"My fault, of course. One has no business really to get interested. It’s a weakness of mine. His was of another kind. My weakness consists in not having a discriminating eye for the incidental — for the externals — no eye for the hod of the rag-picker or the fine linen of the next man. Next man — that’s it. I have met so many men," he pursued, with momentary sadness, "met them too with a certain — certain — impact, let us say; like this fellow, for instance — and in each case all I could see was merely the human being. A confounded democratic quality of vision which may be better than total blindness, but has been of no advantage to me, I can assure you. Men expect one to take into account their fine linen. But I never could get up any enthusiasm about these things. Oh! it’s a failing; it’s a failing; and then comes a soft evening; a lot of men too indolent for whist — and a story."
Joseph Conrad, from Lord Jim