William Saroyan

Als wir jung waren, hat man uns gelehrt, uns nach den Älteren zu richten. Heute, wo wir selber älter sind, sollen wir auf die Jugend hören.

Americans still believe they are cut out to be successful – in everything: love, love-making, luck, luck-giving, money-making, sense-making, cancer-avoiding, clothes-wearing, car-driving, and so on.

Die so moderne und aufgeschlossene Jugend von heute kämpft gegen die Phrasen von gestern und erfindet dafür laufend die tollsten Schlagworte von heute.

Glück ist das Wissen darum, dass du nicht notwendigerweise Glück brauchst.

Good people are good because they've come to wisdom through failure.

I became a writer because during several of the most important years of my life, writing seemed to me to be the most unreal, unattractive, and unecessary idea ever imposed upon the human race.

If this nation is going to survive meaningfully, and then perhaps grow decently, it has got to begin to know and accept enormous deprivation.

It is a pity, in my opinion, that no prize exists for the writer who best refrains from adding to the world's bad books.

Kultur heißt, daß man kontroverse Anschauungen toleriert und höflich miteinander spricht.

Love doesn't have to be perfect. Even perfect, it is still the best thing there is, for the simple reason that it is the most common and constant truth of all, of all life, all law and order, the very thing which holds everything together, which permits everything to move along in time and be its wonderful or ordinary self.

Mit dem Humor ist es wie mit den Austern: Eine Perle setzt eine kleine Wunde voraus.

Niemand ist verpflichtet, ein großer Mann zu sein. Schon Mann zu sein, ist eine respektable Leistung.

Nobody, but nobody, is going to tell me I'm not the most. I am. I was the most when everybody else was struggling bitterly to become a little.

Nur Narren verachten die Lüge.

Something lingers in the human family that is from certain branches of the animal family. Total love, straight through to issue, to children, can be a killer, and no man who is killed by love is ever the same, or ever again a son. He is a father forever after.

Sunday is the day people go quietly mad, one way or another.

The best thing we have is sleep, of course, and what is sleep except the putting aside of everything tentative for another interval of final and everlasting truth? Sleep isn't dying, but it is certainly keeping in touch with it.

The greatest happiness you can have is knowing that you do not necessarily require happiness.

The job of inhabiting the world may simply be too much for the human race at its present stage of development, in which case we shall muddle through to something or other – which could be anything from simple stupor to final disaster.

The Tax Collector's letters are invariably mimeographed, and all they say is that you still haven't paid him.

The whole world and every human being in it is everybody's business.

We are not forced into unpleasant activities. We either allow them to come about or we encourage them to come about.

Wenn ich ein Diktator wäre, würde ich das Ausleihen von Büchern gesetzlich untersagen.

Wenn man sich selbst besiegen will, darf man sich nicht aus dem Wege gehen.

What a people talk about means something. What they don't talk about means something.

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