Conceal Don't Feel Quotes

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Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery - celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to." [MovieMaker Magazine #53 - Winter, January 22, 2004 ]
Jim Jarmusch
Water flows from high places to low places. That is the nature of gravity. Emotions also seem to act according to gravity. When in the presence of someone with whom you have a bond, and to whom you have entrusted your feelings, it is hard to lie and get away with it. The truth just wants to come flowing out. This is especially the case when you are trying to hide your sadness or vulnerability. It is much easier to conceal sadness from a stranger, or from someone you don’t trust.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Before the Coffee Gets Cold)
Being caught up in a game without having a clue about the rules, may be extremely maddening and frustrating. Liberty may be so frightening and grueling, that many don’t conceal their passion for rules and regulations, since these can give a relieving feeling of security and protection. ("When forgetting the rules of the game" )
Erik Pevernagie
When in the presence of someone with whom you have a bond, and to whom you have entrusted your feelings, it is hard to lie and get away with it. The truth just wants to come flowing out. This is especially the case when you are trying to hide your sadness or vulnerability. It is much easier to conceal sadness from a stranger, or from someone you don't trust.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Before the Coffee Gets Cold: Tales from the Café (Before the Coffee Gets Cold, #2))
If loneliness is to be defined as a desire for intimacy, then included within that is the need to express oneself and to be heard, to share thoughts, experiences and feelings. Intimacy can't exist if the participants aren't willing to make themselves known, to be revealed. But gauging the levels is tricky. Either you don't communicate enough and remain concealed from other people, or you risk rejection by exposing too much altogether: the minor and major hurts, the tedious obsessions, the abscesses and cataracts of need and shame and longing.
Olivia Laing (The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone)
Say whatever is in your heart,” Violet said. Her lips twisted wryly. “And if that doesn’t work, I suggest that you take a book and knock him over the head with it.” Hyacinth blinked, then blinked again. “I beg your pardon.” “I didn’t say that,” Violet said quickly. Hyacinth felt herself smile. “I’m rather certain you did.” “Do you think?” Violet murmured, concealing her own smile with her teacup. “A large book,” Hyacinth queried, “or small?” “Large, I think, don’t you?” Hyacinth nodded. “Have we The Complete Works of Shakespeare in the library?” Violet’s lips twitched. “I believe that we do.” Something began to bubble in Hyacinth’s chest. Something very close to laughter. And it felt so good to feel it again. “I love you, Mother,” she said, suddenly consumed by the need to say it aloud. “I just wanted you to know that.” “I know, darling,” Violet said, and her eyes were shining brightly. “I love you, too.
Julia Quinn (It's in His Kiss (Bridgertons, #7))
Talking so much you horrify yourself and those around you; talking so little that you almost refuse your own existence: a demonstrates that speech is by no means a straightforward route to connection. If loneliness is to be defined as a desire for intimacy, then included within that is the need to express oneself and to be heard, to share thoughts, experiences and feelings. Intimacy can’t exist if the participants aren’t willing to make themselves known, to be revealed. But gauging the levels is tricky. Either you don’t communicate enough and remain concealed from other people, or you risk rejection by exposing too much altogether: the minor and major hurts, the tedious obsessions, the abscesses and cataracts of need and shame and longing.
Olivia Laing (The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone)
In the words of Mr Thierry Coup of Warner Bros: 'We are taking the most iconic and powerful moments of the stories and putting them in an immersive environment. It is taking the theme park experience to a new level.' And of course I wish Thierry and his colleagues every possible luck, and I am sure it will be wonderful. But I cannot conceal my feelings; and the more I think of those millions of beaming kids waving their wands and scampering the Styrofoam turrets of Hogwartse_STmk, and the more I think of those millions of poor put-upon parents who must now pay to fly to Orlando and pay to buy wizard hats and wizard cloaks and wizard burgers washed down with wizard meade_STmk, the more I grind my teeth in jealous irritation. Because the fact is that Harry Potter is not American. He is British. Where is Diagon Alley, where they buy wands and stuff? It is in London, and if you want to get into the Ministry of Magic you disappear down a London telephone box. The train for Hogwarts goes from King's Cross, not Grand Central Station, and what is Harry Potter all about? It is about the ritual and intrigue and dorm-feast excitement of a British boarding school of a kind that you just don't find in America. Hogwarts is a place where children occasionally get cross with each other—not 'mad'—and where the situation is usually saved by a good old British sense of HUMOUR. WITH A U. RIGHT? NOT HUMOR. GOTTIT?
Boris Johnson
Do not say, 'But it is hypocritical to thank God with my tongue when I don't feel thankful in my heart.' There is such a thing as hypocritical thanksgiving. Its aim is to conceal ingratitude and get the praise of men. That is not your aim. Your aim in loosing your tongue with words of gratitude is that God would be merciful and fill your words with the emotion of true gratitude. You are not seeking the praise of men; you are seeing the mercy of God. You are not hiding the hardness of ingratitude, but hoping for the in-breaking of the Spirit. Thanksgiving with the Mouth Stirs Up Thankfulness in the Heart Moreover, we should probably ask the despairing saint, 'Do you know your heart so well that you are sure the words of thanks have no trace of gratitude in them?' I, for one, distrust my own assessment of my motives. I doubt that I know my good ones well enough to see all the traces of contamination. And I doubt that I know my bad ones well enough to see the traces of grace. Therefore, it is not folly for a Christian to assume that there is a residue of gratitude in his heart when he speaks and sings of God's goodness even though he feels little or nothing. To this should be added that experience shows that doing the right thing, in the way I have described, is often the way toward being in the right frame. Hence Baxter gives this wise counsel to the oppressed Christian: 'Resolve to spend most of your time in thanksgiving and praising God. If you cannot do it with the joy that you should, yet do it as you can. You have not the power of your comforts; but have you no power of your tongues? Say not that you are unfit for thanks and praises unless you have a praising heart and were the children of God; for every man, good and bad, is bound to praise God, and to be thankful for all that he hath received, and to do it as well as he can, rather than leave it undone.... Doing it as you can is the way to be able to do it better. Thanksgiving stirreth up thankfulness in the heart.
John Piper (When the Darkness Will Not Lift: Doing What We Can While We Wait for God—And Joy)
Everyone wanted to get a better look at the princess. Her parents were used to interacting with their kingdom, but at eighteen, she had only recently been invited to join them on official outings. Truth be told, she still preferred to live life in the shadows, but duty called.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
There's a crack in my mind, That I don't know how to heal. There are demons in my head, People tell me are not real. The voices are my own, Speaking words I don't believe. Convincing me I'm worthless, And that everyone will leave. You want me to be better, Don't you think I want the same? But you've convinced yourself it's nothing, Or that I'm the one to blame. So I'll tell you that I'm 'fine,' Because that's all you want to hear. And I'll conceal it with a smile, While hiding all the fear. I'll bury all the feelings, And I'll cut out all the pain. But that won't mean I'm healed, I've just chosen to not 'complain.' Because being sad was only half of it, And it was not the half to kill. The downfall began when I started to feel nothing, When I slowly lost my will.
Jeannine Allison (Unveiling the Sky (Unveiling #1))
You speak as if you envied him." "And I do envy him, Emma. In one respect he is the object of my envy." Emma could say no more. They seemed to be within half a sentence of Harriet, and her immediate feeling was to avert the subject, if possible. She made her plan; she would speak of something totally different—the children in Brunswick Square; and she only waited for breath to begin, when Mr. Knightley startled her, by saying, "You will not ask me what is the point of envy.—You are determined, I see, to have no curiosity.—You are wise—but I cannot be wise. Emma, I must tell you what you will not ask, though I may wish it unsaid the next moment." "Oh! then, don't speak it, don't speak it," she eagerly cried. "Take a little time, consider, do not commit yourself." "Thank you," said he, in an accent of deep mortification, and not another syllable followed. Emma could not bear to give him pain. He was wishing to confide in her—perhaps to consult her;—cost her what it would, she would listen. She might assist his resolution, or reconcile him to it; she might give just praise to Harriet, or, by representing to him his own independence, relieve him from that state of indecision, which must be more intolerable than any alternative to such a mind as his.—They had reached the house. "You are going in, I suppose?" said he. "No,"—replied Emma—quite confirmed by the depressed manner in which he still spoke—"I should like to take another turn. Mr. Perry is not gone." And, after proceeding a few steps, she added—"I stopped you ungraciously, just now, Mr. Knightley, and, I am afraid, gave you pain.—But if you have any wish to speak openly to me as a friend, or to ask my opinion of any thing that you may have in contemplation—as a friend, indeed, you may command me.—I will hear whatever you like. I will tell you exactly what I think." "As a friend!"—repeated Mr. Knightley.—"Emma, that I fear is a word—No, I have no wish—Stay, yes, why should I hesitate?—I have gone too far already for concealment.—Emma, I accept your offer—Extraordinary as it may seem, I accept it, and refer myself to you as a friend.—Tell me, then, have I no chance of ever succeeding?" He stopped in his earnestness to look the question, and the expression of his eyes overpowered her. "My dearest Emma," said he, "for dearest you will always be, whatever the event of this hour's conversation, my dearest, most beloved Emma—tell me at once. Say 'No,' if it is to be said."—She could really say nothing.—"You are silent," he cried, with great animation; "absolutely silent! at present I ask no more." Emma was almost ready to sink under the agitation of this moment. The dread of being awakened from the happiest dream, was perhaps the most prominent feeling. "I cannot make speeches, Emma:" he soon resumed; and in a tone of such sincere, decided, intelligible tenderness as was tolerably convincing.—"If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am.—You hear nothing but truth from me.—I have blamed you, and lectured you, and you have borne it as no other woman in England would have borne it.—Bear with the truths I would tell you now, dearest Emma, as well as you have borne with them. The manner, perhaps, may have as little to recommend them. God knows, I have been a very indifferent lover.—But you understand me.—Yes, you see, you understand my feelings—and will return them if you can. At present, I ask only to hear, once to hear your voice.
Jane Austen (Emma)
Water flows from high places to low places. That is the nature of gravity. Emotions also seem to act according to gravity. When in the presence of someone with whom you have a bond, and to whom you have entrusted your feelings, it is hard to lie and get away with it. The truth just wants to come flowing out. This is especially the case when you are trying to hide your sadness or vulnerability. It is much easier to conceal sadness from a stranger, or from someone you don’t trust. Hirai saw Kei as a confidante with whom she could share anything. The emotional gravity was strong. Kei was able to accept anything—forgive anything—that Hirai let flow out. A single kind word from Kei could cut the cords of tension that ran through her.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Before the Coffee Gets Cold (Before the Coffee Gets Cold, #1))
Elsa smiled, her heart full and her head in a good place. Her people were happy. She was content. And she was very, very loved by a sister who had finally been returned to her. Things were exactly as they should be.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
You are not alone in the world! You are a smart, resourceful girl, Elsa, and I know you can find a way to reach your sister even when she is out of sight. And Anna, with her warm heart and kind soul, will find her way back to you.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
A snowball formed between her palms, surrounded by a blue glow. "Ready?" she asked, feeling the rush she got when she was about to use magic. She threw her hands up and flung the snowball high into the air. Snow started to fall from the ceiling, washing the floor in a blanket of white. "This is amazing!" Anna marveled, her giggles of joy filling Elsa with pride. Anna, more than anyone else, loved Elsa's gift, and she begged her to use it often. Their parents, on the other hand, wanted her to keep it private. But if a gift like this could bring such joy, shouldn't she share it?
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
It Hurts To Be Alive and Obsolete: Often when men are attracted to me, they feel ashamed and conceal it. They act as if it were ridiculous. If they do become involved, they are still ashamed and may refuse to appear publicly with me. Their fear of mockery is enormous. There is no prestige attached to having sex with me. Since we are all far more various sexually than we are supposed to be, often, in fact, younger men become aware of me sexually. Their response is similar to what it is when they find themselves feeling attracted to a homosexual: they turn those feelings into hostility and put me down. Listen to me! Think what it is like to have most of your life ahead and be told you are obsolete! Think what it is like to feel attraction, desire, affection towards others, to want to tell them about yourself, to feel that assumption on which self-respect is based, that you are worth something, and that if you like someone, surely he will be pleased to know that. To be, in other words, still a living woman, and to be told that every day that you are not a woman but a tired object that should disappear. That you are not a person but a joke. Well, I am a bitter joke. I am bitter and frustrated and wasted, but don’t you pretend for a minute as you look at me, forty-three, fat, and looking exactly my age, that I am not as alive as you are and that I do not suffer from the category into which you are forcing me.
Zoe Moss (Sisterhood is Powerful: An Anthology of Writings from the Women's Liberation Movement)
Leonie was on a roll now. ‘From the second we’re born we’re made to feel insecure about our bodies, our choices, our lives. Then we hit puberty and all of a sudden we have to be both sexual and chaste at the same time, while our bodies are going fucking mental. We start leaking, for fuck’s sake. Then, after we’re covertly trained to conceal our excellence at school, we get to go work for men who don’t understand literally any of those dilemmas, and think they’re innately more skilled than us. They want you to be like men, but also not like men. It’s a fucking trap. We’re fucked as soon as the doctor says hun, it’s a girl.
