Ogden Nash

(1902 - 1971)

US humorist & poet


A door is what a dog is perpetually on the wrong side of.
A family is a unit composed not only of children but of men, women, an occasional animal, and the common cold.
I think that I shall never see
a billboard lovely as a tree.
Perhaps, unless the billboards fall,
I'll never see a tree at all.
Middle age is when you've met so many people that every new person you meet reminds you of someone else.
Children aren't happy with nothing to ignore,
And that's what parents were created for.
People who have what they want are fond of telling people who haven't what they want that they really don't want it.
People who work sitting down get paid more than people who work standing up.
Progress might have been all right once, but it has gone on too long.

A husband is a guy who tells you when you've got on too much lipstick and helps you with your girdle when your hips stick.

Women would rather be right than reasonable.

I am a conscientious man, when I throw rocks at seabirds I leave no tern unstoned.

Marriage is the alliance of two people, one of whom never remembers birthdays and the other who never forgets them.

The trouble with a kitten is that eventually it becomes a Cat.

There is only one way to achieve happiness on this terrestrial ball, and that is to have either a clear conscience or none at all.

If you don't want to work, you have to work to earn enough money so that you won't have to work

An occasional lucky guess as to what makes a wife tick is the best a man can hope for, Even then, no sooner has he learned how to cope with the tick than she tocks.

Basketball, a game which won't be fit for people until they set the basket umbilicus-high and return the giraffes to the zoo.

Candy is dandy but liquor is quicker.

Commitments the voters don't know about can't hurt you.

Happiness is having a scratch for every itch.

I would live all my life in nonchalance and insouciance, Were it not for making a living, which is rather a nouciance.

People who have what they want are fond of telling people who haven't what they want that they really don't want it.

Sleep is perverse as human nature, Sleep is perverse as a legislature, Sleep is as forward as hives or goiters, And where it is least desired, it loiters.

The bed is a bundle of paradoxes: we go to it with reluctance, yet we quit it with regret; we make up our minds every night to leave it early, but we make up our bodies every morning to keep it late.

The cow is of the bovine ilk; One end is moo, the other milk.

Too clever is dumb.

Beneath this slab
John Brown is stowed.
He watched the ads
And not the road.

I do not like to get the news, because there has never been an era when so many things were going so right for so many of the wrong persons.

I sit in an office at 244 Madison Avenue, 
And say to myself You have a responsible job, havenue? 

The bronx? No thonx.

The camel has a single hump; The dromedary, two; Or else the other way around, I'm never sure. Are you?

Good wine needs no bush, and perhaps products that people really want need no hard-sell or soft-sell TV push. Why not? Look at pot.

They take the paper and they read the headlines. So they've heard of unemployment and they've heard of bread-lines. And they philanthropically cure them all by getting up a costume charity ball.

There is only one thing for a man to do who is married to a woman who enjoys spending money, and that is enjoy earning it.

Indoors or out, no one relaxes in March, that month of wind and taxes, the wind will presently disappear, the taxes last us all the year.

Life is sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating.

Oh, what a tangled web do parents weave when they think that their children are naive.

To keep your marriage brimming,
  With love in the loving cup,
    Whenever you're wrong, admit it;
      Whenever you're right, shut up.

A bit of talcum
Is always walcum.--Reflection on Babies

A child need not be very clever
To learn that "Later, dear" means "Never."

He who is ridden by a conscience
Worries about a lot of nonscience;
He without benefit of scruples
His fun and income soon quadruples.

The Preacher, the Politicain, the Teacher,
Were each of them once a kiddie.
A child, indeed, is a wonderful creature.

Do I want one? God Forbiddie!

The Pig, if I am not mistaken,
Supplies us sausage, ham, and Bacon.
Let others say his heart is big,
I think it stupid of the Pig.

Certainly there are things in life that money can't buy, but it's very funny -Did you ever try buying them without money?

You are only young once, but you can stay immature indefinitely.

Sometimes with secret pride I sigh to think how tolerant am I; then wonder which is really mine: tolerance or a rubber spine?

Never befriend the oppressed unless you are prepared to take on the oppressor.


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