Glenn O'Brien — How to be a Man

It is an excellent tactic to be unfailingly polite. If you are cheerful, solicitous, and appear kind and attentive, you will be welcome almost everywhere. Strangers will believe that you like them. Your enemies will be thwarted, even disarmed by the relentless good vibrations you transmit.
Wyndham Lewis said, "The best artist is an imperfect artist." The perfect artist is finished. He's done. He has found it; he's not looking for it. The genuine stylist is too caught up with developing and applying his modus operandi to the job to rest... Style isn't taste. As Lewis said, "Taste is a dead emotion or mentally treated and preserved emotion." Style is spontaneous emotion; you feel your way through the world. You dig for it, you find it, and you put it out in the world. I guess it's what Smokey Robinson called "the way you do the things you do."

I will be forever grateful to this book for introducing me to H. L. Mencken:

We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart.
Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.
Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.

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