Paul Newman (1925-2008)

“A man with no enemies is a man with no character.”

“I don’t like to discuss my marriage, but I will tell you something which may sound corny but which happens to be true. I have steak at home. Why should I go out for hamburger?”

“We are such spendthrifts with our lives, the trick of living is to slip on and off the planet with the least fuss you can muster. I’m not running for sainthood. I just happen to think that in life we need to be a little like the farmer, who puts back into the soil what he takes out.”

“You only grow when you are alone.”

“The problem with getting older is you still remember how things used to be.”

“I never ask my wife about my flaws. Instead I try to get her to ignore them and concentrate on my sense of humor. You don’t want any woman to look under the carpet, guys, because there’s lots of flaws underneath. Joanne believes my character in a film we did together, ‘Mr. and Mrs. Bridge’ comes closest to who I really am. I personally don’t think there’s one character who comes close . . . but I learned a long time ago not to disagree on things that I don’t have a solid opinion about.”

“There are two Newman’s laws. The first one is “It is useless to put on your brakes when your upside down.” The second is “Just when things look darkest, they go black.”

“I picture my epitaph: ‘Here lies Paul Newman, who died a failure because his eyes turned brown.”

“Those with a moral deficit put on a good show, and sleep like a baby.”

“The embarrassing thing is that my salad dressing is out-grossing my films.”

“It’s like chasing a beautiful woman for 80 years. Finally, she relents and you say, ‘I’m terribly sorry. I’m tired.’ [After winning his first Oscar after so many losses]”

“I like racing but food and pictures are more thrilling. I can’t give them up. In racing you can be certain, to the last thousandth of a second, that someone is the best, but with a film or a recipe, there is no way of knowing how all the ingredients will work out in the end. The best can turn out to be awful and the worst can be fantastic. Cooking is like performing and performing like cooking.”

“It’s always darkest before it turns absolutely pitch black.”

“It’s all been a bad joke that just ran out of control. I got into food for fun but the business got a mind of its own. Now – my good Lord – look where it has gotten me. My products are on supermarket shelves, in cinemas, in the theater. And they say show business is odd.”

“It’s been a privilege to be here.”

“If you’re playing a poker game and you look around the table and and can’t tell who the sucker is, it’s you.”

“To be an actor, you have to be a child.”

“I don’t think there’s anything exceptional or noble in being philanthropic. It’s the other attitude that confuses me.”

“You can’t be as old as I am without waking up with a surprised look on your face every morning: “Holy Christ, whaddya know — I’m still around!””

“People stay married because they want to, not because the doors are locked.”

“There are a lot of drivers who can carry a car. It doesn’t happen very often very successfully. I think it takes a certain amount of sensible bravery. It’s no good to be brave and just keep crashing.”

“I’m like a good cheese. I’m just getting mouldy enough to be interesting.”

“Building weapons that we don’t need, don’t work, and aren’t necessary, and have no mission — that’s not bad politics, that’s robbery.”

“Money won is twice as sweet as money earned.”

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