We just got to go on, that’s all. That’s what grown-ups would do.[Also known as:]We did everything adults would do. What went wrong?
Children should be very understanding of grown-ups.[translation by Richard Howard]Children should always show great forbearance toward grown-up people.[translation by Katherine Woods][Les enfants doivent être très indulgents envers les grandes personnes.]
All grown-ups were once children first. But few of them remember it.[translation by Richard Howard]All grown-ups were once children – although few of them remember it.[translation by Katherine Woods][Toutes les grandes personnes ont d’abord été des enfants. (Mais peu d’entre elles s’en souviennent.)]
When adults say, “Teenagers think they are invincible” with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don’t know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail.
Young people love what is interesting and exceptional, indifferent whether it is truth or falsehood. Riper minds love what is interesting and extraordinary when it is truth. Matured minds, finally, love truth even in those in whom it appears plain and simple and is found tiresome by ordinary people, because they have observed that truth is in the habit of giving utterance to its highest intellectual verities with all the appearance of simplicity.
Only teenagers think boring is bad. Adults, grown men and women who’ve been around the block a few times, know that boring is a gift straight from God. Life has more than enough excitement up its sleeve, ready to hit you with as soon as you’re not looking, without you adding to the drama.
I have spent lots of time with grown-ups. I have seen them at close range… which hasn’t much improved my opinion of them.[translation by Richard Howard]I have lived a great deal among grown-ups. I have seen them intimately, close at hand. And that hasn’t much improved my opinion of them.[translation by Katherine Woods][J’ai beaucoup vécu chez les grandes personnes. Je les ai vues de très près. Ça n’a pas trop amélioré mon opinion.]
Grownups know things. They ain’t afraid of the dark. They’d meet and have tea and discuss. Then things ‘ud be all right-[said Piggy]
Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is exhausting for children to have to provide explanations over and over again.[translation by Richard Howard]Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them.[translation by Katherine Woods][Les grandes personnes ne comprennent jamais rien toutes seules, et c’est fatigant, pour les enfants, de toujours et toujours leur donner des explications.]