So don’t fret

“[You] try to come at people without unreal expectations, without an overload of bias or hope or arrogance; . . . you take them on with an open mind, as equals, man to man, as we used to say, and yet you never fail to get them wrong. . . . You get them wrong before you meet them, while you’re anticipating meeting them; you get them wrong while you’re with them; and then you go home to tell somebody else about the meeting and you get them all wrong again. Since the same generally goes for them with you, the whole thing is really a dazzling illusion empty of all perception, an astonishing farce of misperception. And yet what are we to do . . . , so ill-equipped are we all to envision one another’s interior workings and invisible aims? . . . The fact remains that getting people right is not what living is all about anyway. It’s getting them wrong that is living, getting them wrong and wrong and wrong and then, on careful reconsideration, getting them wrong again. That’s how we know we’re alive: we’re wrong. Maybe the best thing would be to forget being right or wrong about people and just go along for the ride. But if you can do that–well, lucky you.” — Philip Roth, American Pastoral (via Philip Roth quotes)

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Comments

  • Angie  On July 7, 2012 at 12:27 am

    I believe the reason we do this “expectation thing” is for our minds to have a way of preparing. We all want to have some control over our own lives and in some way expecting is sort of our minds way to prepare, thus having some control over the situation we are about to embark on or in. There is no actual reality there is only the perception of what we each believe our reality is. So one could never possibly get any one “right”.

  • mark  On August 3, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    We are all the very centre of our own universe…..it makes it bloody difficult to see or understand the other guy……but you have to try…..its what makes us better.

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