60 Ron Swanson Quotes That’ll Take You Back to Parks and Rec

Here are the most iconic Ron Swanson quotes to help you reminisce about one of your favorite American TV series!

We’ve all heard of inspiring characters that do their best at work and push their colleagues to do the same. However, have you ever heard of a main character that’s completely opposite of that?

Ron Swanson is the epitome of a deadpan and lazy government employee. Everything he does is to make sure that his team and the government office he works for are as inefficient as possible.

His unique but hilarious personality is precisely what brought Parks and Recreation to life. Besides that, Ron Swanson enjoys anything involving breakfast, meat, and fishing!

If he’s your favorite character from Parks and Recreation, then you’ll no doubt love this collection of the most popular Ron Swanson quotes. Read through to the end and be encouraged to watch the show again!

And don’t forget to check out these Parks and Rec quotes.

Best Ron Swanson Quotes

1. “Birthdays were invented by Hallmark to sell cards.”

2. “There are only three ways to motivate people: money, fear, and hunger.”

3. “Give 100%; 110% is impossible. Only idiots recommend that.”

4. “I regret nothing. The end.”

5. “You choose a thankless job. You can’t be upset when nobody thanks you. Don’t start chasing applause and acclaim. That way lies madness.”

6. “I’d wish you the best of luck, but I believe luck is a concept created by the weak to explain their failures.”

7. “It’s always a good idea to demonstrate to your coworkers that you are capable of withstanding a tremendous amount of pain.”

8. “Normally, if given the choice between doing something and nothing, I’d choose to do nothing. But I will do something if it helps someone else do nothing. I’d work all night if it meant nothing got done.”

9. “One rage every three months is permitted. Try not to hurt anyone who doesn’t deserve it.”

10. “Crying: acceptable at funerals and the Grand Canyon.”

Ron Swanson Quotes About Breakfast

11. “There has never been a sadness that can’t be cured by breakfast food.”

12. “I’m a simple man. I like pretty, dark-haired women and breakfast food.”

13. “Breakfast food can serve many purposes.”

14. “Strippers do nothing for me, but I will take a free breakfast buffet anytime, anyplace.”

15. “Just give me all the bacon and eggs you have. Wait—I worry what you heard was, ‘Give me a lot of bacon and eggs.’ What I said was, give me all the bacon and eggs you have. Do you understand?”

Ron Swanson Quotes for Food Enthusiasts

16. “There’s only one thing I hate more than lying: skim milk—which is water that’s lying about being milk.”

17. “You had me at ‘Meat Tornado.’”

18. “You’ve accidentally given me the food that my food eats.”

19. “Barbecues should be about one thing: good shared meat.”

20. “Dear frozen yogurt, you are the celery of desserts. Be ice cream, or be nothing.”

21. “When I eat, it is the food that is scared.”

22. “If there were more food and fewer people, this would be a perfect party.”

23. “Cowardice and weak-willed men—and hazelnuts.”

24. “Why is everyone else so bad at eating?”

25. “Put some alcohol in your mouth to block words from coming out.”

26. “Clear alcohols are for rich women on diets.”

27. “I call this turf ‘n’ turf. It’s a 16-ounce T-bone and a 24-ounce porterhouse. Also, whiskey and a cigar. I am going to consume all of this at the same time because I am a free American.”

Inspirational Ron Swanson Quotes

28. “Literally everything is a weapon, son. That folder, in my hands, is far deadlier than this bow of yours.”

29. “Live your life how you want, but don’t confuse drama with happiness.”

30. “Keep your tears in your eyes—where they belong.”

31. “Sting like a bee, but do not float like a butterfly. That’s ridiculous.”

32. “Never half-*ss two things. Whole-*ss one thing.”

33. “If any of you need anything at all, too bad. Deal with your problems yourselves, like adults.”

34. “Under my tutelage, you will grow from boys to men. From men into gladiators. And from gladiators into Swansons.”

35. “It’s pointless for a human to paint scenes of nature when they can go outside and stand in it.”

Ron Swanson Quotes on Fishing

36. “Fishing relaxes me. It’s like yoga, except I still get to kill something.”

37. “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Don’t teach a man to fish and feed yourself. He’s a grown man. And fishing’s not that hard.”

38. “Fishing is for sport only. Fish meat is practically a vegetable.”

Ron Swanson Quotes That Zoom in on the Government and Society

39. “There is only one bad word: taxes.”

40. “Busy? Impossible. I work for the government.”

