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Quotes by John Alejandro King a.k.a. The Covert Comic

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360-FeedbackWhoever invented the 360-degree feedback method was thinking outside the box, but not outside the circle.
69The 69 in 1969 wasn't really all that fun for anybody, but the 19 was at least enjoyable for the 1.
9696: what happens after my wife and I attempt 69.
99%Le 99%, c'est moi.
AboutIf by 'about' you mean 'in a circle around,' then yes, we're doing something about the problem.
AbsentWhere's that guy who said "The absent are always in the wrong?"
Absolute PowerAs long as you're only 99.9% corrupt, they can't accuse you of wielding absolute power.
Adapt or PerishThe 'or' in 'adapt or perish' is inclusive.
AdvertisingThe quote 'You can tell the ideals of a nation by its advertisements' is used in advertisements in the USA.
AdviceMy uncle once offered me the following advice: "Only you can live your life; don't let others live it for you." I said, "So in other words, don't let other people do what you just said is impossible anyway." My uncle pretty much leaves me alone now.
- (From 'I Killed JFK')
After 2:00 A.M.Nobody's ugly after 2:00 a.m. But not as ugly as Anybody.
AgeYou push 40. 50 drags you down the street.
Age is Only a NumberSaying age is only a number is like saying a Seal 2K combat knife is only an edged instrument.
Agent in PlaceSecret 4081.1.1. The usefulness of an agent in place will tend to be proportional to the uselessness of the place.
Agent ProvocateurEach of us is our own agent provocateur.
AgentsA triple agent is more dangerous than a double agent, a double agent is more dangerous than an agent, and so on.
AgingAging is about mind over matter – every year my matter drops another quarter inch below my mind.
AgnosticismNo agnostic ever burned anyone at the stake. That wouldn't be nearly slow and painful enough.
Aim for the StarsAim for the stars – even if you miss, you may hit an executive producer.
AlcoholHigh-functioning alcoholic? Pretty much by definition.
All EarsTo be all ears is good. To be many ears and a couple of nostrils is better.
All Is Not LostAll is not lost – so why the hell should it stop to ask for directions???
All Other Things Being EqualAll other things being equal, I'm proud to be an other thing!
AlmsSecret 25.40. Whenever you give alms, you're executing a perfect brush pass with Jesus.
Alone We Can Do NothingAlone we can do nothing, but not as much nothing as we can do together.
AmericaIn America anyone can grow up and be President. ... Well, anyone can be President.
AmericaThe number of Americans who have never been outside America is less than the number who have never been in it.
AmericaIn America, any boy or girl can grow up to officially not be Director of the National Clandestine Service.
American DreamThe death of the American dream *is* the American dream.
AnimalsSecret 9.6.218. The name of any animal sounds scarier if you put the word 'grizzly' in front of it.
Anna PίfaniYou had Anna Pίfani last night? How was she?
Anonymous SourceThe official spokesperson is the most anonymous source of all.
Anything Worth Doing'Anything worth doing' is a problematic premise.
AphorismsGiven a big enough bottle, you can always get the genie back in.
AphorismsIn the interest of safety, shouldn't *everything* come with a self-destruct button?
ApparitionsIs it that a lot of stuff looks like the Virgin Mary, or that the Virgin Mary looks like a lot of stuff?
AppearanceNot only are things not what they appear to be, they're not even what they are.
Art of LoveIf you would learn the art of love, be sure to take a course in perspective.
Artificial IntelligenceWho cares whether computers are intelligent, as long as they're sincere?
AskingDid you ever stop to ask yourself why you have to stop to ask yourself something?
Ass from a Hole in the GroundIt's not like I can't tell my ass from a hole in the ground. It's just that I've learned the difference is trivial.
Ass KickingIt's a moot point whether your ass needs kicking, if kicking needs your ass.
AuthorityQuestion authority – ask authority if it's lost weight or been working out recently, because it's really looking great.
AuthorityWhat is authority without accountability – and how can I get a bunch?
Auto-tuneAuto-tune, but for a person's thoughts.
Autonomous Remote SensingAutonomous remote sensing *is* the eye of the beholder.
Barack ObamaIf you say 'Barack Obama' backwards, it sounds like you're threatening to beat up an Arab.
BeautyThough Michelangelo defined it as the essence of beauty, you probably want to be careful about calling a girl "the purgation of superfluities" on a first date.
BeautyThe opposite of beauty isn't ugliness. The opposite of beauty is other beauty.
Becoming Who You Aren'tAre You Ready to Become Who You Really Aren't? – suggested slogan for National Clandestine Service recruitment campaign
BedYou made your bed, now hide under it.
BedYou made your bed, now jump up and down on it.
Beg the QuestionStop begging the question – get a job and earn the question like everyone else.
BeginBegin (v.) To start stopping.
Being There For YouI said I'd be there for you. I never said I would actually be visible.
BeliefsThe danger in seeking to force our beliefs on others isn't that they may someday force their beliefs on us; it's that they may someday force *our* beliefs on us.
Best Foot ForwardWhen I put my best foot forward, I put my worst foot forward. What am I? (Answer: a sciapod!)
Best PracticesBest practices, good enough does.
Big DataI said my office had a big data strategy – I didn't say we had a strategy for big data.
Big PictureIf it fits in a frame, it's not the big picture.
BiologyLife originally came from the ocean; which may explain why, whenever I'm in the ocean, I feel a deep urge to get out as quickly as possible.
BiotechnologyYou can’t fight genetics. Unless, of course, you happen to be born with a gene for fighting genetics.
BirdsBirds don't sing after a storm, they sing before the next one.
Bishop Fulton SheenIf not for his call to priesthood / The Bishop Fulton Sheen / Might have been a five-star general / Or even a famed drag queen
Biting The Hand That Feeds YouI'm not questioning that I shouldn't bite the hand that feeds me, I'm questioning whether that's a hand.
Black OperationsSecret 4808. Beware the operation so black it gleams.
Blackmail and BriberyWhen John le Carré said blackmail was more effective than bribery, he was paid off.
BlameWho seeks a scapegoat may find a scapeodile.
Blame GameThe problem with playing the blame game is that it always ends up going to penalty kicks.
Blessings in DisguiseThere's a reason blessings wear disguises.
- (
BloggingHenry Kissinger said that university faculty politics are vicious precisely because the stakes are so small. Of course, that was before blogging.
- ((
BlowbackThe opposite of blowback is worse.
BlowbackThe op is the blowback, and the blowback is the op.
Body ArmorIf she wears lingerie under her body armor, date her. If she wears body armor under her lingerie, buy her a diamond ring.
BooksEducation is the progressive discovery of our own ignorance? Wow, there's another thing I didn't know!
Books'Oh for a book and a shady nook?' Oh for a shady bookie and some nookie.
BooksSecret 23810871. Books, like friends, should be few, well chosen, and fit neatly on a shelf.
BooksEverything truly valuable that I possess is in books (ever since I read 'How to Make a Hollow Book' on Wikihow).
Brain SurgeryI wouldn't object to being conscious during brain surgery, as long as someone told me where to cut.
Breaking CharacterBreaking character *is* my character.
Breaking NewsWhen news breaks, what oozes out?
BriefingsNever assume your briefing audience is less intelligent than you. Carefully vet and edit the invitation list to make sure.
Broken HomeI didn't come from a broken home – more like deliberately imploded.
BrouhahaBrouhahaha n. A particularly intense brouhaha.
Budget PlanningAn annual budget planning exercise by any other name would smell as sweet.
Burn BagSecret 4.1.85921. Just because it's thrown into the burn bag doesn't mean it ends up in the furnace.
Burn NoticeThe credo of every intelligence agency is a burn notice against the world.
Burning ManYou can't plan a trip to Burning Man and truly go there.
ButterfliesIt's said that butterflies flutter for a day and think it's forever. And if you've ever tried fluttering, you know how they feel.
ButterfliesA butterfly cannot see its own wings. But if it could, it would probably think: "So THAT'S what the hell happened to my abdominal prolegs."
Caged AnimalsWhen I see pictures of animals staring through cage bars, I always imagine they're sad because they can't let me out.
CagesI know why the caged monkey throws feces.
CahootsSecret 59.814001. To maximize operational security, avoid dark alleys, culs-de-sac, and cahoots.
CalligraphyI've been studying calligraphy. Not to boast, but I think I'm getting pretty good at it. For example, these sentences weren't typed.
CanadaI like Canada, but I like the idea of Canada even better.
- ('America's funniest covert intelligence officer')
Cancer CellsA cancer cell only does what normal cells would do if they had the chutzpah.
CandlesAnybody I *can* hold a candle to, I drip hot wax on.
CapitalismI'll take social democracy over capitalism any day of the week (but not weekends).
CAPTCHAIf you can't figure out the CAPTCHA, consider the possibility that you're a machine.
CarThat 'If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention' sticker on my bumper isn't a political statement, it's a comment about my car.
Career-threateningCareer-threatening adj. 1. (Government) True.
CaringI tell everybody I couldn't care less, but deep down, I know I could if I applied myself.
CarpeCarpe nanosecundo.
Case Officer's BlessingThe Case Officer's Blessing (a.k.a. the Case Officer's Curse): May your assets be twice as loyal to you as you are to your assets.
Castles in the AirWhat castle isn't built in the air?
Celebrities Die in ThreesPeople who believe that celebrities die in threes die in three hundred thousands.
Central Intelligence AgencySecret #66. The best thing to come out of the US State Department is the Roosevelt Bridge.
Central Intelligence AgencyDo as I CIA, not as I DO.
ChangeYou can be the change you wish to see in the world ... or you can be the large denomination bills!
Change ManagementChange management consultants will always have a slide in their decks containing the phrase 'But we've always done it this way.'
Change ManagementIf we hire a change management consultant, do we have to supply the diapers?
Changing the SubjectAttempted to delicately change the subject. But despite being soiled, subject loudly resisted. – contact report
CharacterTo build character, use a 4D printer.
ChemtrailsWe all live under the same sky, but not the same chemtrails.
ChemtrailsI don't make chemtrails. I am chemtrails.
ChildrenMy wife is thinking about having another baby. As for me, I've got a few questions. For example, how many children do we have now?
Choose Your BattlesIf you can choose your battles, it's not a real war.
CIAThe ultimate indignity for a Third World country isn’t to be spied on by the CIA. The ultimate indignity for a Third World country is to not be spied on by the CIA.
CIAIf the American people knew what we at CIA know, that would make none of us.
CIASecret #81919.59. If thine spy satellite offends thee, send it into terminal orbit.
CIASecret #413.53. It's better to think you're a CIA agent when you aren't one, than to think you aren't a CIA agent when you are.
CIAAll the time I thought I was smuggling the hard drive containing the secrets, the hard drive containing the secrets was smuggling me.
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
CIASecret #19,531.974. A lie told to a counterintelligence officer doesn't necessarily equate to a truth, but it will tend to work out that way.
- (from 'Real Men Don't Get Published')
CIAYou start off your career as an intelligence officer assuming every claim is either true or false. As the years go by, you begin to suspect it's more complicated than that. When at long last you become a mature intelligence officer, you realize it's not even that complicated.
CIATypical themes in CIA human intelligence collection include money, sex, treason, and lust for power. ... And those are just the things you need to requisition a good laptop.