Juno Dawson (Her Majesty's Royal Coven (Her Majesty's Royal Coven #1))
PICARD: Did you read that book I gave you? (Wesley reacts, barely concealing a grimace as he recalls.) WESLEY: Some of it. PICARD: That's reassuring. WESLEY: I just don't have much time. PICARD: (re the book in his hand) There is no greater challenge than the study of philosophy. (Wesley glances over at Picard's book) WESLEY: William James sure won't be on my Starfleet exams. PICARD: The important things never will be. Anyone can be trained to deal with technology, and the mechanics of piloting a starship. WESLEY: But Starfleet Academy-- PICARD: It takes more than just that. Open your mind to the past... to history, art, philosophy. And then... (re: the stars) ...this will mean something. (Wesley considers this, almost embarrassed as he realizes Picard does truly care about him.) Then: PICARD (continuing) Just consider James' wisdom: "Philosophy... is not a technical matter... it is our sense of what life honestly means... our individual way of feeling the total push and pressure of the cosmos." (then) That's what I want for you. From: STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION "Samaritan Snare" #40272-143 Written by Robert L. McCullough
Jean-Luc Picard
Elsa looked down at her hands. She was wearing only one glove. Her gloves had served as "protection" from her powers for far too long. It was time to let go. She pulled the glove off and let it fly into the wind. She was finally free. Lifting her hand to the sky, she concentrated on creating a giant snowflake that crystallized in midair and floated away. Then she lifted her other hand and made another snowflake, watching it fly away as well. Pulse racing, Elsa kept building, her face breaking into a smile as she realized the possibilities were endless. Here she could really use her gift and see what she was capable of.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Home. It felt strange to use that word about a place she hadn't lived in since she was a child, but the castle felt more familiar than she had expected. She quickly became reacquainted with the layout, her bedroom, and all the other rooms, even visiting her old friend Joan in the portrait gallery. The truth was, home was anywhere Elsa was.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Hey, do me a favor and grab my butt," Olaf´s head said to Hans.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Riches come and go, but no one can take away your education.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Nothing is too much to ask when it is done out of love.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
The late-afternoon sun was casting shadows that tip-toed along the walls
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Freya was never late, while Anna tended to get distracted and show up a few minutes behind schedule no matter how punctual she tries to be.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Why am I feeling guilty? Why is he so mad? I peek up at him. “Well, you know a lot more about me now,” he snaps, his mouth presses into a hard line. “I knew you were inexperienced, but a virgin!” He says it like it’s a really dirty word. “Hell, Ana, I just showed you …” he groans. “May God forgive me. Have you ever been kissed, apart from by me?” “Of course I have.” I try my best to look affronted. Okay … maybe twice. “And a nice young man hasn’t swept you off your feet? I just don’t understand. You’re twenty-one, nearly twenty-two. You’re beautiful.” He runs his hand through his hair again. Beautiful. I flush with pleasure. Christian Grey thinks I’m beautiful. I knot my fingers together, staring at them hard, trying to conceal my goofy grin.
E.L. James (Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, #1))
The world – whatever we might think when terrified by its vastness and our own impotence, or embittered by its indifference to individual suffering, of people, animals, and perhaps even plants, for why are we so sure that plants feel no pain; whatever we might think of its expanses pierced by the rays of stars surrounded by planets we've just begun to discover, planets already dead? still dead? we just don’t know; whatever we might think of this measureless theater to which we've got reserved tickets, but tickets whose lifespan is laughably short, bounded as it is by two arbitrary dates; whatever else we might think of this world – it is astonishing. But ‘astonishing’ is an epithet concealing a logical trap. We’re astonished, after all, by things that deviate from some well-known and universally acknowledged norm, from an obviousness we've grown accustomed to. Now the point is, there is no such obvious world. Our astonishment exists per se and isn't based on comparison with something else. Granted, in daily speech, where we don’t stop to consider every word, we all use phrases like ‘the ordinary world,’ ‘ordinary life,’ ‘the ordinary course of events’ … But in the language of poetry, where every word is weighed, nothing is usual or normal. Not a single stone and not a single cloud above it. Not a single day and not a single night after it. And above all, not a single existence, not anyone’s existence in this world.
Wisława Szymborska
Anna Chapter Eight: Elsa Chapter Nine: Elsa Chapter Ten: Hans Chapter Eleven: Anna Chapter Twelve: Elsa Chapter Thirteen: Elsa Chapter Fourteen: Elsa Chapter Fifteen: Anna Chapter Sixteen: Elsa Chapter Seventeen: Anna Chapter Eighteen: Elsa
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
I know you're learning how to follow in your father's footsteps, and that's good, but when was the last time you went outside the castle walls? With someone other than this staff? A good queen knows herself inside and out, and you are too inside your head. The only way you can understand the people you serve is to get to know them. Enjoy their company. Hear their stories. In the process you might figure out what you enjoy, as well, when you're not focused on your studies and your future.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
The mountain range ahead of her was remote and imposing. Maybe that was where Grand Pabbie was! In the distance, the rocky face of the North Mountain loomed, large and impressive. Even in the summer, the peak was covered in snow. Few had attempted to climb it, which meant no one would follow her up there. The mountain was a kingdom of isolation, and it looked like she was the queen. She'd keep going in that direction until she found the trolls or her legs gave out. She wasn't even tired. And the cold never bothered her, anyway.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
BOWLS OF FOOD Moon and evening star do their slow tambourine dance to praise this universe. The purpose of every gathering is discovered: to recognize beauty and love what’s beautiful. “Once it was like that, now it’s like this,” the saying goes around town, and serious consequences too. Men and women turn their faces to the wall in grief. They lose appetite. Then they start eating the fire of pleasure, as camels chew pungent grass for the sake of their souls. Winter blocks the road. Flowers are taken prisoner underground. Then green justice tenders a spear. Go outside to the orchard. These visitors came a long way, past all the houses of the zodiac, learning Something new at each stop. And they’re here for such a short time, sitting at these tables set on the prow of the wind. Bowls of food are brought out as answers, but still no one knows the answer. Food for the soul stays secret. Body food gets put out in the open like us. Those who work at a bakery don’t know the taste of bread like the hungry beggars do. Because the beloved wants to know, unseen things become manifest. Hiding is the hidden purpose of creation: bury your seed and wait. After you die, All the thoughts you had will throng around like children. The heart is the secret inside the secret. Call the secret language, and never be sure what you conceal. It’s unsure people who get the blessing. Climbing cypress, opening rose, Nightingale song, fruit, these are inside the chill November wind. They are its secret. We climb and fall so often. Plants have an inner Being, and separate ways of talking and feeling. An ear of corn bends in thought. Tulip, so embarrassed. Pink rose deciding to open a competing store. A bunch of grapes sits with its feet stuck out. Narcissus gossiping about iris. Willow, what do you learn from running water? Humility. Red apple, what has the Friend taught you? To be sour. Peach tree, why so low? To let you reach. Look at the poplar, tall but without fruit or flower. Yes, if I had those, I’d be self-absorbed like you. I gave up self to watch the enlightened ones. Pomegranate questions quince, Why so pale? For the pearl you hid inside me. How did you discover my secret? Your laugh. The core of the seen and unseen universes smiles, but remember, smiles come best from those who weep. Lightning, then the rain-laughter. Dark earth receives that clear and grows a trunk. Melon and cucumber come dragging along on pilgrimage. You have to be to be blessed! Pumpkin begins climbing a rope! Where did he learn that? Grass, thorns, a hundred thousand ants and snakes, everything is looking for food. Don’t you hear the noise? Every herb cures some illness. Camels delight to eat thorns. We prefer the inside of a walnut, not the shell. The inside of an egg, the outside of a date. What about your inside and outside? The same way a branch draws water up many feet, God is pulling your soul along. Wind carries pollen from blossom to ground. Wings and Arabian stallions gallop toward the warmth of spring. They visit; they sing and tell what they think they know: so-and-so will travel to such-and-such. The hoopoe carries a letter to Solomon. The wise stork says lek-lek. Please translate. It’s time to go to the high plain, to leave the winter house. Be your own watchman as birds are. Let the remembering beads encircle you. I make promises to myself and break them. Words are coins: the vein of ore and the mine shaft, what they speak of. Now consider the sun. It’s neither oriental nor occidental. Only the soul knows what love is. This moment in time and space is an eggshell with an embryo crumpled inside, soaked in belief-yolk, under the wing of grace, until it breaks free of mind to become the song of an actual bird, and God.
Rumi (Jalal ad-Din Muhammad ar-Rumi) (The Soul of Rumi: A New Collection of Ecstatic Poems)
What, sir, would you think of a member of the Weaker Sex who assumed the guise of a man, and left the home of her natural protector by way of the window?" "I should assume," replied Sir Richard, "that she had strong reasons for acting with such resolution." "She did not wish to marry me," said Mr. Griffin gloomily. "Oh!" said Sir Richard. "Well, I'm sure I can't see why she should be so set against me, but that's not it, sir. The thing is that here's my mother determined to find her, and to make her marry me, and so hush up the scandal. But I don't like it above half. If she dislikes the notion so much, I don't think I ought to marry her, do you?" "Emphatically not!" "I must say I am very glad to hear you say that, Sir Richard!" said Mr. Griffin, much cheered. "For you must know that my mother has been telling me ever since yesterday that I must marry her now, to save her name. But I think she would very likely make me uncomfortable, and nothing could make up for that, in my opinion." "A lady capable of escaping out of a window in the guise of a a man would quite certainly make you more than uncomfortable," said Sir Richard. "Yes, though she's only a chit of a girl, you know. In fact, she is not yet out. I am very happy to have had the benefit of the opinion of a Man of the World. I feel that I can rely on your judgment." "On my judgment, you might, but in nothing else, I assure you," said Sir Richard. "You know nothing of me, after all. How do you know that I am not now concealing your cousin from you?" "Ha-ha! Very good, upon my word! Very good, indeed!" said Mr. Griffin, saluting a jest of the first water.
Georgette Heyer (The Corinthian)
The sudden and uncalled for coldness with which you treated me just before I left last night, both surprised and deeply hurt me - surprised because I could not have believed that such sullen and inflexible obstinacy could exist in the breast of any girl in whose heart love had found place; and hurt me, because I feel for you more than I have ever professed and feel a slight from you more than I care to tell. My object in writing to you is this: if hasty temper produces this strange behaviour, acknowledge it when I give you the opportunity - not once or twice, but again and again. If a feeling of you know not what - a capricious restlessness of you can't tell what, and a desire to tease, you don't know why, give rise to it - overcome it; it will never make you more amiable, I more fond or either of us, more happy. Depend upon it, whatever be the cause of your unkindness - whatever gives rise to these wayward fancies - that what you do not take the trouble to conceal from a Lover's eyes, will be frequently acted before those of a husband's. I know as well, as if I were by your side at this moment, that your present impulse on reading this letter is one of anger - pride perhaps, or to use a word more current with your sex - 'spirit'. My dear girl, I have not the most remote intention of awakening any such feeling, and I implore you, not to entertain it for an instant.... I have written these few lines in haste, but not anger.... If you knew but half the anxiety with which I watched your recent illness, the joy with which I hailed your recovery, and the eagerness with which I would promote your happiness, you could more readily understand the extent of the pain so easily inflicted, but so difficult to be forgotten. - Excerpts from a letter by Charles Dickens to his fiancee of three weeks, 1835
Charles Dickens
Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent. And don’t bother concealing your thievery - celebrate it if you feel like it. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “It’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to.
Jim Jarmusch
You might want to pop your collar." "Hey if the biker doesn't pop his, I'm not popping mine. Also? We're thirty years past that fashion faux pas." "Yeah, but it still comes in handy when you're sporting a hickey." "What?" My hands flew to my neck, and I found the tender spot. "Shit. No, that's not-- I burned it. My hair wasn't cooperating, so I dragged out the curling iron." "Gabriel has a curling iron?" "No, I meant--Damn it." I rooted through my bag for concealer. "I'm sorry. If I'd noticed, I'd have hidden it." "I know." His lips twitched. "It is kinda funny, though, watching you guys scramble with excuses. Gabriel told me you weren't answering my calls because you forgot your phone in the car. Which is about as likely as you leaving your arm behind. He dried his hair so fast the back was sticking up. And then he scarfed down half the food I brought for lunch. I've never seen him eat like that." He smiled. "But I do appreciate he's being circumspect." "He's not going to wave it in your face." "No, but we are talking about Gabriel, who never goes out of his way to cushion anyone's feelings but yours. He's being very thoughtful. It's sweet. Just don't tell him I said that." "I won't." I finished applying the concealer. "Better?" "Yep." He leaned over for a better look and then stopped. "Is that a bite on your collarbone?" "Shit! No. Damn it. Ricky laughed as I frantically applied more makeup.
Kelley Armstrong (Rituals (Cainsville, #5))
Just an FYI for you citizens. The mayor and every city of Chicago alderman have voted themselves the right to carry a concealed weapon. Don’t you feel a little safer knowing that? The insanity is that the troubles in the hood get worse by the year. Yet the voters put the same fools in charge at every election. Go figure. They may as well elect gang members.
