2. "The store is also lit to the point of painfulness by a ceiling loaded with more fluorescent bulbs than a landing mothership. Shielding my headachey eyes, I make my consumer choices, then head to the counter, where the clerk is wearing sunglasses. I pay the clerk with a five-dollar bill on which I have felt-penned the words: I AM AFRAID OF THE DARK AGES."
- Douglas Coupland, Shampoo Planet
3. "Sifting through thousands of petitions a year in order to select the dozens that will be granted is a daunting task for a nine-member court. In the mid-1970s, with the number of petitions growing rapidly, the justices found a way to lighten the load by organizing their energetic young law clerks into a cert pool. Under this arrangement, each petition is reviewed by a single law clerk on behalf all the justices who subscribe to the pool. This clerk writes a memo that summarizes the lower court decision and the arguments for and against review, concluding with a recommendation. The recommendation is only that. Most justices in the pool (all but one or two in recent years) assign one of their own four law clerks to review the pool recommendations from the individual justice’s own perspective."
- Linda Greenhouse, The U.S. Supreme Court:A Very Short Introduction
4. "When a divorce is initiated, regardless of who files with the court, blamers particularly feel threatened. Many cannot handle seeming in any way responsible for the divorce, which triggers their lifelong fears of abandonment and inferiority. Therefore, they split their partner into all bad. It feels like a war between good and evil to blamers, so they create one. Their extreme feelings create their own problems."
- Randi Kreger, Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder
5. "A man named Dennis Newton was on trial for armed robbery in Oklahoma City, when he decided to fire his lawyer. While Newton was defending himself in court, the woman who was working as a clerk at the convenience store that he supposedly robbed, was put on the stand. When the woman identified Newton as the robber, Newton quickly jumped up and screamed at the woman, calling her a liar. He then screamed out "I shoulda blown your f***ing head off." Newton soon realized what he said, and quickly followed the comment with "....If I'da been the one that was there." ...Not that it mattered at that point, the jury was already convinced of his guilt."
- Jeffrey Fisher, Stupid Criminals: Funny and True Crime Stories
8. "Terms swarm up to tempt me in the course of this description: Greek Orthodox, Romanesque, flying buttress, etc. These guessing words I find junked in my brain in deranged juxtaposition, like files randomly stuffed into cabinets by a dispirited secretary with no notion of what, if anything, might ever be usefully retrieved. Often all language seems this way: a monstrous compendium of embedded histories I’m helpless to understand. I employ it the way a dog drives a car, without grasping how the car came to exist or what makes a combustion engine possible. That is, of course, if dogs drove cars. They don’t. Yet I go around forming sentences."
- Jonathan Lethem, Chronic City
9. "She started at the sound of a knock on the door. Opening it a crack, the clerk peeked her head in. "Come out here and look at yourself in the full-length mirrors."
- Kathy Carmichael, Chasing Charlie
10. "Here’s a shocking secret: The .xlsx file format is actually a ZIP file in disguise. It’s composed of several files that are compressed and then packaged together as a single unit. With a little know-how, you can take a look at these hidden files-within-a-file, which makes for a great Excel party trick."
- Nancy Conner, Office 2013: The Missing Manual