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Quotes / Wanting Is Better Than Having

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Tom said to himself that it was not such a hollow world, after all. He had discovered a great law of human action, without knowing it — namely, that in order to make a man or a boy covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to attain."

"There are two great tragedies in life. One is not getting what you want... the other is getting it."
—Oscar Wilde

"We would often be sorry if our wishes were gratified."

"The honey doesn’t taste so good once it has been eaten; the goal doesn’t mean so much once it has been reached; the reward is not so rewarding once it has been given. If we add up all the rewards in our lives, we won’t have very much. But if we add up all the spaces between the rewards, we’ll come up with quite a bit. [ . . . ] Each time a goal is reached, it becomes Not So Much Fun, and we’re off to reach the next one, then the next one, then the next. That doesn’t mean the goal doesn’t count. They do, mostly because they cause us to go through the process, and it’s the process that makes us wise, happy, whatever. [ . . .] What could we call the moment before we eat the honey? Some call it anticipation, but we think it’s more than that. We could call it awareness. It is when we become happy and realize it, if only for an instant. By Enjoying the Process, we can stretch that awareness out so it’s no longer only a moment, but covers the whole thing. Then we can have a lot of fun."
—The Tao of Pooh

"Stonn, she is yours. After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing after all as wanting. It is not logical... but it is often true."
—Spock, Star Trek: The Original Series, "Amok Time"

So when the race is won
And there's nothing left to do
Alone again,
But where are you?
—Graham Gouldman, "Love's Not For Me", Animalympics

After you get what you want, you don't want it
If I gave you the moon,
You'd grow tired of it soon.
You're like a baby
You want what you want when you want it
But after you are presented
With what you want, you're discontented.
You're always wishing and wanting for something
When you get what you want
You don't want what you get
And tho' I sit upon your knee
You'll grow tired of me
'Cause after you get what you want
You don't want what you wanted at all.
Irving Berlin, "After You Get What You Want, You Don't Want It",

Peter: (walks in) Hey, I'm home. I got groceries.
Lois: You what?
Peter: Yeah, I was driving past there and we were out of some stuff, so I—(Lois tackles him)
Lois: You listen to me, you son of a bitch! I've got one thing in this lifetime! ONE THING! (punches Peter in the face)
Peter: Y-You always say I never do anything around here!
Lois: (teeth clenched) Yeah, I like saying that more than I like you doing things!
Family Guy, "Vestigial Peter"

"Some things are beautiful because they cannot be obtained."
— Gilgamesh, Fate/stay night

"You really don't understand, do you? I don't want whatever I want. Nobody does. Not really. What kind of fun would it be if I just got everything I ever wanted? Just like that, and it didn't mean anything. What then?"

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