From: Kingsman: The Secret Service
Who said it?: Galahad (quoting Ernest Hemmingway)
The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the 2015 spy film, Kingsmen: The Secret Service. Based on the comic book series of the same name, the movie is about Galahad (played by Colin Firth) who decides to recruit a rough around the edged lad named Eggsy (played by Taron Egerton) into the Kingsman group, a secret spy organization.
The quote comes fairly early in the film. Galahad is taking Eggsy to the Kingsman base when Eggsy asks him what does his training entail and if he needs to learn how to speak properly and such. Galahad tells Eggsy that he won’t as being a gentleman has nothing to do with the way someone speaks. He then delivers the quote, which is actually a quote from Ernest Hemmingway.
Geek wisdom: People should always strive to improve themselves. However, the most common pitfall to this is attempting to copy someone else and their successes. While this may seem like a noble effort, the goal of self-improvement shouldn’t be based on how you stack up against others. Rather, the only way to measure your improvement is to see how you stack up against yourself.
From: The Simpsons
Genre: Cartoons, Television
Who said it?: Homer Simpsons
The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the longest running animated series in the United States, The Simpsons. The show has been on for 29 straight seasons and counting and is a general smorgasbord for quotes.
The quote comes from the 18th episode of the 5th season, Burns’ Heir. In the episode, Mr. Burns has a near death experience and decides to hold an audition for all the kids in Springfield to become his heir. The Simpsons has their kids, Lisa and Bart Simpson try out but they fail to pass the audition. The kids are heartbroken and Marge asks Homer Simpson to cheer his kids up. Unfortunately, he doesn’t do a good job…
Geek wisdom: Homer Simpsons’ reaction is probably one we’re all familiar with. We try something once and, when we initially fail at whatever it is, we give up. This isn’t the way to get better at anything. If anything, this is a call for us to pick ourselves up and try again to get better at whatever it is.
Oh, and because of this “pep talk,” Bart Simpson pulls a prank at Mr. Burns house, which does get him signed as the heir apparent.
From: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Genre: Video Games
Who said it?: Paarthurnax
The story behind the quote: The quote comes from the massive RPG game, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, by Bethesda Softworks. The game is one of the most beloved video games of the modern generation because of the huge swath of land you can explore as well as the numerous paths you can take in your quest as the Dragonborn to eliminate the legendary Alduin, the dragon that is prophesied to destroy the world.
During the main questline, the Dragonborn is sent out to meet with Paarthurnax, the leader of the Greybeards sect. It turns out that Paarthurnax is actually a great dragon himself. During your conversation with the dragon, Paarthurnax tells the Dragonborn that, while he did commit atrocities in the past, he has overcome those base instincts through hard work but that part of him is still alive within him. This is when he delivers the quote.
Geek wisdom: Everyone has the potential of changing and better themselves. However, the journey of doing so will not be so easy. It will take dedication and perseverance for change to happen. But the change will happen if one really strives to do so.
From: Kingdom Hearts
Genre: Video Games
Who said it?: Ansem
The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the action RPG game Kingdom Hearts. The game is notable for being a crossover between video game juggernaut Square, the company that makes the Final Fantasy games, and Disney. In Kingdom Hearts, you control a new character named Sora, who partners with Disney characters Donald Duck and Goofy. The trio travel to different worlds populated by both Final Fantasy and Disney characters in order to rid the world of the Heartless.
The quote comes early in the game. As Sora (voiced by Haley Joel Osment) explores Destiny Island, he comes across a figure hiding in the shadows. The figure, who is actually the primary antagonist, Ansem (voiced by Billy Zane), chides Sora as he knows so little about the predicament that’s afflicting the other worlds. Sora then replies that he’ll learn about the world soon. This is when Ansem tells Sora that all his effort will be for naught and delivers the quote.
Geek wisdom: A lot of us think we know practically everything in the world and what’s happening. In reality, we know so little about the things around us as we don’t fully understand them. Rather than pretend we know everything, we have to accept that we all need to learn new things to better ourselves. Knowledge is power, after all.
From: Mass Effect 3
Genre: Video Games
Who said it?: Javik
The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the third installment of the original Mass Effect trilogy of games from Bioware. The game puts you in the shoes of Commander Shepard as he tries to prevent the Reapers from destroying all sentient life in the galaxy.
The quote comes the Javik, the only survivor of the Prothean race from the last Reaper cycle. Commander Shepard and Liara try to communicate with the previously thought extinct race. Javik pledges his allegiance to Shepard but warns him that he will destroy anyone else who sides with the Reapers. Shepard says that there may be other reasons and that the war isn’t black and white. However, as the Prothean has experienced the war and how it decimated the galaxy before, he delivers the quote.
Geek wisdom: Sometimes, life is all about survival and you will have to swallow your pride and you may have to do horrible things in order to just keep on living. It isn’t a pleasant thought but the world and life isn’t fair. Life can be harsh but we have to push on to live on.
From: Cosmos: A Personal Journey
Who said it?: Carl Sagan
The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the 1980 13-part documentary series, Cosmos: A Personal Journey. The show was hosted by astronomer and scientist Carl Sagan. In the show, Carl Sagan teaches the viewers about numerous scientific lessons, such as the theory of evolution, how time slows down when someone moves close to the speed of light as well as the origins of the universe, all while using his “spaceship of the imagination.” The show was incredibly popular when PBS aired it in 1980 and it is still currently the most viewed PBS television program today.
The quote comes from the very first episode of the show, The Shores of the Cosmic Ocean. In his opening monologue, Carl Sagan talks about the cosmos and all of the mysteries it holds and that mankind is desperately trying to understand the inner workings of the universe while trying to understand ourselves at the same time. It is during this monologue when he delivers the quote, as he tells us that we long to explore and return to the cosmos.
Geek wisdom: We are all connected. We may not really feel that connection but we are in some way. Whatever we do affects all of us in the future, even in minute ways. But there are times when we do things that cause harm to ourselves because we do not truly understand what we are. It is better to not pretend we know everything and keep plodding ignorantly along. Rather, it would be in all our best interests to learn what we can from each other so we can determine what actions will benefit all of us.
From: Forrest Gump
Who said it?: Forrest Gump
The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the very quotable film from 1994 film, Forrest Gump. Based on the book of the same name, Forrest Gump is a person of low IQ but, despite his apparent handicap, he proceeds to go on different new adventures and meet people who would go on to make history, making his life one of the most fulfilling ones ever.
The quote comes from the middle of the film. Forrest (played by Tom Hanks) gets a visit from his childhood friend and longtime crush Jenny (played by Robin Wright). Jenny seems to be trying to get away from something painful so Forrest invites her to stay to live with her. After watching TV, Jenny tells Forrest she’s going to bed. Before she makes it up the stairs, Forrest abruptly proposes to Jenny but she declines because she won’t be good for him. This leaves Forrest confused as he instinctively knows of Jenny’s true feelings. This is about when he delivers the quote before leaving the house.
Geek wisdom: There are actually two meanings for this week’s quote. The first one deals with knowing what love is. Love is nothing we can really “learn.” It’s something we feel deep in our gut and we know about this feeling through pure instinct. And anyone can actually fall in love; there is no prerequisite to getting it.
The second piece of Geek Wisdom we can get from the quote has to deal with Jenny’s true feelings for Forrest. Although she does love him, she feels like she doesn’t deserve him. We sometimes deny ourselves of love because we feel we don’t deserve it like Jenny does. But that’s not true. We’re all deserving of love in our life. We just have to be willing to accept it.