Responding To Insults Quotes

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Remember, it is not enough to be hit or insulted to be harmed, you must believe that you are being harmed. If someone succeeds in provoking you, realize that your mind is complicit in the provocation. Which is why it is essential that we not respond impulsively to impressions; take a moment before reacting, and you will find it easier to maintain control.
Epictetus (The Art of Living: The Classical Manual on Virtue, Happiness and Effectiveness)
Were you born with all your organs intact?” he responds. I can’t see his face, so I have no way of knowing where he’s going with this question. “Yes …” I say cautiously. “Good,” he responds, “then I expect you to use the one beneath your skull.” Damn. That insult burned a little.
Laura Thalassa (Pestilence (The Four Horsemen, #1))
As much as you can, keep dunya (worldly life) in your hand--not in your heart. That means when someone insults you, keep it out of your heart so it doesn't make you bitter or defensive. When someone praises you, also keep it out of your heart, so it doesn't make you arrogant and self-deluded. When you face hardship and stress, don't absorb it in your heart, so you don't become hopeless and overwhelmed. Instead keep it in your hands and realize that everything passes. When you're given a gift by God, don't hold it in your heart. Hold it in your hand so that you don't begin to love the gift more than the giver. And so that when it is taken away you can truly respond with 'inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi rajioon': 'indeed we belong to God, and to God we return'.
Yasmin Mogahed
If ever a fool utters all kinds of insults against you, The best bet is to not respond at all.
Válgame (Zori 2ª Parte)
I don’t want any more insults. I’d like to experience three whole minutes in your presence before you lay into me again…and we really should make sure the tools are all locked up. (Acheron) (He pulled the sleeve of his jacket back to look at his watch.) Let me start timing… (Acheron) (She opened her mouth to respond, but he held his hand up.) Wait for it. We got two minutes and fifty-give seconds to go. (Acheron) I’m not that bad. (Tory) Yeah…you’re not standing in my shoes. (Acheron) And judging by the ungodly size of them, I don’t think there are many people who could. (Tory) We almost made it to thirty seconds without an insult. I think we just set a new record. (Acheron)
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Acheron (Dark-Hunter, #14))
Then my father's features hardened. "You can't expect my blessings on this disastrous mistake." The words were directed at me, but Vlad responded. "I wouldn't insult you by asking. We both know you disapprove and we both know I don't care. Leila's opinion is the only one that matters, and she said yes.
Jeaniene Frost (Twice Tempted (Night Prince, #2))
When you encounter another person, when you have dealings with anyone at all, it is as if a question is being put to you. So you must think, What is the Lord asking of me in this moment, in this situation? If you confront insult or antagonism, your first impulse will be to respond in kind. But if you think, as it were, This is an emissary sent from the Lord, and some benefit is intended for me, first of all the occasion to demonstrate my faithfulness, the chance to show that I do in some small degree participate in the grace that saved me, you are free to act otherwise than as circumstances would seem to dictate. You are free to act by your own lights. You are freed at the same time of the impulse to hate or resent that person.
Marilynne Robinson (Gilead (Gilead, #1))
I only accept and pay attention to feedback from people who are also in the arena. If you're occasionally getting your butt kicked as you respond, and if you're also figuring out how to stay open to feedback without getting pummeled by insults, I'm more likely to pay attention to your thought about my work. If, on the other hand, you're not helping, contributing, or wrestling with your own gremlins, I'm not at all interested in your commentary.
Brené Brown (Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead)
The easiest way to disarm a bully or a jerk is to take any insult he throws at you and follow it with, 'I know, and isn’t it fabulous?!
Dan Pearce (Single Dad Laughing: The Best of Year One)
I am sorry," said Monty. "I cannot respond to you in any way. I am just not sufficiently interested in anything you have to say.
Iris Murdoch (The Sacred and Profane Love Machine)
It might help with your condition.” “What condition?” Alex sounded bored. “Stickuptheassitis.” I’d already called the man an asshole, so what was one more insult? I might’ve imagined it, but I thought I saw his mouth twitch before he responded with a bland, “No. The condition is chronic.
Ana Huang (Twisted Love (Twisted, #1))
Every day, people engaged in the clever defiance of their own intuition become, in mid-thought, victims of violence and accidents. So when we wonder why we are victims so often, the answer is clear: It is because we are so good at it. A woman could offer no greater cooperation to her soon-to-be attacker than to spend her time telling herself, “But he seems like such a nice man.” Yet this is exactly what many people do. A woman is waiting for an elevator, and when the doors open she sees a man inside who causes her apprehension. Since she is not usually afraid, it may be the late hour, his size, the way he looks at her, the rate of attacks in the neighborhood, an article she read a year ago—it doesn’t matter why. The point is, she gets a feeling of fear. How does she respond to nature’s strongest survival signal? She suppresses it, telling herself: “I’m not going to live like that, I’m not going to insult this guy by letting the door close in his face.” When the fear doesn’t go away, she tells herself not to be so silly, and she gets into the elevator. Now, which is sillier: waiting a moment for the next elevator, or getting into a soundproofed steel chamber with a stranger she is afraid of? The inner voice is wise, and part of my purpose in writing this book is to give people permission to listen to it.
Gavin de Becker (The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence)
What, for instance, does it mean to be insulted? [29] Stand by a rock and insult it, and what have you accomplished? If someone responds to insult like a rock, what has the abuser gained with his invective? If, however, he has his victim’s weakness to exploit, then his efforts are worth his while.
Epictetus (Of Human Freedom (Penguin Great Ideas))
An unenthusiastic chorus responds, “We encourage vigorous debate. Civil debate is a healthy and democratic process. If one cannot make one’s point without yelling, name-calling, or insulting others, one should develop a stronger argument before speaking further.
Lisa Wingate (The Book of Lost Friends)
You begin to think, maybe erroneously, that this other kind of anger is really a type of knowledge: the type that both clarifies and disappoints. It responds to insult and attempted erasure simply by asserting presence, and the energy required to present, to react, to assert is accompanied by visceral disappointment: a disappointment in the sense that no amount of visibility will alter the ways in which one is perceived.
Claudia Rankine (Citizen: An American Lyric)
Truth is, nothing you say can ensure that the other person will get it, or respond the way you want. You may never exceed his threshold of deafness. She may never love you, not now or ever. And if you are courageous in initiating, extending, or deepening a difficult conversation, you may feel even more anxious and uncomfortable, at least in the short run.
Harriet Lerner (The Dance of Connection: How to Talk to Someone When You're Mad, Hurt, Scared, Frustrated, Insulted, Betrayed, or Desperate)
There is a story concerning the Buddha, who is in the company of a fellow traveler who tests this great teacher with derogatory, insulting, disparaging, and bitter responses to anything the Buddha says. Every day, for three days when the Buddha spoke, the traveler responded by calling him a fool, and ridiculing the Buddha in some arrogant fashion. Finally, at the end of the third day, the traveler could stand it no more. He asked, “How is it that you are able to be so loving and kind when all I’ve done for the past three days is dishonor and offend you? Each time I am disobliging to you, you respond in a loving manner. How is this possible?” The Buddha responded with a question of his own for the traveler. “If someone offers you a gift, and you do not accept that gift, to whom does the gift belong?
Wayne W. Dyer (There's a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem)
I believe in the right to offend. To insult. Even to horrify. It’s not that we’re supposed to enjoy it; it’s that we’re supposed to allow it and then respond in a more persuasive voice. That’s the bedrock of the First Amendment—the answer to speech you do not like is not less speech, it’s more speech. In
Megyn Kelly (Settle for More)
Each human being deals with hurt or resentment in a unique way. When you feel insulted or bullied, you may reach for a chocolate bar. In the same circumstance, I might burst into tears. Another person may put his or her feelings quickly into words, confronting the mistreatment directly. Although our feelings can influence how we wish to act, our choices of how to behave are ultimately determined more by our attitudes and our habits. We respond to our emotional wounds based on what we believe about ourselves, how we think about the person who has hurt us, and how we perceive the world. Only in people who are severely traumatized or who have major mental illnesses is behavior governed by feelings. And only a tiny percentage of abusive men have these kinds of severe psychological problems.
Lundy Bancroft (Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men)
I respond to insults, And to rivalries, With a silence occult In all my victories.
Ana Claudia Antunes (A-Z of Happiness: Tips for Living and Breaking Through the Chain that Separates You from Getting That Dream Job)
Time responds to all insults . It is waiting for the opportunity to get revenge.
Srinivas Mishra
That's what you think of me, is it, girl?" said his lordship, a glint in his eyes. "Oh, no!" she responded, dropping him a curtsy. "It's what I say, sir! You must know that my featherheaded Mama has taught me to behave with all the propriety in the world! To tell you what I think of you would be to sink myself quite below reproach!
Georgette Heyer (The Unknown Ajax)
When dealing with offensive and irritating people, you need to look past their behavior to their pain. Please understand that hurting people hurt people. They are full of fear and insecurity. Wise people ignore the insult and respond with patience and love.
Tony Warrick
[Texting] discourages thoughtful discussion or any level of detail. And the addictive problems are compounded by texting's hyperimmediacy. E-mails take some time to work their way through the Internet, through switches and routers and servers, and they require that you take the step of explicitly opening them. Text messages magically appear on the screen of your phone and demand immediate attention from you. Add to that the social expectation that an unanswered text feels insulting to the sender, and you've got a recipe for addiction: You receive a text, and that activates your novelty centers. You respond and feel rewarded for having completed a task (even though that task was entirely unknown to you fifteen seconds earlier). Each of those delivers a shot of dopamine as your limbic system cries out "More! More! Give me more!
Daniel J. Levitin (The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload)
Do not respond to these insults, they will not increase your abilities. You will tire yourself needlessly.