Ben Celano (Beat Cop,Chicago Blue: Recollections of a Street Grunt Book One)
When in the presence of someone with whom you have a bond, and to whom you have entrusted your feelings, it is hard to lie and get away with it. The truth just wants to come flowing out. This is especially the case when you are trying to hide your sadness or vulnerability. It is much easier to conceal sadness from a stranger, or from someone you don’t trust.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Before the Coffee Gets Cold #1)
Pulling at her uncomfortable hairstyle, she let several loose tendrils frame her face. Next, she took out the tight bun, and her braided hair hung down her back. Elsa didn't stop there. This gown had weighed her down for too long. It was time for it to go as well. With a wave of her hands, she imagined a new dress that suited her personality and style. Something light and freeing. Ice crystallized over the bottom of her teal dress, forming a new one that was a shimmering pale blue. Gone were the itchy high collar and the annoying long sleeves that restricted her movements. Her new gown was strapless, her neck was open, and her arms were loosely wrapped in silk. A light sheer cape was made up of a pattern of snowflakes as unique as she was.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
As dawn broke over the mountains on the horizon, Iduna rode into the sleepy village. She spotted the sign for Tomally's Baked Goods almost immediately. It was just as her friend had described in her letters. The bakery was attached to a modest house that was clean and bright, with a window box filled with golden crocus. They were Anna's favorite flower. It had to be a sign.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
She played with one of her braids. Three years feels so far away. "Hey." Kristoff moved closer. "Your hair." "Oh." She was used to this question. "The white stripe? I was born with it," she explained. "That's what my parents were told. They actually adopted me when I was a baby. I dreamt that I was kissed by a troll." Kristoff's eyes widened. "Did you say 'troll'?" He hurried after her to hear more.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
I... I remember, she realized. A feeling came over her, so strong that for the smallest of moments, it warmed her soul. Pictures flew through her mind: She and Elsa talking in their bedroom, baking with their mother in the kitchen, running down the central staircase. Do the magic! she heard a voice say, and now she realized it was her younger self begging Elsa to create more snow. Together they had skated around the Great Hall and made snow angels. They had built Olaf! She used to marvel at Elsa's magic and always wanted her sister to use it. Do the magic! she heard herself beg again, and then she saw the moment when everything changed. In her haste to stop Anna from falling off a snow mound, Elsa had accidentally struck her. That was when she and Elsa had been ripped apart. She remembered everything!
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
All that mattered was reaching Anna. Anna, with her bright smile, bubbly enthusiasm, big eyes, and need to fill every moment with chatter. Anna, with her feisty nature and strong will that had saved him from the wolves... and cost him his sleigh. Anna, who was willing to risk her life to save her village and help a princess she didn't think she knew. Leave it to him to wait till now to realize he was falling for her.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Condemnation comes from guilt. Conviction is born out of grace. Condemnation leads you to conceal your sin. Conviction urges you to confess it. Condemnation results in remorse (feeling bad about what you did). Conviction calls you to repentance (turning to go the other way). Condemnation prompts you to rededicate. Conviction demands full surrender. Condemnation is a path to future failure. Conviction is a highway to real change.
Louie Giglio (Don't Give the Enemy a Seat at Your Table: It's Time to Win the Battle of Your Mind...)
That is the nature of gravity. Emotions also seem to act according to gravity. When in the presence of someone with whom you have a bond, and to whom you have entrusted your feelings, it is hard to lie and get away with it. The truth just wants to come flowing out. This is especially the case when you are trying to hide your sadness or vulnerability. It is much easier to conceal sadness from a stranger, or from someone you don’t trust.
Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Before the Coffee Gets Cold #1)
At first glance, it looked like the portrait of her family that hung in the Great Hall. But this painting had four people in it: the king, the queen, Elsa, and another little girl. The child was a few years younger than Elsa, and she was the spitting image of the king. She had wide-set blue eyes, bright red hair set in pigtails, and a sprinkle of freckles dotting her nose. She wore a pale green dress, and she was clutching Elsa's arm as if she might never let go.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
She couldn't help noticing the way his shaggy blond hair fell in front of his brown eyes. The two of them stared at each other for a moment. Then they both looked away. "I'll pay you in cookies if you want," she offered. "I make the best ones in the village." The reindeer started to prance. "You make the only ones in the village," the young man deadpanned. "How would you know?" Anna replied. "Did you ask about me?" He pulled his wool cap down on his head. "No. Maybe." She flushed.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
My friend was aboard Sewee, untying his vessel from an ancient sunken post. “Ben?” No response. I slipped off my shoes and waded to the runabout. Pulled myself up the tiny ladder. Found Ben’s hand waiting at the rail. He effortlessly hoisted me into the boat, maneuvering my weight like it was nothing. I sometimes forgot how strong Ben was. How warm his hands could feel. Ben released me. Went back to coiling line. “Are you okay?” I immediately realized it was the wrong thing to say. “Of course I’m okay.” Gruff. Distant. I stood watching him, unsure what to say next. Unbidden, the image of a bench sprang to mind. The two of us, huddled close. Me crying in his arms. I felt blood rush to my face, was grateful for the concealing darkness. “No one expects you to like Chance,” I said finally. “Good.” Not looking up. “Because I don’t.” Another awkward silence. Then Ben huffed, “You like him enough for both of us.” I straightened, surprised. Was that what was bothering him? Jealousy? Why would Ben be jealous of Chance? After everything that spoiled boy had done to me? Did Ben think I was some ditz? That my memory reset with every pretty smile? Am I? I felt a nervous twinge in my stomach. Felt it grow. Ben. Jealous. Because of his feelings for me. The issue would not simply go away. “Ben. I . . .” Words failed. My face grew hot. Ben’s hands stopped moving. He stared at the deck, his long black hair fanning his face. He sucked in a breath, as if on the verge of something.
Kathy Reichs (Terminal (Virals, #5))
The clock in the kitchen chimed and Anna looked up. The first batch of cookies would be ready any moment; then it would be time to put it in another tray. After that, there were four different types of bread, krumkaker (she wouldn't fill them with cream in this heat), and at least two spice cakes to make. Her mother hated the idea of her baking cakes that might not sell ("The ingredients cost money"), but Anna knew people would want them, and they made a tidy profit off cakes. It was a win-win.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
This looks wonderful, girls," Mama said. "Your father is going to be so surprised. You know how much he loves your krumkaker." "Crumbs cake-r." Anna tried hard to say the word, but she never could. "Crumb cake?" Mama and Elsa laughed. "Krumkaker," Mama said, the word rolling off her tongue smoothly. "I've been using this recipe since I was your age. I used to bake these with my best friend." "That's where you learned to bake with love," Anna said. "Yes, I did," Mama agreed, fixing Anna's right pigtail.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Elsa was smart and focused, but kept so much bottled up inside her it was a wonder she didn't explode. Anna was a free spirit who wore her heart on her sleeve, but she could also be impulsive. Even at five, she was already an outgoing little thing who liked to stop and talk to every person she met, while Elsa tried to hide behind her parents at gatherings and preferred life in the background. They balanced each other perfectly- Elsa knowing when to help rein Anna in, and Anna knowing when to pull Elsa out.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
It's kind of French, you know? Not the hurting your feelings thing. Only smiling when it's sincere. Americans will smile at anyone, for any reason. You don't... Yeah, I've been told that I have a hard time . . . concealing my displeasure. I know...I like that about you... You do?... It means that when you do smile? I know it's not false. You're not just smiling to make me...whomever feel better. If they're saying stupid things. And can't seem to stop talking. His mouth spreads into a slow smile. Yeah...Like that.
Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1))
Let people make fun of magic all they wanted. He knew it was real. He'd been raised around magic his whole life. Not that he'd tell Anna that. Why would he when she was so infuriating? She talked on and on and on, not just to him and Sven- to everyone she met! She was also impulsive and strong-minded, which was how he'd allowed himself to be talked into taking her to Arendelle in the first place. Feisty-pants thought she could stop an eternal winter even though she had no idea how to find Elsa or what she'd say to make her end the madness.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
I am frightened. There is a terrible dread in me, Kennit.” She twisted suddenly to look at him over one bare shoulder. “I fear the truth that lurks inside me, Kennit. I fear the whole of my identity. I have a face I wear to show the world, but there is more to me than that. There are other faces concealed in me. I sense a past behind my past. If I do not guard against it, I fear it will leap out and change all I am. Yet, it makes no sense. How could I be someone other than who I am now? How can I fear myself? I don’t understand how I could feel such a thing. Do you?
Robin Hobb (Ship of Destiny (Liveship Traders, #3))
Grand Pabbie was right- love can really thaw any curse," Kristoff said. "Love can thaw..." Elsa repeated. "Of course!" All that time she had allowed herself to be wrapped up in fear- fear of being alone, fear of never finding Anna, fear of destroying the kingdom with her powers. That fear had held her prisoner since she had learned she had magic inside her. It was just as Grand Pabbie had said: she needed to learn to control her magic. If only she embraced the beauty in her life and the magic she'd been gifted- gifted, not cursed with!- then she could move mountains.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
You never told me how everyone liked the sirupskake." "It was splendid!" she said, her smile returning. "Your fa- my husband asked that you bake another one soon for me to bring him." Freya was always tripping over her words like that. Anna did the same thing herself. She chalked it up to wanting to say so much in a short amount of time. She was like a pot of melting chocolate: the words bubbled over. "Did he like the candied oranges I placed on top?" "Yes! He said he'd never seen it done that way before." Anna shrugged. "I love to put my own spin on recipes. I like to be unique, if you haven't noticed." "I have." Freya smiled. "I think my husband would enjoy meeting you. You and I have a similar joyful spirit, while he"- she sighed- "carries the weight of the world on his shoulders, I'm afraid. Much like my daughter." Freya talked about her daughter a lot but unfortunately never brought her along for visits. From what Anna knew, the girl seemed whip smart and serious. Anna wished she could meet her so she could shake her up a bit. Everyone needed to let their hair down sometimes. Plus it would be nice to have a friend close to her own age.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
The action and the fact that his hand rested on the top of hers expressed their feelings in a strange way, as these short insignificant words also expressed something, words with short wings for their heavy body of meaning, inadequate to carry them far and thus alighting awkwardly upon the very common objects that surrounded them, and were to their inexperienced touch so massive; but who knows (so they thought as they pressed the parasol into the earth) what precipices aren't concealed in them, or what slopes of ice don't shine in the sun on the other side? Who knows? Who has ever seen this before?
Virginia Woolf (Monday or Tuesday)
When Elsa finally reached the top, she didn't find any trolls, but the view was breathtaking. Few mountaineers had climbed to such heights, and there she was, high over the entire kingdom. Arendelle was far in the distance, as tiny as a speck. Even if she hadn't found the trolls yet, the North Mountain felt like a good place for her to recharge and figure out how to find Anna. She'd build a palace as stunning as the landscape to shelter in. One that reflected the new her. Mama had called her powers a gift, hadn't she? Well, they were. And there was no reason to conceal them from the world at the top of a mountain.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Is this about my birth parents?" The frown lines on her mother's forehead deepened. "Well, yes..." "Did Freya know them?" Anna asked. She'd always wondered. Freya had been such a big part of her life since the beginning. Maybe Freya had known something Anna didn't. Silence hung over the room as they stared at one another. "It's okay," Anna finally said. "If you know who they are and don't want to tell me, I'll understand. It doesn't matter anyway." She reached for their hands. "You've been the best parents anyone could ever hope for." Papa and Ma reached in for a hug at the same time. They were a family of huggers and laughters. Anna clung to them, not wanting to let go.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
TIA OR TARA has stopped applying makeup to my wife’s face and is looking at Scottie with disapproval. The light is hitting this woman’s face, giving me an opportunity to see that she should perhaps be working on her own makeup. Her coloring is similar to a manila envelope. There are specks of white in her eyebrows, and her concealer is not concealing. I can tell my daughter doesn’t know what to do with this woman’s critical look. “What?” Scottie asks. “I don’t want any makeup.” She looks at me for protection, and it’s heartbreaking. All the women who model with Joanie have this inane urge to make over my daughter with the notion that they’re helping her somehow. She’s not as pretty as her older sister or her mother, and these other models think that slapping on some rouge will somehow make her feel better about her facial fate. They’re like missionaries. Mascara thumpers. “I was just going to say that I think your mother was enjoying the view,” Tia or Tara says. “It’s so pretty outside. You should let the light in.” My daughter looks at the curtain. Her little mouth is open. Her hand reaches for a tumbleweed of hair. “Listen here, T. Her mother was not enjoying the view. Her mother is in a coma. And she’s not supposed to be in bright light.” “My name is not T,” she says. “My name is Allison.” “Okay, then, Ali. Don’t confuse my daughter, please.” “I’m turning into a remarkable young lady,” Scottie says. “Damn straight.” My heart feels like one of Scottie’s clogs clomping down the hall. I don’t know why I became so angry.
