The Stranger Quotes

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I may not have been sure about what really did interest me, but I was absolutely sure about what didn't.

2017

I opened myself to the gentle indifference of the world.

1600

I had only a little time left and I didn't want to waste it on God.

806

There is not love of life without despair about life.

804

Since we're all going to die, it's obvious that when and how don't matter.

697

If something is going to happen to me, I want to be there.

622

I looked up at the mass of signs and stars in the night sky and laid myself open for the first time to the benign indifference of the world.

503

Have you no hope at all? And do you really live with the thought that when you die, you die, and nothing remains?" "Yes," I said.

359

I had been right, I was still right, I was always right. I had lived my life one way and I could just as well have lived it another. I had done this and I hadn't done that. I hadn't done this thing but I had done another. And so?

323

She was wearing a pair of my pajamas with the sleeves rolled up. When she laughed I wanted her again. A minute later she asked me if I loved her. I told her it didn't mean anything but that I didn't think so. She looked sad. But as we were fixing lunch, and for no apparent reason, she laughed in such a way that I kissed her.

306

Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday; I can't be sure.

276

Mostly, I could tell, I made him feel uncomfortable. He didn't understand me, and he was sort of holding it against me. I felt the urge to reassure him that I was like everybody else, just like everybody else. But really there wasn't much point, and I gave up the idea out of laziness.

261

I've never really had much of an imagination. But still I would try to picture the exact moment when the beating of my heart would no longer be going on inside my head.

188

After another moment's silence she mumbled that I was peculiar, that that was probably why she loved me but that one day I might disgust her for the very same reason.

163

Maman used to say that you can always find something to be happy about. In my prison, when the sky turned red and a new day slipped into my cell, I found out that she was right.

128

After awhile you could get used to anything.

127

It is better to burn than to disappear.

125

I felt that I had been happy and that I was happy again. For everything to be consummated, for me to feel less alone, I had only to wish that there be a large crowd of spectators the day of my execution and that they greet me with cries of hate.

110

And it was like knocking four quick times on the door of unhappiness.

107

At that time, I often thought that if I had had to live in the trunk of a dead tree, with nothing to do but look up at the sky flowing overhead, little by little I would have gotten used to it.

98

Mother used to say that however miserable one is, there’s always something to be thankful for. And each morning, when the sky brightened and light began to flood my cell, I agreed with her.

96

I explained to him, however, that my nature was such that my physical needs often got in the way of my feelings.

92

I felt the urge to reassure him that I was like everybody else, just like everybody else.

72

I knew that I had shattered the harmony of the day, the exceptional silence of a beach where I'd been happy. Then I fired four more times at the motionless body where the bullets lodged without leaving a trace. And it was like knocking four quick times on the door of unhappiness.

72

One always has exaggerated ideas about what one doesn't know.

65

I would rather not have upset him, but I couldn't see any reason to change my life. Looking back on it, I wasn't unhappy. When I was a student, I had lots of ambitions like that. But when I had to give up my studies I learned very quickly that none of it really mattered.

61

But,' I reminded myself, 'it's common knowledge that life isn't worth living, anyhow.

54

I was assailed by memories of a life that wasn't mine anymore, but one in which I'd found the simplest and most lasting joys: the smells of summer, the part of town I loved, a certain evening sky, Marie's dresses and the way she laughed.

50

To stay or to go, it amounted to the same thing.

42

Everything is true, and nothing is true!

40

On my way out I was even going to shake his hand, but I remembered just in time that I'd killed a man.

33

Maman used to say that you can always find something to be happy about.

28

I couldn't quite understand how an ordinary man's good qualities could become crushing accusations against a guilty man.

27

She was wearing a pair of my pajamas with the sleeves rolled up. When she laughed I wanted her again. A minute later she asked me if I loved her. I told her it didn’t mean anything but that I didn’t think so. She looked sad.

26

And I too, felt ready to start life all over again. It was as if that great rush of anger had washed me clean, emptied me of hope, and, gazing up at the dark sky spangled with its signs and stars, for the first time, the first, I laid my heart open to the benign indifference of the universe.

25

Still, obviously, one can't be sensible all the time.

24

The Byronic hero, incapable of love, or capable only of an impossible love, suffers endlessly. He is solitary, languid, his condition exhausts him. If he wants to feel alive, it must be in the terrible exaltation of a brief and destructive action.

24

I felt as I hadn't felt for ages. I had a foolish desire to burst into tears. for the first time I'd realized how all these people loathed me.

23

I didn’t like having to explain to them, so I just shut up, smoked a cigarette, and looked at the sea.

21

Big tears of frustration and exhaustion were streaming down his cheeks. But because of all the wrinkles, they weren't dripping off. They spread out and ran together again, leaving a watery film over his ruined face.

21

...there was only one thing that interested her and that was getting into bed with men whenever she'd the chance. And I warned her straight. 'You'll be sorry one day, my girl, and wish you'd got me back'.

18

There was the same dazzling red glare. The sea gasped for air with each shallow, stifled wave that broke on the sand. ...with every blade of light that flashed off the sand, from a bleached shell or a peice of broken glass, my jaws tightened. I walked for a long time.

17

So the thing that bothered me most was that the condemned man had to hope the machine would work the first time.

14

How did I picture the life after the grave?I Fairly bawled out at him: 'A life in which I can remember this life on earth. That's all I want of it.

13

...as if familiar paths traced in summer skies could lead as easily to prison as to the sleep of the innocent.

12

I would have liked to have tried explaining to him cordially, almost affectionately, that I had never been able to truly feel remorse for anything. My mind was always on what was coming next, today or tomorrow.

12

Then she said she wondered if she really loved me or not. I, of course, couldn't enlighten her as to that. And, after another silence, she murmured something about my being "a queer fellow." "And I daresay that's why I love you," she added. "But maybe that's why one day I'll come to hate you.

11

She was wearing one of my pajama suits, and had the sleeves rolled up. When she laughed I wanted her again. A moment later she asked me if I loved her. I said that sort of question had no meaning, really; but I supposed I didn't. She looked sad for a bit, but when we were getting our lunch ready she brightened up and started laughing and when she laughs I always want to kiss her.

11

In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it say that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there's something stronger - something better pushing right back.

11

And I fired four more times at a lifeless body and the bullets sank in without leaving a mark. And it was like giving four sharp knocks at the door of unhappiness.

10