Paulo Coelho (Warrior of the Light)
Start with very small experiments. When anger arises, stop! What is the hurry? When you feel hatred, wait! There should be some interval. Reply only when you are fully conscious – not until that. You will find that all that is sinful in life has fallen away from you; all that is wrong is banished forever. You will suddenly discover, there is no need to respond to anger. Perhaps you might feel like thanking the man who insults you. Because he has obliged you. He gave you an opportunity to awaken. Kabir has said stay near the one who is critical of you. Look after him and serve him who is abusing you because it is he who gives you the opportunity to awaken. All the occasions that drown you in unconsciousness can be turned into stepping stones to awareness if you wish so. Life is like a huge boulder lying in the middle of the road. Those who are foolish, see the stone as a barrier and turn back. For them the road is closed. Those who are clever, climb the stone and use it as a step. And the moment they make it a stepping stone greater heights are available to them. A seeker should keep in mind only one factor, and that is: to utilize each moment to awaken awareness. Then be it hunger or anger or lust or greed, every state can be utilized towards awareness.
Osho (Bliss: Living beyond happiness and misery)
Who is he?” Eleanor lowered her voice, the name rolling off her tongue like a dark secret. “Dante Berlin.” I laughed. “Dante? Like the Dante who wrote the Inferno? Did he pick that name just to cultivate his ‘dark and mysterious’ persona?” Eleanor shook her head in disapproval. “Just wait till you see him. You won’t be laughing then.” I rolled my eyes. “I bet his real name is something boring like Eugene or Dwayne.” I expected Eleanor to laugh or say something in return, but instead she gave me a concerned look. I ignored it. “He sounds like a snob to me. I bet he’s one of those guys who know they’re good-looking. He probably hasn’t even read the Inferno. It’s easy to pretend you’re smart when you don’t to anyone.” Eleanor still didn’t respond. “Shh . . .” she muttered under her breath. But before I could say “What?” I heard a cough behind me. Oh God, I thought to myself, and slowly turned around. “Hi,” he said with a half grin that seemed to be mocking me. And that’s how I met Dante Berlin. So how do you describe someone who leaves you speechless? He was beautiful. Not Monet beautiful or white sandy beach beautiful or even Grand Canyon beautiful. It was both more overwhelming and more delicate. Like gazing into the night sky and feeling incredibly small in comparison. Like holding a shell in your hand and wondering how nature was able to make something so complex yet to perfect: his eyes, dark and pensive; his messy brown hair tucked behind one ear; his arms, strong and lean beneath the cuffs of his collared shirt. I wanted to say something witty or charming, but all I could muster up was a timid “Hi.” He studied me with what looked like a mix of disgust and curiosity. “You must be Eugene,” I said. “I am.” He smiled, then leaned in and added, “I hope I can trust you to keep my true identity a secret. A name like Eugene could do real damage to my mysterious persona.” I blushed at the sound of my words coming from his lips. He didn’t seem anything like the person Eleanor had described. “And you are—” “Renee,” I interjected. “I was going to say, ‘in my seat,’ but Renee will do.” My face went red. “Oh, right. Sorry.” “Renee like the philosopher Rene Descartes? How esoteric of you. No wonder you think you know everything. You probably picked that name just to cultivate your overly analytical persona.” I glared at him. I knew he was just dishing back my own insults, but it still stung. “Well, it was nice meeting you,” I said curtly, and pushed past him before he could respond, waving a quick good-bye to Eleanor, who looked too stunned to move. I turned and walked to the last row, using all of my self-control to resist looking back.
Yvonne Woon (Dead Beautiful (Dead Beautiful, #1))
Working to restore our voice with members of our first family can be a terrific learning experience. We didn't choose these difficult folks, but, as adults, how we talk to them is up to us. Observing and changing our part in family conversations is one royal road to change. In other words, if you can learn to speak clearly and to respond in a new way with your difficult mother or sister, then other relationships will be a piece of cake.
Harriet Lerner (The Dance of Connection: How to Talk to Someone When You're Mad, Hurt, Scared, Frustrated, Insulted, Betrayed, or Desperate)
I’m not even sure how to respond to such a foul question, Mr. Sykes.” She’s quiet but resilient. “Your obvious and ill-placed insult of your own son makes me sick, and I’m positive the answer isn’t one you want to hear anyway.
Meagan Brandy (Fake It 'Til You Break It)
Your choice to match insult with insult and respond to sarcasm with sarcasm is part of the reason the narrative does not and has not changed. Instead of matching the weakness of insults, respond with the strength of your argument.
Loren Weisman
What if an enterprising (or perhaps just ill-natured) fisherman found part of the serpent's body a few thousand miles away from his head and decided to cut it open and take a peek inside? It would take hours or days for Jormungand to respond to such and insult.
Gregory Amato (Burden to Bear (Spear of the Gods, #1))
An elementary school student asked me the NOT “politically correct” question, “Is an idiot smarter than a moron?” I had to Google it because I was afraid to respond in today’s PC society and didn’t want to offend him, his parents, or anyone else. Here’s what I found. Technically, a moron is smarter than an idiot. An imbecile is also smarter than an idiot. Although today the words are considered insulting and derogatory, prior to the 1960s they were widely used as actual psychology terms associated with intelligence on an IQ test. An IQ between: 00-25 = Idiot 26-50 = Imbecile 51-70 = Moron Explaining all of this to a nine year old with an IQ of 130 made me feel like society has turned all adults into one of the above, myself included. When I told him that I’m afraid to openly say it, the nine year old said, “Adults are idiots!
Ray Palla (H: Infidels of Oil)
When you encounter another person, when you have dealings with anyone at all, it is as if a question is being put to you. So you must think, What is the Lord asking of me in this moment, in this situation? If you confront insult or antagonism, your first impulse will be to respond in kind. But if you think, as it were, This is an emissary sent from the Lord, and some benefit is intended for me, first of all the occasion to demonstrate my faithfulness, the chance to show that I do in some small degree participate in the grace that saved me, you are free to act otherwise than as circumstances would seem to dictate. You are free to act by your own lights. You are freed at the same time of the impulse to hate or resent that person. He would probably laugh at the thought that the Lord sent him to you for your benefit (and his), but that is the perfection of the disguise, his own ignorance of it.
Marilynne Robinson (Gilead (Gilead #1))
Remember that it is we who torment, we who make difficulties for ourselves – that is, our opinions do. What, for instance, does it mean to be insulted? Stand by a rock and insult it, and what have you accomplished? If someone responds to insult like a rock, what has the abuser gained with his invective?
Epictetus (Discources and Selected Writings)
We should become self-aware: We should observe ourselves as we go about our daily business, and we should periodically reflect on how we responded to the day’s events. How did we respond to an insult? To the loss of a possession? To a stressful situation? Did we, in our responses, put Stoic psychological strategies to work? •
William B. Irvine (A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy)
Women facing sexual violence rarely speak up or call the police because they know what awaits them. Even good men hate it when women express their feelings, often responding with mockery, insults or threats. There’s a box in the minds of American men, a box labeled 'Girl Problems,' into which men can stuff any complaint made by women they wish to ignore.
Israel Morrow (Gods of the Flesh: A Skeptic's Journey Through Sex, Politics and Religion)
Remember, it is not enough to be hit or insulted to be harmed, you must believe that you are being harmed. If someone succeeds in provoking you, realize that your mind is complicit in the provocation. Which is why it is essential that we not respond impulsively to impressions; take a moment before reacting, and you will find it is easier to maintain control.
Epictetus (Discourses and Selected Writings (Classics))
You would’ve enjoyed all the horrible team name suggestions that Dex and Biana kept bugging the Council with, though,” Sophie shouted over the abundance of snorts and gurgles. If that was what Ro actually sounded like when she slept, poor Keefe probably had to sleep with a pillow over his head. “I thought Emery was going to exile them at one point.” “Okay, now I’m interested,” Ro informed her. “And let’s hope Team Fancypants was the winner. Because I can almost forgive you for wearing all of those sparkly accessories if that’s what you’re making your stuffy Councillors call you.” “Wait,” Keefe said, before Sophie could respond. “Dex and Biana were there?” Sophie nodded, then realized he couldn’t see her. Which actually made it a little easier to tell him. “Yeah. And Wylie. And Stina. I guess the Council decided I’m way more successful when I have backup—and they’re not wrong. But I’m still trying not to be insulted that they built this whole team because I’m useless alone. Oh—and you’ll love this. They wanted to name us Team Prodigious.” “Wow,” Ro said. “You guys shut that down, right?” “First thing we did,” Sophie agreed, pulling on a blissfully boring gray tunic and wishing all clothes could be
Shannon Messenger (Legacy (Keeper of the Lost Cities, #8))
Do you ever smile?” I asked, peeking inside the box to make sure they hadn’t messed up the order. Nope. One Death by Chocolate, coming right up. “It might help with your condition.” “What condition?” Alex sounded bored. “Stickuptheassitis.” I’d already called the man an asshole, so what was one more insult? I might’ve imagined it, but I thought I saw his mouth twitch before he responded with a bland, “No. The condition is chronic.
Ana Huang (Twisted Love (Twisted, #1))
Do you ever smile?” I asked, peeking inside the box to make sure they hadn’t messed up the order. Nope. One Death by Chocolate, coming right up. “It might help with your condition.” “What condition?” Alex sounded bored. “Stickuptheassitis.” I’d already called the man an asshole, so what was one more insult? I might’ve imagined it, but I thought I saw his mouth twitch before he responded with a bland, “No. The condition is chronic.
Ana Huang (Twisted Love (Twisted, #1))
The first is simple: I only accept and pay attention to feedback from people who are also in the arena. If you're occasionally getting your butt kicked as you respond, and if you're also figuring out how to stay open to feedback without getting pummeled by insults, I'm more likely to pay attention to your thoughts about my work. If, on the other hand, you're not helping, contributing, or wrestling with your own gremlins, I'm not at all interested in your commentary. The second strategy is also simple. I carry a small sheet of paper in my wallet that has written on it the names of people whose opinions of me matter. To be on that list, you have to love me for my strengths and struggles... To be on my list, you have to be what I call a "stretch-mark friend" - our connection has been stretched and pulled so much that it's become part of who we are, a second skin, and there are a few scars to prove it.