Kaui Hart Hemmings (The Descendants)
For a split second, Elsa recalled a new memory of her younger self. She was building a snowman with another girl. They pulled the snowman around the room laughing. It was clear they loved each other. Her hands started to tingle in an unfamiliar way- they were warm- then the sensation was gone and she was left with a sharp headache. What was that? she wondered. The girl had to be in her imagination. She had never used magic before that week. Had she? Elsa stood up, her legs shaking. She held on to her bed frame to keep from falling. Heart pounding, fingers aching, she closed her eyes again and tried to remember the love she had just felt coursing through her veins. The emotion was stronger than fear. This feeling had come from building something out of love- a snowman for the two girls to enjoy.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
If, uh, Luce wants to get out, someone's gonna have to help her down from the window." She drummed her fingers on the table, looking sheepish. "I made a library book barricade near the entrance in case any of the Sword & Cross-eyeds felt inclined to disrupt us." "Dibs." Cam already had his arm slipped through the crook of Luce's elbow. She started to argue, but none of the other angels seemed to think it was a bad idea. Daniel didn't even notice. Near the back exit, Shelby and Miles both mouthed Be careful to Luce with varying degrees of fierceness. Cam walked her to the window, radiating warmth with his smile. He slid the glass pane up and together they looked out at the campus where they'd met, where they'd grown close, where he'd tricked her into kissing him. They weren't all bad memories... He hopped through the window first, landing smoothly on the ledge, and he held out a hand for hers. "Milady." His grip was strong and it made her feel tiny and weightless as Cam drifted down from the ledge, two stories in two seconds. His wings were concealed, but he still moved as gracefully as if he were flying. They landed softly on the dewy grass. "I take it you don't want my company," he said. "At the cemetery-not, you know, in general." "Right. No, thanks." He looked away and reached into his pocket, pulled out a tiny silver bell. It looked ancient, with Hebrew writing on it. He handed it to her. "Just ring when you want a lift back up." "Cam," Luce said. "What is my role in all of this?" Cam reached out to touch her cheek, then seemed to think better of it. His hand hovered in the air. "Daniel's right. It isn't our place to tell you." He didn't wait for her response-just bent his knees and soared off the ground. He didn't even look back.
Lauren Kate (Rapture (Fallen, #4))
Anna rushed onward, past another row of homes, and found her way to the farm where they kept their chicken coop. She opened the netting to collect a fresh batch of eggs. "Morning, Erik, Elin, and Elise," she greeted the hens. "I've got to move quick today. Freya is coming!" She gathered at least a dozen eggs, closed up the coop, and carefully carried the bucket and the tea back to the house. An older man was pulling a cart with flowers down the street. "Morning, Anna!" "Morning, Erling!" Anna called. "Gorgeous blooms today. Do you have my favorite?" Erling produced two stems of golden crocuses. The yellow flowers were as bright as the sun. Anna inhaled their sweet aroma. "Thank you! Come by later for some fresh bread. First batch should be out of the oven midmorning." "Thank you, Anna! I will!" he said, and Anna hurried along, trying not to crack the eggs or stop again. She had a habit of stopping to talk. A lot.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Elsa walked to her desk and looked down at the small porcelain jar and candlestick. She had been using them as stand-ins for the orb and scepter she would have to hold, like her father did during his coronation. As she had many times before, Elsa closed her eyes and tried to imagine herself inside the chapel where the ceremony would take place. She thought of the choir that would be singing in the balcony, and she could see the pulpit she would be standing at in front of the priest and all her people, as well as nobles and visiting dignitaries. With no family, she'd be up there alone. Elsa tried not to think about that as she imagined the priest placing the jeweled tiara on her head. Then he'd hold out the pillow with the orb and scepter for her to take. She couldn't wear her teal gloves during that portion of the ceremony, so she removed them for practice. She wore gloves all the time these days. Perhaps it was silly, but she thought the gloves helped her conceal her magic. This was her battle cry: Conceal it. Don't feel it. Don't let it show.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Anna practically leapt out of bed and skidded across the floor in her bare feet. She didn't bother looking in the mirror. Her long red hair, which she had unbraided the night before, couldn't be that messy, could it? Hmmm... maybe she'd give it a quick glance before she pulled off her nightdress. She looked in the mirror. Not good. Her hair looked like a bird's nest. Did she have time to fix it? She had to fix it. Where was her brush? It should have been on the desk like it always was, but it wasn't there. Where was it? Think, Anna. She remembered brushing her hair the morning before at the window seat, because it had the best view of Arendelle. Looking at Arendelle made her start dreaming about Arendelle and what she'd do when she someday moved there. She'd have her own bake shop, of course, and her cookies would be so popular that people would be lined up day and night to purchase them. She'd meet new people and make friends, and it all sounded so glorious she had started singing and spinning around the room with the hairbrush... Oh! Now she remembered where she had flung it.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
A short while later, they were all covered in flour. "Anna, do you have to use so much flour?" her mother asked, waving a cloud of dust away from her face. "I hate when the cookies stick, Ma, you know that." Anna sifted more flour onto the wooden table that doubled as a workspace. She loved flour and she used it liberally, but it did make cleanup much harder. The bakery wasn't large and it wasn't bright; the windows were high up, just below the ceiling eaves. Anna had to squint to see her measurements. Spoons and pots hung on the walls, and the large wooden table stood in the middle of the room, where Anna and her mom baked bread, cinnamon rolls, and Anna's famous cookies. The majority of the bakery was taken up by the cast-iron stove. It was as beautiful as it was functional, and Anna was constantly tripping over it- or falling into it, hence the small burn marks on her forearms. Those also came from paddling the bread into and out of the oven. Her parents said she was the best at knowing when the temperature of the stove was just right for baking the softest bread. Maybe she was a little messy when she baked, but it didn't bother her.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Yes. I'm going to talk to her. Maybe." Kristoff huffed. "You, Bulda, Grand Pabbie... you act like this is so easy! They may be so-called love experts, but they've never left the valley." Sven snorted. "Hi," Anna interrupted, feeling funny. She was suddenly very aware of how she looked, and how he did, too. Kristoff had on a bright blue dress shirt and clean pants. She was wearing a green dress under a flour-and-icing-covered apron. Her braids, which she'd had in for two days, needed refreshing. "Were you looking for me? I mean, not actually looking, but you're here, so maybe... you're hungry?" He immediately blushed. "What? Yes. I mean, no. I..." He pressed a bunch of carrots into her hands. "I just wanted to give you what I owed you." "Oh." Anna looked down. "You didn't have to bring me back- oof!" Sven had bumped into Anna, sending her flying into Kristoff's arms. The two tumbled backward, falling onto several stacks of flour Anna's parents hadn't had a chance to bring into the shop yet. "This is awkward," Anna said, struggling to get up. 'Not because you're awkward. Because we're... I'm... awkward." She stood up. "You're gorgeous. Wait, what?
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
Tomally had always wanted children of her own. Unfortunately, she'd never been able to conceive. Tomally said she had made her peace with it years ago, but Iduna suspected there was still a part of her that longed to be a mother. Iduna had always thought Tomally would make an exceptional one... and now she'd have the chance. Tomally loved hearing stories about Anna's spunk- Tomally had been just like her when they were young- and expressed delight whenever Iduna wrote about Anna doing something precocious. Iduna knew they'd get along well. She could just picture Tomally and Anna baking in their shop. Anna loved to bake and was always so proud of her krumkaker. Tomally would have to be the one to teach her new recipes now and help her keep up with her studies and learn about the world around her. It wasn't the childhood Iduna had envisioned for Anna, but it would still be a good life and excellent training for her future as a princess. When Elsa someday ascended to the throne, it would be Anna who understood their people and could help her sister relate to their kingdom. Their relationship would be much like the one she and Tomally had shared when they were children.
Jen Calonita (Conceal, Don't Feel)
To Harry James Potter,’” he read, and Harry’s insides contracted with a sudden excitement, “‘I leave the Snitch he caught in his first Quidditch match at Hogwarts, as a reminder of the rewards of perseverance and skill.’” As Scrimgeour pulled out the tiny, walnut-sized golden ball, its silver wings fluttered rather feebly, and Harry could not help feeling a definite sense of anticlimax. “Why did Dumbledore leave you this Snitch?” asked Scrimgeour. “No idea,” said Harry. “For the reasons you just read out, I supposed . . . to remind me what you can get if you . . . persevere and whatever it was.” “You think this a mere symbolic keepsake, then?” “I suppose so,” said Harry. “What else could it be?” “I’m asking the questions,” said Scrimgeour, shifting his chair a little closer to the sofa. Dusk was really falling outside now; the marquee beyond the windows towered ghostly white over the hedge. “I notice that your birthday cake is in the shape of a Snitch,” Scrimgeour said to Harry. “Why is that?” Hermione laughed derisively. “Oh, it can’t be a reference to the fact Harry’s a great Seeker, that’s way too obvious,” she said. “There must be a secret message from Dumbledore hidden in the icing!” “I don’t think there’s anything hidden in the icing,” said Scrimgeour, “but a Snitch would be a very good hiding place for a small object. You know why, I’m sure?” Harry shrugged. Hermione, however, answered: Harry thought that answering questions correctly was such a deeply ingrained habit she could not suppress the urge. “Because Snitches have flesh memories,” she said. “What?” said Harry and Ron together; both considered Hermione’s Quidditch knowledge negligible. “Correct,” said Scrimgeour. “A Snitch is not touched by bare skin before it is released, not even by the maker, who wears gloves. It carries an enchantment by which it can identify the first human to lay hands upon it, in case of a disputed capture. This Snitch”—he held up the tiny golden ball—“will remember your touch, Potter. It occurs to me that Dumbledore, who had prodigious magical skill, whatever his other faults, might have enchanted this Snitch so that it will open only for you.” Harry’s heart was beating rather fast. He was sure that Scrimgeour was right. How could he avoid taking the Snitch with his bare hand in front of the Minister? “You don’t say anything,” said Scrimgeour. “Perhaps you already know what the Snitch contains?” “No,” said Harry, still wondering how he could appear to touch the Snitch without really doing so. If only he knew Legilimency, really knew it, and could read Hermione’s mind; he could practically hear her brain whirring beside him. “Take it,” said Scrimgeour quietly. Harry met the Minister’s yellow eyes and knew he had no option but to obey. He held out his hand, and Scrimgeour leaned forward again and placed the Snitch, slowly and deliberately, into Harry’s palm. Nothing happened. As Harry’s fingers closed around the Snitch, its tired wings fluttered and were still. Scrimgeour, Ron, and Hermione continued to gaze avidly at the now partially concealed ball, as if still hoping it might transform in some way. “That was dramatic,” said Harry coolly. Both Ron and Hermione laughed. “That’s all, then, is it?” asked Hermione, making to prise herself off the sofa. “Not quite,” said Scrimgeour, who looked bad-tempered now. “Dumbledore left you a second bequest, Potter.” “What is it?” asked Harry, excitement rekindling. Scrimgeour did not bother to read from the will this time. “The sword of Godric Gryffindor,” he said. Hermione and Ron both stiffened. Harry looked around for a sign of the ruby-encrusted hilt, but Scrimgeour did not pull the sword from the leather pouch, which in any case looked much too small to contain it.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7))
But the manner of giving voice to thoughts and feelings becomes particularly significant in the case of negative feelings or doubts about a relationship. The difference was highlighted for me when a fifty-year-old divorced man told me about his experiences in forming new relationships with women. On this matter, he was clear: "I do not value my fleeting thoughts, and I do not value the fleeting thoughts of others." He felt that the relationship he was currently in had been endangered, even permanently weakened, by the woman's practice of tossing out her passing thoughts, because, early in their courtship, many of her thoughts were fears about the relationship. Not surprisingly, since they did not yet know each other well, she worried about whether she could trust him, whether their relationship would destroy her independence, whether this relationship was really right for her. He felt she should have kept these fears and doubts to herself and waited to see how things turned out. As it happens, things turned out well. The woman decided that the relationship was right for her, she could trust him, and she did not have to give up her independence. But he felt, at the time that he told me of this, that he had still not recovered from the wear and tear of coping with her earlier doubts. As he put it, he was still dizzy from having been bounced around like a yo-yo tied to the string of her stream of consciousness. In contrast, the man admitted, he himself goes to the other extreme: he never expresses his fears or misgivings about their relationship at all. If he's unhappy but doesn't say anything about it, his unhappiness expresses itself in a kind of distancing coldness. This response is just what women fear most, and just the reason they prefer to express dissatisfactions and doubts - as an antidote to the isolation and distance that would result from keeping them to themselves. The different perspectives on expressing or concealing dissatisfactions and doubts may reflect a difference in men's and women's awareness of the power of their words to affect others. In repeatedly telling him what she feared about their relationship, she spoke as though she assumed he was invulnerable and could not be hurt by what she said; perhaps she was underestimating the power of her words to affect him. For his part, when he refrains from expressing negative thoughts or feelings, he seems to be overestimating the power of his words to hurt her, when, ironically, she is more likely to be hurt by his silence than his words. Such impasses will perhaps never be settled to the complete satisfaction of both parties, but understanding the differing views can help detoxify the situation, and both can make adjustments.
