As another year draws to a close, we asked our local reporters and editors to share the most memorable quotes of 2011.
Some were weird. Others were heartbreaking. And at least one (ahem, Beltway sex) is simultaneously reasonable and ludicrous.
Read through some of our favorite quotes of the year, and vote for the one you think is most notable.
“Having sex at 85 miles per hour while drunk on a freeway is willful and wanton negligence.”
— Attorney Douglas R. Stevens, arguing that a man who caused a crash on the Beltway should be subject to punitive damages because he claimed he was ‘otherwise engaged’ at the time of the collision.
“You know, we’re just waiting in the wings, ready to take over the NFC East.”
“The phone rang, it was 5:30, and it was Swedish-sounding people, and I knew they weren’t from Ikea.”
— Johns Hopkins astrophysicist Adam Riess, on how he learned that he was one of three winners of this year’s Nobel Prize in Physics.
“It’s obvious the reason why you all are here is because this is a wanton, random act of violence on the campus with the name Virginia Tech. I don’t believe you’d be here if that was otherwise the case.”
— Lawrence G. Hincker, head spokesman for Virginia Tech, addressing reporters after the tragic shooting that claimed the lives of a university police officer and his killer.
“The truth is that I was a full-time working mother of three children while Jack was in office. I could not and did not focus on Jack’s activities because I was focused on my family’s needs.”
— Leslie Johnson, the former Prince George’s County Council member, telling a court that she had no part in the bribery scheme orchestrated by her husband, former County Executive Jack Johnson.
“I help animals in every state of the union and other countries as well.”
— Bob Barker, the former “Price is Right” host and fierce animal defender, on why he inserted himself into a debate over how to control Rockville’s booming deer population.
“I believe she was alive for all of them.”
— Mary Ripple, a Maryland state medical examiner, testifying in the Lululemon murder trial that Jayna Murray sustained more than 300 injuries including brain bruising, stab wounds, chipped teeth and severe brain trauma.
“I was a drum major for justice.”
— A quote carved into the side of the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial. Critics said the quote, a shortened version of the original, misrepresented the actual words from King’s 1968 sermon about the evils of self-promotion.
“I don’t even like ice cream that much.”
— Zach Burroughs, AKA “ice cream cone man,” who braved a snowstorm in his quest for pistachio gelato.
Vote for the quote you think is the year’s most memorable and submit your own suggestions in the comments below.