Brené Brown (Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead)
When people say things that we find offensive, civic charity asks that we resist the urge to attribute to immorality or prejudice views that can be equally well explained by other motives. It asks us to give the benefit of doubts, the assumption of goodwill, and the gift of attention. When people say things that agree with or respond thoughtfully to our arguments, we acknowledge that they have done so. We compliment where we can do so honestly, and we praise whatever we can legitimately find praiseworthy in their beliefs and their actions. When we argue with a forgiving affection, we recognize that people are often carried away by passions when discussing things of great importance to them. We overlook slights and insults and decline to respond in kind. We apologize when we get something wrong or when we hurt someone's feelings, and we allow others to apologize to us when they do the same. When people don't apologize, we still don't hold grudges or hurt them intentionally, even if we feel that they have intentionally hurt us. If somebody is abusive or obnoxious, we may decline to participate in further conversation, but we don't retaliate or attempt to make them suffer. And we try really hard not to give in to the overwhelming feeling that arguments must be won - and opponents destroyed - if we want to protect our own status or sense of worth. We never forget that our opponents are human beings who possess innate dignity and fellow citizens who deserve respect.
Michael Austin (We Must Not Be Enemies: Restoring America's Civic Tradition)
Do you ever smile?” I asked, peeking inside the box to make sure they hadn’t messed up the order. Nope. One Death by Chocolate, coming right up. “It might help with your condition.” “What condition?” Alex sounded bored. “Stickuptheassitis.” I’d already called the man an asshole, so what was one more insult? I might’ve imagined it, but I thought I saw his mouth twitch before he responded with a bland, “No. The condition is chronic.” My hands froze while my jaw unhinged. “D-did you make a joke?
Ana Huang (Twisted Love (Twisted, #1))
But why shouldn't I thank someone for doing me a service?" he heard Lillian ask with genuine perplexity. "It's polite to say thank you, isn't it?" "You should no more thank a servant than you would think a horse for allowing you to ride it, or a table for bearing the dishes you place upon it." "Well, we're not discussing animals or inanimate objects, are we? A footman is a person." "No," the countess said coldly. "A footman is a servant." "And a servant is a person," Lillian said stubbornly. The elderly woman sighed in exasperation. "Whatever your view of a footman is, you must not thank him at dinner. Servants neither expect nor desire such condescension, and if you insist on putting them in the awkward position of having to respond to your remarks, they will think badly of you... as will everyone else. Do not insult me with that vapid stare, Miss Bowman! You come from a family of means- surely you employed servants at your New York residence!" "Yes," Lillian acknowledged pertly, "but we talked to ours.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Are those chocolate chip?'' Cole reaches her first and claims one. ''Oh, my godness.'' Nana sets the tray aside and coos the guy. ''Cole, dear, you have a boulder-size knot on your jaw.'' ''River did it.'' Cole smirks at the guy. ''And he insulted my mom. And my dad.'' ''River Marks.'' Nana shakes her head, as if her heart is acually breaking. ''How could you be so rough? And so insensitive!'' River glares at Cole before bowing his head. ''I'm sorry, Nana.'' ''The human body is like a flower. Treat it well, and it will bloom.'' She approaches the ring and extends two cookies. River and I accept with eager thanks. ''Let's be kind to each other and keep our punches away from the face and groin.'' ''Yes, ma'am,'' we say in unison. Then of course, we devour the offering as if we've never tasted sugar. ''Good, good.'' She brushes the crumbs from her fingers. ''I'll leave you kids to your practice.'' She kisses Ali, then Cole, and leaves. ''Are you a rose?'' River sneers at Cole. ''Or a lilly?'' ''Orchid. And your jealousy is showing.'' Cole responds.
Gena Showalter (A Mad Zombie Party (White Rabbit Chronicles, #4))
If you confront insult or antagonism, your first impulse would be to respond in kind. But if you think, as it were, This is an emissary sent from the Lord, and some benefit is inteded for me, first of all the occasion to demonstrate my faithfulness, the chance to show that I do in some small degree participate in the grace that saved me, you are free to act otherwise than as circumstances would seem to dictate. You are free to act by your own lights. You are freed at the same time of the impulse to hate or resent that person.
Marilynne Robinson (Gilead (Gilead, #1))
Come on, she’s gorgeous. Guys in Richmond would be drooling right now.” Joe’s brows shot up, and he turned as if expecting to see someone new behind him. “Sid?” “You’d have to be a eunuch not to see that.” Joe looked insulted by that insinuation. “You know what I mean. Who is she anyway?” “She’s my boat mechanic. A pain in the ass, but she can fix anything you put in front of her.” Beth couldn’t respond. She’d need to lift her jaw off the floor to do that. “What?” Joe asked, looking perplexed again. “That is your boat mechanic? You work with a woman Hugh Hefner would pay a million bucks for, yet you claim not to notice she’s the slightest bit attractive?” Beth pulled the tray to her now inferior-feeling chest and wrapped her arms around it. “Is that why you’re so cranky all the time?” Joe’s mouth clamped shut and his eyes narrowed. “You’re out of your mind. Sid isn’t…” He trailed off as he looked again to the woman in question and got a straight shot of a well-shaped bottom. “You’re nuts,” he said, stomping out of the room. Before Beth could follow behind him, he leaned back in to yell, “And I’m not cranky!
Terri Osburn (Meant to Be (Anchor Island, #1))
In the course of her letter writing, she’d learned a few things about the subtle peculiarities of the South’s power brokers. The Mississippi Sovereigns, like most other rebel groups, preferred to be addressed as Brothers; letters to Mr. Sharif, the director of Camp Patience, were exclusively read and acted upon by his secretary, but could never be addressed to his secretary; the Free Southern State government in Atlanta had a perfect record of responding to every letter, but no sooner than two years after the fact. She learned which methods of attack worked and which didn’t. Any familial relation between appellant and recipient, no matter how tenuous, was to be ruthlessly exploited; pictures of dead relatives or horrific war wounds never did any good, although the refugees in possession of such images invariably demanded they be sent anyway; a direct offer of bribery was more likely than not to elicit an insulted response, but an offer to make a donation to a cause of the recipient’s choosing got the same message across more tactfully. It was, in the end, hopeless work, the letters almost always doomed to fail. But for the refugees who paid or begged Martina to write these pleadings on their behalf, hopelessness was no impediment to hope.
Omar El Akkad (American War)
Drawing near the family parlor, Marcus paused beside the half-open door as he heard his mother lecturing the Bowman sisters. Her complaint appeared to hinge upon the sisters’ habit of speaking to the footmen who served them at the dinner table. “But why shouldn’t I thank someone for doing me a service?” he heard Lillian ask with genuine perplexity. “It’s polite to say thank you, isn’t it?” “You should no more thank a servant than you would thank a horse for allowing you to ride it, or a table for bearing the dishes you place upon it.” “Well, we’re not discussing animals or inanimate objects, are we? A footman is a person.” “No,” the countess said coldly. “A footman is a servant.” “And a servant is a person,” Lillian said stubbornly. The elderly woman replied in exasperation. “Whatever your view of a footman is, you must not thank him at dinner. Servants neither expect nor desire such condescension, and if you insist on putting them in the awkward position of having to respond to your remarks, they will think badly of you…as will everyone else. Do not insult me with that vapid stare, Miss Bowman! You come from a family of means—surely you employed servants at your New York residence!” “Yes,” Lillian acknowledged pertly, “but we talked to ours.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Full of remorse and self-recrimination, Remus fled, leaving the pregnant Tonks, seeking out Harry and offering to accompany him on whatever death-defying adventure awaited. To Remus’s shock and displeasure, the seventeen-year-old Harry not only declined his offer but became angry and insulting. He told his ex-teacher that he was acting selfishly and irresponsibly. Remus responded with uncharacteristic violence and stormed out of the house, taking refuge in a corner of the Leaky Cauldron, where he sat drinking and fuming. However, after a few hours’ reflection, Remus was forced to accept that his ex-pupil had just taught him a valuable lesson. James and Lily, Remus reflected, had stuck with Harry even unto their own deaths. His own parents, Lyall and Hope, had sacrificed their peace and security to keep the family together.
J.K. Rowling (Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies (Pottermore Presents, #1))
When you encounter another person…it is as if a question is being put to you. So you must think, What is the Lord asking of me in this moment, in this situation? If you confront insult or antagonism, your first impulse will be to respond in kind. But if you think, as it were, This is an emissary sent from the Lord, and some benefit is intended for me, first of all the occasion to demonstrate my faithfulness, the chance to show that I do in some small degree participate in the grace that saved me, you are free to act otherwise than as circumstances would seem to dictate. You are free to act by your own lights. You are freed at the same time of the impulse to hate or resent that person. He would probably laugh at the thought that the Lord sent him to you for your benefit (and his), but that is the perfection of the disguise, his own ignorance of it…I am reminded of this precious instruction by my own great failure to live up to it recently…
Marilynne Robinson (Gilead (Gilead, #1))
I hear two female voices around the corner and creep toward the end of the hallway to hear better. “…just can’t handle her being here,” one of them sobs. Christina. “I can’t stop picturing it…what she did…I don’t understand how she could have done that!” Christina’s sobs make me feel like I am about to crack open. Cara takes her time responding. “Well, I do,” she says. “What?” Christina says with a hiccup. “You have to understand; we’re trained to see things as logically as possible,” says Cara. “So don’t think that I’m callous. But that girl was probably scared out of her mind, certainly not capable of assessing situations cleverly at the time, if she was ever able to do so.” My eyes fly open. What a--I run through a short list of insults in my mind before listening to her continue. “And the simulation made her incapable of reasoning with him, so when he threatened her life, she reacted as she had been trained by the Dauntless to react: Shoot to kill.” “So what are you saying?” says Christina bitterly. “We should just forget about it, because it makes perfect sense?” “Of course not,” says Cara. Her voice wobbles, just a little, and she repeats herself, quietly this time. “Of course not.” She clears her throat. “It’s just that you have to be around her, and I want to make it easier for you. You don’t have to forgive her. Actually, I’m not sure why you were friends with her in the first place; she always seemed a bit erratic to me.” I tense up as I wait for Christina to agree with her, but to my surprise--and relief--she doesn’t. Cara continues. “Anyway. You don’t have to forgive her, but you should try to understand that what she did was not out of malice; it was out of panic. That way, you can look at her without wanting to punch her in her exceptionally long nose.” My and moves automatically to my nose. Christina laughs a little, which feels like a hard poke to the stomach. I back up through the door to the Gathering Place. Even though Cara was rude--and the nose comment was a low blow--I am grateful for what she said.
