“A man would not feel bored while he was being executed, unless he had almost superhuman courage. In like manner no one has ever yawned during his maiden speech in the House of Lords, with the exception of the late Duke of Devonshire, who was reverenced by their Lordships in consequence. Boredom is essentially a thwarted desire for events, not necessarily pleasant ones, but just occurrences such as will enable the victim of ennui to know one day from another. The opposite of boredom, in a word, is not pleasure, but excitement.
The desire for excitement is very deepseated in human beings, especially in males. I suppose that in the hunting stage it was more easily gratified than it has been since. The chase was exciting, war was exciting, courtship was exciting.”