Alan Alda quotes

Born
January 28, 1936, New York City, U.S.

Occupation
Actor.

Alan Alda is an American actor. A six-time Emmy Award and Golden Globe Award winner, he played Hawkeye Pierce in the war television series M*A*S*H (1972–1983). 

It’s a funny feeling to work with people who you consider your colleagues and to realize that they actually are young enough to be your children.
– Alan Alda
Listening is being able to be changed by the other person.
– Alan Alda
It’s too bad I’m not as wonderful a person as people say I am, because the world could use a few people like that.
– Alan Alda
Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative place where no one else has ever been.
– Alan Alda
You can’t get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you’re doing. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself.
– Alan Alda
For me, I find that even though I’ve accomplished a few things in my life, looking back on accomplishments doesn’t give me a sense of satisfaction.
– Alan Alda
It’s not an epitaph. I felt I could look back at my life and get a good story out of it. It’s a picture of somebody trying to figure things out. I’m not trying to create some impression about myself. That doesn’t interest me.
– Alan Alda
In 2003, I almost died of an intestinal blockage when I was on a mountain in Chile, filming a segment for ‘Scientific American Frontiers.’
– Alan Alda
Why would you give money to somebody whose work you don’t understand?
– Alan Alda
Be as smart as you can, but remember that it is always better to be wise than to be smart.
– Alan Alda
Begin challenging your assumptions. Your assumptions are the windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in awhile or the light won’t come in.
– Alan Alda
You wouldn’t want to be called a sell-out by selling a product. Selling out was frowned on, whereas now you can major in it at business school.
– Alan Alda
I think when you’re acting, you usually don’t have to know too much beyond how to pronounce the words you’re saying.
– Alan Alda
Awards shows mainly publicize the people giving the awards.
– Alan Alda
M*A*S*H’ was a collection of people, in front of and behind the cameras, that really clicked.
– Alan Alda
When people are laughing, they’re generally not killing one another.
– Alan Alda
You can watch actors create their illusions, but if you don’t see where they get the pigeons from, you don’t really know how they’re doing it.
– Alan Alda
Blind dates are treacherous. You don’t know who this person is. You wonder, ‘Should I call my grandma during coffee to get out of this?’
– Alan Alda
My father sang well, and he was a handsome man. When he walked down the street, people sometimes mistook him for Cary Grant and asked for his autograph.
– Alan Alda
You know what my earliest memories are? Going from one burlesque town to another. My father was in burlesque.
– Alan Alda
The thing is when you’re… well-enough known, you get asked to speak places, and they don’t really think about whether or not you’re qualified. They just want somebody that will be a drawing card for the audience. So it’s up to you to decide whether or not it’s foolish to get up and speak to these people.
– Alan Alda
Here’s my Golden Rule for a tarnished age: Be fair with others, but keep after them until they’re fair with you.
– Alan Alda
You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself.
– Alan Alda
The President never intends to get into any kind of war situation. He gets carried away by events.
– Alan Alda
Laugh at yourself, but don’t ever aim your doubt at yourself. Be bold. When you embark for strange places, don’t leave any of yourself safely on shore. Have the nerve to go into unexplored territory.
– Alan Alda
I’m greedy for that satisfaction of doing something hard and knowing that, even though I was afraid I couldn’t do it, that somehow I can deliver.
– Alan Alda
I think most people are interested in our origins; once we understand, it might be easier to become the people we’d like to be. Or, better, become the people we think we already are.
– Alan Alda
I love oatmeal. To me, it’s not boring. I agree that ordinary oatmeal is very boring, but not the steel-cut Irish kind – the kind that pops in your mouth when you bite into it in little glorious bursts like a sort of gummy champagne.
– Alan Alda
When I got recognized as a writer, when I got the Emmy, I was more excited than the Emmys I had gotten as an actor.
– Alan Alda
We need to be more conversant with it because science is in our lives. It’s in everything. It’s in the food we eat. It’s in the air we breathe. It’s everywhere.
– Alan Alda
I used to read science fiction a lot, and I still like science fiction when it is a model of how we really are and to see ourselves from another perspective.
– Alan Alda
No, I never thought about my image. It interests me that there are people who do, that they seem to be methodical about it.
– Alan Alda
Kids are natural scientists.
– Alan Alda
I’ve sat looking down into a volcano that could blow at any moment; I’ve helped catch a shark and several rattlesnakes; I let a tarantula walk across my hand, and I ate rat soup.
– Alan Alda
Awards can give you a tremendous amount of encouragement to keep getting better, no matter how young or old you are.
– Alan Alda
You can’t be aware of everything. You’d fall down the stairs if you were aware of every intricate thing involved in going down stairs.
– Alan Alda
Some of the greatest things, as I understand, they have come about by serendipity, the greatest discoveries.
– Alan Alda
I used to be a Catholic. I left because I object to conversion by concussion. If you don’t agree with what they teach, you get clobbered over the head until you do. All that does is change the shape of the head.
– Alan Alda
Almost everybody that’s well-known gets tagged with a nickname.
– Alan Alda
Be fair with others, but then keep after them until they’re fair with you.
– Alan Alda
After a while I started to think of that as an image of something that went a lot deeper than the dead dog, which is you can’t bring back anything to life.
– Alan Alda
The meaning of life is life.
– Alan Alda
I’ve been nominated twice before as actor in a leading part. Now I’m nominated as actor in a supporting part. If I don’t win, I’ll just wait until I’m nominated for being in the theater during the show. Do they have one like that?
– Alan Alda
No matter how big the audience is going to be. I’m interested in doing things that are fun.
– Alan Alda