonds a day. Whether or not you believe in God. (Although there's no question a belief in God would come in handy. It would be great to think there's a plan, and that everything happens for a reason. I don't happen to believe that. And every time one of my friends says to me, "Everything happens for a reason," I would like to smack her.)
Everyone always asks, was he mad at you for writing the book? and I have to say, Yes, yes, he was. He still is. It is one of the most fascinating things to me about the whole episode: he cheated on me, and then got to behave as if he was the one who had been wronged because I wrote about it! I mean, it's not as if I wasn't a writer. It's not as if I hadn't often written about myself. I'd even written about him. What did he think was going to happen? That I would take a vow of silence for the first time in my life? "
Food is one of my favourite things. Though I certainly know lots of people who happen to be happily married who don't have food play the role in it that it plays in my life. And I don't know how they do it, and frankly I feel so bad for them because I just love food and one of my favourite things is asking, "What do we want for dinner? What do we feel like eating?" That wonderful negotiation that goes on several times a week about what "we" feel like.
From the essay "Twenty-five Things People Have a Shocking Capacity to Be Surprised by Over and Over Again" 1. Journalists sometimes make things up. 2. Journalists sometimes get things wrong. 3. Almost all books that are published as memoirs were initially written as novels, and then the agent/editor said, This might work better as a memoir. 6. Freedom of the press belongs to the man who owns one.
Here are some questions I am constantly noodling over: Do you splurge or do you hoard? Do you live every day as if it's your last, or do you save your money on the chance you'll live twenty more years? Is life too short, or is it going to be too long? Do you work as hard as you can, or do you slow down to smell the roses? And where do carbohydrates fit into all this? Are we really all going to spend our last years avoiding bread, especially now that bread in American is so unbelievable delicious? And what about chocolate?
I am a writer and a feminist, and the two seem to be constantly in conflict.... ever since I became loosely involved with it, it has seemed to me one of the recurring ironies of this movement that there is no way to tell the truth about it without, in some small way, seeming to hurt it.
I am living in the Google years, no question of that. And there are advantages to it. When you forget something, you can whip out your iPhone and go to Google. The Senior Moment has become the Google moment, and it has a much nicer, hipper, younger, more contemporary sound, doesn't it? By handling the obligations of the search mechanism, you almost prove you can keep up.... You can't retrieve you life (unless you're on Wikipedia, in which case you can retrieve an inaccurate version of it).
I am still amazed at the amount of Christian charity [Wellesley] stuck us all with, a kind of glazed politeness in the face of boredom and stupidity. Tolerance, in the worst sense of the word. How marvelous it would have been to go to a women's college that encouraged impoliteness, that rewarded aggression, that encouraged argument.
I live in New York City. I could never live anywhere else. The events of September 11 forced me to confront the fact that no matter what, I live here and always will. One of my favorite things about New York is that you can pick up the phone and order anything and someone will deliver it to you. Once I lived for a year in another city, and almost every waking hour of my life was spent going to stores, buying things, loading them into the car, bringing them home, unloading them, and carrying them into the house. How anyone gets anything done in these places is a mystery to me.
I married him against all evidence. I married him believing that marriage doesn't work, that love dies, that passion fades, and in so doing I became the kind of romantic only a cynic is truly capable of being.
I recognize that printing pictures of corpses raises all sorts of problems about taste and titillation and sensationalism; the fact is, however, that people die. Death happens to be one of life's main events. And it is irresponsible and more than that, inaccurate, for newspapers to fail to show it.
I think you often have that sense when you write--that if you can spot something in yourself and set it down on paper, you're free of it. And you're not, of course; you've just managed to set it down on paper, that's all.
I want to talk to her. I want to have lunch with her. I want her to give me a book she just read and loved. She is my phantom limb, and I just can't believe I'm here without her."- on losing her best friend
I'm not one of those people who think you should go grey and that there is some virtue in looking wrinkly if you don't feel like it. If you do, great. If you don't, just my only caution is watch out. There are a huge number of wrinkle creams that do nothing for you.
Let's face it: part of being a grownup is that every day you have to choose between going out at night or staying home, and it is one of life's unhappy truths that there is not enough time to do both.
Maybe young women don't wonder whether they can have it all any longer, but in case any of you are wondering, of course you can have it all. It will be a little messy, but embrace the mess. It will be complicated, but rejoice in the complications. It will not be anything like what you think it will be like, but surprises are good for you. And don't be frightened: you can always change your mind. I know: I've had four careers and three husbands.
Most directors, I discovered, need to be convinced that the screenplay they're going to direct has something to do with them. And this is a tricky thing if you write screenplays where women have parts that are equal to or greater than the male part. And I thought, 'Why am I out there looking for directors?' - because you look at a list of directors, it's all boys. It certainly was when I started as a screenwriter. So I thought, 'I'm just gonna become a director and that'll make it easier.'
One of the great things about movies is that it's just that short period of time. It's a bubble. The last thing you want to know is that Elizabeth and Darcy had a fight over how to treat the servants!
One of the things people always say to you if you get upset is, don't take it personally, but listen hard to what's going on and, please, I beg you, take it personally. Understand: every attack on Hillary Clinton for not knowing her place is an attack on you. Underneath almost all those attacks are the words: get back, get back to where you once belonged.
people in New Orleans really care about food, care about it passionately, can spend hours arguing over whether Antoine's is better than Galatoire's or the other way around ... in New Orleans, there is basically nothing to do but eat and then argue about it.
Plastic surgery is a way for people to buy themselves a few years before they have to truly confront what ageing is, which of course is not that your looks are falling apart, but that you are falling apart and some-day you will have fallen apart and ceased to exist.
Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it's a way of making contact with someone else's imagination after a day that's all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.
