The basis of optimism is sheer terror.
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- Seriousness is the only refuge of the shallow.
- If you pretend to be good, the world takes you very seriously. If you pretend to be bad, it doesn’t. Such is the astounding stupidity of optimism.
- Fathers should be neither seen nor heard. That is the only proper basis for family life.
- No man dies for what he knows to be true. Men die for what they want to be true, for what some terror in their hearts tells them is not true.
- To be good, according to the vulgar standard of goodness, is obviously quite easy. It merely requires a certain amount of sordid terror, a certain lack of imaginative thought, and a certain low passion for middle-class respectability.
- Youth! There is nothing like youth. The middle-aged are mortgaged to Life. The old are in Life’s lumber-room. But youth is the Lord of Life. Youth has a kingdom waiting for it. Every one is born a king, and most people die in exile.