- ('America's Funniest Covert Intelligence Officer')
CIAThe International Spy Museum is located in Washington DC. The International Spy Zoo is located across the river in Langley, Virginia.
CIAAt CIA we're committed to transparency in government. In fact, we create transparent governments every day.
CIAIn 1942 Colonel William 'Wild Bill' Donovan created the Office of Strategic Services, which would later become the Miss USA Beauty Pageant.
CIABlack budgets make you look slimmer.
- (CIA research manager, poet and covert activist)
CIAWhen it comes to working with heads of state, my preferred variety is the titular.
CIAIt's just CIA being CIA.
CIASecret 16913011. Better a CIA front than a CIA backside.
CIASpookSpeak. Agent (n.) The average of a double agent and no agent at all.
CIAA typical breakfast for a CIA ops officer consists of a pastry and a piping hot cup of Armageddon.
CIAAt CIA we're not above criticism – more like in a back alley on the other side of town.
CIAMirror, mirror on the wall, please point your cam at the shower stall. – [context classified]
CIAThe enemy of my enemy, and my enemy, are both on the payroll.
CIAFew are pitched, but many are recruited.
CIALife at CIA isn't all spying, sex and gunplay. Every week or so you have to leave the HQS building and go home to pick up your mail.
CIAThe recruitment of a single asset begins with a thousand drinks.
CIASecret 50023101. It isn't the number of assets you recruit, it's the quality of the acrylic award plaques you get for recruiting them.
CIAAt CIA, there's a fine line between getting blown and getting blown.
CIAA reporter asked why the abstract art collection at Langley is classified Secret. As one who's seen it, I ask why it isn't Top Secret/SCI.
CIACIA under siege? More like doing siege doggy style.
CIAEvery man and woman is a spy agency of one.
CIAHe who fights and runs away / May live to fight another day / But he whose foe to flee does pay / Shall get promoted at CIA
CIAAs a CIA officer, I consider it an honor to give my life for my country. I just wish getting a new life didn't involve so much paperwork.
CIAIf it's not a crime to spy on an allied intelligence service, it's a crime not to.
CIAYou saw 9/11 coming? I gave 9/11 the handjob, and you weren't even in the room.
CIADelusion is believing you work for the CIA when you don't. Illusion is believing you don't work for the CIA when you do.
CIASome spooks work with flaps and seals. Others, with slaps and feels.
CIAThese days, my cover is the only part of me that gets blown.
CIAI never met a man I didn't mic.
CIAIt's a myth that if you join the CIA you can never see your family again. Most members of my family are still at least faintly visible.
CIAMan shall propose, God shall dispose, and a CIA spokesperson refuse to disclose.
CIASecret 1391.3.6. Assign a young operations officer old assets.
CIAThey asked me if she was an agent provocateur. I answered no, and passed the polygraph. ... Obviously, she was an agente provocatrice.
CIASecret 481080. If you can't pay the loot, don't recruit.
CIALie not with the uncleared if you talk in your sleep.
CIASecret 24. The more expensive the CIA office furniture in a movie, the cheaper the screenplay.
CIAYour loyalty is not for sale? … How much to rent it?
CIAIntelligence Community Dis of the Day: 'Judging from his rate of motion, he definitely qualifies as an agent-in-place.'
CIAAs a CIA officer, I'm never swayed by emotions. Uprooted, hurled through the air, and smashed to pieces on the ground maybe, but never swayed.
CIACan I be cleared for the coffee and doughnuts, but not for the rest of the intelligence briefing?
CIA AssetsSecret 146250. A fool and his assets aren't soon parted.
CIA Cyber Ops SloganCIA Cyber Ops: blue screen of death of death.
CIA Mind ControlCIA mind control? I personally know several CIA officers who are able to control their minds.
CIA OperationsIf this doesn't work, we'll never smell the end of it.
CIA OperativeEverything you need to become a CIA operative is already within you. While you were sleeping we implanted it under your skin.
CIA World FactbookSecret 33183551. Never update the CIA World Factbook until *after* you've updated the world.
CircusYou run away to join *another* circus.
Classified InformationThere are more classifications than there are secrets. (U//ORCON//NOFORN//NOCONTRACTOR)
Cleaning UpWe can never clean up after ourselves, we can only clean up during ourselves.
ClearancesWith each clearance granted, a greater clearance is revoked.
ClearancesThe funniest clearance is the Q clearance. The saddest clearance is Sensitive But Unclassified.
ClearancesUncleared, and cleared for nothing, are not the same.
Clenched FistA clenched fist cannot give the finger.
ClevernessMy father always told me I was too clever times half.
ClichesZombie cliche, n. A cliche that has attained a 'second life' through its use in new but equally trite contexts. 2. A cliche about, or spoken by, zombies.
ClichésAll things being equal, you'd never need to use this cliché.
ClicksEvery link you click saves one life, and ends another.
ClockSaw a scientist on TV holding a picture of a clock hand approaching midnight. Apparently we're going to have six more weeks of winter.
ClothesClothes make the man. Capes, the superman.
ClownsThe history of Western civilization can be divided into two main periods: the Clowns-Are-Funny era, and the Clowns-Are-Scary era.
CointelproseIt's always an appropriate time / For your intel reporting to rhyme!
Cold Hard FactsCold hard facts tend to spoil when exposed to air.
Collateral DamageNot all damage is collateral, but all collateral is damage.
CollectivismA little collectivism never hurt everybody.
Comic TimingThey laughed at Jesus, they laughed at Einstein, they laughed at Gandhi. What did these three have in common? Great comic timing.
CommentsPlease enter your comments in the space provided below (if you catch my drift).
ComplicityComplicity is the mother of convention.
CompromiseOne compromises much to remain uncompromising.
ConcealTo conceal is to reveal, and to reveal is to conceal.
Condoms and BalloonsI'd rather think a condom was a balloon, than think a balloon was a condom.
Conference Calls"You are now joining the meeting as a useless sycophant and/or hanger-on." – suggested automated conference call greeting for the other 98% of us
ConfigurationSecret 72252135. Depending on the configuration, you can *only* have your cake and eat it too.
Confusion Agents'Confusion agent' is a redundancy.
CongressWhich one of the Founding Fathers came up with the name 'Congress?' Based on his lifestyle, I've always assumed it was Thomas Jefferson.
Congressional HearingsA congressional hearing on a covert action scandal is typically about as scandalous, but involves more covert action.
ConscienceWhen wrestling with your conscience, watch out for its trademark move: the piledriver.
Conscience and the LawIf the law is at odds with your conscience, take the two of them out drinking – by the end of the night they'll be best buddies.
ConservatismAs an American conservative, while I oppose the invasion of privacy, I support the privatization of that invasion.
- (legendary CIA officer, poet and covert activist)
ConspiracyNever attribute to conspiracy that which can be explained by a deeper, more sinister conspiracy.
ConspiracyDon't hate the conspiracy, date the conspiracy!
ConspiracyThe aim of the conspiracy is to come up with an aim for the conspiracy.
ConspiracyRemember, vast government conspiracies create jobs.
Conspiracy TheoriesI don't subscribe to conspiracy theories unless they include the swimsuit issue for free.
Contact HighEvery high is a contact high.
Contact ReportSecret 9.6. When writing a contact report, the term 'intense vocalization' should be used in place of words like 'moan,' 'pant' and 'sigh.'
ContemptContempt breeds familiarity.
- (noted CIA officer, poet and covert activist)
ContractionsTop 3 most painful contractions: 3. Economic 2. Uterine 1. Grammatical
ControlControl is under the situation.
CoolI was into evaporative thermoregulation before it was cool.
Copying and PastingWhat you're really copying and pasting is copying and pasting itself.
CorporationsA corporation is considered a 'person' in the legal sense only. Obviously no human could emit dazzling light from their body like that.
Corrupted DataIf the criteria was whether it demanded a cash bribe, what data wouldn't be considered corrupted?
CounterintelligenceIn the strip club of CIA counterintelligence, the dancer performs in an overcoat, while members of the audience get naked.
Counterintelligence*All* counterintelligence is offensive.
CounterintelligenceWhat we need is a multidisciplinary approach to counterintelligence. The more frequently a CI officer gets paddled, the better.
CounterterrorismIf you see something, CIA something.
Counterterrorism BriefingsAttended the latest counterterrorism briefing at CIA HQS. Hackneyed dialogue, boring plot, gratuitous sex scene. One and a half stars.
CourageA tiger can't eat you if you hide in a lion's stomach.
CourageShow me a man who's willing to fight when he has no hope of victory. Because I want to fight that man.
CoverSaying is one thing, doing is your cover.
Cover StopLife is just another cover stop.
Cover StoryLife is a continual backstopping of one's cover story.
Covert ActionCan God design a covert action that's so secret even He doesn't know what He's doing?
Covert ActionIf a covert action fails, the next one will be ten times more expensive. If a covert action succeeds, the next one will be priceless.
Covert ActionCovert action speaks quieter than words.
Covert ActionCovert action is diplomacy carried to its logical contusion.
Covert Action and DiplomacyCovert action is the coffee and donuts of international diplomacy.
Covert OpsSecret 10022122. If the high point of a CIA covert operations program is higher than the low point, that program is a failure.
Crass CommercialismI despise crass commercialism – though I have nothing against crassness itself.
CrisisIf we’re going to prepare for the worst, let’s damn well make sure it happens.
- ((
CriticsNever fish for compliments. Lob dynamite in the water.
Cult of IntelligenceBetter a cult of intelligence than a cargo cult of CI.
CustomersIf the customer is always right, try adjusting your riflescope.
CYAThey practice CYA the most who have the least A to C.
Cyber EspionageIn cyber espionage, the cloak and the dagger are one and the same.
Cyber SabotageCyber sabotage n. The subverting of an adversary by providing them with a functioning computer network.
CynicismThe darkest hour has only sixty minutes. But it has 3,600,000,000,000 nanoseconds.
CynicismNothing is more precious than a shared sense of community. Here, please take mine.
DaisiesA stone trips you. A daisy reaches up and pulls you down.
DamnedI'm damned if I do, but I'm only darned if I don't.
DanceNot dancing is also a dance.
DancingWhen the dancing starts, don't worry about what others will think of you, just get up and leave.
Danger and OpportunityIn danger lies opportunity. The bigger the danger, the bigger the lie.
Dangerous IdeasIs the idea that an idea that isn't dangerous isn't worthy of being called an idea dangerous?
Dangle OperationsSecret 80916003. If it doesn't hurt when they snatch it, it isn't worth dangling.
Dangling Participles'Lying in a beach chair, drink in hand, the sun sank below the horizon' is a dangling participle? I've seen the sun do that lots of times.
Dare to DreamDare to dream of dreaming daringly.
Dark AgeLiving in a dark age isn't so bad if you have night vision goggles.
Dark MatterDark matter is attitude.
Dark Night of the SoulAn upside of the dark night of the soul: no lines at the convenience store of the soul.
Dark WebWe're all auctioned on the dark web every day.
DaysHave a next day!
Dead HorsesThen again, is there any use *not* beating a dead horse?
Dealing with Difficult PeopleIf you keep a copy of "Dealing with Difficult People in the Workplace" in your cubicle, guess who the difficult person in your workplace is.
