“The fault I find with our journalism is that it forces us to take an interest in some fresh triviality or other every day, whereas only three or four books in a lifetime give us anything that is of real importance. Suppose that, every morning, when we tore the wrapper off our paper with fevered hands, a transmutation were to take place, and we were to find inside it—oh! I don’t know; shall we say Pascal’s Pensées?” [Swann] articulated the title with an ironic emphasis so as not to appear pedantic. “And then, in the gilt and tooled volumes which we open once in ten years,” he went on, showing that contempt for worldly matters which some men of the world like to affect, “we should read that the Queen arrived at Cannes, or that the Princesse de Léon had given a fancy dress ball. In that way we should arrive at a happy medium.”

Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time, Volume 1: Swann’s Way, translated by C. K. Scott Moncrieff and Terence Kilmartin