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Wendy Wasserstein

  • Sometimes I want to clean up my desk and go out and say, respect me, I'm a respectable grown-up, and other times I just want to jump into a paper bag and shake and bake myself to death.

  • ... no matter how lonely you get or how many birth announcements you receive, the trick is not to get frightened. There's nothing wrong with being alone.

  • ... you're the unfortunate contradiction in terms — a serious good person.

  • ... being funny is a way of being liked and a way of dealing with sadness.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • in Parade ()
  • ... anyone who writes plays is unbelievably persistent, because there isn't a need in the world for plays. Somehow you internally have to feel a need to write a play.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • in Parade ()
  • ... to live life as a writer is a very lucky thing.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • in Parade ()
  • I don't much like to think that being a bachelor girl limits how you see the world. On the other hand, I know it certainly limits how the world sees you.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • title story, Bachelor Girls ()
  • My mother and I go way back.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • "My Mother, Then and Now," Bachelor Girls ()
  • The struggle to be considered a grown-up begins, I believe, shortly after birth.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • "Modern Maturity," Bachelor Girls ()
  • Being a grown-up means assuming responsibility for yourself, for your children, and — here's the big curve — for your parents. In other words, you do get to stay up later, but you want to go to sleep earlier.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • "Modern Maturity," Bachelor Girls ()
  • A diet counselor once told me that all overweight people are angry with their mothers and channel their frustrations into overeating. So I guess that means all thin people are happy, calm, and have resolved their Oedipal entanglements.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • "To Live and Diet," Bachelor Girls ()
  • Personally I don't spend much time thinking about being funny. For me it's always been just a way to get by, a way to be likable yet to remain removed. When I speak up, it's not because I have any particular answers; rather, I have a desire to puncture the pretentiousness of those who seem so certain they do.

    • Wendy Wasserstein,
    • "Jean Harlow's Wedding Night," Bachelor Girls ()
  • Love is love, Sara. Gender is merely spare parts.

  • I really worked at becoming more assertive, and now none of my friends talk to me.

  • Sloth is the fastest-growing lifestyle movement in the world, and that's because it is completely doable. If you embrace sloth, it's the last thing you'll ever have to do again.

  • Women like us have to learn to give to those who appreciate it instead of to those who expect it.

Wendy Wasserstein, U.S. playwright, screenwriter

(1950 - 2006)