Perhaps we humans are still in command, and perhaps there really will be a conventional robot war in the not-so-distant future. If so, let's roll. I'm ready. My toaster will never be the boss of me. Get ready to make me some Pop-Tarts, bitch.

The most wretched people in the world are those who tell you they like every kind of music 'except country.

There are very few Americans who honestly care who Lindsay Lohan is dating. But it's still information they need to have. This is because those people care about something else entirely; they're worried about the possibility of everyone else understanding something that they're missing.

Saying you like "Piano Man" doesn't mean you like Billy Joel; it means you're willing to go to a piano bar if there's nothing else to do.

Not all crazy people are brilliant, but almost all brilliant people are crazy.

Gay marriage should be legalized in america because gay men are the only men who want to be married.

We assume that all statements must be mild inversions of the truth, because it's too weird to imagine people who aren't casually lying, pretty much all the time.

If a problem is irreversible, is there still an ethical obligation to try to reverse it?

It's peculiar what you remember when you're not trying.

I grew up on a farm, and we didn't have cable and only limited radio stations, so I wasn't inundated with culture the way people in other parts of the country were. But I was really interested in it.

Even though I wanted to experience all these things I was interested in, I couldn't get them. So I had to think critically and culturally about what was available.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and O. J. Simpson have a lot in common. We don't normally lump them together, because certain key contrasts are tricky — for example, one man is a Muslim intellectual and the other more or less decapitated his ex-wife.

In Western culture, virtually everything is understood through the process of storytelling, often to the detriment of reality. When we recount history, we tend to use the life experience of one person — the journey of a particular hero, in the lingo of the mythologist Joseph Campbell — as a prism for understanding everything else.

The Constitution is awesome, but still overrated; it's like Pet Sounds. The wide-scale adoption of political correctness was silly, but not unreasonable. The freedom that was lost was mostly theoretical and rarely necessary. No one is significantly worse off.

We're starting to behave as if we've reached the end of human knowledge. And while that notion is undoubtedly false, the sensation of certitude it generates is paralyzing.

But the future is a teenage crackhead who makes shit up as he goes along.

Nothing can be appreciated in a vacuum.

It's someone who views life as a game where the rules are poorly written and designed for abuse.

Observing someone without context amplifies the experience. The more we know, the less we are able to feel.

Once people decide they want you to do something, they don't really care what your qualifications are. However you describe yourself becomes proof that you're the ideal candidate. This is true in journalism, and in life.

The essays are different because ultimately it's things I'm interested in, and I'm really just writing about myself and using those subjects as a prism.

Record sales don't matter when the people who bought the records are dead and gone.

So if you've seen Twelve Monkeys more than twice, you're probably a Calvinist.

A ten-year-old boy doesn't want a hyper-dexterous giant to choke, just as a ten-year-old girl doesn't feel good when Britney Spears has a nervous breakdown on live TV. Only an adult can feel good about someone else's failure.

You're trying to find new ideas in people. I always think to myself, what question I am least comfortable asking the person? And then I make sure I ask it early in the interview.

Some say that time is like water that flows around us (like a stone in the river) and some say we flow with time (like a twig floating on the surface of the water).

But when you're naturally better than everyone else, and when that talent is so utterly obvious, being quiet doesn't translate as humble. It translates as boredom.

As recently as the grunge era, there remained a bohemian cachet in casually mentioning that you didn't own a TV. But nobody thinks like that anymore. Today, claiming you don't own a TV simply means you're poor (or maybe depressed). In one ten-year span, high-end television usurped the cultural positions of film, rock, and literary fiction.

The only people who think the Internet is a calamity are people whose lives have been hurt by it; the only people who insist the Internet is wonderful are those who need it to give their life meaning.

The last girl I love will be someone I haven't even met yet, probably.

I keep saying the word 'weird' over and over again, but it's the only way I can describe it.

I also did an Ozzy piece for him, and so I got hired. Everything happened really fast. I can't give people advice, because everything in my life changed completely in less than a year and it's still not something I am used to.

By now, everyone I know is one of seven strangers, inevitably hoping to represent a predefined demographic and always failing horribly. The Read World is the real world is The Real World is the read world. It's the same true story, even when it isn't.

What those anti-cookie-baking mothers wanted me to do was turn baseball into soccer.

We all eventually become whatever we pretend to hate.

I am ready to be alone.

Women intrinsically understand human dynamics, and that makes them unstoppable. Unfortunately, the average man is less adroit at fostering such rivalries, which is why most men remain average; males are better at hating things that can't hate them back (e.g., lawnmowers, cats, the Denver Broncos, et cetera). They don't see the big picture.

Woody Allen made it acceptable for beautiful women to sleep with nerdy, bespectacled goofballs; all we need to do is fabricate the illusion of intellectual humor, and we somehow have a chance.

So this, it seems, is the key for authors who want to live forever: You need to write about important things without actually writing about them.

Life is rarely about what happened; it's mostly about what we think happened.

In Fargo, they say, well, that's a job. How well do you get paid? For example, for this book I was written about in Entertainment Weekly, and it was kind of cool because my mom asked me if Entertainment Weekly was a magazine or a newspaper.

Hitler is the human catch-all for all other terrible humans.

I once loved a girl who almost loved me, but not as much as she loved John Cusack.

But I've mellowed over time, which is what all wine drunks and dope smokers say when trying to justify why they quit trying.

I think the larger sect of liars are people who think they are telling the truth, but who really have no idea what the truth is.

The solution to this paradox (according to Palahniuk) is the theory of splintered alternative realities, where all possible trajectories happen autonomously and simultaneously (sort of how Richard Linklater describes The Wizard of Oz to an uninterested cab driver in the opening sequence of Slacker).

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert needed ABBA to invent gay Australians.

In baseball and sex, cliches are usually true: pitching beats hitting, and people always want to be loved by anyone who doesn't seem to care.

Ignorance is not bliss. That platitude is totally wrong. You will not be intellectually happier if you know fewer things. Learning should be a primary goal of living. But what if ignorance feels better—not psychologically, but physically? That would explain a lot of human incongruities.