“Their pooled emotions wouldn’t fill a teaspoon.” (quoted in Not Much Fun: The Lost Poems of Dorothy Parker)

For being asked for writing advice:

“If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second-greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first-greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy.” (originally published in a review in Esquire, 1959)

For riding the subway in New York City:

“Not just plain terrible. This was fancy terrible; this was terrible with raisins in it.” (quoted in Chimes of Change and Hours by Audrey Borenstein)

For turning down a proposal:

“By the time you swear you’re his,
Shivering and sighing.
And he vows his passion is,
Infinite, undying.
Lady make note of this—
One of you is lying.” (her poem “Unfortunate Coincidence”)

For when you hate a book everyone else loves, and you know you’re right:

“But on second thinking, I dare to differ more specifically from the booksie-wooksies. . . . For years, you see, I have been crouching in corners hissing small and ladylike anathema of [author’s name here—in this case, it’s Theodore Dreiser]. I dared not yip it out loud, much less offer it up in print. But now, what with a series of events that have made me callous to anything that may later occur, I have become locally known as the What-the-Hell Girl of 1931.” (from a review of Theodore Dreiser’s Dawn in The New Yorker)

For Monday mornings:

“To my own admittedly slanted vision, industry ranks with such sour and spinster virtues as thrift, punctuality, level-headedness, and caution.” (from a review of Sinclair Lewis’s Dodsworth in The New Yorker)

“It has lately been drawn to your correspondent’s attention that, at social gatherings, she is not the human magnet she would be. Indeed, it turns out that as a source of entertainment, conviviality, and good fun, she ranks somewhere between a sprig of parsley and a single ice-skate.” (from a review of Favorite Jokes of Famous People in The New Yorker)

For every single day, reading the news:

“Civilization is coming to an end, you understand.” (The Paris Review)

“What fresh hell can this be?” (everyone’s favorite Dorothy Parker quote, though often misquoted, here reported in You Might as Well Live: the Life and Times of Dorothy Parker, by John Keats)