Just over fifty years ago, in 1967, S.E. Hinton’s The Outsidersbecame the first YA novel to hit shelves. Its earnest, emotional tone resonated deeply with teenagers… probably because its author was one. At fifteen years old, S.E. Hinton didn’t want to read another book about proms (which, to be fair, tend to have all the emotional depth of the punch bowl). She wanted to write about the socioeconomic divisions she saw altering the lives of her classmates—a phenomenon no one would address. After her friend was jumped on the way home from the movies, Hinton began writing a story about her friend’s beating. But she realized it was more than that.
The manuscript editors would eventually see was Hinton’s third draft of the novel. In the end, they hardly changed any of her writing, making only minor suggestions (example: ‘maybe if Dally whips out a gun, he should have had a gun prior to this scene’). Thus, Hinton’s voice remained earnest and open in a way only a teenager can be.
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Hinton’s novel set the precedent for YA fiction, a genre which continues to break conventions and share marginalized voices. The Outsiders is an empathetic and heartfelt novel that encourages people to see beyond their differences (or, more specifically, to see that inequality is the REAL enemy). It also probably made you wish you owned a leather jacket—which you should—and a switchblade—which you probably shouldn’t.
Check out these ten quotes, and remind yourself to stay gold!
1. “They grew up on the outside of society. They weren’t looking for a fight. They were looking to belong.”
2. “Can you see the sunset real good on the West side? You can see it on the East side too.”
3. “Get smart and nothing can touch you.”
4. “I lie to myself all the time. But I never believe me.”
5. “Sixteen years on the streets and you can learn a lot. But all the wrong things, not the things you want to learn. Sixteen years on the streets and you see a lot. But all the wrong sights, not the things you want to see.”
6. “That’s why people don’t ever think to blame the Socs and are always ready to jump on us. We look hoody and they look decent. It could be just the other way around – half of the hoods I know are pretty decent guys underneath all that grease, and from what I’ve heard, a lot of Socs are just cold-blooded mean – but people usually go by looks.”
7. “They used to be buddies, I thought. They used to be friends, and now they hate each other because one has to work for a living and the other comes from the West Side.”
8. “You still have a lot of time to make yourself be what you want. There’s still lots of good in the world.”
9. “If we don’t have each other, we don’t have anything.”
“If conversation was the lyrics, laughter was the music, making time spent together a melody that could be replayed over and over without getting stale.”
There are those people who you can just spend time with for hours upon hours and never get tired of them! Never forget those people, they are a big part of the happiness in your life. Just try to be kind when you tell them to stop talking.
Image via Giphy.
2. Criss Jami
To say that one waits a lifetime for his soulmate to come around is a paradox. People eventually get sick of waiting, take a chance on someone, and by the art of commitment become soulmates, which takes a lifetime to perfect.
Relationships, of all types, can be work and there will be issues in the beginning, but many times taking time for the people you love and sharing happiness in life, as best as you can, will be worth it in the end.
Image via Wanna-Joke.
3. Fred Rogers (a.k.a Mister Rogers)
Part of the problem with the word ‘disabilities’ is that it immediately suggests an inability to see or hear or walk or do other things that many of us take for granted. But what of people who can’t feel? Or talk about their feelings? Or manage their feelings in constructive ways? What of people who aren’t able to form close and strong relationships? And people who cannot find fulfillment in their lives, or those who have lost hope, who live in disappointment and bitterness and find in life no joy, no love? These, it seems to me, are the real disabilities.
― Fred Rogers, The World According to Mister Rogers: Important Things to Remember
Some advice from everyone’s favorite neighbor Mister Rogers. Let’s be kind to one another, and never forget how to love and live happily.
Image via Giphy.
4. Christopher Pike
“Relationships are mysterious. We doubt the positive qualities in others, seldom the negative. You will say to your partner: do you really love me? Are you sure you love me? You will ask this a dozen times and drive the person nuts. But you never ask: are you really mad at me? Are you sure you’re angry? When someone is angry, you don’t doubt it for a moment. Yet the reverse should be true. We should doubt the negative in life, and have faith in the positive.”
