Books

“Get off my lawn.”

From: Gran Torino

Genre: Movies

Who said it?: Walt Kowalski

The story behind the quote: The quote comes the 2008 drama Gran Torino, which starred and also directed by Clint Eastwood. In the film, Clint Eastwood plays Walt Kowalski, an aging Vietnam veteran who lives in a bad neighborhood of Detroit. Many poor Hmong immigrants have moved into the neighborhood as of late and, as such, gang violence has become rather commonplace in Walt’s area.

The quote comes from the early part of the film. One of the gang leaders try to bully Thao, one of the Hmong teens living in the area, to try out for his gain. However, this leads into a major squabble, which spills into Walt’s property. This is when Walt gets his shotgun and delivers the quote. And, despite the gang trying to intimidate Walt, he doesn’t back down.

Geek wisdom: You may be older but that doesn’t mean that the other, younger generation have the right to disrespect you. In fact, it is the younger people that should try to learn from the older generation and try to respect their boundaries. If they don’t, then it’s the older person/s right to demand the respect they deserve.

“Dark and difficult times lie ahead. Soon, we must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy.”

From: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Genre: Movies

Who said it?: Dumbledore

The story behind the quote: The quote comes from the fourth film of the Harry Potter films, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Note that I said that the quote comes from the movies as, while Dumbledore does say something like this week’s quote, it isn’t the exact quote.

Anyway, the quote comes near the end of the film. Dumbledore (played by Michael Gambon) talks to Harry (played by Daniel Radcliffe) and the headmaster of Hogwarts tries to warn The Boy Who Lived about the impending attack of Lord Voldemort. This is when he delivers the quote.

On a side note, the quote from the book reads as such: Remember, if the time should come when you have to make a choice between what is right, and what is easy, remember what happened to a boy who was good and kind and brave because he strayed across the path of Lord Voldemort.

Geek wisdom: It is difficult to fight back, especially when against specific circumstances. You may be fighting against a greater opponent who’s stronger or even something like a practice that is being done that is simply wrong but no one questions it. It would be so easy to just lay down and not fight back. However, that is the easy way and we have to be brave and look at injustice for what it is and decide to combat it.

“Michael Jordan plays ball. Charles Manson kills people. I talk. — Everyone has a talent.”

From: Thank You for Smoking

Genre: Movies

Who said it?: Nick Naylor

The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the dark comedy Thank You for Smoking. The film is based on the book of the same name. Both the book and the movie focuses on Nick Naylor, a suave lobbyist for Big Tobacco, who goes above and beyond the call of duty to perpetrate the notion that smoking can cause lung cancer.

The quote comes from the very end of the film. Naylor (played by Aaron Eckhart) has started his own lobbying firm. He meets up with cellphone manufacturers and tells them what to say when asked if cell phone radiation can cause brain cancer. He then turns to the audience and, in a voice over, delivers the quote.

Geek wisdom: Each and every one of us has a special skill that we can all utilize. Sometimes, however, it will take a lot of hard work to find what your talent is. And sometimes, the talent that you have may even prove to be distasteful to others. That’s not the point. The point is that everyone is going to be good at something; it’s all about finding out what it is and what you do with that talent.

“Now imagine she’s white.”

From: A Time To Kill

Genre: Movies/Books

Who said it?: Jake Brigance

The story behind the quote: The quote comes from the film A Time to Kill, which is based on the John Grisham book of the same name. The film and the book is the tale of Jake Brigance, a white attorney who was hired to defend Carl Lee Hailey, a black man who shot and killed two men who raped his daughter.

The quote comes from the very end of the film. Jake Brigance (played by Matthew McConaughey) tells the jury to close their eyes while he narrates the horrors Carl Lee Hailey’s daughter had to endure during her rape. He describes every thing in brutal detail and he asks the jury if they can see the little girl in their minds. This is when the lawyer delivers the quote.