DeathSooner or later, most of us die from complications of being ourselves.
DeathFlightless birds, too, fall to earth.
Death and RelationshipsThey say death ends a life, not a relationship. But usually the relationship is at least partly responsible.
Death is Not the EndDeath is not the end. Death is the middle linebacker.
DeathbedSecret 45810161. We're all on our deathbed, but some of us are jumping up and down on the mattress.
DeceptionLife begins at deception.
DeceptionLife begins at deception.
DemocracyBackroom intrigues punctuated by occasional covert action are no substitute for democratic government. They ARE democratic government.
DemonsWhen wrestling with your demons, try to use more convincing moves than the bronco buster, the slingshot, and the worm.
DesperationDesperate measures call for desperate times.
DevastatedTo be devastated is a luxury of the devastatable classes.
DIADIA-va (n.) An employee of the Defense Intelligence Agency with an attitude.
Different DrumTo make someone stop marching to the beat of a different drum, march alongside them.
Dignity of OfficeDue to budget challenges, the dignity of office has been replaced with the dignity of cubicle.
DigressDigress v. [Portmanteau of di- ("twofold," "double") + progress (to develop toward a more advanced state)] To be twice as informative and enlightening.
DigressingRemember: they can't prove you're digressing if you don't specify a topic.
Diplomacy'Diplomatic mission' is an oxymoron.
DiplomacyDiplomacy and intelligence are sisters – which explains all the pinching and hair pulling.
Director's CutDirector's cut? Let's hope it's a major artery.
DirtSecret 27915981. After you dig up the dirt, put it back in the hole.
Dirty Little SecretsHow a dirty little secret gets found out is usually a dirtier little secret.
DisIntelligence Community Dis of the Day: Her name will go down on history.
Dis InformationIt's dis information, with a space, where I come from.
DisasterWhen the bottom falls out, it'll be the new top.
DiscretionSecret A good backstop is the better part of discretion.
DiscriminationI judge people by the color of their skin, but in infrared.
- (The Covert Comic isn't like you, The Covert Comic is love you.)
DiversionYou create a diversion, and I'll try to escape. But don't make it *too* good a diversion, otherwise I might forget about escaping and stick around to watch. – [context classified]
Do It Right or Don't Do It at AllThe 'or' in 'Do it right or don't do it at all' is inclusive.
DocumentationA living, breathing document is also an eating and defecating one.
Dodging QuestionsI never dodge a question. I'm too busy dodging answers.
DogMy bark may be worse than my bite, but I can still hump a mean leg.
DogsLife is a series of dogs – and generally that series ends with a Rottweiler.
DogsThe older he gets, the more my neighbor talks to his dogs. The older I get, the more I talk about my neighbor talking to his dogs.
DogsEvery dog has its day, but does any dog know that?
Don't Touch meDon't touch me – I don't know where I've been.
Don't Try This at HomeDon't try this at home. Do this at home, or do this at home not, there is no try.
Don't Try This at HomeCome to think of it, maybe it's best if you don't try *anything* at home.
Doomsday ClockDoes the Doomsday Clock take into account daylight saving time? Because we may be in better shape than we think.
Double StandardA double standard is a scandal. A single standard is an atrocity.
DoubtWhen in doubt, doubt likes it if you talk dirty to her.
Doux DiligenceIt's *doux* diligence where I come from.
- (noted CIA officer)
DreamsAll my life I've dreamed of being one of the movers and shakers. So far I'm half way there: I’m a shaker.
DreamsNever lose sight of your dreams. There's no telling the trouble they'll get into if left unsupervised.
Dribs and DrabsMore dribs, fewer drabs.
DrinkingMaybe drinking wouldn't kill so many brain cells if brain cells didn't cause drinking to have such a low sense of self-esteem.
DrinkingMaybe drinking wouldn't kill so many brain cells if brain cells didn't give drinking such a low sense of self-esteem.
DrinkingYou don't drink to drown your sorrows, you drink to give them mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
Drinking and TalkingDiplomats drink while talking. Ops officers talk while drinking.
DrizzleNo thunder was ever angry, nor dark cloud somber. But every drizzle is definitely embarrassed.
- (Noted CIA officer)
DrugsAlways keep drugs out of the reach of children. And for maximum entertainment, keep them *just* out of reach.
Drugs and InterventionThe intervention is the drug.
Ducks in a RowAs long as you have two or fewer, your ducks are always in a row.
E = mCIAE = mCIA
- (noted CIA research manager)
E-mailThe longer the e-mail chain marked "Urgent!" drags on, the less urgent it was in the first place.
EcologyIf you're living in your own toilet, don't flush.
ElephantsWhat an elephant never forgets isn't worth knowing in the first place.
EmbarrassmentEmbarrassment is the cold sore on the lip of freedom.
EncryptionSecret 18033-3. If the key to her heart is 128 bits or greater, you're probably wasting your time.
End of DaysMost who claim to be citizens of the world couldn't qualify for a transit visa.
End UsersEnd users? You have no idea how much I'd love to.
End WellIf it can't end well, don't end it.
EnemiesThe problem with loving your enemies, is that sometimes your enemies love you back.
- (America's funniest covert intelligence officer!)
EnemiesAll I ask is that you judge me by the enemies I've made. I'm particularly proud of the large papier-mâché ones.
EnergyEnergy equals mass times the speed of light scared.
EnergyEnergy equals staff times the speed of life scared.
EnvironmentIf a band plays a slow song at a Live Earth concert, it's OK to hold up your cigarette lighter, as long as you don't actually light it.
Erection PillsKnowing I paid fifty dollars for an erection pill would make me need another one.
Escape VelocitySometimes escape velocity is a negative number.
EspionageI would never recruit an intelligence agent who was willing to have me for a case officer.
EspionageI would never recruit an intelligence asset who was willing to have me for a case officer.
EspionageSecret 003126. In espionage, useful intelligence tends to come in dribbles. And that's a polite way of putting it.
EspionageThe expert crowd is adept at blending into a spy.
EspionageWho spies on my ally / Is likewise my ally
EspionageAn intelligence agent is to intelligence as a nerve agent is to nerves.
Espionage and Covert ActionGentlemen do not read each other's mail. They write it.
Essential versus PeripheralIs the line between the essential and the peripheral essential or peripheral?
EternityEternity merely postpones the inevitable.
Ethnic CleansingBy stripping it of natural moisturizers, ethnic cleansers leave your ethnicity dry, wrinkled and flaky.
EverythingThat everything happens for a reason in no way implies that anything does.
EvidenceThe claim that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence is extraordinary.
EvidenceExtraordinary claims inspire extraordinary evidence.
ExceptionsThe exception grooves the rule.
Exclamación, signo deIn Spanish, an exclamation mark is used at the beginning as well as the end of a sentence. If you're going to be getting excited, Spaniards want as much advance warning as possible.
Exotic DancerThree legs. To me, *that's* an exotic dancer.
EyewashThis secret is eyewash.
EyewashSecret 21021190. Always write your eyewash so that you're covered in case it becomes true.
Facial RecognitionTo defeat facial recognition technology, disguise your face to look like who you really are.
FactsLet the facts lie for themselves.
FactsLet the facts speak for themselves, and they'll generally plead the Fifth.
FadsThe Law of Fads. By day 30 of any fad, a 102-year-old woman will have successfully participated, and a teenager will have died trying.
Fair to MiddlingIs it closer to fair or to middling?
FakeThe first fake was also an original.
Fake NewsNews (n.) Fake fake news.
FakingIt's easier to fake an orgasm than to fake not having one.
Fallback ActionFallback action: back all factions.
Falling DownHave you ever been walking along, and suddenly the toe of your shoe catches on the ground and you almost trip and fall on your face? No? ... Good, me neither (I was just checking).
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
False Statements Under OathThe statements I provided under oath were not false, they were substantially mispronounced.
FamiliarityFamiliarity breeds contempt? Gee, I never heard *that* idea before.
Family ValuesHate is not a family value. Hate is family itself.
Farewell TourThis farewell tour known as life.
Fat PeopleIf E = mc², this presumably explains all the energetic fat people.
Father's DayOpen letter to my wife and kids: If Father's Day has already passed, then thanks for the best Father's Day any dad could ever hope for.
Father's DayYou were the last guy with me on Saturday night. – entry in Father's Day essay contest: 'You're a Father If ...'
FearWe don't have to live in fear. We can move out to the suburbs and commute to fear instead.
FearNever love that which you fear. Always fear that which you love.
FearThe only thing we have to fear is we itself.
Femme FataleSecret 28322. Boring an enemy agent to death also qualifies one as a femme fatale.
FilmThe best thing about viewing a letterbox version of a film is that you see a lot less of it.
- ('America's Funniest Covert Intelligence Officer')
FilmsWhat kind of films do I prefer? It depends on the substrate.
Final AnalysisIn the final analysis, jokes about the phrase "in the final analysis" should definitely be included, because it would be a shame to pass up an opportunity like that.
Finding ThingsThe saying 'You always find a thing in the last place you look for it' is refutable at will.
Finger BumpOpen letter to the Italian national soccer team: When celebrating a goal, instead of the "fist bump," give each other the finger bump, like God and Adam in that Michelangelo painting.
Finger PointingPeople who say 'Let's not point fingers' are pointing talons.
First PitchWhen a celebrity throws out the first pitch at a baseball game, I think it should count. If the celebrity throws a strike, leave 'em in.
Fish OilIf fish oil is so good for brain function, how come it didn't help the fish?
Fly off the HandleCan someone please reattach me to the handle? I need to fly off it again.
Folk Song RuleThe Folk Song Rule. If the number of people who know a folk song about you is ≥ 2, the probability that you died violently is > 90%.
Follow Your BlissI tried following my bliss, but it employed countersurveillance and got away.
Forbidden FruitIt could have been worse: instead of forbidding a fruit, God could have mandated a vegetable.
ForecastingIf you must forecast, play it safe and forecast the future.
Foreign PolicyA sensible foreign policy is worth a hundred covert operations. ... Only twelve more ops to go.
Forgive and ForgetTo forgive and forget is noble, but to forget is more efficient.
Forgive and ForgetI'm willing to forgive and forget, but damned if I'll be forgiven and forgotten.
FortnightIf you've ever stayed on a military base, you know why two weeks is called a fortnight.
Fortune CookieIf you want to read the fortune, you've got to break the cookie.
Four-letter WordsThe ultimate four-letter word is 'I.'
FreedomThe clash of freedoms isn't necessarily the sound of ideas.
- (America's funniest covert intelligence officer)
FreedomFreedom without discipline is chaos. Discipline without freedom is tyranny. Therefore, freedom with discipline is tyranny and chaos.
FreedomA little taste of freedom, and a lot of people's lives spiral totally into control.
Freedom of ConscienceI support freedom of conscience. I set my own conscience free years ago.
Freedom of Information ActWWJD: What Would Jesus Declassify?
Freedom Of Information ActThe unredacted text hides a black smudge mark.
Freedom vs SecurityThose who would trade freedom for security deserve neither. At least hold out for faster downloads.
Freedom vs. SecurityThose who would trade freedom for security shall be forced to throw in extra draft picks.
FreethinkerI'm a freethinker, but I do charge per diem.