Deborah Tannen (You Just Don't Understand: Women and Men in Conversation)
Lord,it's hot in here!" she exclaimed, waving a bedraggled towel in front of her face. "Wouldn't mind a swim myself." Paying him no mind, she unfastened a couple of buttons on her shirt, parted it, and blotted the swells of her breasts with the towel. As she bent down and reached into a cupboard, the shirt gaped. Paralysis afflicted Rider from his eyeballs down. Unaware of his stymied condition, Willow rummaged though the cupboard and asked, "Did Juan and Taylo get back yet?" No answer. "Sinclair?" She found a chunk of soap and a towel and rose from her stooped position to find Rider's eyes glued to her breasts. The soap thunked Rider on his chest and broke his trance. He glanced up just in time to get a towel in his face but managed to catch it before it joined the soap on the floor. "I'm sorry. What did you say?" "Never mind," She spun away to face the stove and to conceal her flaming face. Busily stirring with one hand, she nonchalantly rebuttoned her blouse with the other. "Don't tarry," she warned over her shoulder, "supper is almost ready." Tarry? Tarry? If he remained a minute longer, he was going to have dessert here and now and to hell with supper! He lowered his hat a few discreet inches to hide the evidence of his stirring desire. Then,with an ease he didn't feel, he picked up the soap. "I'll hurry, and thanks for the soap." He turned to leave, then stopped, a devilish glint in his eye. After the emotional turmoil she'd just put him through, she more than deserved a little teasing. "You're welcome to join me for a swim, if you like." His smile was wide and audacious. "I'm not shy." Willow turned to face him, fork in hand. "Let's you and me get something straight, Sinclair. I ain't shy and I don't shock easy neither. You see, I reckon you ain't got nothin' my brothers don't." Her bald remark shocked him as intended but Rider was not to be outdone. "Maybe I don't." He grinned rakishly. "But I've been told I have a rather...exceptional physique." Willow rolled her eyes. "Well, as you can see, I ain't got time to do any comparing. Now,go take your bath and get outta my hair!" Rider swung the towel over his shoulder and turned to leave again. Disappointed by his inability to rile her, he added, "Shucks, Freckles. I was kind of hoping you'd scrub my back. I've been told my back is a mighty fi-" She jabbed the air with the big fork, motioning to the door. "I'm going! I'm going! This place is hazardous to a man's health." He ducked out the door,laughing. "And stop calling me Freckles!" she yelled after him. Grinning and shaking her head, Willow directed her attention back to the stove. Rider Sinclair was an odd egg if ever she saw one. One minute the man was purely obnoxious, the next, teasing and charming.
Charlotte McPherren (Song of the Willow)
Describe the defeated ones,” said a merchant, when he saw that the Copt had finished speaking. And he answered: The defeated are those who never fail. Defeat means that we lose a particular battle or war. Failure does not allow us to go on fighting. Defeat comes when we fail to get something we very much want. Failure does not allow us to dream. Its motto is: “Expect nothing and you won’t be disappointed.” Defeat ends when we launch into another battle. Failure has no end; it is a lifetime choice. Defeat is for those who, despite their fears, live with enthusiasm and faith. Defeat is for the valiant. Only they will know the honor of losing and the joy of winning. I am not here to tell you that defeat is part of life; we all know that. Only the defeated know Love. Because it is in the realm of Love that we fight our first battles—and generally lose. I am here to tell you that there are people who have never been defeated. They are the ones who never fought. They managed to avoid scars, humiliations, and feelings of helplessness, as well as those moments when even warriors doubt the existence of God. Such people can say with pride: “I never lost a battle.” On the other hand, they will never be able to say: “I won a battle.” Not that they care. They live in a universe in which they believe they are invulnerable; they close their eyes to injustices and to suffering; they feel safe because they do not have to deal with the daily challenges faced by those who risk stepping out beyond their own boundaries. They have never heard the words “good-bye” or “I’ve come back. Embrace me with the fervor of someone who, having lost me, has found me again.” Those who were never defeated seem happy and superior, masters of a truth they never had to lift a finger to achieve. They are always on the side of the strong. They’re like hyenas, who eat only the leavings of lions. They teach their children: “Don’t get involved in conflicts; you’ll only lose. Keep your doubts to yourself and you’ll never have any problems. If someone attacks you, don’t get offended or demean yourself by hitting back. There are more important things in life.” In the silence of the night, they fight their imaginary battles: their unrealized dreams, the injustices to which they turned a blind eye, the moments of cowardice they managed to conceal from other people—but not from themselves—and the love that crossed their path with a sparkle in its eyes, the love God had intended for them, but which they lacked the courage to embrace. And they promise themselves: “Tomorrow will be different.” But tomorrow comes and the paralyzing question surfaces in their mind: “What if it doesn’t work out?” And so they do nothing. Woe to those who were never beaten! They will never be winners in this life.
Paulo Coelho (Manuscript Found in Accra)
Even worse, traditional grading that penalizes students for mistakes often isn’t just limited to a student’s academic work. Teachers often assign grades based on mistakes in students’ behaviors as well: downgrading a score if an assignment is late, subtracting points from a daily participation grade if a student is tardy to class, or lowering a group’s grade if the group becomes too noisy while they work. In this environment, every mistake is penalized and incorporated into the final grade. Even if just a few points are docked for forgetting to bring a notebook to class or losing a few points for not heading a paper correctly, the message is clear: All mistakes result in penalties. While some might argue that this is simply accountability—“I asked the students to do something, so it has to count”—it’s missing the forest for the trees. The more assignments and behaviors a teacher grades, the less willing a student will be to reveal her weaknesses and vulnerability. With no zones of learning that are “grade free,” it becomes nearly impossible to build an effective teacher–student relationship and positive learning environment in which students try new things, venture into unfamiliar learning territory, or feel comfortable making errors, and grow. When everything a student does is graded, and every mistake counts against her grade, that student can perceive that to receive a good grade she has to be perfect all of the time. Students don’t feel trust in their teachers, only the pressure to conceal weaknesses and avoid errors.
Joe Feldman (Grading for Equity: What It Is, Why It Matters, and How It Can Transform Schools and Classrooms)
I run a comb through my hair to smooth it down and then tuck it behind my ears. “Here,” says Cara. She lifts a piece of hair from my face and pins it back with a silver hair clip, the way Erudite girls do. Christina takes out the guns we brought with us and looks at me. “Do you want one?” she says. “Or would you rather carry the stunner?” I stare at the gun in her hand. If I don’t take the stunner, I leave myself completely undefended against people who will gladly shoot me. If I do, I admit to weakness in front of Fernando, Cara, and Marcus. “You know what Will would say?” says Christina. “What?” I say, my voice breaking. “He would tell you to get over it,” she says. “To stop being so irrational and take the stupid gun.” Will had little patience for the irrational. Christina must be right; she knew him better than I did. And she--who lost someone dear to her that day, just as I did--was able to forgive me, an act that must have been nearly impossible. It would have been impossible for me, if the situation were reversed. So why is it so difficult for me to forgive myself? I close my hand around the gun Christina offered me. The metal is warm from where she touched it. I feel the memory of shooting him poking at the back of my mind, and try to stifle it. But it won’t be stifled. I let go of the gun. “The stunner is a perfectly good option,” Cara says as she plucks a hair from her shirtsleeve. “If you ask me, the Dauntless are too gun-happy anyway.” Fernando offers me the stunner. I wish I could communicate my gratitude to Cara, but she isn’t looking at me. “How am I going to conceal this thing?” I say. “Don’t bother,” Fernando says. “Right.
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
You can have no idea what it feels like to live in an ordinary woman’s skin. From the moment a girl is born she is tutored by her mother on what she may and may not do. The list of what she is allowed to do keeps on shrinking as she grows older—cover your head, lower your neck, conceal your breasts, hide your ankles, don’t go to the river alone, don’t step out in the evening, don’t laugh loudly, don’t ask questions, don’t expect answers … Then she marries and it only gets worse. A mother-in-law takes over to enforce the rules. Wake up first, sleep last. Cook feasts, eat leftovers. Feed sons, starve daughters. And when finally she grows older and the baton passes on to her, she starts battering the next generation with it, having seen nothing else in her life!’ ‘So are you saying women oppress women?’ I was surprised that her tirade was directed at mothers and mothers-in-law rather than at men. ‘Yes, precisely. Why blame the men alone? Why will they try to change an existing order in which they get a bonded slave to cook their food, wash their clothes, clean their homes, warm their beds, look after their aging parents and bear them children? But what reason do women have? Why do they fall all over themselves to tyrannise other women? Women can rescue each other. Women can refuse to starve, scare and suppress their daughters. They can be friends and comrades with their daughters-in-law. Women can look out for the safety of their house maids and farm labourers. Women can insist that other women be treated with respect and dignity. But for that they first need to stop feeling helpless and scared themselves. They need to stop needing a man to protect them. The price of that protection is just too high.
Manjul Bajaj (In Search of Heer)
I have talked to many people about this and it seems to be a kind of mystical experience. The preparation is unconscious, the realization happens in a flaming second. It was on Third Avenue. The trains were grinding over my head. The snow was nearly waist-high in the gutters and uncollected garbage was scattered in a dirty mess. The wind was cold, and frozen pieces of paper went scraping along the pavement. I stopped to look in a drug-store window where a latex cooch dancer was undulating by a concealed motor–and something burst in my head, a kind of light and a kind of feeling blended into an emotion which if it had spoken would have said, “My God! I belong here. Isn’t this wonderful?” Everything fell into place. I saw every face I passed. I noticed every doorway and the stairways to apartments. I looked across the street at the windows, lace curtains and potted geraniums through sooty glass. It was beautiful–but most important, I was part of it. I was no longer a stranger. I had become a New Yorker. Now there may be people who move easily into New York without travail, but most I have talked to about it have had some kind of trial by torture before acceptance. And the acceptance is a double thing. It seems to me that the city finally accepts you just as you finally accept the city. A young man in a small town, a frog in a small puddle, if he kicks his feet is able to make waves, get mud in his neighbor’s eyes–make some impression. He is known. His family is known. People watch him with some interest, whether kindly or maliciously. He comes to New York and no matter what he does, no one is impressed. He challenges the city to fight and it licks him without being aware of him. This is a dreadful blow to a small-town ego. He hates the organism that ignores him. He hates the people who look through him. And then one day he falls into place, accepts the city and does not fight it any more. It is too huge to notice him and suddenly the fact that it doesn’t notice him becomes the most delightful thing in the world. His self-consciousness evaporates. If he is dressed superbly well–there are half a million people dressed equally well. If he is in rags–there are a million ragged people. If he is tall, it is a city of tall people. If he is short the streets are full of dwarfs; if ugly, ten perfect horrors pass him in one block; if beautiful, the competition is overwhelming. If he is talented, talent is a dime a dozen. If he tries to make an impression by wearing a toga–there’s a man down the street in a leopard skin. Whatever he does or says or wears or thinks he is not unique. Once accepted this gives him perfect freedom to be himself, but unaccepted it horrifies him. I don’t think New York City is like other cities. It does not have character like Los Angeles or New Orleans. It is all characters–in fact, it is everything. It can destroy a man, but if his eyes are open it cannot bore him. New York is an ugly city, a dirty city. Its climate is a scandal, its politics are used to frighten children, its traffic is madness, its competition is murderous. But there is one thing about it–once you have lived in New York and it has become your home, no place else is good enough. All of everything is concentrated here, population, theatre, art, writing, publishing, importing, business, murder, mugging, luxury, poverty. It is all of everything. It goes all right. It is tireless and its air is charged with energy. I can work longer and harder without weariness in New York than anyplace else….
John Steinbeck
You are wrong to assume that I insist upon perfection in a woman. I enjoy physical beauty like any other man, but it's hardly a requirement. That would be hypocritical, coming from a man who is far from handsome himself." Aline paused in surprise, regarding his broad, even features, his strong jaw, the shrewd black eyes set beneath the straight lines of his brows. "You are attractive," she said earnestly. "Perhaps not in the way that someone like Mr. Shaw is... but few men are." Her brother shrugged. "Believe me, it doesn't matter, since I've never found my looks- or lack thereof- to be an impediment in any way. Which has given me a very balanced perspective on the subject of physical beauty- a perspective that someone with your looks rarely attains." Aline frowned, wondering if she was being criticized. "It must be extraordinarily difficult," Marcus continued, "for a woman as beautiful as you to feel that there is a part of you that is shameful and must be concealed. You've never made peace with it, have you?" Leaning her head back against the settee, Aline shook her head. "I hate these scars. I'll never stop wishing that I didn't have them. And there's nothing I can do to change them." "Just as McKenna can never change his origins." "If you're trying to draw a parallel, Marcus, it won't do any good. McKenna's origins have never mattered to me. There is nothing that would make me stop loving him-" She stopped abruptly as she understood the point he had been leading to. "Don't you think he would feel the same way about your legs?" "I don't know." "For God's sake, go tell him the truth. This isn't the time for you to let your pride get the better of you." His words kindled sudden outrage. "This has nothing to do with pride!" "Oh?" Marcus gave her a sardonic look. "You can't bear to let McKenna know that you're less than perfect. What is that if not pride?
