When I was a child, I did always feel that people were hiding things, and that they weren't expressing their true feelings. When adults are too complicated, and cover their emotions with layers of well-intentioned subterfuge, the child isn't seeing reality clearly enough and gets upset.
In Europe one needs to act 'as if' "" as if what was wanted was little, in order to obtain much, as if States were to remain sovereign to convince them to concede sovereignty ... The Commission in Brussels, for example, should act as if it were a technical instrument, in order to be able to be treated as a government. And so on by disguise and subterfuge.
There are many, many nouns for the act of looking - a glance, a glimpse, a peep - but there's no noun for the act of listening. In general, we don't think primarily about sound. So I have a different perspective on the world; I can construct soundscapes that have an effect on people, but they don't know why. It's a sort of subterfuge.
Whereas, according to the declaration of that true man of the world Talleyrand, the use of language is to conceal the thoughts; this is to declare in the present instance, when I say I am not able to bear much talking, it means really, and without any mistake, or equivocation, or oblique meaning, or implication, or subterfuge, or omission, that I am not able; being at present rather weak in the head, and able to work no more.
Take the particular trick of false names. It seems to us particularly odious. We think when we show our contempt for those who use this subterfuge that we are giving them no more than they deserve. It is a meanness which we associate with criminals and vagabonds; a piece of crawling and sneaking...Men whose race is universally known, will unblushingly adopt a false name as a mask, and after a year or two pretend to treat it as an insult if their original and true name be used in its place.
Well, look who's on my front porch, " he said, speaking Empire with this odd hissing accent. "A murderer and a cross-dressing pirate." I looked down at my clothes, ripped and shredded and covered in mud and sand and dried blood. I'd forgotten I was dressed like a boy. "So are you here to kill me or to rob me?" the man said. "I generally don't find it useful to glow when undertaking acts of subterfuge, but then, I'm just a wizard
Cassandra Rose Clarke
Heaven knows insanity was disreputable enough, long ago; but now that the lawyers have got to cutting every gallows rope and picking every prison lock with it, it is become a sneaking villainy that ought to hang and keep on hanging its sudden possessors until evil-doers should conclude that the safest plan was to never claim to have it until they came by it legitimately. The very calibre of the people the lawyers most frequently try to save by the insanity subterfuge ought to laugh the plea out of the courts, one would think.
Children's Song We live in our own world, A world that is too small For you to stoop and enter Even on hands and knees, The adult subterfuge. And though you probe and pry With analytic eye, And eavesdrop all our talk With an amused look, You cannot find the centre Where we dance, where we play, Where life is still asleep Under the closed flower, Under the smooth shell Of eggs in the cupped nest That mock the faded blue Of your remoter heaven.
There's an honesty to the wolf world that is liberating. There's no diplomacy, no decorum. You tell your enemy you hate him; you show your admiration by confessing the truth. That directness doesn't work with humans, who are masters of subterfuge. Does this dress make me look fat? Do you really love me? Did you miss me? When a person asks this, she doesn't want to know the real answer. She wants you to lie to her. After two years of living with wolves, I had forgotten how many lies it takes to build a relationship.
There is the staircase, there is the sun. There is the kitchen, the plate with toast and strawberry jam, your subterfuge, your ordinary mirage. You stand red-handed. You want to wash yourself in earth, in rocks and grass What are you supposed to do with all this loss? In the daylight we know what's gone is gone, but at night it's different. Nothing gets finished, not dying, not mourning; the dead repeat themselves, like clumsy drunks lurching sideways through the doors we open to them in sleep; these slurred guests, never entirely welcome, even those we have loved the most, especially those we have loved the most, returning from where we shoved them away too quickly: from under the ground, from under the water, they clutch at us, they clutch at us, we won't let go.
Dear 2600: I think my girlfriend has been cheating on me and I wanted to know if I could get her password to Hotmail and AOL. I am so desperate to find out. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks. And this is yet another popular category of letter we get. You say any help would be appreciated? Let's find out if thats true. Do you think someone who is cheating on you might also be capable of having a mailbox you don't know about? Do you think that even if you could get into the mailbox she uses that she would be discussing her deception there, especially if we live in a world where Hotmail and AOL passwords are so easily obtained? Finally, would you feel better if you invaded her privacy and found out that she was being totally honest with you? Whatever problems are going on in this relationship are not going to be solved with subterfuge. If you can't communicate openly, there's not much there to salvage.
When I was no longer of the world, I would miss its extravagant beauty. I would miss the complex and charming layers of subterfuge by which the truth of the world's mysteries were withheld from us even as we were tantalized and enchanted by them. I would miss the kindness of good people who were compassionate when so many were pitiless, who made their way through so much corruption without being corrupted themselves, who eschewed envy in a world of envy, who eschewed greed in a world of greed, who valued truth and could not be drowned in a sea of lies, for they shone and, by the light they cast, they warmed me all my life.
In our day everyone wants to appear intelligent, one would prefer to be accused of crime than of naivete if the accompanying risks could be avoided. But since intelligence cannot be drawn from the void, subterfuge are resorted to, one of the most prevalent being the mania for "demystification", which allows an air of intelligence to be conveyed at small cost, for all one need do is assert that the normal response to a particular phenomenon is "prejudiced" and that it is high time it was cleared of the "legends" surrounding it; if the ocean could be made out to be a pond or the Himalayas a hill, it would be done. Certain writers find it impossible to be content with taking note of the fact that a particular thing or person has a particular character or destiny, as everyone had done before them; they must always begin by remarking that "it has too often been said", and go on to declare that the reality is something quite different and has at last been discovered, and that up till now all the world has been "living a lie". This strategy is applied above all to things that are evident and universally know, it would doubtless be too naive to acknowledge in so many words that a lion is a carnivore and that he is not quite safe to meet.
No sooner do we believe that God loves us than there is an impulse to believe that He does so, not because He is Love, but because we are intrinsically lovable. The Pagans obeyed this impulse unabashed; a good man was "dear to the gods" because he was good. We, being better taught, resort to subterfuge. Far be it from us to think that we have virtues for which God could love us. But then, how magnificently we have repented! As Bunyan says, describing his first and illusory conversion, "I thought there was no man in England that pleased God better than I." Beaten out of this, we next offer our own humility to God's admiration. Surely He'll like that? Or if not that, our clear-sighted and humble recognition that we still lack humility. Thus, depth beneath depth and subtlety within subtelty, there remains some lingering idea of our own, our very own attractiveness. It is easy to acknowledge, but almost impossible to realize for long, that we are mirrors whose brightness, if we are bright, is wholly derived from the sun that shines upon us. Surely we must have a little-however little-native luminosity? Surely we can't be quite creatures? - The Four Loves