FriendsThey say it's the friend you can call at 4:00 a.m. who matters. You can call me at 4:00 a.m. – just be sure to speak clearly after the beep.
Furtive GlancesSecret 0.8913981. A furtive glance usually isn't.
FutureActually, here in the future, what everyone longs for is 15 minutes of total anonymity.
FutureHere in the future, the best exit strategy is still the time warp.
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
FutureMessage to the future: I'll help you if you help me.
FutureThere is no future. You'll see.
Future'Like' there's no tomorrow???
GenderIf men could get pregnant, you just know they'd get pregnant twenty or thirty times a day.
GeneralsGenerally speaking, generals shouldn't speak.
Get Over ItPlease get over getting over it.
Giant-JugglingDwarf-tossing may be banned, but giant-juggling is still perfectly legal.
Glass Half Empty or Half FullAt the atomic level, the glass is 99.99% empty space. Hope this helps.
Global AffairsWhere I work, you're not considered an expert on global affairs until you've had at least one on every continent.
Global WarmingI cried because I had no carbon credits. Then I met a man with no carbon.
- ('America's funniest covert intelligence officer')
GloryActually, if guts are involved, I'd rather not have the glory.
Go Ahead, See if I CareGo ahead, see if I care. (And if you find out I do care, please let me know.)
GodI assume God isn't constantly depressed at the suffering of those souls cast into hell for all eternity for denying Him. On the other hand, I assume God doesn't just forget about these people either. ... Probably God is sort of mildly bummed out all the time.
GodWhenever God opens one secure vault, He automatically closes and locks all the others.
GodIf God had an operating budget, would it cost more to run heaven or hell?
God and DoorsWhenever God kicks in a door, He padlocks it later.
God and the UniverseGod does not play dice with the universe - He plays Russian roulette.
- ('America's Funniest Covert Intelligence Officer')
GodsWhom the gods would destroy, they first make gods.
GolfWhen C.S. Lewis characterizes the path to hell as "the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts," his description sounds suspiciously like a golf course.
GolfWhat angers you masters you. What mildly annoys you Puerto Rican Opens you.
Good Intel, Bad IntelSecret 89715271. Good intel assets get you promoted. Bad intel assets get you intel.
Good ListenerNot a good listener??? When have I ever failed to receive your HTTP request and indicate your destination IP address and port???
Good Things in LifeI don't expect the good things in life to be handed to me. Just wheel them up to the sofa, and I'll reach over and get them myself.
Good Versus EvilSometimes, what seems like an evil is really the good in disguise (which, if you think about it, is kind of evil of the good).
GoogleThe future is not googleable. I found that on Google.
GovernmentThe mightiest of weapons is truth. And everyone knows you’re not permitted to enter a Government building with a weapon.
GovernmentIt's true we're borrowing from future generations. But we're doing it to pay dead people, so really it kind of evens out.
GovernmentI’m a Federal official. So when my wife tells me I’m the hottest thing she’s ever seen, I know she means it; because she knows that if she was lying I’d have to arrest her.
GovernmentWhen people really fear the government, they get jobs there.
GovernmentThe government that peers over your shoulder can also look down your shirt.
Gratuitous Sex and ViolenceWhen you say 'gratuitous sex and violence,' do you mean as in uncalled for and inappropriate, or as in provided free of charge?
GreedThere's a fine line between greed and thoroughness.
GridBetter live off the grid, than live off the grid.
Grim ReaperHe may be called the Grim Reaper, but his body language says "This is one fun job."
GrudgeIt's not necessarily wrong to hold a grudge, as long as you refrain from heavy petting.
GrudgesWhen nursing a grudge, lie sideways, position yourself nose to nipple, and don't push the back of your grudge's head.
GunsI know it’s just a silly superstition, but I never go out of the house without my lucky gun.
GunsWhere I come from, 'distraught gunman' is a contradiction in terms.
GunsPlease don't speak to me in that tone of gun.
GunsI'm not pro-gun so much as anti-anti-gun.
HammersWhatever makes a nail go in is a hammer.
HappinessFaulkner was right, only vegetables are happy. And even then, only the cucumbers and zucchini.
HappinessSecret #43,912.7. All revolutions devour their own children. All democratic reform movements lightly snack on their own children.
HappinessThe problem isn't that we postpone happiness, it's that we reschedule happiness to twenty years ago.
HappinessThere's no secret to happiness. It's actually classified top secret codeword.
Hard ChoicesHere in America we believe success is about making hard choices. And nobody makes choices harder than we do here in America.
Hard PartThe hard part is over. Now comes the soft, gooey part that's impossible to get off one's shoes.
HasslesThe cause of most hassles is assles.
HateThe statement "Hate is not a family value" does not apply to members of one's own family.
HateHate needs the hated more than love needs the loved.
Head of StateShe gives good head of state. – contact report
HeartbreakSome hearts are broken, others are popped like a zit.
HeavenThe sign 'Abandon hope, all who enter' also hangs at the gates of heaven.
HeliumThe universe is 9% helium. We're all talking in a squeaky voice all the time.
Helping OthersHow can I help others unless I first stop them from helping themselves?
Herding Cats"Like herding cats" ... you mean, like opening a can of tuna???
Here and NowIn the time it takes to say 'here and now,' it's already there and then.
Hidden AgendasI had a hidden agenda, but I forgot where I hid it.
HidingSecret 91.1.1. You don't go into hiding, hiding goes into you.
HistoryWhenever someone complains that the world isn't what it used to be, the world is what it used to be.
HistoryBe angry about history only if you're prepared to be ecstatic about history.
HistoryHistory may be written by the victors, but it's published, marketed and distributed by the aarons, the hannahs and the sols.
History and PhilosophyHistory is philosophy teaching by example? History is philosophy being made an example of.
Hokey PokeyIntelligence Forecast of the Week: Quantum physicists will discover that the hokey pokey is actually *more* than what it's all about.
HolidaysNovember 13th is World Kindness Day. November 16th is International Day for Tolerance. Trust me, you do NOT want to confuse them.
HolidaysA kitchen full of family makes for a family full of kitchen.
Holy GrailsIt's only a holy grail as long as you don't find it.
Home62% of all home injuries occur in the hotel room.
HomeI didn't come from a broken home. More like a hyperextended one.
Home ImprovementHome improvement is where the heart improvement is.
HoneypotAn attractive walk-in approached me at the embassy and proposed sex for secrets. At first I hesitated, but her information *was* pretty good.
HopeHope has feathers. Hope floats. And sometimes hope soars. Therefore, if it quacks, we can safely infer that hope is a species of duck.
House HuntersI like watching 'House Hunters' – especially when they kill, dress and skin the house.
HTML11% of Americans believe HTML is a sexually transmitted disease. In reality, HTML is caused by bacteria living in the lower bowel.
HubrisHubris n. The use, especially in a public setting, of the word hubris.
Human RightsTechnically speaking, shouldn't the title of world's worst human rights violator go to a country like Switzerland?
HUMINTContrary to popular perception, HUMINT is not acquired by means of sex, though you can get it from sitting on a public toilet.
HUMINT and TrufflesHUMINT is like truffles: it's expensive, to get it requires digging up dirt, and you spend a lot of time working with pigs.
HumorAlways keep your sense of humor – securely locked in a Class TXTL-60 safe.
Hung ParliamentOne man with the truth can make a majority – though depending on the size of his truth, he may constitute a hung parliament.
I Don't Care What You ThinkWhen I say I don't care what you think, I mean that I agree with you whatever you think.
Ice CreamIf living well is the best revenge, and revenge is a dish best served cold, living well must be ice cream!
IconoclastIn an opposite universe, the iconoclast creates the icon. – Why We Couldn't Possibly Be Living in an Opposite Universe, Reason 11.9
Ideas'Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.' Is it bad if I ask who said this?
IdeasNever reject an idea because it challenges conventional ways of thinking. Reject it because it's an idea.
IdeasI haven't the slightest idea – but I'm working to make my ideas slighter and slighter every day.
If I Had It to Do All Over AgainIf I had it to do all over again, I wouldn't change a thing (pretty much by definition).
IgnoranceIgnorance is blissinformation.
IllusionsThe explanation of the illusion is the greater illusion by far.
ImmigrationIf you want to be successful in comedy, you have to tell jokes that people in America today understand. So here goes: 'El presidente Bush ha mandado que los que no hablen ingles correctamente se vayan de los Estados Unidos inmediatamente.'
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
ImpossibleNever use the word 'impossible.' Use 'non-budgetable' – it's stronger.
IndifferenceI'm not indifferent. I'm adifferent.
- ('America's funniest covert intelligence officer')
InfluenceInfluence (n.) What an operations officer attempts to get a target under, in order to recruit that target to be an agent of.
Ink of the ScholarThe ink of the scholar is holier than the blood of the martyr, the latter having a tendency to gum up toner cartridges.
INTThe HUMINT refutes the SIGINT that refutes the OSINT that refuted the HUMINT.
IntelinkIntelink is the apocalypse it was created to help the Intelligence Community prevent.
IntelligenceFor a mid-level government employee, James Bond sure doesn't seem to get much sex.
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
IntelligenceSecret 2591. If you can't assure, obscure.
IntelligenceIntelligence is its own euphemism.
IntelligenceIntelligence is too important to be left to the intelligent.
Intelligence AssetsNo one intelligence assets are alike.
Intelligence AssetsA CIA ops officer never uses an asset as a 'discard' to protect more valuable assets. A country or two maybe, but never an asset.
Intelligence EstimatesSecret 41026092. The situation aspires to its intelligence estimate.
Intelligence FailuresThere are no intelligence successes, only intelligence failures gone wrong.
Intelligence LeaksIntelligence Community Dis of the Day. 'His analysis leaks for itself.'
Intelligence OfficersAn intelligence officer cannot afford to be a moralist. The entertainment expenses alone would bankrupt him inside a month.
Intelligence ReformMy position on intelligence reform? Doggy style.
Interagency CooperationInteragency cooperation is a two-way street. You drive on your agency's side of the street, I'll drive on mine.
International Day of NeutralityDecember 12th is International Day of Neutrality. It could have been another date, but nobody had a preference one way or the other.
InternetThe original Internet was spoken conversation, but there were too many 400 and 500 errors.
InternetThe Internet has made it possible to sit amok.
IotasOK, maybe one iota, or two iotas at most, but definitely not three.
IronyIrony, n. The realization that Paul Anka co-wrote the song 'My Way.'
IslamIf you die waging jihad, you shall be rewarded with 72 virgins in the afterlife. ... That’s you, plus six dozen adolescent girls, for the rest of eternity. Truly, Allah is just.
IssuesWhen getting out in front of an issue, always remember that you're running on a circular track.
It Goes Without SayingIt goes without saying – especially if it owes you rent.
It Is What It IsSecret 955-39. That it is what it is does not imply that it isn't what it isn't.
It Takes All KindsNot only does it take all kinds, it never gives any of them back.
ItalicsItalians speak in italics all the time.
James AngletonThere's a little bit of James Angleton in every CIA officer. Counterintelligence implants a portion of Angleton's DNA inside us when we EOD.
JobsIf you know what your job is, it's time to start looking for a new one.
JokesA joke at one's expense is its own reimbursement.