Lisa Kleypas (Again the Magic (Wallflowers, #0))
Ell's Double Down --- "The haze across the room conceals the faces of the patrons and gives the setting a secretive draping. Her heart is pounding and although she has done this for months now, she still becomes nervous starting out. She glances across the table, the man facing her is attractive he is dressed in a fine suit his eyes a warm brown, his stare deliberate. When he looks at her she can tell, it’s a look you don’t give a kid sister, his look is heated. She can hardly breathe when she looks into his eyes it is disarming, she can’t have this. She looks above him to her friend Sophie; she is unsure of herself and silently communicates her discomfort to her friend. Sophie gives her a smile then leans down whispering into the man’s ear his attention is suddenly diverted giving Ell the opportunity to settle in. She exhales feeling better now that the man is distracted. Later she will help Sophie untangle herself from him but now she has to focus on the business at hand. She takes a deep breath, flashing a dazzling smile at the rest of the men gathered around the table and antes up. The truth is gambling makes her feel empowered the rush was like none other. Each hand dealt promised her a solution to her problems. Logically that alone could be the cause for her increased heart rate and butterflies but Ell knew better. She liked the mind games played as each of them attempted to psyche out opponents seated around the table. Ell herself suffered through painful lessons until she honed her own skills. Eventually Sophie taught her the most valuable ploy --using her womanly wiles as her weapon. Ell initially felt foolish but the first time she glanced through mascaraed lashes and saw the effect she turned to her friend for additional suggestions. This combined with her ability to gauge the cards each player held or what now laid in the muck. However to be honest, she simply loved soundly beating the table full of men.
Caroline Walken
Like A Rolling Stone" Once upon a time you dressed so fine You threw the bums a dime in your prime, didn't you? People'd call, say, "Beware doll, you're bound to fall" You thought they were all kiddin' you You used to laugh about Everybody that was hangin' out Now you don't talk so loud Now you don't seem so proud About having to be scrounging for your next meal How does it feel? How does it feel To be without a home Like a complete unknown Like a rolling stone? You've gone to the finest school all right, Miss Lonely But you know you only used to get juiced in it And nobody's ever taught you how to live out on the street And now you're gonna have to get used to it You said you'd never compromise With the mystery tramp, but now you realize He's not selling any alibis As you stare into the vacuum of his eyes And say do you want to make a deal? How does it feel? How does it feel To be on your own With no direction home A complete unknown Like a rolling stone? You never turned around to see the frowns on the jugglers and the clowns When they all did tricks for you You never understood that it ain't no good You shouldn't let other people get your kicks for you You used to ride on the chrome horse with your diplomat Who carried on his shoulder a Siamese cat Ain't it hard when you discover that He really wasn't where it's at After he took from you everything he could steal How does it feel? How does it feel To be on your own With no direction home Like a complete unknown Like a rolling stone? Princess on the steeple and all the pretty people They're all drinkin', thinkin' that they got it made Exchanging all precious gifts But you'd better take your diamond ring, you'd better pawn it babe You used to be so amused At Napoleon in rags and the language that he used Go to him now, he calls you, you can't refuse When you ain't got nothing, you got nothing to lose You're invisible now, you got no secrets to conceal How does it feel How does it feel To be on your own With no direction home Like a complete unknown Like a rolling stone? Bob Dylan, Highway 61 Revisited (1965)
Bob Dylan (Highway 61 Revisited)
Will’s fleshy face contorted and a memory swept over him like a chilling wind. He did not move slowly over the past, it was all there in one flash, all of the years, a picture, a feeling and a despair, all stopped the way a fast camera stops the world. There was the flashing Samuel, beautiful as dawn with a fancy like a swallow’s flight, and the brilliant, brooding Tom who was dark fire, Una who rode the storms, and the lovely Mollie, Dessie of laughter, George handsome and with a sweetness that filled a room like the perfume of flowers, and there was Joe, the youngest, the beloved. Each one without effort brought some gift into the family. Nearly everyone has his box of secret pain, shared with no one. Will had concealed his well, laughed loud, exploited perverse virtues, and never let his jealousy go wandering. He thought of himself as slow, doltish, conservative, uninspired. No great dream lifted him high and no despair forced self-destruction. He was always on the edge, trying to hold on to the rim of the family with what gifts he had—care, and reason, application. He kept the books, hired the attorneys, called the undertaker, and eventually paid the bills. The others didn’t even know they needed him. He had the ability to get money and to keep it. He thought the Hamiltons despised him for his one ability. He had loved them doggedly, had always been at hand with his money to pull them out of their errors. He thought they were ashamed of him, and he fought bitterly for their recognition. All of this was in the frozen wind that blew through him. His slightly bulging eyes were damp as he stared past Cal, and the boy asked, “What’s the matter, Mr. Hamilton? Don’t you feel well?” Will had sensed his family but he had not understood them. And they had accepted him without knowing there was anything to understand. And now this boy came along. Will understood him, felt him, sensed him, recognized him. This was the son he should have had, or the brother, or the father. And the cold wind of memory changed to a warmth toward Cal which gripped him in the stomach and pushed up against his lungs.
John Steinbeck (East of Eden)
Catch Either/Or Thinking Anxious perfectionists will typically think “I need to perform flawlessly at all times,” with their underlying assumption being “or else it will result in disaster.” This is a common type of thinking trap termed either/or thinking. In this case, the either/or is this: Either there is flawless performance or complete and utter failure, and nothing in between. Not only can this style of thinking make you feel crushed when you don’t meet your own ideal standards, but it also often leads to perfectionism paralysis. Take, for example, an artist who sees his future career prospects as becoming either the next Picasso or a penniless flop; this person doesn’t see other possible outcomes in between. You can see how this would give the artist a creative block. For other folks, their hidden assumption may be slightly different: “Either I need to perform flawlessly at all times, or other people will reject me.” When I look back at my clinical psychology training, I realize I had this belief at that time. At a semiconscious level, I thought that the only way to prevent getting booted out of the program was to score at the top of the class for every test or assignment. Ultra-high standards often arise because a person is trying to hide imagined catastrophic flaws. In this scenario, people often think that if their flaws get revealed they’ll be shunned, and so the only way to conceal their defects is by always excelling. When people who have this belief do excel, their brain jumps to the conclusion that excelling was the only reason they managed to avoid catastrophe. This then perpetuates their belief that excelling is necessary for preventing future disasters. Researchers have used the term clinical perfectionism to describe the most problematic kind of perfectionism. When clinical perfectionists manage to meet their ultra-high standards, they often conclude that those standards must not have been high enough and revise them upward, meaning they can never feel any sense of peace. All this being said, I’m not suggesting you shoot for “acceptable” performance standards if you’re capable of excellence. Most of the anxious perfectionists I’ve worked with would hate that. It’s not in their nature to feel comfortable with mediocre performance.
Alice Boyes (The Anxiety Toolkit: Strategies for Fine-Tuning Your Mind and Moving Past Your Stuck Points)
Why should he treat Elizabeth as if he harbored any feelings for her, including anger? Elizabeth sensed that he was wavering a little, and she pressed home her advantage, using calm reason: “Surely nothing that happened between us should make us behave badly to each other now. I mean, when you think on it, it was noting to us but a harmless weekend flirtation, wasn’t it?” “Obviously.” “Neither of us was hurt, were we?” “No.” “Well then, there’s no reason why we should not be cordial to each other now, is there?” she demanded with a bright, beguiling smile. “Good heavens, if every flirtation ended in enmity, no one in the ton would be speaking to anyone else!” She had neatly managed to put him in the position of either agreeing with her or else, by disagreeing, admitting that she had been something more to him than a flirtation, and Ian realized it. He’d guessed where her calm arguments were leading, but even so, he was reluctantly impressed with how skillfully she was maneuvering him into having to agree with her. “Flirtations,” he reminded her smoothly, “don’t normally end in duels.” “I know, and I am sorry my brother shot you.” Ian was simply not proof against the appeal in those huge green eyes of hers. “Forget it,” he said with an irritated sigh, capitulating to all she was asking. “Stay the seven days.” Suppressing the urge to twirl around with relief, she smiled into his eyes. “Then could we have a truce for the time I’m here?” “That depends.” “On what?” His brows lifted in mocking challenge. “On whether or not you can make a decent breakfast.” “Let’s go in the house and see what we have.” With Ian standing beside her Elizabeth surveyed the eggs and cheese and bread, and then the stove. “I shall fix something right up,” she promised with a smile that concealed her uncertainty. “Are you sure you’re up to the challenge?” Ian asked, but she seemed so eager, and her smile was so disarming, that he almost believed she knew how to cook. “I shall prevail, you’ll see,” she told him brightly, reaching for a wide cloth and tying it around her narrow waist. Her glance was so jaunty that Ian turned around to keep himself from grinning at her. She was obviously determined to attack the project with vigor and determination, and he was equally determined not to discourage her efforts. “You do that,” he said, and he left her alone at the stove.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
Marlboro Man opened the passenger door of the semi and allowed me to climb out in front of him, while Tim exited the driver-side door to see us off. That wasn’t so bad, I thought as I made my way down the steps. Aside from the manicure remark and my sweating problem, meeting Marlboro Man’s brother had gone remarkably well. I looked okay that evening, had managed a couple of witty remarks, and had worn just the right clothing to conceal my nervousness. Life was good. Then, because the Gods of Embarrassment seemed hell-bent on making me look bad, I lost my balance on the last step, hooking the heel of my stupid black boots on the grate of the step and awkwardly grabbing the handlebar to save myself from falling to my death onto the gravel driveway below. But though I stopped myself from wiping out, my purse flew off my arm and landed, facedown, on Tim’s driveway, violently spilling its contents all over the gravel. Only a woman can know the dreaded feeling of spilling her purse in the company of men. Suddenly my soul was everywhere, laid bare for Marlboro Man and his brother to see: year-old lip gloss, a leaky pen, wadded gum wrappers, and a hairbrush loaded up with hundreds, if not thousands, of my stringy auburn hairs. And men don’t understand wads of long hair--for all they knew, I had some kind of follicular disorder and was going bald. There were no feminine products, but there was a package of dental floss, with a messy, eight-inch piece dangling from the opening and blowing in the wind. And there were Tic Tacs. Lots and lots of Tic Tacs. Orange ones. Then there was the money. Loose ones and fives and tens and twenties that had been neatly folded together and tucked into a pocket inside my purse were now blowing wildly around Tim’s driveway, swept away by the strengthening wind from an approaching storm. Nothing in my life could have prepared me for the horror of watching Marlboro Man, my new love, and his brother, Tim, whom I’d just met, chivalrously dart around Tim’s driveway, trying valiantly to save my wayward dollars, all because I couldn’t keep my balance on the steps of their shiny new semi. I left my car at Tim’s for the evening, and when we pulled away in Marlboro Man’s pickup, I stared out the window, shaking my head and apologizing for being such a colossal dork. When we got to the highway, Marlboro Man glanced at me as he made a right-hand turn. “Yeah,” he said, consoling me. “But you’re my dork.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
His voice was cool and steady. “You’ve proved my point, Lillian. If a man you don’t even like can bring you to this state, then how much easier would it be for St. Vincent?” She started as if he had slapped her, and her eyes widened. The transition from warm desire to a feeling of utter foolishness was not a pleasant one. The devastating intimacy between them had been nothing but a lesson to demonstrate her inexperience. He had used it as an opportunity to put her in her place. Apparently she wasn’t good enough to wed or to bed. Lillian wanted to die. Humiliated, she scrambled upward, clutching at her unfastened garments, and shot him a glare of hatred. “That remains to be seen,” she choked out. “I’ll just have to compare the two of you. And then if you ask nicely, perhaps I’ll tell you if he—” Westcliff pounced on her with startling swiftness, shoving her back to the lawn and bracketing her tossing head between his muscular forearms. “Stay away from him,” he snapped. “He can’t have you.” “Why not?” she demanded, struggling as he settled more heavily between her flailing legs. “Am I not good enough for him either? Inferior breed that I am—” “You’re too good for him. And he would be the first to admit it.” “I like him all the better for not suiting your high standards!” “Lillian— hold still, damn it— Lillian, look at me!” Westcliff waited until she had stilled beneath him. “I don’t want to see you hurt.” “Has it ever occurred to you, you arrogant idiot, that the person most likely to hurt me might be you?” Now it was his turn to recoil as if struck. He stared at her blankly, though she could practically hear the whirring of his agile brain as he sorted through the potential implications of her rash statement. “Get off me,” Lillian said sullenly. He moved upward, straddling her slender hips, his fingers grasping the inner edges of her corset. “Let me fasten you. You can’t run back to the manor half dressed.” “By all means,” she replied with helpless scorn, “let’s observe the proprieties.” Closing her eyes, she felt him tugging her clothes into place, tying her chemise and re-hooking her corset efficiently. When he finally released her, she sprang from the ground like a startled doe and rushed to the entrance of the hidden garden. To her eternal humiliation, she couldn’t find the door, which was concealed by the lavish spills of ivy coming over the wall. Blindly she thrust her hands into the trailing greenery, breaking two nails as she scrabbled for the doorjamb. Coming up behind her, Westcliff settled his hands at her waist, easily dodging her attempts to throw him off. He pulled her hips back firmly against his and spoke against her ear. “Are you angry because I started making love to you, or because I didn’t finish?” Lillian licked her dry lips. “I’m angry, you bloody big hypocrite, because you can’t make up your mind about what to do with me.” She punctuated the comment with the hard jab of one elbow back against his ribs.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
That night, she was neglecting her pen in favor of rereading one of the most-favored books in her library. It was a small volume that had appeared mysteriously when she was only fifteen. Josephine still had no idea who had gifted her the lovely horror of Carmilla, but she owed her nameless benefactor an enormous debt. Her personal guess was a briefly employed footman who had seen her reading her mother’s well-worn copy of The Mysteries of Udolpho and confessed his own forbidden love of Poe. The slim volume of Le Fanu’s Gothic horror stories had been hidden well into adulthood. As it wasn’t her father’s habit to investigate her reading choices, concealment might have been more for dramatic effect than real fear of discovery. Josephine read by lamplight, curled into an old chaise and basking in the sweet isolation of darkness as she mouthed well-loved passages from her favorite vampire tale. “For some nights I slept profoundly; but still every morning I felt the same lassitude, and a languor weighed upon me all day. I felt myself a changed girl. A strange melancholy was stealing over me, a melancholy that I would not have interrupted. Dim thoughts of death began to open, and an idea that I was slowly sinking took gentle, and, somehow, not unwelcome possession of me.” She slammed the book shut. How had she turned so morbid? For while Josephine had long known she would not live to old age, she thought she had resigned herself to it. She made a point of fighting the melancholy that threatened her. If she had any regret, it was that she would not live long enough to write all the stories she wanted. Sometimes she felt a longing to shout them into the night, offering them up to any wandering soul that they might be heard so they could live. So many voices beating in her chest. So many tales to write and whisper and shout. Her eyes fell to the book she’d slammed shut. ‘“You are afraid to die?” “Yes, everyone is.” Josephine stood and pushed her way out of the glass house, into the garden where the mist enveloped her. She lifted her face to the moon and felt the tears cold on her cheeks. “‘ Girls are caterpillars,” she whispered, “‘ when they live in the world, to be finally butterflies when the summer comes; but in the meantime there are grubs and larvae, don’t you see?’” But the summer would never come for Josephine. She beat back the despair that threatened to envelop her. You are afraid to die? Yes, everyone is. She lifted her face and opened her eyes to the starry night, speaking her secret longing into the night. “‘ But to die as lovers may— to die together, so that they may live together.’” How she longed for love! For passion. How she ached to be seen. To be cherished. To be known. She could pour her soul onto the page and still find loneliness in the dark. She strangled her heart to keep it alive, knowing it was only a matter of time until the palest lover took her to his bosom. Already, she could feel the tightness in her chest. Tomorrow would not be a good day.
