I would like travelers, especially American travelers, to travel in a way that broadens their perspective, because I think Americans tend to be some of the most ethnocentric people on the planet. It's not just Americans, it's the big countries. It's the biggest countries that tend to be ethnocentric or ugly. There are ugly Russians, ugly Germans, ugly Japanese and ugly Americans. You don't find ugly Belgians or ugly Bulgarians, they're just too small to think the world is their norm.
Love is hard. We try to love one another. But generally the quality and quantity of our love for one another is found wanting, because we find it difficult, if not impossible, to look beyond those things that are ugly and unlovable in those we try to love. Even though the things that are ugly and unlovable in ourselves are the very things that cause us to cry out for love.
I just think of things as beautiful or not. Can't you understand? I don't think of good or bad. Just of beautiful or ugly. I think a lot of nice things are ugly and a lot of nasty things are beautiful.
The great fact all the while however had been the incalculability; since he had supposed himself, from decade to decade, to be allowing, and in the most liberal and intelligent manner, for brilliancy of change. He actually saw that he had allowed for nothing; he missed what he would have been sure of finding, he found what he would never have imagined. Proportions and values were upside-down; the ugly things he had expected, the ugly things of his far away youth, when he had too promptly waked up to a sense of the ugly-these uncanny phenomena placed him rather, as it happened, under the charm; whereas the 'swagger' things, the modern, the monstrous, the famous things, those he had more particularly, like thousands of ingenuous enquirers every year, come over to see, were exactly his sources of dismay. They were as so many set traps for displeasure, above all for reaction, of which his restless tread was constantly pressing the spring. It was interesting, doubtless, the whole show, but it would have been too disconcerting hadn't a certain finer truth saved the situation. He had distinctly not, in this steadier light, come over all for the monstrosities; he had come, not only in the last analysis but quite on the face of the act, under an impulse with which they had nothing to do. ("The Jolly Corner")
So I was ugly. I was never fat, really, and I never wore headgear or had zits or anything. But I was ugly. I don't even know how ugly and pretty get decided - maybe there's like a secret cabal of boys who meet in the locker room and decide who's ugly and who's hot, because as far as I can remember, there was no such thing as a hot fourth-grader. - Lindsey Lee Wells
The chair and desk and stuff, they change in the darkness. Like people change. And I lay in my bed and I think, you know, this is the way the chair really is. The way it looks in the daytime, that's just a foolie. It looks that way to make me think it's all right. But it's an ugly thing, a chair at night is. And I know even in the day that it's ugly underneath. It will be ugly again, when I'm alone with it. When it's dark... I'm scared of chairs... I try not to be scared of things. I try to fight it. But I'm not good at it. It's everywhere at once. It's like fighting the night.
Beautiful is he who recognizes what is truly beautiful even if the surface is ugly. Truthful is he who says what is true even if the truth is ugly. Ugly is he who measures beauty by its exterior without first weighing the interior. And ugly is the man who judges harshly what he sees looking out without first judging what he sees in the mirror.
REFLECTIONS OF A MIRROR Beautiful is he who recognizes what is truly beautiful, Even if the surface is ugly. Truthful is he who says what is true, Even if the truth is ugly. Ugly is he who measures beauty by its exterior, Without first weighing the interior. And ugly is the man who judges harshly what he sees looking out, Without first judging what he sees in the mirror.