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sjmaxq #169502 08/11/07 02:10 AM
Joined: Aug 2005
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Carpal Tunnel
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Carpal Tunnel
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Posts: 3,290
Latin invidia is the evil eyekeyn ahoreand the source of English envy.


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
zmjezhd #169503 08/11/07 04:38 AM
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Hydra Offline OP
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I do feel a bit silly for overlooking envy, jealousy; on the other hand, these words (to me, at least) also imply desire: The resentment is centred on the fact that X has what you want. But, the lines from Swift notwithstanding (that's clearly envy), isn't there also a self-sufficient resentment of others' happiness? For example, X loves his job, is happily married, fulfilled, exuberantly satisfied with life. Y would not change places with X, but finds X's happiness inexpressibly irritating. Perhaps what I am looking for is a word to describe the annoyance caused by demonstrative displays of happiness... almost the failed attempt to arouse envy. This often happens when one runs into their ex, to whom you are forced to say (through gritted teeth): "I am so happy for you." (I always think of that song by Nick Cave, with the line: "It's good to hear you're doing so well / But really can't you find somebody else that you can ring and tell?") It is not so much envy as the clash of world-weary cynicism with Pollyannaism.

Edit: I forgot to mention: Bono said, of Irish begrudgery: "An American will look up at somebody living in a big house on a hill and say, 'Someday, I'm going to be like him'. An Irishman will look up at the big house and say, 'Someday, I'm going to get that fecker!'"

Last edited by Hydra; 08/11/07 05:23 AM.
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