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
There were clear differences in how the young men responded to being called a bad name. For some, the insult changed their behavior. For some it didn’t. The deciding factor in how they reacted wasn’t how emotionally secure they were, or whether they were intellectuals or jocks, or whether they were physically imposing or not. What mattered—and I think you can guess where this is headed—was where they were from. Most of the young men from the northern part of the United States treated the incident with amusement. They laughed it off. Their handshakes were unchanged. Their levels of cortisol actually went down, as if they were unconsciously trying to defuse their own anger. Only a few of them had Steve get violent with Larry. But the southerners? Oh, my. They were angry. Their cortisol and testosterone jumped. Their handshakes got firm. Steve was all over Larry. “We even played this game of chicken,” Cohen said. “We sent the students back down the hallways, and around the corner comes another confederate. The hallway is blocked, so there’s only room for one of them to pass. The guy we used was six three, two hundred fifty pounds. He used to play college football. He was now working as a bouncer in a college bar. He was walking down the hall in business mode—the way you walk through a bar when you are trying to break up a fight. The question was: how close do they get to the bouncer before they get out of the way? And believe me, they always get out of the way.” For the northerners, there was almost no effect. They got out of the way five or six feet beforehand, whether they had been insulted or not. The southerners, by contrast, were downright deferential in normal circumstances, stepping aside with more than nine feet to go. But if they had just been insulted? Less than two feet. Call a southerner an asshole, and he’s itching for a fight. What Cohen and Nisbett were seeing in that long hall was the culture of honor in action: the southerners were reacting like Wix Howard did when Little Bob Turner accused him of cheating at poker.
Malcolm Gladwell (Outliers: The Story of Success)
Are you sure you won’t be too bored here, waiting for us to come back? We don’t know how long our time with the Pythia will last; I hope you’ll find something to do.” “Of course I will,” I told him. “I’ll be exploring Delphi.” “No you won’t,” my brothers responded in perfect unison. Then they took turns telling me exactly why I couldn’t do what I wanted. “You wouldn’t be safe,” Castor said. “You’d get lost if you went wandering around the city on your own,” Polydeuces added. “It’s too big.” “Too noisy.” “Too confusing.” “Too busy.” “You could run into the wrong sort of people.” “Dangerous types.” “But sneaky enough so you couldn’t tell they’re dangerous until it’s too late.” “We’re responsible for your safety.” “We have to know where you are at all times.” “It’s not that we don’t trust you, Helen.” “It’s them.” “It’s for your own good.” I flopped down on my bed. “Fine. Go. I’ll stay here,” I told the ceiling. Castor and Polydeuces each grabbed one of my wrists and pulled me back to my feet. “I don’t think so,” Castor said, chuckling. “You’d stay here, all right. You’d stay here just until you saw us go into Apollo’s temple, and then you’d be a little cloud of dust sailing out through the gates.” “You don’t have to come with us,” Polydeuces said. “But if you want to tour this city, you’ll have to do it on our terms.” With that, he left me in Castor’s company. “Where’s he going?” I asked. “Probably to see if the priests of Apollo have an oil jar big enough to stuff you inside for safekeeping.” He winked at me. No matter how much I loved my brothers, I wasn’t in the mood for more teasing. “Aren’t you afraid you’ll insult the Pythia if you don’t go to see her right now? You were summoned. She could foretell terrible fates for the two of you if you keep her waiting.” Castor didn’t seem worried. “If she’s truly blessed with the gift of prophecy, she already knows we’re going to be delayed. And if she can’t foretell that, she’s as much of an oracle as I am, so why should I care what she predicts?” He laughed out loud, then added, “But don’t tell Polydeuces I said that. He’s the devout one.
Esther M. Friesner (Nobody's Princess (Nobody's Princess, #1))
I have learned about these mechanisms from clinical populations that express difficulties in social connectedness. HIV patients provide an interesting example to elaborate on this point. In studying HIV patients, I have learned that often their caregivers feel unloved and frequently get angry attending to the needs of the infected individual. Parents of autistic children often report the same feelings and experiences. In both examples, although they often report feeling unloved, what they really are expressing is that the HIV-infected individual or the autistic child is not contingently responding to them with appropriate facial expressivity, eye gaze, and intonation in their voices. In both cases, the individual being cared for is behaving in a machinelike manner, and the caregivers feel disengaged and emotionally disconnected. Functionally, their physiological responses betray them, and they feel insulted. Thus, an important aspect of therapy is to deal not solely with the patient, but to also include the social context in which the patient lives with a focus on the parent–child or caregiver–client dyad. This will ensure that the parents or the caregivers will learn to understand their own responses as a natural physiological response.
Stephen W. Porges (The Pocket Guide to the Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe (Norton Series on Interpersonal Neurobiology))
One of the most extraordinary examples of adaptation to immaturity in contemporary American society today is how the word abusive has replaced the words nasty and objectionable. The latter two words suggest that a person has done something distasteful, always a matter of judgment. But the use of the word abusive suggests, instead, that the person who heard or read the objectionable, nasty, or even offensive remark was somehow victimized by dint of the word entering their mind. This confusion of being “hurt” with being damaged makes it seem as though the feelings of the listener or reader were not their own responsibility, or as though they had been helplessly violated by another person’s opinion. If our bodies responded that way to “insults,” we would not make it very far past birth. The use of abusive rather than objectionable has enabled those who do not want to take responsibility for their own efforts to tyrannize others, especially leaders, with their “sensitivity.” The desire to be “inoffensive” has resulted in more than one news medium producing long lists of words, few of which are really nasty, that reporters should avoid using for fear of “hurting” someone. Obviously there are some words that are downright impolite if not always hostile and disparaging, but making everyone sensitive to the sensitivities of others plays into the hands of those who feel powerless.
Edwin H. Friedman (A Failure of Nerve: Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix)
Once we’re on the bus, I realize my parents and Charlene have no idea where I am. I pull my phone out, turn it on, and check my texts. There are twenty-seven. Alex sent fifteen between four in the afternoon and just prior to the start of the game. The rest are from my mom and Charlene. Having checked before I left for the Great White North, I discovered roaming charges were super expensive, hence the reason I shut my phone off. I quickly shoot a text to Charlene and one to my mom to let them know I haven’t been kidnapped by a serial killer. The plan is to meet up with everyone at the bar to celebrate the win. When I’ve finished texting, I look over at Alex. He’s staring at me. “Why didn’t you respond to any of my messages today?” He sounds like I kicked his pet beaver. “Do you have any idea how expensive the roaming charges are in Canada? It doesn’t even make sense. Canada’s kind of like a huge state in the north. I know it’s a commonwealth and all, but wouldn’t it be more convenient if we had the same money and government?” Alex’s mouth hangs open. I fear I may have insulted him. “Every text I send costs seventy-five cents outside of the US, and I didn’t buy a package. I figured I’d see you soon enough, and if I sent you messages I’d tell you I was coming, and I wanted it to be a surprise.” “I’m going to pretend you didn’t say any of that shit about Canada being an extension of the US, Violet. I know you don’t mean that.” Ooooh, I definitely offended him. I’ll bring it up again later. It would be the perfect way to get him all riled up before we get naked. He might smack my ass for it. Interestingly enough, the possibility gets me a little excited.
Helena Hunting (Pucked (Pucked, #1))
have to give it, especially if that engagement seems emotionally charged. When you decide not to dignify an irrational communication with a response, it’s about preserving your personal dignity and mental clarity. Just because someone throws the ball doesn’t mean you have to catch it. Think of it this way: How would you feel if you sent someone an emotionally charged email but never received a response? You’d initially be confused. First, you’d double-check your Sent folder to make sure it went through. Then you’d start obsessing over the audible “ding” of your incoming messages, thinking it might be their response. Finally, you’d begin wondering if they even got your electronic tirade, somehow found a way to block your emails, or what else they might be doing that was more important than sending you a reply. In the end, you’d feel embarrassed, your pride deflated, and the fire you had to engage in keyboard karate would burn out. That’s the power of not reacting. When faced with a situation in which you’re being provoked, take a moment to let your emotions pass, and then ask yourself, “Do I really need to respond?” Assess the situation from a logical vantage point—rather than an emotional one—and base your decisions on what will ultimately benefit you in the long run. This mental strategy, however, isn’t solely for dealing with insults or slander. It’s just as effective when trying to handle people who constantly want your time and attention. Sometimes you simply don’t have it to give. Or giving it will distract you from things that are more important. When it comes to time allocation, it’s good to separate the signals from the noise. If everything in your life is important, then nothing is.