Elizabeth Hunter (Beneath a Waning Moon)
*Wife's Letter* Pt1 ... It was not the mask that died among the boots, but you. The girl with the yoyo was not the only one to know about your masked play. From the very first instant, when, elated with pride, you talked about the distortion of the magnetic field, I too saw through you completely. Please don’t insult me any more by asking how I did it. Of course, I was flustered, confused, and frightened to death. Under any circumstances, it was an unimaginably drastic way of acting, so different from your ordinary self. It was hallucinatory, seeing you so full of self-confidence. Even you knew very well that I had seen through you. You knew and yet demanded that we go on with the play in silence. I considered it a dreadful thing at first, but I soon changed my mind, thinking that perhaps you were acting out of sympathy for me. Then, though the things you did seemed a little embarrassing, they began to present the appearance of a delicate and suave invitation to a dance. And as I watched you become amazingly serious and go on pretending to be deceived, my heart began to fill with a feeling of gratitude, and so I followed after you meekly. But you went from one misunderstanding to the next, didn’t you? You write that I rejected you, but that’s not true. Didn’t you reject yourself all by yourself? I felt that I could understand your wanting to. In view of the accident and all, I had more than half resigned myself to sharing your suffering. For that very reason, your mask seemed quite good to me. In a happy frame of mind, I reflected that love strips the mask from each of us, and we must endeavor for those we love to put the mask on so that it can be taken off again. For if there is no mask to start with, there is no pleasure in removing it, is there? Do you understand what I mean? I think you do. After all, don’t even you have your doubts? Is what you think to be the mask in reality your real face, or is what you think to be your real face really a mask? Yes, you do understand. Anyone who is seduced is seduced realizing this. But the mask did not return. At first you were apparently trying to get your own self back by means of the mask, but before you knew it you had come to think of it only as your magician’s cloak for escaping from yourself. So it was not a mask, but somewhat the same as another real face, wasn’t it? You finally revealed your true colors. It was not the mask, but you yourself. It is meaningful to put a mask on, precisely because one makes others realize it is a mask. Even with cosmetics, which you abominate so, we never try to conceal the fact that it is make-up. After all, it was not that the mask was bad, but that you were too unaware of how to treat it. Even though you put the mask on, you could not do a thing while you were wearing it. Good or bad, you could not do a thing. All you could manage was to wander through the streets and write long, never-ending confessions, like a snake with its tail in its mouth. It was all the same to you whether you burned your face or didn’t, whether you put on a mask or didn’t. You were incapable of calling the mask back. Since the mask will not come back, there is no reason for me to return either.
Kōbō Abe (The Face of Another)
You are a totally pathetic, historical example of the phallocentric, to put it mildly." "A pathetic, historical example," Oshima repeats, obviously impressed. By his tone of voice he seems to like the sound of that phrase. "In other words you're a typical sexist, patriarchic male," the tall one pipes in, unable to conceal her irritation. "A patriarchic male," Oshima again repeats. The short one ignores this and goes on. "You're employing the status quo and the cheap phallocentric logic that supports it to reduce the entire female gender to second-class citizens, to limit and deprive women of the rights they're due. You're doing this unconsciously rather than deliberately, but that makes you even guiltier. You protect vested male interests and become inured to the pain of others, and don't even try to see what evil your blindness causes women and society. I realize that problems with restrooms and card catalogs are mere details, but if we don't begin with the small things we'll never be able to throw off the cloak of blindness that covers our society. Those are the principles by which we act." "That's the way every sensible woman feels," the tall one adds, her face expressionless. [...] A frozen silence follows. "At any rate, what you've been saying is fundamentally wrong," Oshima says, calmly yet emphatically. "I am most definitely not a pathetic, historical example of a patriarchic male." "Then explain, simply, what's wrong with what we've said," the shorter woman says defiantly. "Without sidestepping the issue or trying to show off how erudite you are," the tall one adds. "All right. I'll do just that—explain it simply and honestly, minus any sidestepping or displays of brilliance," Oshima says. "We're waiting," the tall one says, and the short one gives a compact nod to show she agrees. "First of all, I'm not a male," Oshima announces. A dumbfounded silence follows on the part of everybody. I gulp and shoot Oshima a glance. "I'm a woman," he says. "I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't joke around," the short woman says, after a pause for breath. Not much confidence, though. It's more like she felt somebody had to say something. Oshima pulls his wallet out of his chinos, takes out the driver's license, and passes it to the woman. She reads what's written there, frowns, and hands it to her tall companion, who reads it and, after a moment's hesitation, gives it back to Oshima, a sour look on her face. "Did you want to see it too?" Oshima asks me. When I shake my head, he slips the license back in his wallet and puts the wallet in his pants pocket. He then places both hands on the counter and says, "As you can see, biologically and legally I am undeniably female. Which is why what you've been saying about me is fundamentally wrong. It's simply impossible for me to be, as you put it, a typical sexist, patriarchic male." "Yes, but—" the tall woman says but then stops. The short one, lips tight, is playing with her collar. "My body is physically female, but my mind's completely male," Oshima goes on. "Emotionally I live as a man. So I suppose your notion of being a historical example may be correct. And maybe I am sexist—who knows. But I'm not a lesbian, even though I dress this way. My sexual preference is for men. In other words, I'm a female but I'm gay. I do anal sex, and have never used my vagina for sex. My clitoris is sensitive but my breasts aren't. I don't have a period. So, what am I discriminating against? Could somebody tell me?
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
Never Let Me Down" (feat. Jay-Z, J-Ivy) [Intro:] Yeah Grandmama Told you I won't let you down Told you I won't let this rap game change me, right? [Chorus:] When it comes to being true, at least true to me One thing I found,one thing I found Oh no you'll neva let me down, Get up I get(down) Get up I get(down) Get up I get(down) Get up I get(down) Get up I get(down) Get up I get(down) [Jay-Z:] Yo, yo first I snatched the street then I snatched the charts, First had they ear now I hav they're heart, Rappers came and went, I've been hear from the start, Seen them put it together Watch them take it apart, See the Rovers roll up wit ribbons I've seen them re-poed, re-sold and re-driven So when I reload, he holds #1 position When u hot I'm hot And when your feet cold, mines is sizzelin It's plain to see Nigga's can't f*** wit me Cuz ima be that nigga fo life This is not an image This is God given This is hard liven Mixed wit crystal sipping It's the most consistent Hov Give you the most hits you can fit inside a whole disc and Nigga I'm home on these charts, y'all niggaz visitin It's Hov tradition, Jeff Gordan of rap I'm back to claim pole position, holla at ya boy [Chorus] [Kanye West:] I get down for my grandfather who took my momma Made her sit that seat where white folks ain't wanna us to eat At the tender age of 6 she was arrested for the sit in With that in my blood I was born to be different Now niggas can't make it to ballots to choose leadership But we can make it to Jacob and to the dealership That's why I hear new music And I just don't be feeling it Racism still alive they just be concealing it But I know they don't want me in the damn club They even made me show I.D to get inside of Sam's club I did dirt and went to church to get my hands scrubbed Swear I've been baptised at least 3 or 4 times But in the land where nigga's praise Yukons and getting paid It gon' take a lot more than coupons to get us saved Like it take a lot more than do-rags to get your waves Noting sadder than that day my girl father past away So I promised to Mr Rany I'm gonna marry your daughter And u know I gotta thank u for they way that she was brought up And I know that u were smiling when u see that car I bought her And u sent tears from heaven when u seen my car get balled up But I can't complaint what the accident did to my Left Eye Cuz look what a accident did to Left Eye First Aaliyah and now romeo must die I know a got angels watching me from the other side
Kanye West
Marriage is so important in modern America that we even have a legal term, “ex-wife”—and a related social term, “ex”—that applies equally to an ex-wife and to an ex-girlfriend. And because English is generally nongendered, it also refers to an ex-husband and an ex-boyfriend. (We don’t have an English verb for the feeling one has for an ex, but Russian conveniently does: razlubit’—literally, to “unlove”—is how you feel for someone you used to love. It’s like the English “falling out of love.”)
Joel M. Hoffman (And God Said: How Translations Conceal the Bible's Original Meaning)
Since our new-found sensitivity decrees that only the victim shall be the hero, the white American male starts bawling for victim status too. Hence the rise of cult therapies which teach that we are all the victims of our parents: that whatever our folly, venality, or outright thuggishness, we are not to be blames for it, since we come from "dysfunctional families". [...] Thus the pursuit of the Inner Child has taken over just at the moment when Americans ought to be figuring out where their Inner Adult is, and how that disregarded oldster got buried under the rubble of pop psychology and specious short-term gratification. [...] The all-pervasive claim to victimhood tops off America's long-cherished culture of therapeutics. To seem strong may only conceal a rickety scaffolding of denial, but to be vulnerable is to be invincible. Complaint gives you power - even when it's only the power of emotional bribery, of creating previously unnoticed levels of social guilt. [...] In these and a dozen other ways we create an infantilized culture of complaint, in which Big Daddy is always to blame and the expansion of rights goes on without the other half of citizenship - attachment to duties and obligations. To be infantile is a regressive way to defy the stress of corporate culture: Don't tread on me, I'm vulnerable. The emphasis is on the subjective: how we feel about things, rather than what we think or can know.
