Hope said, "He only means he understands, Nathan. He has the highest respect for what you are. We don't have visitors unless they're people Manny respects. He has no tolerance for people without substance."
"Enough," said Lonoff.
"I just don't want Nathan to resent you for superiority feelings you don't have."
"My wife would have been happier with a less exacting companion."
"But you are less exacting," she said, "with everyone but yourself. Nathan, you don't have to defend yourself. Why shouldn't you enjoy your first bit of recognition? Who deserves it more than a gifted young man like yourself? Think of all the worthless people held up for our esteem every day: movie stars, politicians, athletes. Because you happen to be writer doesn't mean you have to deny yourself the ordinary human pleasure of being praised and applauded."
"Ordinary human pleasures have nothing to do with it. Ordinary human pleasures be damned. The young man wants to be an artist."