For it is said that humans are never satisfied, that you give them one thing and they want something more. And this is said in disparagement, whereas it is one of the greatest talents the species has and one that has made it superior to animals that are satisfied with what they have.
What we call happiness in the strictest sense comes from the (preferably sudden) satisfaction of needs which have been dammed up to a high degree, and it is from its nature only possible as an episodic phenomenon.
What I always hated and detested and cursed above all things was this contentment, this healthiness and comfort, this carefully preserved optimism of the middle classes, this fat and prosperous brood of mediocrity.
Delight is to him—a far, far upward, and inward delight—who against the proud gods and commodores of this earth, ever stands forth his own inexorable self.
Woman is fine for her own satisfaction alone. No man will admire her the more, no woman will like her the better for it. Neatness and fashion are enough for the former, and a something of shabbiness or impropriety will be most endearing to the latter.
Where does discontent start? You are warm enough, but you shiver. You are fed, yet hunger gnaws you. You have been loved, but your yearning wanders in new fields. And to prod all these there’s time, the bastard Time.
There is no satisfaction in vengeance unless the offender has time to realise who it is that strikes him, and why retribution has come upon him.
The feeling of the law, the satisfaction of being right, the joy of selfesteem, cher Monsieur, are powerful incentives to keep us upright or make us move forward. On the other hand, if you deprive men of them, you transform them into dogs frothing with rage.[Le sentiment du droit, la satisfaction d’avoir raison, la joie de s’estimer soi-même, cher monsieur, sont des ressorts puissants pour nous tenir debout ou nous faire avancer. Au contraire, si vous en privez les hommes, vous les transformez en chiens écumants.]