Geek wisdom: We tend to have a bias on how similar things are to what we are. This is generally normal but this is also the root of many prejudices around the world. However, when we really get down to things, we are all the same because we are all human beings and should be treated as equals.

Any form of persecution, prejudice and discrimination is wrong.

“Control your emotions! Discipline your mind!”

From: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Genre: Movies

Who said it?: Severus Snape

The story behind the quote: It’s been a very sad week as two cultural icons have passed away: David Bowie and Alan Rickman. As such, My Geek Wisdom will be paying tribute to both of these legendary men by posting a quote from these individuals today. Earlier, the site posted a quote from David Bowie. So now, it’s Alan Rickman’s turn.

This quote comes from Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix, specifically, from the character Alan Rickman brought to life on the big screen, Serverus Snape. Harry Potter is in need of a way to shield his thoughts from Voldermont. Dumbledore enlists the help of Serverus Snape to help teach The Boy Who Lived on how to do precisely that. Snape easily invades Harry’s mind and the teacher starts berating his student’s parents by calling them “weak.” Harry contradicts this, which is when Snape delivers the quote.

Geek wisdom: We can let our emotions get the better of us. We can make rash decisions when we let our feelings take over. Rational thought and thinking with a cool head is much better than just “going with our gut” during stressful times.

“Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can’t carry it for you… but I can carry you!”

From: Samwise “Sam” Gamgee

Genre: Movies/Books

Who said it?: The Lord of The Rings: The Return of the King

The story behind the quote: This week’s quote comes from the final entry of The Lord of The Rings, The Return of the King. The final chapter closes out Frodo Baggins and his friend Samwise “Sam” Gamgee’s trial/adventure to take the One Ring into Mordor to destroy it by tossing it into the fires of Mount Doom.

The quote comes from near the end of the movie but somewhere in the middle of the book. Frodo and Sam (played in the films by Elijah Wood and Sean Astin, respectively) have entered Mordor and are making the trek to the top of Mount Doom. Tired and exhausted, Frodo collapses. Sam tried to comfort his comrade by telling him about their home. The Shire. However, Frodo only feels paranoia from carrying the One Ring for so long. Sam then makes his decision on how they should press on…

Geek wisdom: You don’t have to go through hardships all by yourself. Friends will support you whenever you have a heavy burden to carry. They may not be able to solve the problem or completely take the load off. However, true friends will be there for you to assist you in whatever way they can.

“The town was paper, but the memories were not.”

From: Paper Towns

Genre: Movies/Books

Who said it?: Quentin “Q” Jacobson

The story behind the quote: This week’s quote was submitted by Hazel Lance! Thanks, Hazel! You can check out her other written stuff by checking out her WordPress blogsite (poeticfangirl.wordpress.com)!

The quote comes from the book Paper Towns by John Green, the author that gave us The Fault in Our Stars. And, like The Fault in Our Stars, Paper Towns is going to be made into a feature length film.

Fair warning: the quote and Geek Wisdom may contain SPOILERS for the upcoming film.

Anyway, Paper Towns is all about Quentin Jacobson, Q to his friends, who has a massive crush on his next door neighbor, Margo Roth Spiegelman. After being ignored by her throughout high school, Q is surprised to see Margo ask for his help in getting revenge on her ex-boyfriend for cheating on her. The next day, Q finds out that Margo is now missing and Q believes he is the only one who can find her.

The quote comes as Q’s graduation date draws near. He realizes that, although, the people around him were indeed materialistic and “unreal, he still treasures the memories he has with them. This is precisely why graduating makes him feel a little sad.

The town was paper

Geek wisdom: We come across a lot of people who end up being someone different from what we thought they were. These people may have been selfish and never cared much about us, but the memories would always bring a smile to our face because we were genuinely happy in that moment.

“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to your enemies. But a great deal more to stand up to your friends.”