Sometimes I wonder about my life. I lead a small life - well, valuable, but small - and sometimes I wonder, do I do it because I like it, or because I haven't been brave? So much of what I see reminds me of something I read in a book, when shouldn't it be the other way around? I don't really want an answer. I just want to send this cosmic question out into the void. So good night, dear void. - You've Got Mail
Suddenly, one day, there was this thing called parenting. Parenting was serious. Parenting was fierce. Parenting was solemn. Parenting was a participle, like going and doing and crusading and worrying.
The divorce has lasted way longer than the marriage, but finally it's over. Enough about that.The point is that for a long time, the fact that I was divorced was the most important thing about me.And now it's not.
The function of a blog is on some level to start a conversation that you're not involved in any more because you've already had your say. That thing of coming right off the news - did you see what I saw this morning, can you believe it? - has a kind of fun appeal.
The odd thing about this form of communication is you're more likely to talk about nothing than something. But I just want to say that all this nothing has meant more to me than so many... somethings. So, thanks.
The one thing I would like to get across about my whole feeling regarding high school is how I was when I was fifteen. Gawky. Always a hem hanging down, or strap loose, or a pimple on my chin. I never knew what to do with my hair. I was a mess. And I still carry that fifteen-year-old girl around now. A piece of me still believes I'm the girl nobody dances with.
The realization that I may have only a few good yeras remaining has hit me with real force, and I have done a lot of thinking as a result. I would like to have come up with something profound, but I haven't.
The Senior Moment has become the Google moment, and it has a much nicer, hipper, younger, more contemporary sound, doesn't it? By handling the obligations of the search mechanism, you almost prove you can keep up.
The Washington press corps thinks that Julie Nixon Eisenhower is the only member of the Nixon Administration who has any credibility--and, as one journalist put it, this is not to say that anyone believes what she is saying but simply that people believe she believes what she is sayingit is almost as if she is the only woman in America over the age of twenty who still thinks her father is exactly what she thought he was when she was six.
There is something called the rapture of the deep, and it refers to what happens when a deep-sea diver spends too much time at the bottom of the ocean and can't tell which way is up. When he surfaces, he's liable to have a condition called the bends, where the body can't adapt to the oxygen levels in the atmosphere. All of this happens to me when I surface from a great book.
There's a reason why forty, fifty, and sixty don't look the way they used to, and it's not because of feminism, or better living through exercise. It's because of hair dye. In the 1950's only 7 percent of American women dyed their hair; today there are parts of Manhattan and Los Angeles where there are no gray-haired women at all.
Vera said: "Why do you feel you have to turn everything into a story?" So I told her why. Because if I tell the story, I control the version. Because if I tell the story, I can make you laugh, and I would rather have you laugh at me than feel sorry for me. Because if I tell the story, it doesn't hurt as much. Because if I tell the story, I can get on with it.
We have a game we play when we're waiting for tables in restaurants, where you have to write the five things that describe yourself on a piece of paper. When I was [in my twenties], I would have put: ambitious, Wellesley graduate, daughter, Democrat, single. Ten years later not one of those five things turned up on my list. I was: journalist, feminist, New Yorker, divorced, funny. Today not one of those five things turns up in my list: writer, director, mother, sister, happy.
We weren't meant to have futures, we were meant to marry them. We weren't meant to have politics, or careers that mattered, or opinions, or lives; we were meant to marry them. If you wanted to be an architect, you married an architect.
Well, it was a million tiny little things that, when you added them all up, they meant we were supposed to be together... and I knew it. I knew it the very first time I touched her. It was like coming home... only to no home I'd ever known... I was just taking her hand to help her out of a car and I knew. It was like... magic. - Sleepless in Seattle
What I love about cooking is that after a hard day, there is something comforting about the fact that if you melt butter and add flour and then hot stock, it will get thick! It's a sure thing! It's a sure thing in a world where nothing is sure; it has a mathematical certainty in a world where those of us who long for some kind of certainty are forced to settle for crossword puzzles.
When I was young, I had a list of things that I wanted in a husband. I knew what he should read and what sports he should like and blah, blah, blah. But the truth is, that the list was a shocking mirror image of me. You want to marry yourself when you are young. All the things you think are so urgently important, when you get older, you discover they don't have anything to do with love.
When something like this happens, you suddenly have no sense of reality at all. You have lost a piece of your past. The infidelity itself is small potatoes compared to the low-level brain damage that results when a whole chunk of your life turns out to have been completely different from what you thought it was. It becomes impossible to look back at anything that's happened ... without wondering what was really going on.
When you have a baby, you set off an explosion in your marriage, and when the dust settles, your marriage is different from what it was. Not better, necessarily; not worse, necessarily; but different.
Why do people write books that say it's better to be older than to be younger? It's not better. Even if you have all your marbles, you're constantly reaching for the name of the person you met the day before yesterday ... If you work, you're surrounded by young people who are plugged into the marketplace, the demographic, the zeitgeist; they want your job and someday they're going to get it.
Working as a journalist is exactly like being the wallflower at an orgy. I always seem to find myself at a perfectly wonderful event where everyone else is having a marvelous time, laughing merrily, eating, drinking, having sex in the back room, and I am standing on the side taking notes on it all.
You can blame Al Gore and you can blame Ralph Nader and you can blame George Bush, but I blame Bill [Clinton]. I just do. I just think he squandered his presidency the night that woman delivered that pizza to him, and if he hadn't, we wouldn't be where we are and there would be a lot of people who are alive today who aren't.
You do get to a certain point in life where you have to realistically, I think, understand that the days are getting shorter, and you can't put things off thinking you'll get to them someday. If you really want to do them, you better do them. There are simply too many people getting sick, and sooner or later you will. So I'm very much a believer in knowing what it is that you love doing so you can do a great deal of it.