41. “Capitalism: God’s way of determining who is smart and who is poor.”

42. “America: the only country that matters. If you want to experience other ‘cultures,’ use an atlas or a ham radio.”

43. “History began on July 4, 1776. Everything that happened before that was a mistake.”

44. “When I walked in this morning and saw that the flag was half-mast, I thought, ‘Alright, another bureaucrat ate it!'”

45. “The government is a greedy piglet that suckles on a taxpayer’s teat until they have sore, chapped nipples.”

46. “The whole point of this country is if you want to eat garbage, balloon up to 600 pounds, and die of a heart attack at 43, you can! You are free to do so. To me, that’s beautiful.”

Ron Swanson Quotes That’ll Teach You About His Friends and Relationships

47. “Friends: one to three is sufficient.”

48. “The less I know about other people’s affairs, the happier I am. I’m not interested in caring about people. I once worked with a guy for three years and never learned his name. Best friend I ever had. We still never talk sometimes.”

49. “My first ex-wife’s name is Tammy. My second ex-wife’s name is Tammy. My mom’s name is Tamara—she goes by Tammy.”

50. “If you don’t believe in love, what’s the point of living?”

Funny Ron Swanson Quotes to Make You Laugh

51. “Great job, everyone. The reception will be held in each of our individual houses, alone.”

52. “Straight down the middle. No hook, no spin, no fuss. Anything more, and this becomes figure skating.”

53. “When people get too chummy with me, I like to call them by the wrong name to let them know I don’t really care about them.”

54. “Any dog under 50 pounds is a cat, and cats are useless.”

More Ron Swanson Quotes for Fans of Parks and Recreation

55. “I would rather bleed out than sit here and talk about my feelings for 10 minutes.”

56. “There are three acceptable haircuts: high and tight, crew cut, buzz cut.”

57. “That is a canvas sheet—the most versatile object known to man. It can be used to make tents, backpacks, shoes, stretchers, sails, tarpaulins, and I suppose, in the most dire of circumstances, it can be a surface on which to make art.”

58. “I’ve cried twice in my life. Once when I was seven, and hit by a school bus. And then again when I heard that Li’l Sebastian had passed.”

59. “There’s more than one crib tree in a forest. That’s not a lesson, by the way, just a comment on lumber availability.”

60. “I have a hernia. I’ve had it for a while, and I’ve been ignoring it successfully. But, uh, this morning, I made the mistake of sneezing. But as long as I sit still and don’t move my head or torso, I’m good. I got this.”

Which Ron Swanson Quote Can You Relate to the Most?

Ron Swanson is one of the many characters we cannot help but love. He’s fictional, but we can no doubt relate to his love for meat and breakfast and overall laziness and deadpan attitude when it comes to working. 

After all, who doesn’t find comfort in breakfast, and who doesn’t love meat and whole milk? Beyond Ron’s love for food, though, he also loves fishing!

Whatever Ron Swanson does or says will surely make you laugh. This may be why many still come back to Parks and Recreation years after its last episode aired.

However, no matter how superficial Ron Swanson might seem on the outside, he’s actually a great guy and a good leader. For example, though he doesn’t particularly like Leslie’s mindset, he still respects her decisions and commends her for her hard work.

The juxtaposition of Ron Swanson’s personality and quirks and how he treats his colleagues makes his character even more admirable and iconic. So, we hope the quotes above were able to give justice to this fact!

Let the quotes above push you to watch the whole of Parks and Recreation again. Maybe you’ll find something new you love about Ron!

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Karen Danao

Hi, I’m Karen, a content curator and writer for Quote Ambition; I’m also a marketing and advertising professional. Beyond the keyboard and the screen, I’m someone who’s out to enjoy every bit that life has to offer!

Poetry, philosophy, history, and movies are all topics I love writing about! However, my true passion is in traveling, photography, and finding common ground to which everyone from different cultures can relate.

With the many places I’ve been to, I found that love, inspiration, and happiness are some things that bring people together. No matter how different we are on the outside, I’m a true believer that our emotions don’t lie; if you dig deep into our psyche, we’re all the same inside.

This belief was further amplified when I joined Quote Ambition. Through the quotes I’ve read, collected, organized, and written about, I found that humans are resilient, creative, and compassionate.

We take from each others’ hearts and courage, and it’s through our individual experiences that we learn how to rise above our challenges and pain. In so many ways, Quote Ambition is a platform that allows people from all over the world to gain the inspiration they need anytime, anywhere!

You can find me on MuckRack and LinkedIn.