“I don’t understand it,” Katie went on. “A few months ago, people were literally dying in the street. Every one of us lost family, friends, neighbors. We’re all we have left, but people like the Mercers, like Kurt Rove, belittle and bad-talk those of us who, well, have something that might help get all of us through. Because they’re different.”
“I have a theory,” Arlys began. “Major, monumental crises bring out the best or the worst in us — sometimes both. And sometimes those major, monumental crises have no effect on certain types. Which means, no matter what the circumstances, assholes remain assholes.”
Steve held close to his heart his family’s connection to Ireland. It is an interesting aspect of the Irish in America that Steve, like others of his generation who were several generations removed from Ireland, felt that being Irish defined who they were. Possibly, it had to do with the identity it gave them. Saying that you were Irish was comparable to claiming membership in a distinct fraternity with a common tradition, secret rituals, and assured friendships wherever you found a fellow member of the Irish diaspora. The Irish gloried in their family, their neighborhood, and their love of the language. For Steve, it granted him entrée into the big leagues, where many young men of Irish descent were entering the American mainstream.
–Steve Hannagan: Prince of the Press Agents and Titan of Modern Public Relations by Michael K. Townsley
Lobetto lifted his hand and I flinched out of habit. But instead of thumping my head, he cupped his hand gently under my chin. He turned my head toward and way from the lamp-light, so that I faced light and shadow in turns. “We are the same,” he announced. “Half in one world, half in the other.”
“It’s a great community,” Don G. was saying. “We all look out for each other. But not everybody fits in.”
In the world he came from, you had to be wealthy to be able to live in an Up City; he and his dad had never fit in there, either. People who lived in Up Cities had access to vaccines and cleaner air and water. Somebody always got to decide who belonged or didn’t belong. Somebody got to choose who to cut out. Zert glared at Don G. And it was never the Somebody who got cut.
It could also be that Ma got me the job because she started working at Antoine’s when she was sixteen, my age. Most parents who want their kids to follow in their footsteps are doctors or senators, stuff like that. But Ma wants me to work in a convenience store. Stay in the neighborhood. Support my community, because that’s another thing about growing up in Jokertown—it’s the only home some of us will ever have.
–The Thing about Growing Up in Jokertown (A Tor.com Original) by Carrie Vaughn
The worst thing they have done to you, who are my mother’s people, was not to destroy your government, take your food and children, deny your traditions, or outlaw your greatest powers. The worst thing they have done is to replace your version of honor with theirs. They are making you, the Shaftali people, into Carolins. So when you read this book, read it not as a history of the enemy, but as a history of your own future: what will happen to Shaftal when the Carolins are extinct, but live on in you and your children. Rather than defeat the enemies, you must change them—or else, someday, their story will be your story.
The storyteller’s fingertip touched the red symbol stamped on one corner. “This glyph means fate, or chance. The Laughing Man’s actions are so unexpected, and their effect is so profound, that his victims think it is a bitter joke. He destroys everything—even trust and hope. But there is one power that can counteract his.” She took out another card: a circle of people, arm in arm. “Fellowship,” she said.
Mr. Lewis from the barbershop next door stands out front, his arms folded over his big belly. He sets his narrowed eyes on Daddy. Daddy sighs. “Here we go.” We hop out. Mr. Lewis gives some of the best haircuts in Garden Heights—Sekani’s high-top fade proves it—but Mr. Lewis himself wears an untidy Afro. His stomach blocks his view of his feet, and since his wife passed nobody tells him that his pants are too short and his socks don’t always match. Today one is striped and the other is argyle.