The Catcher in the Rye
by J. D. Salinger
The Catcher in the Rye Sadness Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)
I was way early when I got there, so I just sat down on one of those leather couches right near the clock in the lobby and watched the girls. […] It was really nice sightseeing, if you know what I mean. In a way, it was sort of depressing, too, because you kept wondering what the hell would happen to all of them. When they got out of school and college, I mean. You figured most of them would probably marry dopey guys. Guys that always talk about how many miles they get to the gallon in their goddam cars. (17.1)
Sometimes, Holden makes personal connections without ever reaching out—or even talking—to another individual. Here, he even makes himself depressed over the futures of the girls he's watching, even though he doesn’t know the first thing about them.
"You don't like anything that's happening."
It made me even more depressed when she said that.
"Yes I do. Yes I do. Sure I do. Don't say that. Why the hell do you say that?"
"Because you don't. You don't like any schools. You don't like a million things. You don't."
"I do! That's where you're wrong—that's exactly where you're wrong!
Why the hell do you have to say that?" I said. Boy, she was depressing me. (22.18-23)
All right, keep telling yourself that, Holden. He won’t admit it, but his depression admits it for him: if it weren’t true, he wouldn’t feel so depressed when Phoebe points out that he hates everything.
There was this magazine that somebody'd left on the bench next to me, so I started reading it. […] It was all about hormones. It described how you should look. […] I looked exactly like the guy with lousy hormones. So I started getting worried about my hormones. Then I read this other article about how you can tell if you have cancer or not. It said if you had any sores in your mouth that didn't heal pretty quickly, it was a sign that you probably had cancer. I'd had this sort on the inside of my lip for about two weeks. So figured [sic] I was getting cancer. That magazine was some little cheerer upper.
Nice. On top of everything else, Holden now thinks he’s dying of cancer—even though it’s probably just stress.