Evy Poumpouras (Becoming Bulletproof: Protect Yourself, Read People, Influence Situations, and Live Fearlessly)
Elizabeth’s concern that Ian might insult them, either intentionally or otherwise, soon gave way to admiration and then to helpless amusement as he sat for the next half-hour, charming them all with an occasional lazy smile or interjecting a gallant compliment, while they spent the entire time debating whether to sell the chocolates being donated by Gunther’s for $5 or $6 per box. Despite Ian’s outwardly bland demeanor, Elizabeth waited uneasily for him to say he’d buy the damned cartload of chocolates for $10 apiece, if it would get them on to the next problem, which she knew was what he was dying to say. But she needn’t have worried, for he continued to positively exude pleasant interest. Four times, the committee paused to solicit his advice; four times, he smilingly made excellent suggestions; four times, they ignored what he suggested. And four times, he seemed not to mind in the least or even notice. Making a mental note to thank him profusely for his incredible forbearance, Elizabeth kept her attention on her guests and the discussion, until she inadvertently glanced in his direction, and her breath caught. Seated on the opposite side of the gathering from her, he was now leaning back in his chair, his left ankle propped atop his right knee, and despite his apparent absorption in the topic being discussed, his heavy-lidded gaze was roving meaningfully over her breasts. One look at the smile tugging at his lips and Elizabeth realized that he wanted her to know it. Obviously he’d decided that both she and he were wasting their time with the committee, and he was playing an amusing game designed to either divert her or discomfit her entirely, she wasn’t certain which. Elizabeth drew a deep breath, ready to blast a warning look at him, and his gaze lifted slowly from her gently heaving bosom, traveled lazily up her throat, paused at her lips, and then lifted to her narrowed eyes. Her quelling glance earned her nothing but a slight, challenging lift of his brows and a decidedly sensual smile, before his gaze reversed and began a lazy trip downward again. Lady Wiltshire’s voice rose, and she said for the second time, “Lady Thornton, what do you think?” Elizabeth snapped her gaze from her provoking husband to Lady Wiltshire. “I-I agree,” she said without the slightest idea of what she was agreeing with. For the next five minutes, she resisted the tug of Ian’s caressing gaze, firmly refusing to even glance his way, but when the committee reembarked on the chocolate issue again, she stole a look at him. The moment she did, he captured her gaze, holding it, while he, with an outward appearance of a man in thoughtful contemplation of some weighty problem, absently rubbed his forefinger against his mouth, his elbow propped on the arm of his chair. Elizabeth’s body responded to the caress he was offering her as if his lips were actually on hers, and she drew a long, steadying breath as he deliberately let his eyes slide to her breasts again. He knew exactly what his gaze was doing to her, and Elizabeth was thoroughly irate at her inability to ignore its effect. The committee departed on schedule a half-hour later amid reminders that the next meeting would be held at Lady Wiltshire’s house. Before the door closed behind them, Elizabeth rounded on her grinning, impenitent husband in the drawing room. “You wretch!” she exclaimed. “How could you?” she demanded, but in the midst of her indignant protest, Ian shoved his hands into her hair, turned her face up, and smothered her words with a ravenous kiss. “I haven’t forgiven you,” she warned him in bed an hour later, her cheek against his chest. Laughter, rich and deep, rumbled beneath her ear. “No?” “Absolutely not. I’ll repay you if it’s the last thing I do.” “I think you already have,” he said huskily, deliberately misunderstanding her meaning.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
Ye are stirring up a lot of trouble, arenae ye?” “Me? I just came to explore this building. She is the one stirring up trouble. She wants Cathal, I think.” “She does, e’en though his Outsider blood sickens her. Edmee would like to be the lady of Cambrun. She has ne’er been able to convince Cathal of that, however. It doesnae help her cause that she makes her contempt of his mother so verra clear. Cathal has ne’er intended to wed with a MacNachton, either. He wants bairns.” Bridget frowned at him. “There is a wee bit more to me than a womb, ye ken.” “Och, aye, a wee bit.” He laughed when she softly hissed in annoyance, then grew serious. “O’er the last few days ’tis evident neither of ye will suffer in the making of a bairn.” He only briefly smiled at her blushes. “Tis a blessing, that. And where is the insult in a mon thinking a woman a good choice as mother to his bairns?” None, she supposed, but she was not about to admit it. “There should be more.” “Ah, poor lass, so unsure of yourself.” He nimbly danced out of her reach when she tried to hit him. “The only thing I will say is that, compared to the rest of us, Cathal is nearly a monk. He isnae one to be caught in embraces with a lass round every corner. And, aye, mayhap he thinks too much on a bairn, but ’tisnae just an heir he seeks, is it? Tis the salvation of his people. Tis no small thing that. So, do ye cease teasing the fool and say aye?” Bridget sighed. “Tisnae an easy thing to decide. Tisnae just my fate, but that of my children I must consider and ye ask me to do it in but a week.” “We are but a wee bit different.” “Och, aye, ye are that.” “But, that shouldnae trouble a Callan, I think.” He sighed when she did not respond to that remark. “We arenae what ye think we are, lass. Nay exactly. I dinnae believe the soulless dead breed bairns.” He smiled gently at the look of consternation that briefly crossed her face. “We are but different. Cursed in some ways, blessed in others, but ’tis Cathal who must tell ye the tale.
Hannah Howell (The Eternal Highlander (McNachton Vampires, #1))
From Life, Volume III, by Unspiek, Baron Bodissey: I am constantly startled and often amused by the diverse attitudes toward wealth to be found among the peoples of the Oikumene. Some societies equate affluence with criminal skill; for others wealth represents the gratitude of society for the performance of valuable services. My own concepts in this regard are easy and clear, and I am sure that the word ‘simplistic’ will be used by my critics. These folk are callow and turgid of intellect; I am reassured by their howls and yelps. For present purposes I exclude criminal wealth, the garnering of which needs no elaboration, and a gambler’s wealth which is tinsel. In regard, then, to wealth: Luxury and privilege are the perquisites of wealth. This would appear a notably bland remark, but is much larger than it seems. If one listens closely, he hears deep and far below the mournful chime of inevitability. To achieve wealth, one generally must thoroughly exploit at least three of the following five attributes: Luck. Toil, persistence, courage. Self-denial. Short-range intelligence: cunning, improvisational ability. Long-range intelligence: planning, the perception of trends. These attributes are common; anyone desiring privilege and luxury can gain the precursory wealth by making proper use of his native competence. In some societies poverty is considered a pathetic misfortune, or noble abnegation, hurriedly to be remedied by use of public funds. Other more stalwart societies think of poverty as a measure of the man himself. The critics respond: What an unutterable ass is this fellow Unspiek! I am reduced to making furious scratches and crotchets with my pen! — Lionel Wistofer, in The Monstrator I am poor; I admit it! Am I then a churl or a noddy? I deny it with all the vehemence of my soul! I take my bite of seed-cake and my sip of tea with the same relish as any paunchy plutocrat with bulging eyes and grease running from his mouth as he engulfs ortolans in brandy, Krokinole oysters, filet of Darango Five-Horn! My wealth is my shelf of books! My privileges are my dreams! — Sistie Fael, in The Outlook … He moves me to tooth-chattering wrath; he has inflicted upon me, personally, a barrage of sheer piffle, and maundering insult which cries out to the Heavens for atonement. I will thrust my fist down his loquacious maw; better, I will horsewhip him on the steps of his club. If he has no club, I hereby invite him to the broad and convenient steps of the Senior Quill-drivers, although I must say that the Inksters maintain a superior bar, and this shall be my choice since, after trouncing the old fool, I will undoubtedly ask him in for a drink. — McFarquhar Kenshaw, in The Gaean
Jack Vance (Demon Princes (Demon Princes #1-5))
Miraculously, thirty minutes later I found Marlboro Man’s brother’s house. As I pulled up, I saw Marlboro Man’s familiar white pickup parked next to a very large, imposing semi. He and his brother were sitting inside the cab. Looking up and smiling, Marlboro Man motioned for me to join them. I waved, getting out of my car and obnoxiously taking my purse with me. To add insult to injury, I pressed the button on my keyless entry to lock my doors and turn on my car alarm, not realizing how out of place the dreadful chirp! chirp! must have sounded amidst all the bucolic silence. As I made my way toward the monster truck to meet my new love’s only brother, I reflected that not only had I never in my life been inside the cab of a semi, but also I wasn’t sure I’d ever been within a hundred feet of one. My armpits were suddenly clammy and moist, my body trembling nervously at the prospect of not only meeting Tim but also climbing into a vehicle nine times the size of my Toyota Camry, which, at the time, was the largest car I’d ever owned. I was nervous. What would I do in there? Marlboro Man opened the passenger door, and I grabbed the large handlebar on the side of the cab, hoisting myself up onto the spiked metal steps of the semi. “Come on in,” he said as he ushered me into the cab. Tim was in the driver’s seat. “Ree, this is my brother, Tim.” Tim was handsome. Rugged. Slightly dusty, as if he’d just finished working. I could see a slight resemblance to Marlboro Man, a familiar twinkle in his eye. Tim extended his hand, leaving the other on the steering wheel of what I would learn was a brand-spanking-new cattle truck, just hours old. “So, how do you like this vehicle?” Tim asked, smiling widely. He looked like a kid in a candy shop. “It’s nice,” I replied, looking around the cab. There were lots of gauges. Lots of controls. I wanted to crawl into the back and see what the sleeping quarters were like, and whether there was a TV. Or a Jacuzzi. “Want to take it for a spin?” Tim asked. I wanted to appear capable, strong, prepared for anything. “Sure!” I responded, shrugging my shoulders. I got ready to take the wheel. Marlboro Man chuckled, and Tim remained in his seat, saying, “Oh, maybe you’d better not. You might break a fingernail.” I looked down at my fresh manicure. It was nice of him to notice. “Plus,” he continued, “I don’t think you’d be able to shift gears.” Was he making fun of me? My armpits were drenched. Thank God I’d work black that night. After ten more minutes of slightly uncomfortable small talk, Marlboro Man saved my by announcing, “Well, I think we’ll head out, Slim.” “Okay, Slim,” Tim replied. “Nice meeting you, Ree.” He flashed his nice, familiar smile. He was definitely cute. He was definitely Marlboro Man’s brother. But he was nothing like the real thing.
Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels)
Christopher’s attention was brought back abruptly to the little wild thing he had caught. In a frenzied effort to gain her release, she clawed his face with raking nails and sought to tear the hair from his head with grasping fists. He was hard pressed to defend himself until he caught the flailing arms firmly in his grasp and pressed them down, using his greater weight to subdue the Lady Saxton. Erienne was trapped, held firmly in the middle of the dusty road. Her outraged struggles had loosened her hair and disarranged her clothes to the point that her modesty was savaged. Her coat had come open in the scuffle, and their shirts were twisted awry, leaving her bosom bare against a hard chest. The meager pair of breeches made her increasingly aware of the growing pressure against her loins. She was pinned almost face to face with her captor, and even though the visage was shadowed, she could hardly miss the fact of his identity or the half-leering grin that taunted her. “Christopher! You beast! Let me go!” Angrily she struggled but could not influence him with her prowess. His teeth gleamed in the dark as his grin widened. “Nay, madam. Not until you vow to control your passion. I fear before too long I would be somewhat frayed by your zealous attention.” “I shall turn that statement back to you, sir!” she retorted. He responded with an exaggerated sigh of disappointment. “I was rather enjoying the moment.” “So I noticed!” she quipped before she thought, then bit her lip, hoping he might mistake her meaning. He didn’t. He was most aware of the effect her meagerly clad body had on him, and he replied with laughter in his voice. “Though you may choose to fault my passions, madam, they’re quite honestly aroused.” “Aye!” she agreed jeeringly. “By every twitching skirt that saunters by!” “I swear, ’tis not a skirt that attracts me now.” Holding her wrists clasped in one hand, he moved his hand down along her flank and replied in a thoughtful tone, “ ’Tis more like a pair of boy’s breeches. What? Has my ambush yielded me a stable boy?” Erienne’s indignation found new fuel that he could so casually fondle her, as if he had a perfect right. “Get off, you… you… ass!” It was the most damaging insult she could think of at the moment. “Get off me!” “An ass, you say?” he mocked. “Madam, may I point out that asses are to be ridden, and at the moment you are bearing my weight. Now, I know women are made to bear— usually their husbands or the seed they plant— but I would not suggest that you have the shape or looks even approaching an ass.” She ground her teeth in growing impatience at his wont to turn the simplest comment into an exercise of his wit. She could not bear the bold feel of him against her another moment. “Will you get off me?!” “Certainly, my sweet.” He complied as if her every wish was his command. Lifting her to her feet, he solicitously dusted her backside. -Erienne & Christopher
Kathleen E. Woodiwiss (A Rose in Winter)
But I had no need to suppose anything of the sort, she might well have disdained the use of her eyes to ascertain what her instinct must have adequately enough detected, for, throughout her service with me and my parents, fear, prudence, alertness and cunning had finally taught her that instinctive and almost divinatory knowledge of us that the sailor has of the sea, the quarry of the hunter, and if not the doctor then often the patient of the disease. All the knowledge she was in the habit of acquiring would have astounded anyone for as good a reason as the advanced state of certain areas of knowledge among the ancients, given the almost negligible means of information at their disposal (hers were no less so: a handful of chance remarks forming barely a twentieth part of our conversation at dinner, gleaned in passing by the butler and inaccurately transmitted to the staff quarters). Even her mistakes resulted, like theirs, like the fables in which Plato believed, from a false conception of the world and from preconceived ideas rather than from an inadequacy of material resources... But if the drawbacks of her position as a servant had not prevented her from acquiring the learning indispensable to the art which was its ultimate goal – the art of confounding us by communicating the results of her discoveries – the constraints on her time had been even more effective; here hindrance had not merely been content not to paralyse her enthusiasm, it had powerfully fired it. And of course Françoise neglected no auxiliary stimulant, like diction and attitude for instance. While she never believed anything we said to her when we wanted her to believe it, and since she accepted beyond a shadow of doubt the absurdest things anyone of her own status told her which might at the same time offend our views, in the same way that her manner of listening to our assertions pointed to her incredulity, so the tone she used to report (indirection enabling her to fling the most offensive insults at us with impunity) a cook’s account of threatening her employers and forcing any number of concessions out of them by treating them like dirt in public, indicated that she treated the story as gospel truth. Françoise even went so far as to add: ‘If I’d been the mistress, I’d have been very put out, I can tell you.’ However much, despite our initial dislike of the lady on the fourth floor, we might shrug our shoulders at this unedifying tale as if it were an unlikely fable, its teller knew just how to invest her tone with all the trenchant punch of the most unshakeable and infuriating confidence in what she was saying. But above all, just as writers, when their hands are tied by the tyranny of a monarch or of poetic convention, by the strict rules of prosody or state religion, often achieve a power of concentration they would not have done under a system of political freedom or literary anarchy, so Françoise, by not being free to respond to us in an explicit manner, spoke like Tiresias and would have written like Tacitus.5 She knew how to contain everything she could not express directly in a sentence we could not denounce without casting aspersions on ourselves, in less than a sentence in fact, in a silence, in the way she placed an object.
Marcel Proust (The Guermantes Way)
Like,” he repeats with distaste. “How about I tell you what I don’t like? I do not like postmodernism, postapocalyptic settings, postmortem narrators, or magic realism. I rarely respond to supposedly clever formal devices, multiple fonts, pictures where they shouldn’t be—basically, gimmicks of any kind. I find literary fiction about the Holocaust or any other major world tragedy to be distasteful—nonfiction only, please. I do not like genre mash-ups à la the literary detective novel or the literary fantasy. Literary should be literary, and genre should be genre, and crossbreeding rarely results in anything satisfying. I do not like children’s books, especially ones with orphans, and I prefer not to clutter my shelves with young adult. I do not like anything over four hundred pages or under one hundred fifty pages. I am repulsed by ghostwritten novels by reality television stars, celebrity picture books, sports memoirs, movie tie-in editions, novelty items, and—I imagine this goes without saying—vampires. I rarely stock debuts, chick lit, poetry, or translations. I would prefer not to stock series, but the demands of my pocketbook require me to. For your part, you needn’t tell me about the ‘next big series’ until it is ensconced on the New York Times Best Sellers list. Above all, Ms. Loman, I find slim literary memoirs about little old men whose little old wives have died from cancer to be absolutely intolerable. No matter how well written the sales rep claims they are. No matter how many copies you promise I’ll sell on Mother’s Day.” Amelia blushes, though she is angry more than embarrassed. She agrees with some of what A.J. has said, but his manner is unnecessarily insulting. Knightley Press doesn’t even sell half of that stuff anyway. She studies him. He is older than Amelia but not by much, not by more than ten years. He is too young to like so little. “What do you like?” she asks. “Everything else,” he says. “I will also admit to an occasional weakness for short-story collections. Customers never want to buy them though.” There is only one short-story collection on Amelia’s list, a debut. Amelia hasn’t read the whole thing, and time dictates that she probably won’t, but she liked the first story. An American sixth-grade class and an Indian sixth-grade class participate in an international pen pal program. The narrator is an Indian kid in the American class who keeps feeding comical misinformation about Indian culture to the Americans. She clears her throat, which is still terribly dry. “The Year Bombay Became Mumbai. I think it will have special int—” “No,” he says. “I haven’t even told you what it’s about yet.” “Just no.” “But why?” “If you’re honest with yourself, you’ll admit that you’re only telling me about it because I’m partially Indian and you think this will be my special interest. Am I right?” Amelia imagines smashing the ancient computer over his head. “I’m telling you about this because you said you liked short stories! And it’s the only one on my list. And for the record”—here, she lies—“it’s completely wonderful from start to finish. Even if it is a debut. “And do you know what else? I love debuts. I love discovering something new. It’s part of the whole reason I do this job.” Amelia rises. Her head is pounding. Maybe she does drink too much? Her head is pounding and her heart is, too. “Do you want my opinion?” “Not particularly,” he says. “What are you, twenty-five?” “Mr. Fikry, this is a lovely store, but if you continue in this this this”—as a child, she stuttered and it occasionally returns when she is upset; she clears her throat—“this backward way of thinking, there won’t be an Island Books before too long.
Gabrielle Zevin (The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry)
Draw a line in the sand As you get going, keep in mind why you’re doing what you’re doing. Great businesses have a point of view, not just a product or service. You have to believe in something. You need to have a backbone. You need to know what you’re willing to fight for. And then you need to show the world. A strong stand is how you attract superfans. They point to you and defend you. And they spread the word further, wider, and more passionately than any advertising could. Strong opinions aren’t free. You’ll turn some people off. They’ll accuse you of being arrogant and aloof. That’s life. For everyone who loves you, there will be others who hate you. If no one’s upset by what you’re saying, you’re probably not pushing hard enough. (And you’re probably boring, too.) Lots of people hate us because our products do less than the competition’s. They’re insulted when we refuse to include their pet feature. But we’re just as proud of what our products don’t do as we are of what they do. We design them to be simple because we believe most software is too complex: too many features, too many buttons, too much confusion. So we build software that’s the opposite of that. If what we make isn’t right for everyone, that’s OK. We’re willing to lose some customers if it means that others love our products intensely. That’s our line in the sand. When you don’t know what you believe, everything becomes an argument. Everything is debatable. But when you stand for something, decisions are obvious. For example, Whole Foods stands for selling the highest quality natural and organic products available. They don’t waste time deciding over and over again what’s appropriate. No one asks, “Should we sell this product that has artificial flavors?” There’s no debate. The answer is clear. That’s why you can’t buy a Coke or a Snickers there. This belief means the food is more expensive at Whole Foods. Some haters even call it Whole Paycheck and make fun of those who shop there. But so what? Whole Foods is doing pretty damn well. Another example is Vinnie’s Sub Shop, just down the street from our office in Chicago. They put this homemade basil oil on subs that’s just perfect. You better show up on time, though. Ask when they close and the woman behind the counter will respond, “We close when the bread runs out.” Really? “Yeah. We get our bread from the bakery down the street early in the morning, when it’s the freshest. Once we run out (usually around two or three p.m.), we close up shop. We could get more bread later in the day, but it’s not as good as the fresh-baked bread in the morning. There’s no point in selling a few more sandwiches if the bread isn’t good. A few bucks isn’t going to make up for selling food we can’t be proud of.” Wouldn’t you rather eat at a place like that instead of some generic sandwich chain?