JokesIf the joke's on you, experts recommend keeping calm and utilizing the 'trap and roll' mount escape.
JournalismSecret 0.81201. 9 out of 10 stories with legs have cellulite.
JourneysI don't doubt that getting there is half the fun. What I want to know is: how much fun is being there?
JugglingI want to take a class to learn how to stop juggling.
JusticeWherever decent people fight against injustice, there you'll find me, offering odds.
JusticeIt's good that justice is blind – I just wish she had a better sense of smell.
Keep Your Rear to the GroundFor years I thought the saying was 'Keep your rear to the ground.' And truth be told, it's always worked pretty well for me.
Kick AssHe who kicks ass should not wear shoes with laces.
Kids TodayKids today want the world handed to them on a silver platter. Back when I was young, we expected nothing less than a platter made of gold.
Kill and TellIf I didn't have to kill you, I wouldn't tell you.
KillingYou don't teach a man something by killing him. That's my job.
KindnessIf being kind is more important than being right, how about not saying this constantly???
KindnessThe teaching 'Be kind, for everyone you meet is carrying a heavy burden' is that burden.
KirkukThe fact that London is full of somebody elses isn't necessarily a reason to move to Kirkuk.
Know ThyselfKnow thyself – provided thou hath an official need to know.
KnowingNot knowing is more than half the battle. – National Clandestine Service motto
KnowingKnowing that knowing is half the battle is 25% of the battle.
Knowing and the BattleThe battle is twice the knowing.
Knowing BetterYou should know better than to know better!
Knowing One's Ass from a Hole in the GroundTo actually know one's ass from a hole in the ground is to appreciate that the difference is mostly cosmetic.
Knowing What One is DoingI said I knew what I was doing. I never said I knew what would happen after I did it.
KnowledgeIf it's not what you know, but who you know, what's the point of knowing this?
Knowledge and PowerKnowledge may be power, but I'm not really into "being powerful."
Lady-KillerSecret 6391391. If she calls you a lady-killer, note that she isn't dead.
Large Hadron ColliderSay what you will about the Large Hadron Collider, it keeps particle physicists off the streets.
Late to the PartyThere's none so late to the party as he who hosts it.
LaughIt isn't he who laughs last, but he whose laugh lasts.
Laugh Because You Must Not CryWhen laughing because you must not cry, can you please not make that snorting sound?
Laugh So That You Don't CryWhat if, when laughing so that you do not cry, you laugh so hard you cry?
LaughterLaughter always pardons … after it has indicted, convicted, condemned and summarily executed.
LawLaw floats in a sea of ethics – provided the law is lightweight enough and the ethics sufficiently salty.
Leaking SecretsLeak not the secret, lest the secret leak you.
LeaksYou can't plug a leak without getting your fingers wet.
LeaksSome secrets are leaked. Others, sh*t out.
LeaksWhen investigating a leak, the first question isn't who, but from what orifice.
Leave Well Enough AloneLeave well enough alone. Take bad enough out for dinner and a movie.
Less is MoreLess is more, but only marginally.
Lessons LearnedWhen is the Lessons Learned review on the Lessons Learned review?
Lessons LearnedThe lessons-never-learned review is way more useful.
Lest We FuggedaboutitLest we fuggedaboutit.
LevelheadedBe levelheaded, that your head be not leveled.
LeversGive me a lever, and I shall move the world (… oh, and I'll also need a world).
LibertyThe problem with trading liberty for security: per IRS rules, fair market value of bartered services received is taxable income.
LifeNo one values life less than a paid assassin. And yet, no one values it more.
LifeLife is like an onion: I find it most agreeable fried.
LifeNot only is life too short, it has acne and looks geeky in gym clothes.
LifeLife is like a kumquat: some parts are sweet, some parts are bitter, and its name sounds funny.
LifeIf I had my life to live over? Like I don't live my life over every goddamn day.
LifeWhatever life isn't too short for, it's too long for by half.
LifeLife is a denied area.
Life Is Too ShortApparently life *isn't* too short to go around making pronouncements about all the things life is too short for.
LightsabersLightsaber User Manual, Section 7, Note 7.52.5. Never look into the emitter matrix of your lightsaber to see if it's functioning properly.
LimousineThe longer the limo, the shorter the ride.
Listening DevicesSecret 4747. If you find two listening devices in your hotel room, disable one.
Literary RegionalismLiterary regionalism is the description, through a weaving of dialect, characters and customs, of why you don't want to live in that region.
Live Fast, Die YoungLive fast, die young – which is it going to be???
LivingDoes the saying 'Live life one day at a time' refer to solar days or stellar days? Because the difference can be nearly 4 minutes.
Living Beyond One's MeansI just found out I've been living beyond my means. When the hell did I get means???
Living MachinesWe'll know we've built a machine that's truly alive when it commits suicide.
LoftinessSome change their party for the sake of lofty principles. Last weekend I changed my principles for the sake of a loft party.
Lonely at the TopThose who complain that it's lonely at the top never invite you up there to keep them company.
Loose EndsI said to tie up loose ends – I never said anything about torturing them.
LoveThe problem is, I'm in love with you, but you're in love with me.
LoveIt takes all kinds of people to make the world go 'round – but only two to make it bounce.
LoveLove covers a multitude of sins – almost as big a multitude as sin itself.
LoveLove isn't gazing together in the same direction, but looking around in opposite directions, to cover each other against hostile fire.
LoveLove is like a rose: only an amateur attempts to handle it without elbow-length, puncture-resistant, knuckle-reinforced pruning gloves.
LoveBe swift to love. You'll get it over with sooner.
Love Above All ElseWhen placing love above all else, if you use a crane, the upper sheave on the jib isn't higher than your love, it's *part* of your love.
Love and UnderstandingA lot of people think they need love and understanding, when all they really need is to win the lottery.
Love Is in the AirLove is in the air. Remember to maintain your lead and follow through on your shot.
Love the One You're WithIf I *can* be with the one I love, is it still OK to love the one I'm with?
Lowest Common Denominator*Every* common denominator is the lowest.
LyingLying in politics isn't as old as the hills, lying in politics created them.
Make or BreakThe 'or' in 'make or break' is inclusive.
Making a DifferenceAnybody can make a difference – the idea is to make a sum.
Man and ToolMan has become a tool of his tools? Man, what a tool.
ManagementIf you can lose your head when all about you are keeping theirs, chances are I work for you.
MapsThe map is not the territory. The territory contains way more errors.
MarriageMy wife and I have an understanding: No.
MarriageMy wife says I'm great in bed – I don't snore or hog the blankets.
MartyrdomNot only am I willing to die for my beliefs, I'm starting to get pretty good at it.
MartyrdomAs thou stoneth the martyr, so thou martyreth the stone.
MaterialismThere's more to life than acquiring things. There's also leasing out those things and investing the net income to acquire still more things.
Math0 – 0 = –
MathematiciansCelebrity mathematicians die in 3.14159265359's.
MediaIf you want unslanted news reporting, go find some unslanted news.
MediaWhen media distorts the truth, it's only responding in kind.
Median of TimesIt was the best of times, it was the worst of times; which means that, by definition, it was also the median of times.
Medium is the MessageThe medium is the message, the message is encrypted, and the encryption key is controlled by NSA.
MeetingsHaving a meeting to attend is still the best way to get out of having to attend a meeting.
MeetingsThe Law of Meetings: Few are the meeters, many are the meetees.
Meetings'Meeting' shouldn't be a dirty word. It shouldn't be a word at all.
MenWhy do men have nipples? Because we can.
Men and WomenActually, behind every man, great or not, there's an average of 1.2 women. So what exactly is your point?
Men and WomenMen and women are equal, but women and men aren't.
MercyWhen throwing yourself on the mercy of the court, use the diving elbow drop.
Method and MadnessThere's less than 2% method in the madness, and only about 6% madness. The rest is fillers, preservatives, and artificial coloring.
Middle ClassRead that middle class Americans may soon be an endangered species. Wondered how long before it's illegal to trap them and sell their pelts.
Middle ManagementSuccess in middle management is about stampeding by example.
MildewIt's said that some walk in the rain, while others just get wet. As for me, I tend to mildew.
Mind ControlMind control means using both hemispheres.
Misery Loves CompanyMisery loves company, but company just wants to be friends.
MisinformationMisinformation es tusinformation.
MisogynismMisogynist es tusogynist.
Mistaken IdentityMistaken identity? As if every identity isn't a mistake.
Moments and WordsFor every moment for which we have no words, there are ten thousand words for which we have no moments.
MoneyMoney is the poot of all evil.
Moral BankruptcyIf you're morally bankrupt, declare Chapter 13 moral bankruptcy – that way you get to keep your moral car.
MoralityWhen they say 'You can't legislate morality,' do they mean it's against the law?
MorningMorning has broken? Please don't fix it before noon.
Mortgaging the FutureLet us not mortgage our future – let us reverse mortgage our past.
MothersSooner or later we all quote our mothers. – Bernard Williams – my mother
MotivationalSecret 1.1111884. No one can make you feel inferior without my consent.
MotivationalNever be ashamed to say "I don't know" (unless no one's talking to you).
MotivationalThere are no menial jobs. But you're welcome to check back next month.
MotivationalInnovative thinking combined with decisive action results in career-making internal investigations.
MotivationalThe difference between slime and sublime is *you be*.
MotivationalIf you don't run your own life, someone else may ask you to run theirs.
MotivationalIf you can dream it, you can do it. If you can't dream it, the CIA probably doesn't want you doing it.
Motivational'Motivational speech' is an oxymoron.
MotivationalEvery problem is an opportunity in disguise – you can usually tell by looking at the nose.
MotivationalYou have your whole life ahead of you – and if you don't get moving, it's going to lap you for sure.
Motivational QuoteGo limper, play deader.
Motivational Quote from RussiaThe Russian word for 'team' is 'komanda.' In Russia they have a motivational saying: Is strongly advised to have 'da' in 'komanda.'
Motivational QuotesIt's amazing what you can accomplish if you're really terrible at accomplishing things.
Motivational QuotesThere's no time like the present – *any* time is better than now.
Motivational QuotesThey never snap, who remain forever soggy.
Motivational QuotesIn the time it takes to say 'It's impossible,' someone has already finished saying 'It can't be done.'
Motivational QuotesIf it can dream you, it can do you.
Motivational Quotes for ZombiesStagger like nobody's watching. Eat brains like you'll never be shot in the head. – Motivational Quotes for Zombies
MuteSorry, what was the question? I was listening on mute.
Naked AggressionThe phrase 'naked aggression' is a redundancy.
Names"I thought you were the one," I told her sadly. "You were close," replied Theone.
NamesA lovely female name in your language sounds like the word for a bathroom utensil in someone else's.
NanointelligenceGet into nanointelligence before it gets into you. – suggested recruiting slogan, CIA Directorate of Science and Technology
National Intelligence EstimateSecret 13613013. Ask not of whose nation a National Intelligence Estimate is written; it's written of thine own.
National SecurityPower exercised under the cloak of national security is odious. But power exercised under the microkini of national security is totally hot.
NDEHow do we know the tunnel leading toward the Light isn't a throat?
NecrophiliaI'm not into necrophilia, though this could be considered a matter of semantics when I masturbate.
Need to KnowNeed to know does not imply need to give a damn.
