From the FAQ: Did Edith Wharton once say, “If only we’d stop trying to be happy, we could have a pretty good time?”

Did Edith Wharton once say, “If only we’d stop trying to be happy, we could have a pretty good time?”

Not quite, but she did express this sentiment in “The Last Asset” (1904): The old gentleman made a contemptuous motion. “Possibilities of what? Of being multifariously miserable? There are lots of ways of being miserable, but there’s only one way of being comfortable, and that is to stop running round after happiness. If you make up your mind not to be happy there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have a fairly good time.”

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