Jason Fried (ReWork)
Struggling to lift up his own weight, he staggered down a dirt path. Pain radiated throughout his body, his spirit crushed by insult and mockery. Despite the excruciating affliction he continued to walk, knowing that his destination would led him to even more suffering. Heavy, splintering wood pressed against his back, joining in with gravity to pull this man to the dusty ground. Anguish gripped his heart, yet he walked. Blood dripped from raw wounds, yet he carried on. There was no rescue plan. This man knew that he would experience death, but only after the shock of agony pierced his flesh. Still, he walked on, headed towards the place where he would breathe his last. His motivation was you.   Jesus Christ was sacrificed for you and for all mankind. He endured harsh treatment that led to death on the cross, providing people redemption from sin and the only way to be reconciled to God. He made that walk in humiliation regardless of whether or not anyone accepts Him as Lord and Savior. He didn’t do it because you deserve it or because you earned it. There is only one way He could have endured that immense amount of pain: true, unconditional, selfless love.   Knowing that someone would go through so much for you regardless of how you respond strips away any reason apart from love. The power of that kind of love is transforming. It transforms those who believe in it, drawing them closer to God, thus transforming their character to be more like His.
Jennifer Smith (Wives After God: Encouraging Each Other In Faith & Marriage)
consider a young Tunisian man pushing a wooden handcart loaded with fruits and vegetables down a dusty road to a market in the Tunisian town of Sidi Bouzid. When the man was three, his father died. He supports his family by borrowing money to fill his cart, hoping to earn enough selling the produce to pay off the debt and have a little left over. It’s the same grind every day. But this morning, the police approach the man and say they’re going to take his scales because he has violated some regulation. He knows it’s a lie. They’re shaking him down. But he has no money. A policewoman slaps him and insults his dead father. They take his scales and his cart. The man goes to a town office to complain. He is told the official is busy in a meeting. Humiliated, furious, powerless, the man leaves. He returns with fuel. Outside the town office he douses himself, lights a match, and burns. Only the conclusion of this story is unusual. There are countless poor street vendors in Tunisia and across the Arab world. Police corruption is rife, and humiliations like those inflicted on this man are a daily occurrence. They matter to no one aside from the police and their victims. But this particular humiliation, on December 17, 2010, caused Mohamed Bouazizi, aged twenty-six, to set himself on fire, and Bouazizi’s self-immolation sparked protests. The police responded with typical brutality. The protests spread. Hoping to assuage the public, the dictator of Tunisia, President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, visited Bouazizi in the hospital. Bouazizi died on January 4, 2011. The unrest grew. On January 14, Ben Ali fled to a cushy exile in Saudi Arabia, ending his twenty-three-year kleptocracy. The Arab world watched, stunned. Then protests erupted in Egypt, Libya, Syria, Jordan, Kuwait, and Bahrain. After three decades in power, the Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak was driven from office. Elsewhere, protests swelled into rebellions, rebellions into civil wars. This was the Arab Spring—and it started with one poor man, no different from countless others, being harassed by police, as so many have been, before and since, with no apparent ripple effects. It is one thing to look backward and sketch a narrative arc, as I did here, connecting Mohamed Bouazizi to all the events that flowed out of his lonely protest. Tom Friedman, like many elite pundits, is skilled at that sort of reconstruction, particularly in the Middle East, which he knows so well, having made his name in journalism as a New York Times correspondent in Lebanon. But could even Tom Friedman, if he had been present that fatal morning, have peered into the future and foreseen the self-immolation, the unrest, the toppling of the Tunisian dictator, and all that followed? Of course not. No one could. Maybe, given how much Friedman knew about the region, he would have mused that poverty and unemployment were high, the number of desperate young people was growing, corruption was rampant, repression was relentless, and therefore Tunisia and other Arab countries were powder kegs waiting to blow. But an observer could have drawn exactly the same conclusion the year before. And the year before that. Indeed, you could have said that about Tunisia, Egypt, and several other countries for decades. They may have been powder kegs but they never blew—until December 17, 2010, when the police pushed that one poor man too far.
Philip E. Tetlock (Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction)
They respond to movement only, so…don’t fall off the ladder,” I say. “Whoever goes first will secure the ladder on the other side.” I notice that Marcus, who is supposed to selflessly offer himself up for every task, does not volunteer. “Not feeling very Stiff today, Marcus?” says Christina. “If I were you, I would be careful who you insult,” he says. “I am still the only person here who can find what we’re looking for.” “Is that a threat?” “I’ll go,” I say, before Marcus can answer. “I’m part Stiff too, right?
Veronica Roth (Insurgent (Divergent, #2))
I would have never taken you for a coward, Mr. Mulberry, but honestly, do you really believe carting out your wards is going to convince me to agree to whatever madness has you seeking me out so late at night?” Everett smiled almost as brightly as the children. “Now, now, Miss Longfellow, there’s no cause to call me a coward. Smart like a fox, perhaps, but—” “You shouldn’t antagonize her, Everett,” Lucetta suddenly said, interrupting Everett’s speech before she turned to Millie. “And you shouldn’t be surprised he brought the children with him, considering everyone knows you have a distinct weakness for the wee ones. However, before the conversation moves forward, I really am going to have to insist that the two of you drop all of this Miss and Mister nonsense. We have a common friend in Oliver Addleshaw. Which means, like it or not, we’re now friends of a sort. And because of that, there’s really no reason for such formality.” “There is if he’s here to ask me to work for him.” “Of course he’s here to ask you to work for him,” Lucetta said. “But that has absolutely nothing to do with calling him by his given name.” Millie opened her mouth, but before she could respond, something that looked remarkably like mud began seeping through the paper wrapped around the flowers she was holding. Moving to the closest table, she unwrapped the paper before setting her sights on Everett again. “Did you pull these flowers right out of the ground, Mr. Mulberry?” Everett smiled. “Please, call me Everett since Lucetta was kind enough to point out we’re friends, and of course I didn’t pull those right out of the ground.” Millie held up the flowers, exposing the roots still clinging to dirt. “You would have me believe you purchased these from a flower shop?” “It’s after ten. There are no flower shops open, but if you must know, I had Rosetta pluck those out of the ground for you.” A little girl of about five raised an incredibly dirty hand and waved at her right as Everett cleared his throat, drawing Millie’s attention. “I think you should view it as a mark in my favor that I remembered the flowers, especially since, again, I’m a little sensitive to them, but . . . you were quite vocal about what it would take to get you to work for me.” He sent her a far-too-charming smile. Ignoring the charm, Millie lifted her chin. “You might as well tell me what disaster struck your household now.” Everett shot a glance to the children and seemed to shudder. “Why would you assume something disastrous happened?” Setting the flowers, roots and all, aside, Millie crossed her arms over her chest. “Don’t insult my intelligence, Everett. You wouldn’t be bringing me flowers or children if something of a disastrous nature hadn’t occurred.” “The children are adorable, aren’t they?” “Of course they’re adorable, dear, which I’m sure you were hoping to use to your advantage,” Abigail said as she arrived in the drawing room, pushing a cart that seemed to be heavy with treats.
Jen Turano (In Good Company (A Class of Their Own Book #2))
You really married to an Indian?" The woman's curiosity, once released, was unquenchable. "I am married to a man." Lily slapped the bolt on the counter. "Let me see your threads and buttons." When Lily finally left with her purchases, Cade was leaning against the storefront, hands in pockets, watching Roy lead Serena around on his pony. At Lily's appearance, he stood up and grabbed the packages. In doing so, he bent near her ear and whispered, "A man, Lily?" "A stupid one," she responded, sticking her nose up and heading for the wagon. "Not as stupid as Clark. I didn't let you go." Undaunted, Cade flung the packages in the wagon and helped Lily up. "Ollie isn't dumb. He's a coward. He lost Miss Bridgewater because he was terrified to court her. She married a lesser man out of desperation. I cannot imagine how he found the gumption to come out and visit me the few times he did." Cade had a thought or two on that himself, but he had as yet been unable to confirm them. Whistling to himself, he disregarded Lily's insult and allowed the balm of her approval to ease an earlier pain.
Patricia Rice (Texas Lily (Too Hard to Handle, #1))
Our dignity comes because we are made in the image of God. Our significance comes because we are called by Jesus to be world-changers. Our power and strength comes because we are filled with the Holy Spirit who gives us the ability to receive the insults of others and respond as Christ responded to those who hurled insults at Him. 
Dan Lacich (The Provocative God: Radical Things God Has Said and Done)
Everett didn’t hesitate to bring Lucetta’s fingers to his lips, but unlike most gentlemen, he didn’t linger, earning a nod of approval from Lucetta. “This is a pleasant surprise, Lucetta, finding you in Newport.” “Thank you, Everett, and I’m sure you’ll be absolutely delighted to learn I’ll be skulking around Seaview for the next few weeks—although you needn’t look so worried. I won’t be staying under your roof, but at Abigail’s. I thought I’d help Millie out with the children a bit, at no cost to you, of course, but . . . speaking of Millie—have you been given the pleasure of kissing her hand yet today?” For just a second, something interesting flashed through Everett’s eyes, but it was gone in the next, replaced with something . . . cold. “I don’t normally make a habit of kissing the nanny’s hand, Lucetta.” “And I don’t normally make a habit of telling people they’re complete idiots, but . . . there you have it . . . you’re an idiot, Everett,” Lucetta said as calm as you please, not even batting an eye as she delivered her insult. A vein began throbbing on Everett’s forehead, but instead of responding to Lucetta, he turned on his heel, stalked over to Millie, and grabbed hold of her hand. Bringing it to his lips, he pressed a kiss on it that lasted barely a second, before he dropped her hand as if it had burned him and turned back to Lucetta again. “Does that make you feel better?” “Hardly, since no woman likes to be kissed by a man who scowls at them, but . . . it’s a start.
Jen Turano (In Good Company (A Class of Their Own Book #2))
You’re bringing all of this?” he asked as we went inside, and before I could formulate an awesome retort, he added, “You’ve got enough junk here for a small army. Were you planning on invading the beach?” “Have you ever gone somewhere with four kids before? Trust me, it’s all necessary.” I grabbed Zia’s and Zelda’s car seats and turned toward the driveway, surprised by what I saw. “You own a minivan?” “I don’t own a minivan,” he responded, sounding offended. “I have many beautiful pieces of machinery, and I would not insult them by bringing something like that into my garage. I rented it. By myself. It was easier than I thought it would be. And I even remembered your tip about the gas icon and the arrow so I know the gas tank is on the driver’s side.” Now he sounded proud of himself, and I guessed he’d never rented a car on his own before.