Robert Hughes (Culture of Complaint: The Fraying of America (American Lectures))
1} But the humble mushroom is proof that sometimes the best things in life are found growing wild and free right under your nose. Don't rush so fast, that you can't see the wild mushrooms around you. (Pg no. 87) 2} Had life been more simple then? When it was harder merely to survive, did people get on with it and not tangle themselves in knots over who they were and why life had shaped them a certain way? (Pg no. 122) 3} Lists can be self-defeating. Lists can become a way to lessen the importance of something. It's too enormous to cope with, so we break it down into a list and then it has less power over us. And that's shutting the door on what we have to deal with. (Pg no. 142) 4} Life is about getting by. Surviving. It's never perfect and we self-sabotage for any number of reasons, but if you try to understand all that about yourself, you can be happy. (Pg no. 143) 5} The problem with running away is that the problem runs with you. (Pg no. 361) 6} Keep it light, never let them know know how you feel. But that doesn't always work out. Sometimes you had to let people know how you felt. Keeping it light, concealing your true feelings, meant nobody knew you. You were a mystery, and being a mystery was all well and good, but it was a lonely way to live. (Pg no. 403)
Cathy Kelly (Homecoming)
Conceal it,” he told her. “Don’t feel
Sarah Nathan (Frozen: The Junior Novelization)
Prologue “Pain!. Oh, Father of the Dark, how it hurts! My muscles, my bones – every millimeter of my body. Damn locusts! They’re skinning me alive. Do I have any skin left? It seems like it will never end. How many years have passed since I’ve been buried here? One, two, ten? Or maybe, a hundred? Time itself has melded into total dusky looming. A bloody and merciless one. All my thoughts have been mixed up since I’ve been immured in this stone coffin. Without any possibility of escape. Without any chance for freedom. I feel endless agony under the teeny weeny teeth of ghostly beasts. And their small daggers shred my immortal flesh. Time after time, they’re driving me to madness. But I’ll find a way out, or my name is not Rave Eridanus Castro-Firel. And then, I swear, I’ll kill everyone who has taken part in torturing me. Ulfricus, you traitor ass. I hope your soul has never found sanctuary and is being tormented somewhere in the abyss of the Twilight, while I’m decaying here, in immortality. I hope you’re answering for every minute I’ve spent here, in this tomb. Even for every second. And if not, I promise I’ll kill all your relatives. Every person you love. Your wife, your children, your parents, your grandchildren. And your dam cat,...” The man’s interior monologue was interrupted by a restrained growl. “Oh, demons, how it hurts!.. But wait. Someone will surely wander across this damn field again. Someone whom I’ll kill without coming out of the ground. I’ll exhaust the last drop of magic. And, one day, I’ll be able to get out of this trap. Oh, no, who am I kidding? Nobody has appeared here so far. Even animals avoid coming to my field. I don’t sense any living being whose energy I could suck dry and use to appease the burning, even a little... They all sense me. They don’t understand, but they sense that death is there under their feet. Oh, Father of the Dark, I’ll be decomposing here forever! Damn Ulfricus, Banshee take your soul into the Twilight and love it to death.” The internal voice stopped again, and the man stopped short, listening attentively to the sounds of the outer world. “Oh, that just can’t be... Now for the first time since so long ago! A woman. A girl. A very young one. I can almost hear her heart beating... I feel the energy concealed in her blood. Come closer, dear. I don’t have to get out of here to play with you. So sweet... I can practically feel your odor. A strange, unusual smell of blood. What’s wrong with you? You’re a necromancer, for sure. Almost my soulmate. Well, even this won’t save you. Come closer, dear... Yes, this way. Oh Dark! what magic you eradiate! But not black, certainly not. I couldn’t care less. Any energy will suit me...” At this point, somewhere on the surface, somewhere nearby, a woman began singing. The accursed man, chained in the living grave, lay down, having suddenly forgotten the respiratory reflex, which still had not been exterminated through hundreds of years spent under the ground. Without air, without life. “What a pretty voice. A very, very pretty voice. I haven’t heard human voices for so long...” The man’s broad chest rose again. Then, a sequence of dark thoughts continued: “A girl with a ringing voice and strange magic... You’ve come here to the Ash Field in vain. You’re so enigmatic and courageous. You’re alive. But not for long.
Silvia Liam (Do Not Awaken The Undead King)
How did you get the badges?” Parker asked. “You didn’t steal a badge from a pro, did you?” “Of course not,” Hardison said. “Geek solidarity to the end.” “Then whose name is this on my badge? Who’s Diana Prince?” Hardison laughed. “That’s Wonder Woman’s secret identity.” Parker giggled at that. “And who are you? Carl Lucas?” “That’s Luke Cage’s original name.” “Who?” Eliot didn’t bother to conceal his irritation. “Luke Cage? You know, Power Man? Of Power Man and Iron Fist?” Hardison waited for a response that never came. “Sweet Christmas, what’s wrong with you people?” “We have lives. And just who am I supposed to be, huh? Batman’s secret sidekick?” “You’d like that, wouldn’t you?” Sophie said. Nate gave her a nudge with his elbow, and she fixed him with a mischievous smile. “Naw, man,” said Hardison. “I wouldn’t do that to you. I know how you feel about ‘fictional’ people.” “So who the hell is Warren Ellis?” “He’s a comic-book writer. Good one.” Eliot groaned. “For God’s sake, do I look like a comic-book writer?” “Hey, don’t knock Warren Ellis. He wrote all sorts of great stuff. Global Frequency, The Authority, Transmetropolitan. Good stuff.
Matt Forbeck (The Con Job (Leverage, #1))
The quickest way to the heart is through a wound.... Concealed sin keeps us from seeing the light of Christ.... Sin is like spiritual leprosy. It deadens your spiritual senses so that you rip your soul to shreds and don't even feel it.
John Piper (Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist)
So what," the Chelgrian asked, "is the point of me or anybody else writing a symphony, or anything else?" The avatar raised its brows in surprise. "Well, for one thing, you do it, it's you who gets the feeling of achievement." "Ignoring the subjective. What would be the point for those listening to it?" "They'd know it was one of their own species, not a Mind, who created it." "Ignoring that, too; suppose they weren't told it was by an AI, or didn't care." "If they hadn't been told then the comparison isn't complete; information is being concealed. If they don't care, then they're unlike any group of humans I've ever encountered." "But if you can—" "Ziller, are concerned that Minds—AIs, if you like—can create, or even just appear to create, original works of art?" "Frankly, when they're the sort of original works of art that I create, yes." "Ziller, it doesn't matter. You have to think like a mountain climber." "Oh, do I?" "Yes. Some people take days, sweat buckets, endure pain and cold and risk injury and—in some cases—permanent death to achieve the summit of a mountain only to discover there a party of their peers freshly arrived by aircraft and enjoying a light picnic." "If I was one of those climbers I'd be pretty damned annoyed." "Well, it is considered rather impolite to land an aircraft on a summit which people are at that moment struggling up to the hard way, but it can and does happen. Good manners indicate that the picnic ought to be shared and that those who arrived by aircraft express awe and respect for the accomplishment of the climbers. "The point, of course, is that the people who spent days and sweated buckets could also have taken an aircraft to the summit if all they'd wanted was to absorb the view. It is the struggle that they crave. The sense of achievement is produced by the route to and from the peak, not by the peak itself. It is just the fold between the pages." The avatar hesitated. It put its head a little to one side and narrowed its eyes. "How far do I have to take this analogy, Cr. Ziller?
Iain M. Banks (Look to Windward (Culture, #7))
He continued his one-man show. “Wait, you’re not talking about the smokin’-hot brunette who shut you down when you asked her to go as your date tonight.” Her attempts to conceal her smile were futile. The corners of her lips turned up into a wide grin as she shook her head. “Yep. That’s the one,” Lucky confirmed…to himself. “And while it’s true that she did pass on going as my date, I would like the record to show that she sat right next to me at dinner and was flirting shamelessly—” A gasp flew from her mouth. “I was not!” “I’m sorry, but no one was talking to you.” He looked over at her as if she had truly interrupted a private conversation. Despite herself, she burst out laughing. “Rude,” he said under his breath as he once again stared out the windshield, pretending to be offended. “As I was saying, after flirting subtly but shamelessly with me during dinner, we shared one of the most…I don’t even have the words…intimate slow dances in the history of all time. Then, said smokin’-hot brunette asked me for a ride home. Sooo, was it a date? I think so.” Deanna was still chuckling as they drove onto the main road, all the tension she’d been feeling gone. She was relaxed now and surprisingly having fun. After composing herself, she crossed her arms. “Are you finished?” Lucky turned his head slightly towards her, acting surprised. “Oh, I’m sorry. Did you want to join the conversation?” “Only to set the record straight that, one, I did not flirt with you at dinner. Shamelessly or subtly. And, two, I did not ask for a ride home. That was all you.” “Duly noted. Is that it?” he asked casually, but she had a bad feeling the question was leading somewhere. She narrowed her eyes, knowing she was playing right into his hand. “Yes.” He grinned—one of victory. “So you admit that was one of the most intimate slow dances in the history of all time.” “I didn’t say that.” Heat once again rushed to her cheeks, and she was glad the only light in the SUV was from the moon. “You didn’t submit any evidence disproving it, so by default, ya kinda did say that.” He sounded more than a little pleased with himself. “Whatever.” She was still grinning like an idiot as she looked back out the window. It was the lamest of all possible comebacks, but she hadn’t known what else to say. If her brain wasn’t consumed with the fact that they were alone in a small, enclosed area and she’d had six glasses of wine, she would’ve been able to come up with a wittier retort.
Melanie Shawn (Lucky Kiss (Hope Falls #12; Kiss #2))
shrugged. No point making a big thing out of it. “Well, according to game theory, you should never tell anyone when your birthday is.” “I don’t follow.” “It’s a lose-lose proposition. There’s no winning strategy.” “What do you mean, strategy? It’s a birthday.” Chelsea had said exactly the same thing when I’d tried to explain it to her. Look, I’d said, say you tell everyone when it is and nothing happens. It’s kind of a slap in the face. Or suppose they throw you a party, Chelsea had replied. Then you don’t know whether they’re doing it sincerely, or if your earlier interaction just guilted them into observing an occasion they’d rather have ignored. But if you don’t tell anyone, and nobody commemorates the event, there’s no reason to feel badly because after all, nobody knew. And if someone does buy you a drink then you know it’s sincere because nobody would go to all the trouble of finding out when your birthday is—and then celebrating it—if they didn’t honestly like you. Of course, the Gang was more up to speed on such things. I didn’t have to explain it verbally: I could just grab a piece of ConSensus and plot out the payoff matrix, Tell/Don’t Tell along the columns, Celebrated/Not Celebrated along the rows, the unassailable black-and-white logic of cost and benefit in the squares themselves. The math was irrefutable: The one winning strategy was concealment. Only fools revealed their birthdays.
Peter Watts (Blindsight (Firefall, #1))
Hey.” A lopsided smirk offers chagrin as he turns my way. “Sorry about that,” he says, and I’m struck by how much I’ve missed his voice. He opens the door and unfolds himself from the tiny car, and then I realize how much I’ve missed him. “You made it.” It’s tough to keep my emotions in check, but I know I need to. “You look tired.” “I took the long way home.” And just like that, he reaches out and pulls me into a hug. Not a shoulder hug, but the real thing, the kind you give to someone you thought of while you were away. I’m surprised at first. I wasn’t expecting…well…that. I was prepared for more of the uncertain off-and-on awkward dance we usually do. Friends…or two people who want something more? We’re never quite sure. But this feels different. I slip my arms under his and hang on. “Tough few days?” I whisper, and he rests his chin on my head. I listen to his heartbeat, feel the sultry warmth of skin against skin. My gaze lingers on the tangle of wisteria vines and crape myrtle branches hiding the ancient structures of Goswood Grove’s once spectacular gardens, concealing whatever secrets they know. “Tough few days all around, it sounds like,” Nathan says finally. “We should go in.” But he hangs on a minute longer. We part slowly, and the next step suddenly seems uncharted. I don’t know how to catalog it. One moment, we’re as natural as breathing. The next, we’re at arm’s length—or retreating to our separate safety zones. He stops halfway across the porch, turns, widens his stance a little like he’s about to pick up something heavy. Crossing his arms, he tilts his head and looks at me, one eye squeezing almost shut. “What are we to each other?” I stand there a moment with my mouth agape before words dribble out in a halting string. “In…in…what way?” I’m terrified, that’s why I don’t give a straight answer. Relationships require truth telling, and that requires risk. An old, insecure part of me says, You’re damaged goods, Benny Silva. Someone like Nathan would never understand. He’ll never see you in the same way again. “Just like it sounds,” he says. “I missed you, Benny, and I promised myself I’d just put it out there this time. Because…well…you’re hard to read.” “I’m hard to read?” Nathan has been largely a mystery I’ve pieced together in fragments. “Me?” He doesn’t fall for the turnabout, or he ignores it. “So, Benny Silva, are we…friends or are we…” The sentence shifts in the wind, unfinished—a fill-in-the-blank question. Those are harder than multiple-choice. “Friends…” I search for the right answer, one not too presumptuous, but accurate. “Going somewhere…at our own pace? I hope.” I feel naked standing there. Scared. Vulnerable. And potentially unworthy of his investment in me. I can’t make the same mistake I’ve made before. There are things he needs to know. It’s only fair, but this isn’t the right moment for it, or the right place. He braces his hands on his hips, lets his head rock forward, exhales a breath he seems to have been holding. “Okay,” he says with a note of approval. His cheek twitches, one corner of his mouth rising. I think he might be blushing a little. “I’ll take that.” “Me, too,” I agree.
Lisa Wingate (The Book of Lost Friends)
The Chupacabra Sonnet Chihuahuas need guns for strength, They feel naked without concealed carry. To them I say, with all humility, Open your eyes muchacho - ¡chupacabra aquí! You may keep your gun, I won't say a word, But don't confuse them to be your safe haven. Own them in secret, but think of using them, And you'll face the wrath of this kraken. You may conceal, you may carry, if law allows, But dare not raise your gun at a reformador. To the wounded stranger I am ointment, But to the inhuman vermin I am volcano. Carrying a gun every moron feels like superman. Stand up to cruelty unarmed, then you are human.
Abhijit Naskar (High Voltage Habib: Gospel of Undoctrination)