Friday, May 20, 2011

"To Say Goodbye Is To Die A Little"

The season finale of "Bluebloods" last Friday was excellent. One of the best episodes of a TV show I've ever seen. (You can still watch it on the CBS website as of this writing.) Frank Reagan's (Tom Selleck) son, Joe, was killed in the line of duty by some dirty cops. Toward the end of the episode, the Reagan family was visiting the graveyard, and Frank said the following while standing over his son's grave:

"But down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid."

It's a quote from Raymond Chandler's novel—The Simple Art of Murder. Chandler wrote a lot of quotable lines. Some were very poignant—others were oft-times amusing. I thought it would be nice to share a few of my favorites.

"To say goodbye is to die a little." ~ The Long Goodbye

"From 30 feet away she looked like a lot of class. From 10 feet away she looked like something made up to be seen from 30 feet away." ~ The High Window

"The girl gave him a look which ought to have stuck at least four inches out of his back." ~ The Long Goodbye

"I'm all done with hating you. It's all washed out of me. I hate people hard, but I don't hate them very long." ~ The Lady in the Lake

Her eyes rounded. She was puzzled. She was thinking. I could see, even on that short acquaintance, that thinking was always going to be a bother to her." ~ The Big Sleep

"I was neat, clean, shaved and sober, and I didn't care who knew it." ~ The Big Sleep

"Chess is as elaborate a waste of human intelligence as you can find outside an advertising agency." ~ The Long Goodbye

"He snorted and hit me in the solar plexus. I bent over and took hold of the room with both hands and spun it. When I had it nicely spinning I gave it a full swing and hit myself on the back of the head with the floor." ~ Pearls Are a Nuisance

"It seemed like a nice neighborhood to have bad habits in." ~ The Big Sleep

"It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained-glass window." ~ Farewell, My Lovely

"She gave me a smile I could feel in my hip pocket." ~ Farewell, My Lovely

"I sat down on the edge of a deep soft chair and looked at Mrs Regan. She was worth a stare. She was trouble." ~ The Big Sleep

"You're broke, eh?"
I been shaking two nickels together for a month, trying to get them to mate." ~ The Big Sleep

"Under the thinning fog the surf curled and creamed, almost without sound, like a thought trying to form itself on the edge of consciousness." ~ The Big Sleep

"...had my books been any worse I would not have been invited to Hollywood and if they had been any better I would not have come." ~ Unknown Article


  1. You just don't get lines like those anymore. Great!

  2. Thanks for the quote; here's another, also from Chandler's Long Goodbye: "I went out to the kitchen to make coffee-yards of coffee. Rich, strong, bitter, boiling hot, ruthless, depraved. The life blood of tired men."