From: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Genre: Movies

Who said it?: Dumbledore

The story behind the quote: The quote comes from the very first Harry Potter book/film, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. The series is about a boy named Harry Potter, a boy wizard. When he was a baby, he managed to survived a deadly spell cast on him by Lord Voldermont, earning him the nickname, “The Boy Who Lived.” Although he didn’t die, the magical attack left a lightning shaped scar on his forehead. Now, as a teenager, Harry Potter is enrolled in the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. But there are rumblings that Lord Voldermont is slowly regaining his power and is poised to make another play to take over the wizard world.

The quote comes from the very end of the book/film. Dumbledore, Hogwart’s Headmaster, is awarding points to the different “houses” of the school. Although Harry’s house, Gryffindor, is behind their rival, Slytherin, Dumbledore decides to give a few extra points to one of Gryffindor’s members, the meek and mild mannered Neville Longbottom as he did display true courage…

Geek wisdom: Conflict is an odd thing. We usually try to avoid it, especially with those we have a close bond with. At times, we even support things they may do that are just plain wrong just to “fit in.” This isn’t really good. In fact, as friends and family, we have to sometimes tell them the ugly truthjust to lead them on the right path.

Sometimes, tough love is the answer. It may not be the easy path but it may be the right one.

“I volunteer as Tribute!”

From: The Hunger Games

Genre: Movies/Books

Who said it?: Katniss Everdeen

The story behind the quote: The quote comes from the first book of the Hunger Games trilogy. The book has been made into a successful film as well. The story takes place in a dystopian future in the country of Panem. The Capitol and its residents live carefree lives while 12 Districts serve under its rule. The hero of the book is Katniss Everdeen, a resident of District 12.  In order to ensure that the Districts understand their place in the world, the Capitol forces each of the 12 Districts to send one boy and one girl to fight in a duel to the death known as The Hunger Games.

The quote comes early on in the story. During the selection, Katniss’ younger sister, Primrose, is selected at random. Katniss, wanting to protect her sister from competing in the Hunger Games, steps out of the crowd and volunteers herself, delivering the quote in the process.

Geek wisdom: We have to be prepared to make sacrifices to protect what we feel are important. It can be hard to actually do this since there will usually be a some risk involved. It could be something as serious as protecting your family from harm to something smaller, such as standing up to a bully.

No matter how great or small it may be, stepping up to a challenge can be daunting, especially if you’re used to keeping quiet and playing it safe. Still, it’s best to recognize when facing the challenge may be the best thing to do in a situation.

“The answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything is 42.”

From: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Genre: Books, Movies, Television

Who said it?: Deep Thought

The story behind the quote: This is actually my first “book” and “radio” categories entry, but I am cheating a bit here since I’m getting it from the latest movie adapted from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series. The overall story follows Arthur Dent, an ordinary man who survives the destruction of the Earth with Ford Prefect (an alien in disguise) and goes off to have different adventures.

The quote comes from a scene early in the story. Aliens created a supercomputer named Deep Thought and ask it to answer the question of life, the universe and everything. Deep Thought mentions that it would take seven and a half million years to get the Ultimate Answer.

So, seven and a half million years pass. The aliens (their ancestors anyway) come back to Deep Thought to get the answer. Deep Thought gives his reply that the answer is 42. The aliens complain that the answer cannot be correct. Deep Thought then says that he cannot give an answer since the aliens don’t know what the question actually is. The computer does say that another computer, even more powerful than itself, will be able to know what the Ultimate Question is.

SPOILER: The computer more powerful than Deep Thought is actually the Earth.

Geek wisdom: The “meaning of life” question is meaningless since the answer is, and always be, something different for each person. The reason being is that the question is also going to be different for each person. Deep Thought felt that it was a perfectly legitimate answer since, for him, it made sense. For others, it was rubbish. That’s because the Ultimate Question is different for each and every one of them.

When we ask ourselves “what is the meaning of life” we are actually asking how we personally think what we want in life. If you ask ourselves the Ultimate Question and we cannot find what the Ultimate Answer is within ourselves, then you may not know what direction your life is going. If you are able to answer it, then you have already found your purpose in life.