― Christopher Pike, Remember Me
It’s a fact of life. Someone out there loves you. Believe in that, and in the positive, and you will find that happiness will come to you with more ease.
Image via Tenor/Chi Bird
5. Kurt Vonnegut
What should young people do with their lives today? Many things, obviously. But the most daring thing is to create stable communities in which the terrible disease of loneliness can be cured.
― Kurt Vonnegut, Palm Sunday: An Autobiographical Collage
Loneliness should not be an option. Let’s all come together and share joy in each other’s company.
Image via Giphy.
6. John Donne
“No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend’s or of thine own were: any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee.”
― John Donne, No man is an island – A selection from the prose
What John Donne is saying in these famous lines is that no one can live completely without others, and a loss of life is not just sad for the family, but human kind overall.
So let’s all be open to all people, not just our circle of people. That’s not to say I want everyone to befriend strangers at random, but it’s always good to have a community of people if possible.
“Families are messy. Immortal families are eternally messy. Sometimes the best we can do is to remind each other that we’re related for better or for worse…and try to keep the maiming and killing to a minimum.”
― Rick Riordan
We can’t forget about family, even if they drive us mad. Immortal, mortal, or somewhere in between a loving family will always have your back!
Image via Amino Apps.
So go share some happiness with your loved ones today in celebration of this year’s Day of Happiness.
The guy’s work may have been a buzzkill to read while trying to enjoy high school, but he did indeed have some facts of life to spit. (It’s pretty cool that A Tale of Two Cities was the narrative foundation for The Dark Knight Rises). Yet even as the bleakest of writers, Charles Dickens believed you could find lighter moments in darker times. Here are some quotes from the literary icon… aside from “please, sir, I want some more.”
Happy Birthday, Mr. Dickens.
Image via The British Library
1. “The pain of parting is nothing to the joy of meeting again.”
2. “Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts.”
3. “There is nothing so strong or safe in an emergency of life as the simple truth.”
4. “We forge the chains we wear in life.”
5. “A loving heart is the truest wisdom.”
6. “We need never be ashamed of our tears.”
7. “A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.”
8. “The men who learn endurance, are they who call the whole world, brother.”
9. “This is a world of action, and not for moping and droning in.”
10. “It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to, than I have ever known.”
December 21st marks the winter solstice, the very first day of winter. For those of you who are now in a state of dread and hibernation, don’t worry. The winter solstice is the shortest day of the year; it’s the day with the least amount of daylight. However, this also means that days will only grow longer from here, so cheer up!
There’s nothing quite as cozy and inspiring as watching snow fall on a quiet street or looking out at the flurries from inside a warm house. I’d say it’s one of the closest things to magic. If you’re still not ready for it, maybe these beautiful quotes about the season can convince you.
1. “I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, “Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass
2. “Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.”
― Edith Sitwell
3. “What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”
― John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America
4. “Spring passes and one remembers one’s innocence.
Summer passes and one remembers one’s exuberance.
Autumn passes and one remembers one’s reverence.
Winter passes and one remembers one’s perseverance.”
― Yoko Ono
5. “My old grandmother always used to say, Summer friends will melt away like summer snows, but winter friends are friends forever.”
― George R.R. Martin, A Feast for Crows
6. “It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.”
― Charles Dickens, Great Expectations
7. “Are the days of winter sunshine just as sad for you, too? When it is misty, in the evenings, and I am out walking by myself, it seems to me that the rain is falling through my heart and causing it to crumble into ruins.”
― Gustave Flaubert, November
8. “Even the strongest blizzards start with a single snowflake.”
― Sara Raasch, Snow Like Ashes
9. “If winter comes, can spring be far behind?”
― Percy Bysshe Shelley, Ode to the West Wind
10. “In the winter she curls up around a good book and dreams away the cold.”
― Ben Aaronovitch, Broken Homes
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