NegotiationThe statement 'You don't get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate' is just an opening position.
Never BeforeNever before has before seemed more like never.
New Lease on LifeThe downside of being given a new lease on life: having to choose between a straight-line or double declining balance depreciation method.
New York TimesThe New York Times said "A clear conscience needs no public information officer." The Times doesn't have a public information officer – they have a Vice President for Corporate Communications.
Nice GuysLeo Durocher said "Nice guys finish last." Leo Durocher's career managerial record says a-holes finish third.
No Easy AnswersNo easy answers? I know plenty of answers that'll do it on the very first date.
No HurryNo hurry – take all the time you have.
No Ifs, Ands, or ButsThere are no ifs, ands, or buts about it (there are, however, numerous howevers, althoughs, neverthelesses and notwithstandings).
NOCDog spelled backwards is God. NOC spelled backwards is NOC.
NOCWhen opportunity NOCs, it makes no sound.
Norman ConquestThe Norman conquest forever changed English from a mix of bad German and bad Latin, to a mix of bad German, bad Latin, and bad German-Latin.
Not Even CloseSometimes, 'not even close' means already there.
NothingNothing is more vital to our nation's security than timely, accurate intelligence. But don't tell nothing that, or it'll get a swelled head.
Nothing for GrantedCIA ops officers take nothing for granted. And nothing deeply resents it.
Nothing Lasts ForeverNothing lasts forever. Nothing's that brief.
NSAYou'll never hear me complain about NSA surveillance of US citizens (as long as you don't work for NSA).
Obscenity Law'Obscenity law' is a redundancy.
OccupyThe Occupy Wall Street movement faltered when activists realized that traders were quite busy already.
Ockham's RazorWhen William of Ockham stated his famous principle 'Ockham's Razor' in his book Summa Logicae, he waited until chapter twelve to say it.
Ockham's RazorWhen William of Ockham stated his famous principle 'Ockham's Razor' in his book Summa Logicae, he waited until chapter twelve to say it.
Old SayingI don't care what it says, I'm just comforted knowing there's an old saying.
Oldest Trick in the BookThe oldest trick in the book is the book.
One Handed WisdomWhat is the sound of one hand clapping … your smooth, firm, perfectly rounded buttocks?
One-Time PadIn the part of Langley where I come from, 'safe house' and 'one-time pad' mean the same thing.
One-World GovernmentI'm all for one-world government, assuming we can find a world.
OnomatopoeiaThe word 'onomatopoeia' sounds exactly like what it describes.
Open Secrets'Open secret' isn't an oxymoron, it's a redundancy.
OpinionJust because your opinion counts doesn't mean it should multiply.
OpinionsYou are entitled to your opinion. The consequences of your opinion are entitled to you.
OppressionWhoever oppresses my brother, oppresses me (because I was trying to oppress my brother first).
OrderMachine Out Of Order. New Order On Order.
- (noted CIA officer)
OrganizationsSecret 73.009. In a large organization, the term 'waste management' will tend toward redundancy.
OrgasmSpookSpeak. Orgasm n. A fake fake orgasm.
Original vs. CaricatureIn an opposite universe, the original imitates the caricature. – Why We Couldn't Possibly Be Living in an Opposite Universe, Reason 7491213
OutrageIf you're not outraged, you're not paying attention. ... Then again, if you're not paying attention, what makes people think you're going to notice their stupid bumper sticker in the first place?
OwnershipWhen challenged to take ownership, check to see if the property's condemned.
PainIf you have congenital analgia, and a doctor cures you, can you sue him for pain and suffering?
PainHand over the nociceptors, and nobody gets hurt.
Panama PapersPanama Papers n. (Intelligence Community) A brand of rolling papers used for smoking Panama Red.
Paper TigerIn a tissue paper jungle, the paper tiger is justly feared.
Paradigm ShiftParadigm shift: does that come before swing shift or after?
ParaprosdokianA paraprosdokian may be defined as a phrase, the second part of which is unexpected given the apparent meaning of the first, but let's not.
Past, Present, FuturePast, present, future: a collusion to perpetuate a delusion for the sake of an illusion.
PeaceSometimes I think the cause of peace would be immeasurably advanced if bullets could only travel one mile per hour. But then I think: what about all those people in Wisconsin?
PeacePeace beat upon you.
PeacePeace through strength – neutrinos through solid matter.
PeacePeace is too important to be left to the peaceable.
PeaceSecret 0.5914210. Peace is a mistress: you keep her with secrecy, deception and cash.
Peace and TruthIf the first casualty of war is truth, peace awards truth a medal, then discharges truth from the hospital to sleep on a park bench.
PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia is just the tip of the Pittsburgh.
PeoplePeople who need people who need people need the luckiest people in the world.
PeoplePeople who are needed by people who need people aren't the luckiest people in the world.
Personal DemonsI credit my mother for helping me to recognize my personal demons. She sewed my name tag on each one.
Personal DemonsI used to wonder why I didn't seem to have any personal demons. Come to find out: *I'm* a personal demon!
Personal InvolvementI said I wasn't personally involved in his assassination. I never said I didn't kill him.
PerspectivePutting things in perspective really puts putting things in perspective in perspective.
PerspectiveAn end table is a beginning table depending on your point of view.
PessimismMaslow was wrong - it's when the only tool you have is a screwdriver that every problem looks like a nail.
Peter PrincipleThe problem with the Peter Principle is that it assumes somebody somewhere is competent in the first place.
Photoshop of LifeIn the Photoshop of life, some of us need sharpening, some of us need resizing, and some of us need a whole lot of negative warp.
PhrenologyEver notice that phrenologists have funny-shaped heads?
PillsIs there a pill for wishing there was?
Placo DiemPlaco diem – appease the day.
Plausible DenialThere's plausible denial, but there's no such thing as plausible confirmation.
PleasantnessCan't we f*ck about something more pleasant?
PodiatryThey say the best classroom is at the feet of an elderly person. Certainly one can learn a lot about podiatry down there.
PoetryWhy is the poem called 'The Road Not Taken,' when it's about the road that WAS taken?
Political AgendaThe statement 'He does nothing for political reasons' implies no political agenda, or a very wise one.
Political EconomicsActually, if we refrained from fixing things that weren't broken, the global economy would likely collapse overnight.
PoliticsWhen transforming the political landscape, remember that manure makes the best fertilizer.
PoliticsThe people are never wrong. Luckily, they're also never the people.
PoliticsPolitics is the science of who gets what, when, and in which.
PoliticsWhat's real in politics is what voters decide is real. What's a real voter is decided by what's real in politics.
PolygraphNever lie on a polygraph. The needles get all bent, and then they ask you even more questions.
PolygraphI can pass any polygraph, as long as it's cut up into small enough bites.
PornographyOne person's pornography is another person's missing pornography.
PossessionsMy possessions no longer possess me. They sold me to a new owner last week.
PossibilitiesThe possibilities are limitless – you can't tell where they begin.
PossibilityThe possible is achieved in increments of the impossible.
Post-Traumatic Stress DisorderRemember: you can't get post-traumatic stress disorder as long as you're still being traumatized.
PosterityThe greatest gift you can give to posterity is a good kick in the posterior.
PotentialI've finally started realizing my potential ... is trying to kill me.
PowerFête the power!
PowerNever let power go to your head. There are much better parts of your body for power to go to.
PowerPower corrupts, but mediocre power corrupts mediocrely.
PowerWith great power numbs great responsibility.
Practical Jokes'Practical joke' is a redundancy.
Prepare for the WorstTo be prepared for the worst *is* the worst.
Preserving for PosterityWhen preserving for posterity, use 3/4 cups of sugar for each cup of item preserved, seal tightly, and store in a dry, dark place.
President's Daily BriefThe President's Daily Brief was originally called the President's Intelligence Check List. But when people started saying "Is that a PICL in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?" they changed the name.
PrideBefore swallowing your pride, chew it at least 32 times.
PrinciplesI standby my principles.
PrinciplesStand not by your principles so constantly that you start to look like you're loitering.
Prisoners of ConscienceIf you're a prisoner of conscience, try creating a distraction, then make a run for it while your conscience is looking the other way.
ProblemsOnce I put my problems into perspective, how long should I leave them in?
ProblemsIf a problem well stated is a problem half-solved, state it well again!
Product DisclaimersIf for any reason this product is unsatisfied with you, it may return you for a full refund.
ProgrammingBy 'executable,' I don't mean the program, I mean the programmer.
ProlificacyI've always been a prolific writer, though I do support a woman's right to choose.
PromisesI promise I'll always be true ... or at the very least, based on a true story.
ProphetsSecret 38911250. The well-adjusted make poor prophets. The semi-dysfunctional, middle class ones.
ProverbsIf the shoe fits, tell them you're from the future and you'll need their clothes too.
PsychologyIf anybody ever called me 'insecure,' I would die.
Public InterestPublic interest is defined by private apathy.
Public SpeakingI hate speaking in public, unless I'm the one talking.
PublishingA literary agent told me my manuscript had bestseller written all over it. I said I had no idea who could have done that.
PunctualityThe opposite of too late is not late enough.
PuppetsThe puppeteer pulls the puppet's strings. The puppet pulls the audience's strings. The audience pulls the puppeteer's strings.
Quality of LifeA key quality of life indicator is how frequently one has to listen to people who talk about quality of life.
Quantum EntanglementIt isn't the destination *or* the journey – it's this damn quantum entanglement again.
QuestionsIf you couldn't ask God one question, what would it be?
Quo Vadis?If we don't know where we're going, how do we know we're not already there?
- (America's funniest covert intelligence officer!)
QuotationsWhen quoting a statement, it's customary to end the quotation with a small dash. When quoting a true statement, an all-out sprint.
QuotesI read a quote attributed to the Beatles. What did they do, speak it in unison?
Quotes About AmericaA quote about Burundi is a quote about Burundi. But a quote about America is a quote about the quotee.
RacismActually, I might be OK with racial profiling, if they would just get my race right.
Radio CommercialsWhen a radio commercial plays and you're a member of the target audience, how many times do they repeat the phone number?
RainThe wisdom of coming in out of the rain is entirely a function of what's waiting for you inside.
Rape, Loot and PillageIf you loot first, you don't need to rape or pillage.
ReadingSecret 8.645. If you believe everything you read, better read everything.
RealityReality is that which, as soon as you start believing in it, goes away.
RealityWe're all divorced from reality – the only question is whether you're paying alimony or receiving it.
RecruitingSecret 2491711. Recruit the body, and the head will spy.
Recruiting Intel AssetsIf you've recruited one intelligence asset, they've recruited you all.
Recruiting Intelligence AssetsSecret 1.3.45. If you can't recruit the asset you love, love the asset you recruit.
RedactedThe real mystery isn't what's under the redaction mark, but what's above it.
RedactionRedact th*s.
Redress of GrievancesI support a redress of grievances, especially if it's strapless and tight-fitting.
RefrigerationRemember: if you don't open, you never have to refrigerate.
