39 magically funny Tom Robbins quotes.

Written by Cole Schafer

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Tom Robbins’ novel Still Life of Woodpecker is one of those books you want to pick back up from the first page the moment you finish the last. His eccentric and hilarious writing style creates a sense of magic in his novels that make it impossible not to fall in love with both the characters he creates and the mind that has thought them up.

Late, late, last night –– so late that it became morning –– I finished his third (and what many consider to be one of his better novels), Still Life of Woodpecker.

After thumbing back through it, I was astonished at the number of lines and passages I had underlined.

39 Tom Robbins’ quotes I couldn’t help but underline.

  1. Imagine awakening to find the moon flat on its face on the bathroom floor, like the late Elvis Presley poisoned by banana splits.

  2. Albert Camus wrote that the only serious question is whether to kill yourself or not.

  3. Poker was his work. Recently, however, he had had a taste of open-heart surgery. A major valve had been removed and replaced with a Teflon substitute. The artificial valve functioned efficiently, but it made a metallic noise as it opened and shut…. “Jesus,” he said. “When I draw a good hand, I sound like a Tupperware party.”

  4. The moon invented natural rhythm. Civilization uninvented it.

  5. Her hair, as straight and red as ironed ketchup, rode gravity’s one-way ticket all the way to her waist; her blue eyes were as soft and moist as huevos rancheros, and the long curl of their lashes cause fibrillate shadows to fall on the swell of her cheeks. She was not tall, yet the legs that hung out of her skirt seemed a tall woman’s legs, and beneath her No-Nukes-Is-Good-Nukes T-shirt, her astonishingly round breasts jiggled ever so slightly, like balls balanced on the noses of Valium-eating seals.

  6. The sheepish expression of the premature ejaculator crossed his face.

  7. His hair was red then, red being the color of emergency and roses; red being the prelate’s top and the baboon’s bottom; red being the blood’s color, jelly’s color; red maddening the bull, red bringing the bull down; red being the color of valentine's, of left-handedness, and of a small princess’s newfound guilty hobby.

  8. Outlaws are can openers in the supermarket of life.

  9. Goosebumps popped up on her sunburn, making her resemble a bird’s eye view of bloody cobblestones. She felt like a street in the French Revolution.

  10. They were floating in that blissful phase that characterizes religious transcendence and the onset of alcohol poisoning.

  11. Kissing a smoker is licking an ashtray.

  12. That princess cannot expect a happy ending who has been rescued by the dragon.

  13. Actually, there are two kinds of people in this world: those who believe there are two kinds of people in this world and those who are smart enough to know better.

  14. Do you think dynamite can make the world a better place?

  15. A better world has gotta start somewhere. Why not with you and me?

  16. That’s why poets are such important members of society. Poets remember our dreams for us.

  17. The men you’ve been with probably wouldn’t kiss your nipples correctly for fear they’d suck in some pesticide.

  18. Equality is not in regarding different things similarly, equality is in regarding different things differently.

  19. Life is like a stew, you have to stir it frequently, or all the scum rises to the top.

  20. As any car freak will tell you, the old models are the most beautiful, even if they aren’t the most efficient. People who sacrifice beauty for efficiency get what they deserve.

  21. I’m an outlaw, not a hero. I never intended to rescue you. We’re our own dragons as well as our own heroes, and we have to rescue ourselves from ourselves.

  22. Did you really expect me to keep my sense after taking a look at your hair?

  23. Her panties all but dissolved in his grip.

  24. She threw her arms around him and kissed him like he was going out of style.

  25. Leigh-Cheri had been this aroused before but never this relaxed about it.

  26. Now that I’m in love, I’m completely stupid on the subject.

  27. … like a fruit so swollen with juice it moans for the prick of the knife.

  28. There is lovemaking that is bad for a person, just as there is easting that is bad. The boysenberry cream pie from the Thrift-E Mart may appear inviting, may, in fact, cause all nine hundred taste buds to carol from the tongue, but in the end, the sugars, the additives, the empty calories clog arteries, disrupt cells, generate fat and rot teeth.

  29. With the divorce rate up sixty percent, how can anyone attend a wedding with a straight face anymore?

  30. Birds could not have flown through the longing between them.

  31. He said that when you’re locked up, smoking a cigarette is like having a friend.

  32. Love belongs to those who are willing to go to extremes for it. Goodbye.

  33. Three days of darkness is as much as the moon will tolerate before it yelps, “Enough already.”

  34. The first time she spread her legs for him it had been like opening her jaws for the dentist.

  35. As he throbbed in her throat, pumping jet after jet of that steamy translucent mucilage with which Cupid tries to glue the world together, she felt as if she was gulping concentrated ecstasy, and it made her blood croon.

  36. The busiest, loudest Sunday will always seem subdued next to the quietest Saturday. You go to paint the town red on Sunday, you’d better be prepared for pink.

  37. His fingers ran like foxes through the forest fire of her hair.
  38. Leigh-Cheri had begun to suspect that in the last quarter of the twentieth century Cupid was too dazed, crazed and generally pissed-off to stick around and finish the job.

  39. Funny how we think of romance as always involving two, when the romance of solitude can be ever so much more delicious and intense.

Goddamn is right.

While this was the first book I’ve read of Tom Robbins, it most certainly won’t be my last. So, with that said, revisit this article every now and again because I hope to add to it.

By Cole Schafer (but mostly Tom Robbins).