When Gloria Steimem shared one of her all-time favorite quotes, “I am at an age when remembering something right away is as good an orgasm,” my 80-year-old friend jumped out of her seat, started cheering, and called out, “You got that right, girlfriend!”

My friend and I were fortunate to attend a public interview with Gloria last year in NYC. That quote is one of many in Steinem’s new book, The Truth Will Set You Free, But First It Will Piss You Off!: Thoughts on Life, Love, and Rebellion, that will make you want to cheer, or dance for joy, or scream in anger.

I have admired her since I was a young adult. I read Ms. Magazine, saw the Broadway play, Gloria, A Life, and read many of her books. At 85 years old, Gloria radiates an lively energy. And, no she hasn’t had work done. In a black turtleneck, leather pants and boots, she looked way cooler than most of the audience whose average age was 55. She’s a walking advertisement for a life well lived.

This book includes her reflections on her life along with many quotes that inspired her over the years, and of course her own famous words. During the current, worldwide coronavirus situation, I have returned to these pages for much needed inspiration. Here are a few favorite quotes:

LBJ Library photo by Jay Godwin 11/06/2019

I’m beginning to realize the pleasure of being a nothing to lose, take no shit, older woman! 

Growth comes from saying yes to the unknown.

If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.
—Maya Angelou

My grandfather told me there were two kinds of people—those who do the work and those who take the credit. He told me to try to being the first group there was much less competition.
—Indira Gandhi

Women have always been an equal part of the past, just not an equal part of history.

There is still no “right” way to be a woman in public power without being considered a you-know-what. A woman who aspires to be something will be called a bitch.

A Feminist is anyone who recognizes the equality and humanity of all people. For women the only alternative to being a feminist is being a masochist.

Angry women will change the world.
—Street graffiti in South Korea

The art of life is not controlling what happens, it’s using what happens.

Limits lead to invention.

While still adjusting to my new normal of spending almost 24-7 at home, I aspire to find a way to use this crisis to invent something new. This book is sitting on my desk as a source of wisdom, support, laughs, and encouragement. If you need any of those, please read this book. As always, let me know your thoughts. 

 

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