Refutation of Baldy's LawRefutation of Baldy's Law Baldy's Law: Some of it plus the rest of it is all of it. 1. Suppose some of it + the rest of it = all of it. 2. By King's Rule, there's always more of it. 3. Accordingly: all of it – some of it – the rest of it > 0, that is: All of it – (some of it + the rest of it) > 0. 4. Adding some of it + the rest of it to both sides of the relation, we have: All of it – (some of it + the rest of it) + (some of it + the rest of it) > some of it + the rest of it. 5. Or equivalently: some of it + the rest of it < all of it. 6. Therefore, some of it + the rest of it ≠ all of it. Thus, for all values of it, it is never the case that some of it plus the rest of it is all of it.
RegiftingRegifting is its own rereward.
RegiftingIf we never quite forgive a giver, how much less do we reforgive a regifter.
RegretsLet's not do something we'll regret later – let's do it now!
RejectionI've never had a problem with rejection. I've always been able to reject stuff any time I want.
RelationshipsFriends and lovers may come and go. As long as they go.
RelationshipsThere are relationships, and then there are relationaircraftcarriers.
RelativityIf you're traveling at the speed of light and you need to take a leak, whatever you do, don't aim forward.
ReligionThe Super Bowl has become so commercialized, its religious meaning is in danger of being lost completely.
ReligionThere is no Comedian but Allah, and you are His straight man.
ReligionIt bothers me when I hear people make negative comments about my religion. I worked hard to found that religion.
ReligionReligion divides people, but not into nearly enough pieces.
ReligionAll religions agree that the purpose of life is to serve God. Where they differ is in how God should be cooked.
ReligionThey say God always bats last. If I never had to play a road game, I bet I'd have a pretty good record too.
ReligionAgnostics question the existence of God. Believers waterboard it.
Remote SensingAll sensing is remote.
RepublicansSome things you just know are never going to happen. For example: a mime voting Republican. Oh sure, he might mime voting Republican, but he's never actually going to vote Republican.
ResistanceShe offered fierce resistance, but I politely declined. – Excerpt from ops report
- (noted CIA officer, poet and covert activist)
Restraining OrdersRemember: if they have a restraining order against you, you have a restraining order against them.
RevolutionCome the revolution, it'll probably be a good idea to stop saying 'Come the revolution.'
- (noted CIA officer)
RevolutionsAfter devouring their own children, revolutions with good oral hygiene always remember to floss.
Rhythm and BluesAsk not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your R&B.
RightsWhen exercising your rights, there's nothing more beneficial than the burpee.
RiotsIf there's rioting in the streets, use the sidewalk.
Risk AversionRisk averse? Put enough pints in me, and I'll risk the whole damn song!
- (noted CIA research manager, poet and covert activist)
RobotsEither every robot can dance the robot, or no robot can.
RobotsThe more advanced the robot, the less likely that it will want your job.
Rock-Paper-ScissorsRock, paper, scissors, and pretty much anything else for that matter, beats playing rock–paper–scissors.
Room for ImprovementRoom for improvement? I've got a whole mansion.
RumorsRumor shared, rumor squared.
Running AgentsSecret 210222. Some ops officers run agents – but most prefer trotting them.
Safe HouseA safe house is not a safe home.
Safety in NumbersI'm living proof there's safety in numbers. I once evaded enemy agents during Carnival in Rio by hiding inside a large papier-mâché two.
SafewordsSafeword is a contradiction in terms.
SambaSome folks samba to a different set of bagpipes.
Sanity CheckWe need a sanity check. … Yep, still insane.
SatanAny poor dope can be possessed by Satan. But to possess Satan: *that* makes God sit up and take notice!
SatelliteWhen Edward R. Murrow said "A satellite has no conscience," he was referring to early 1960's technology.
ScalingScaling doesn't scale.
ScandalPublicly acknowledged intelligence scandals are the conspicuously displayed jewelry of affluent states.
ScarsThe scar confirms the beauty, the beauty the scar.
ScarsSome are scarred long before they're wounded.
ScarsScared of scarring – scarred of scaring.
ScienceWhen some women donate their bodies to science, they're really turning them back in.
ScoundrelsSince when do scoundrels need refuge?
Second ChancesAmerica believes in second chances. We're just not sure how we feel about first ones.
SecrecyIf secrecy is the beginning of tyranny, declassification is its apotheosis.
SecrecyThere's less done in secret that should be made public than vice versa.
SecretsBig secrets are little compared to little secrets.
SecretsSome things are best kept secret. For all other cases, default to Top Secret Codeword.
SecretsSecrets have no morals, but not vice versa.
SecretsThere are no secrets. (TS/ORCON/NOFORN/NOCONTRACTOR/MULGX.1)
SecretsThere are some secrets you can't be cleared for unless you already know.
Secrets and SpyingIf a secret message doesn't self-destruct before you read it, it probably isn't worth your time.
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
Security ClearancesThe cleared renew their clearances every five years or so. The uncleared renew their clearances every day.
Security Through ObscuritySecret 21817001. Security through obscurity is proof of immaturity.
Seize the DaySeize the day / Squeeze the day / Tease the day / Please the day / Contract a disease from the day
SelfI refuse to let refusing to let something define me as a person define me as a person.
Self-helpAcknowledging your personal issues is the first step toward moving to Thailand.
Senate Select Committee on IntelligenceIt was the usual dog and pony show: the ponies riding the dogs. – after briefing the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
Set TheoryX outlawed ⇒ only outlaws will X, where X ∈ {G : people who care about G aren't all that interested in set theory anyhow}.
SexSecret #112,194.2. Sex is like nothing else you can experience. Nothing else you can experience is like stale donuts. Therefore, sex is like stale donuts.
SexAll ejaculations are premature.
SexYou don't "have" sex, sex "doesn't have" you.
SexSex n. Blend of 'Soon to be ex.'
Sex TherapistFor two years I was seeing a sex therapist. I'm now seeing a sex therapist.
SexologyIs a clit a small penis, or is a penis a small clit?
SexpionageIn real life, espionage and sex have so little to do with one another that for all practical purposes they could be married.
Sexual HarassmentIt's time we put an end to sexual harassment. To harass sex is just plain wrong.
Sexual Preference'Sexual preference?' What have you got?
SFWWhether it's SFW depends on your W.
SFWThe question isn't whether it's SFW, the question is whether W is SF it.
Sh*t HappensSh*t doesn't happen, happening sh*ts.
Sh*t Hits the FanIf enough sh*t hits the fan blades, they'll stop rotating.
- (noted CIA research manager)
ShameHave you no shame? Because if you need some, I've got a bunch I'm not using.
SilenceIf silence is the mother of truth, whoever said this owes child support.
SilenceYou have the right to become silent.
Similarities*All* similarities are eerie.
SinIt isn't the sins in your life that matter, it's the life in your sins.
SitcomsSitcoms have a laugh track because they must not have a cry track.
Sleeper AgentsSecret 704032. A major problem with sleeper agents is that they tend to suffer from sleep apnea.
Sleeper AgentsLet sleeper agents lie.
Sleeper AgentsA surprisingly large percentage of sleeper agents are clinically comatose.
SlothI vow never to embrace slothfulness. That would require extending my arms.
SlugfestA slugfest is a fight? I thought it was something *way* more interesting.
Smart WeaponsReal smart weapons play dumb.
SmelepathyIf fear is in the mind, and if dogs can smell fear, that makes dogs smelepathic!
SnipersBack azimuth detection is a serviceable technique for determining the position of a sniper, provided he isn't still there.
Sobering NewsSobering news? Come back in three hours, and I'll start drinking now.
SobrietyWhenever I read that quote by Hemingway, "Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk," I have a drink!
Social MediaSocial media doesn't cause suicide, so much as articulate it.
SocialismSocialism doesn't work. It has a rich father.
SolipsismAm I the only person who thinks the theory of solipsism is totally stupid? ... Hello?
SouthpawTo those who say it's tough fighting a southpaw, I think I've identified the source of your problem: his paw is actually to your east.
SpaikuTo leave one's footprints / On the sands of time: is this / Not lousy tradecraft?
Speak Truth to PowerIt was Patrick Murphy Malin, not the Quakers, who coined the phrase "Speak truth to power;" but everyone's scared to tell the Quakers this.
Speed ReadingIf it's a *really* good speed reading course, you get the bill before you've even heard of it.
SpinIt's not the spinning around that makes you dizzy, it's the stopping.
SpiritualityThere are two kinds of light: the glow that illuminates, and the glow that illuminates, but not very well.
SportsI decided to take up boxing to see what I was made of. It turns out I’m made of blood.
SpottingIn CIA operations, 'spotting' refers primarily to the identification of recruitment targets, though irregular bleeding may also be involved.
Spring CleaningWhat this house needs is a good spring cleaning. So if we ever have a good spring, let's definitely clean this house.
SpyWhich came first, the secret or the spy?
Spy LifeDangle perilously from the escarpment, or not at all.
Spy MoviesSpy movies are unrealistic because they're not as unrealistic as spying in real life.
SpyingHe who spies and claims diplomatic immunity / May live to spy again with impunity
StalkingA stalker does to a celebrity what the celebrity's media company did to the stalker first.
Standing Up for What You BelieveNever be afraid to stand up for what you believe in. If people get angry, you can always pretend you were just standing up to stretch.
- (noted CIA research manager)
State DepartmentTwo years ago I clicked on the State Department careers page. I've been getting ads for depression medications ever since.
StatisticsI refuse to be just another statistic. I'm empowering myself to be an informed, assertive, beautiful statistic!
StatisticsYou could do worse than be a statistic – you could be a type I error.
StatisticsThe problem with refusing to be another statistic is that you were 71% likely to do that.
SteamrollerThey say if you're not part of the steamroller, you're part of the road. I say I'd rather be part of the road than the seat on the steamroller.
Still Small VoiceThat still small voice within sure seems to refuse to confirm or deny a lot.
StitchesNote to self: A stitch ahead of time does NOT save even more than nine.
Story with LegsSecret 71910151. A story with legs usually involves legs with a story.
StrangeThere are fewer things too strange to happen than things too strange not to.
Strangers'Perfect stranger' is a redundancy.
StrategyThe great strategists teach that you should always allow your adversary an escape route. So please let me know when mine's available.
Stretching the TruthDon't think of it as stretching the truth – think of it as being truth's yoga partner.
Strong Silent TypeShe prefers the strong silent type - you know, Times New Roman or Arial Black.
Sturgeon's LawSturgeon's law states that 90% of everything is crap. If that's true, then the word 'crap' is the 10% of Sturgeon's law that isn't.
SuccessThe race is not always to the swiftest, nor the hotdog eating contest to the fattest man.
SuccessSecret 71919021. It's not what you know, or who you know, it's how to look like you don't know anything.
SuccessAt CIA, 90% of success is nobody knowing you showed up.
SuccessPreparation and opportunity are the parents of success – but they're not legally married.
SuckersThere's a sucker aborted every 1.8 minutes.
Sucking Chest WoundA sucking chest wound isn't as sexy as you might imagine based on the name. It's even sexier.
Sucking Chest WoundSecret 3963. It's only a *sucking* chest wound if you're not the shooter.
Suffering FoolsI don't suffer fools gladly, I suffer them orgasmically.
Suicide PreventionIf you feel badly enough about dialing a suicide prevention hotline by mistake, it wasn't a mistake.
Summer SongsEvery great summer song was recorded the previous winter.
SuperficialityYes, I'm superficial, but only on the surface.
Supply and DemandAccording to economists, supply has a foot fetish – it always cums on the heels of demand.
SweepingLet everyone sweep in front of his own door, and the whole world will be dusty.
Swords to PlowsharesAnd they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their ploughshares into plowshares.
Taking SidesSecret 0.391016. If you must take sides, take as many as possible.
Talk'Talk is cheap' is talk.
TatsThey're called 'tats' and not 'toos' because it's cool to say 'I have a tat too,' but it isn't necessarily cool to say 'I have a too too.'
TattooIf you had a tattoo that said 'Top Secret,' where on your body would it be?
TattooAs if our lives weren't tattoos.
TDYSecret 36915052. What goes TDY comes TDY.
TechnologyWhen I first read about voice interactive household appliances, I felt kind of embarrassed, because I thought they already were.
Teflon ManCookware sticks to a Teflon man.
Temp FilesAll files are temp files.
Terminate with Extreme PrejudiceActually, I'm OK with less than extreme prejudice, as long as you terminate.
TerrorismEverybody hates suicide bombers until they need one.
- (from 'My War On Terror!')
TerrorismWho says you can't negotiate with terrorists? I just traded one for a deputy foreign minister and cash!
TerrorismWe can't let the terrorists win. No matter how softly we toss the ball to them, they miss it every time.
The American RevolutionIf it weren't for the Revolution back in 1776, we Americans would all be speaking English today.
The BrainWhen we reflect on the fact that we only use 10% of our brains, I bet that temporarily pushes us up to at least 10.2%.
The BuckThe buck hops here.
Them and UsThe good news: there are no longer more of them than us. The bad news: there are now more of us than us.
There But For FortuneIs the saying "There but for fortune go you and I," or "There but for fortune go you *or* I?" Because, assuming "there" to be a location that's undesirable, it can be shown mathematically that the first scenario is always preferable to the second.
Thin Line Between Love and HateHow thin the line between love and hate is depends on one's distance from it – as a general rule, the closer one gets, the thinner it looks.
ThinkI'd rather have less time than I think, than less think than I have time.
Think AgainThe problem with the phrase 'Think again' is that it implies someone was thinking in the first place.
Think Outside the TesseractIn the fourth dimension, to 'think outside the tesseract' is physically impossible.
ThinkingIf you've had one thought, you've had 'em all.
Throwaway AgentsSecret 800.F. Always make sure your throwaway agents are biodegradable.
TimeTime travel got us out of this mess, time travel can damn well get us back in!
TimeTime is a brush pass between a moment and eternity. And the secret exchanged in that covert handoff is … us.
Time ManagementNever put off until tomorrow what you can schedule a series of monthly meetings to evolve a framework for a plan to address next year today.
Time TravelStephen Hawking threw a party for time travelers, but except for the cleaning crew, no one from the future showed up.
TimingWhatever isn't too late or too early is too on time.
Tin FoilThe downside of wearing a tin foil hat: your mind can't control the satellite either.
TomorrowDon't tell people "Tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today" today. Prepare today and then tell them tomorrow.
TonicAn unparalleled restorative is the best tonic.
Too Soon JokeCIA analysis: the too soon joke that predates the event.
Too Soon JokesThe joke isn't too soon, the tragedy is too late.
ToolsI don't mind being a tool of my tools, as long as I'm kept well oiled.
ToplessWhether or not you're topless depends on what you consider your top.
TradecraftSecret 28912032. Properly executed, the brush pass is a highly effective means of covert communication; improperly executed, it's even better.
TradecraftSecret 12916062. Dress to impress, assess, access, possess, and egress.
TradecraftAnything worth doing is worth neither confirming nor denying having done.
TragicomedyThe world is a tragicomedy to those who feel they think.
TransparencySecret 89.487. Transparent is the new black.
Trick Question'Is this a trick question?' is a trick question.
TrophiesThe dust gathers the trophy.
TroubleshootingTroubleshoot v. (Compound of 'troubles' + 'hoot') To laugh loudly and derisively when asked for help in resolving a problem.
TrustGut your trust.
TrustTrust is the epoxy of relationships – sniff it at your own risk.
TruthThe opposite of a true statement is a false statement. But the opposite of a really dumb idea may well be another really dumb idea.
TruthAnd you shall be known by the truth, after which the truth shall set you free.
TruthYou can't handle the truth – that's MY asset.
TruthI believe truth will have the last word (if a grunt counts as a word).
TruthThe truth hurts? Give the truth a pain reliever!
TruthThe truth is just a lie with a good backstop.
Truth and LiesIf a half-truth is a whole lie, a whole truth is two whole lies.
Truth and SacrednessThat nothing is more sacred than truth is good news for truth, but bad news for sacredness.
Truth LostThe truth's not lost on me, it's just on a part of me where you probably don't want to look.
TruthersTruthers are stranger than fictioners.
TurthIn John 8:32 it says: 'And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.' Though some computer programs translate the original Greek text as: 'The truth will have sex with you, then the truth will leave you for another sex partner.'
- ((
TwistersI know how twisters feel – I've touched down in trailer parks and wished I could do the same thing.
TwitterI was following total strangers long before Twitter made it du jour.
TwitterThe genius of Twitter is that there's no way to fit an explanation of why Twitter is such a dumb idea into a tweet.
Two SidesToilet paper, and every story, has two sides.
UkraineThe rain in Ukraine falls mainly on the insane.
UndercontrolledDon't worry, the situation is undercontrolled.
Underground WisdomKeep your ear to the ground, and the rest of you underneath it.
UnderstandingWhy must we call that which we do not understand a 'thing?' Probably because it's easier than calling it 'that which we do not understand.'
Underwear BombNo doubt the underwear bomb is a metaphor for something; but what? My vote: underwear.
UnthinkableSecret 737160022162. It's unthinkable only to the extent it's doable.
Upholding StandardsWhen upholding the highest standards, be sure to use an extra sharp stake.
USAThe ingenious network of tunnels you build to fight the US military will have to be widened to accommodate American tourists after the war.
VealPeople will forget what you said, but they'll never forget how you made them veal. – Cooking with Maya Angelou
Victors and SpoilsBy the time the victor gets them, the spoils are usually spoiled.
Views and Opinions ExpressedViews and opinions expressed are strictly impersonal.
Vince Lombardi, CIA AgentMotivational Quote of the Day: It's not whether you get knocked down, it's whether you get up. – Vince Lombardi ... Motivational Quote of the Night: It's not whether you get down, it's whether you get knocked up. – The Covert Comic
ViolenceWhere I come from, the term 'honor killing' is redundant.
Vital Statistics*All* statistics are vital.
VocabularyThe word "vocabulary" isn't in my lexicon.
WaitingDon't wait until it's too late. Wait longer.
Walk-insThe world is your walk-in.
Walk-InsSecret 0858.90. If your walk-in is balkin' at talkin', get stalkin'.
WantingIf each of us learned to want less, we would all have so much more – which would be sad because we wouldn't want it.
WarWar is not the answer. War is the punch line.
- (America's funniest covert intelligence officer)
WarSecret 521.863. The term 'friendly fire' is redundant.
- ('America's Funniest Covert Intelligence Officer')
WarEvery soldier is a Tomb of the Unknown.
WarAmerica has never lost a war. We just misplaced a couple temporarily.
WarWar is glorious, until you see the man next to you get killed. Then war is only glorious if he was an asshole.
War and PoliticsWar is politics by other meanies.
Washington DCIf success is a state of mind, that explains why Washington is a federal district.
Waste'Twas Thomas Edison did declare / That waste is worse than loss / Yet never once saw fit to pare / His first name to Tomás
Wastefulness'Twas Thomas Edison did declare / That waste is worse than loss / Yet never once saw fit to pare / His first name to Tomás
WeaponsWeapons with the most ridiculous sounding names. 1. Nunchuck 2. Halberd 3. Hunga Munga 4. Truth
Weasel WordsSecret 7591.42.21. Avoiding weasel words in your intelligence analysis isn't easy when your intelligence analysis is about weasels.
Well TravelledI'm well-travelled, but badly-arrived.
What Goes AroundLooks like that saying 'What goes around comes around' is coming around again.
What's in It for Me?... OK, let me ask the question a different way: What *isn't* in it for me?
When All Else Seems LostWhen all else seems lost, seem like all else.
When the Jell-O Hits the FanOf course, when the Jell-O hits the fan, everybody wants to take credit for it.
Who You KnowIt's not who you know, it's which of them you've officially never met.
Whole Kit and CaboodleCould I have the whole kit, but none of the caboodle?
wikiHowwikiHow? How wiki.
WikipediaIs it that the Wikipedia logo looks like the Death Star, or that the Death Star looks like the Wikipedia logo?
WindToss bricks in the air to test the wind.
WisdomWhen they say 'It's better to die on your feet than live on your knees,’ do they mean it’s EVEN better?
WisdomThe good news: I kept my head when all about me were losing theirs. The bad news: I can't find my body.
WisdomHow often are we reminded that what matters in life can't be quantified (I'm referring to the annual per capita frequency, to two decimals).
WisdomThere's wisdom of the head / And wisdom of the heart / But pray grant me wisdom / Of that still more southern part
WisdomSecret 32162. The crunchy taco shall become soft, the soft taco, crunchy.
Wish You Were HereWhen you send someone a postcard and write "Wish you were here" on the back, where exactly are you saying you wish they were?
WitWhen Thomas Jefferson said "We must be contented to amuse, when we cannot inform," he was wearing platform shoes and a wig.
- (noted CIA officer)
Woman'Woman' is the plural of 'women.'
WomenAnother way a woman is like a teabag: if you buy one at an airport, they cost at least three times more.
WomenWomen to me are an open book. Now if I could just figure out what all those words on the pages mean.
Women and GunsSecret 62910681. No woman with a gun is ugly.
Women CIA OfficersSecret Thoughts of Women Ops Officers #26.62. "I should have worn something under this government."
WorkThere's no substitute for hard work. But there's plenty of work for a hard substitute.
WorldThe world is one big back room.
WorldIt's a world-eat-world world.
WorryEither it's not worth worrying about, or it's worth not worrying about.
Wrong Side of the TracksBetter to be from the wrong side of the tracks, than to be the tracks.
YawnsHow many yawns are silent screams. Then again, how many other yawns resemble extremely loud screams.
You Can't Please EveryoneWhoever said 'You can't please everyone' pleased everyone.
You Had Me At ... You had me at "You lost me."
Your Mother Doesn't Work HereActually, my mother *does* work here, and she'll be along shortly to clean up my mess.
YouthSecret 0.5916581. The young are wasted on youth.
ZenThe Zen I find at the mountaintop is the Zen I bring there? Oh great, now you tell me!
Zen Polygraph TestIs it true that if you have to ask, you'll never know? - Zen polygraph test
ZombielineZombieline (n). A deadline that moves under its own power in search of live brains to consume. Also known as an undeadline.
ZombiesEverybody talks about how fun it would be to shoot zombies, but nobody talks about how they'd get to the sporting goods store when the ammo ran out.
ZombiesWhat exactly does a zombie *do* if it gets human brains to eat? Go into accounting?
Zombies and WalkingSay what you will about zombies, at least they get out and walk every day.
ZombismEverybody knows that if you're a zombie with money, you can get all the human brains you want.
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