Sariah Wilson (#Starstruck (#Lovestruck, #1))
Ah, so you are the one. The Greencloak who took Takoda from the monastery. The one who succumbed to the Wyrm in Sadre, and eventually turned on him and all his allies.” “Yes, but what happened there … I didn’t have a choice,” Conor explained hastily. “There’s always a choice,” Naveb responded sharply. “And you made yours.” “No, no. You don’t understand. I had no control.” Conor rubbed the mark, as if he could wipe away its stain. Meilin’s blood began to boil. She could not allow this man to insult Conor for being infected by the Wyrm, even if he was an elder. She knew how hard Conor had battled against it, what he had sacrificed, and how some of his actions while under the Wyrm’s influence still tore at his heart. It wasn’t fair to him and it wasn’t fair to what they’d all endured.
Christina Diaz Gonzalez (Stormspeaker (Spirit Animals: Fall of the Beasts, Book 7))
It became clear that if I believed that only bad people who intended to hurt others because of race could ever do so, I would respond with outrage to any suggestion that I was involved in racism. Of course that belief would make me feel falsely accused of something terrible, and of course I would want to defend my character (and I had certainly had many of my own moments of responding in just those ways to reflect on). I came to see that the way we are taught to define racism makes it virtually impossible for white people to understand it. Given our racial insulation, coupled with misinformation, any suggestion that we are complicit in racism is a kind of unwelcome and insulting shock to the system.
Robin DiAngelo (White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism)
But as Epictetus tells his students: “Remember that it is we who torment, we who make difficulties for ourselves—that is, our opinions do. What, for instance, does it mean to be insulted? Stand by a rock and insult it, and what have you accomplished? If someone responds to insult like a rock, what has the abuser gained with his invective?
Massimo Pigliucci (How to Live a Good Life: A Guide to Choosing Your Personal Philosophy)
An elementary school student asked me the NOT politically correct question, “Is an idiot smarter than a moron?” I had to Google it because I was afraid to respond in today’s PC society and didn’t want to offend him, his parents, or anyone else. Here’s what I found. Technically, a moron is smarter than an idiot. An imbecile is also smarter than an idiot. Although today the words are considered insulting and derogatory, prior to the 1960s they were widely used as actual psychology terms associated with intelligence on an IQ test. An IQ between: 00-25 = Idiot 26-50 = Imbecile 51-70 = Moron Explaining all of this to a nine year old with an IQ of 130 made me feel like society has turned all adults into one of the above, myself included. When I told him that I’m afraid to openly say it, the nine year old said, “Adults are idiots!
Ray Palla (H: Infidels of Oil)
Where is your fire?” Trenton asked, every word punctuated with another blow.   Shea kept silent and concentrated on getting out of the encounter with no internal bleeding. With the way he was hammering at her guard, he’d cause an injury if a blow landed.   “Is this the woman who convinced her men to follow her on a fool’s errand?”   Shea didn’t respond.   “Where is the spirit that drove you off a cliff onto a shadow beetle?”   He was very talkative as he drove her across the small practice ring. She envied him the ability.   “You’re weak.”   Now he was onto insults.   “You don’t belong here.”   Yeah, yeah, yeah. She’d heard that one before.   He closed with her, bearing down with his blade until her arms were shaking with the strain. His face was close to hers as their match became a test of strength. “Your stupidity is going to get everyone killed.”   Abruptly, Shea released the blade with one hand, sidestepped and launched a punch straight into his ear. His head rocked to the side and Shea, taking advantage of his distraction, grabbed his arm and hooked her leg around his before pushing with all her might.   He toppled backwards, landing hard on the ground for the first time that day. Shea didn’t wait for him to recover and kicked him in the ribs. He rolled into her legs as she prepared to do it again, bringing her to the ground with him.   She kicked, punched and wiggled her way back to standing and quickly backed up as he rose to his feet.   He didn’t look happy. Shea backed up even further.   The dark expression on his face was a bit scary. Guess she shouldn’t have kicked him when he was down. The biting probably didn’t help either. Trying to dig her fingers into his eyes had been a low blow. Even she could admit that. This was practice. Some things were just off limits.   He started for her, not even bothering to pick up his practice sword. Shea prepared to run. New energy coursed through her as she felt genuine danger rolling off Trenton.   “Test complete,” the old man crowed.   “What?” Shea asked in disbelief.   “You passed.”   “That’s it?”   The test had been difficult but not impossible. She’d been expecting impossible given the hesitation the old man showed in testing her.   “Mostly.”   That’s what she thought.
T.A. White (Pathfinder's Way (The Broken Lands, #1))
It became clear that if I believed that only bad people who intended to hurt others because of race could ever do so, I would respond with outrage to any suggestion that I was involved in racism. Of course that belief would make me feel falsely accused of something terrible, and of course I would want to defend my character (and I had certainly had many of my own moments of responding in just those ways to reflect on). I came to see that the way we are taught to define racism makes it virtually impossible for white people to understand it. Given our racial insulation, coupled with misinformation, any suggestion that we are complicit in racism is a kind of unwelcome and insulting shock to the system. If, however, I understand racism as a system into which I was socialized, I can receive feedback on my problematic racial patterns as a helpful way to support my learning and growth. One of the greatest social fears for a white person is being told that something that we have said or done is racially problematic. Yet when someone lets us know that we have just done such a thing, rather than respond with gratitude and relief (after all, now that we are informed, we won’t do it again), we often respond with anger and denial. Such moments can be experienced as something valuable, even if temporarily painful, only after we accept that racism is unavoidable and that it is impossible to completely escape having developed problematic racial assumptions and behaviors.
Robin DiAngelo (White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism)
This is an important thing, which I have told many people, and which my father told me, and which his father told him. When you encounter another person, when you have dealings with anyone at all, it is as if a question is being put to you. So you must think, What is the Lord asking of me in this moment, in this situation? If you confront insult or antagonism, your first impulse will be to respond in kind. But if you think, as it were, This is an emissary sent from the Lord, and some benefit is intended for me, first of all the occasion to demonstrate my faithfulness, the chance to show that I do in some small degree participate in the grace that saved me, you are free to act otherwise than as circumstances would seem to dictate.
Marilynne Robinson (Gilead (Gilead #1))
Pause, Assess, Then Decide Remember, it is not enough to be hit or insulted to be harmed, you must believe that you are being harmed. If someone succeeds in provoking you, realize that your mind is complicit in the provocation. Which is why it is essential that we not respond impulsively to impressions; take a moment before reacting, and you will find it is easier to maintain control. (Epictetus, Enchiridion XX) Whenever you are assailed with a powerful emotional reaction, immediately take a deep breath and separate the event from your impression of it. The event is what happened; your “impression” is how you have, initially, instinctively viewed it. Will you assent? Anything outside your control is of no real concern. It cannot touch the you that matters. But your considered response is, indeed, yours to control. Will you choose to be angry? Depressed? Afraid? Why? How do those things help you? How do they make you stronger or more virtuous? How do they lead to a life of eudemonia? Instead, take a deep breath and reach for some perspective. Whatever it was that happened, it’s already drifting into the past. What does this moment require of you?
Grey Freeman (Practical Stoicism: Exercises for Doing the Right Thing Right Now)
Oh, dear,” she gasped, pulling back. “I just thought of something horrible.” Nigel blinked a few times in confusion. “I don’t mean to criticize, Amelia, but that is hardly the reaction a man looks for when he first kisses the girl he loves.” She clutched at his cravat again, completely demolishing it this time. “You love me?” “Of course I love you,” he said simply. “How could I not? Now, tell me what’s wrong.” “My parents,” she said, feeling rather dazed by everything. “They’ll be furious if I reject Lord Broadmore. Especially for a man…” She trailed off, hating to insult Nigel. And, strictly speaking, he hadn’t yet asked her to marry him. “A man like me,” he finished. “Is it because I don’t have a title?” “Yes, and because you’re not rich. I know how awful that sounds, but you mustn’t think less of them because of it. Mamma and Papa just want the best for me.” He studied her. He didn’t seem offended, but he did look wary. “Are those things important to you, as well?” She winced, hating that she might have made him doubt himself. “No. Well, of course I don’t want to be poor, but I don’t need to be rich, either. And a title means little to me.” She huffed out a sigh. “I’ll just have to reconcile myself to the notion that Mamma and Papa will be angry with me for not marrying Lord Broadmore. Or anyone else, simply because they’re rich.” The tension seemed to bleed from Nigel’s shoulders as his hands drifted down to her waist. “And would you consider marrying a mere gentleman?” “Of course I would, but…” “But what?” She glanced anxiously at Gwen to make sure she was still asleep. Nigel waited patiently for her to respond. “What if my father cuts me off?” When Nigel frowned, Amelia’s heart sank. “Are you sure he would do that?” he asked. She sighed. “It’s certainly possible. I do hope that wouldn’t...” He leaned down to press a swift kiss on her lips. “My dear girl, while I might not be a nobleman, I am as rich as Croesus. Your parents might lament the lack of a title, but I’m sure the marriage settlements will make up for it nicely.” She stared at him. “I thought your fortune was quite modest, by all accounts.” He grinned. “I rarely talk about money, but for you I’ll make an exception.” After he named a staggering sum, Amelia could only gape at him like an idiot. With a little snort of laughter, he tapped her mouth shut. “I do hope your esteemed father will approve,” he said. Amelia pressed a hand over her heart, right where a bubble of joy was expanding outward. “Oh, I think he’ll be able to reconcile himself to the notion. Not that I give a fig how much you’re worth, Mr. Dash.” Nigel made a great show of wiping his brow. “Well, that’s a relief,” he said in a voice warm with laughter. “I’d hate to disappoint either of you.” Amelia went up on her toes to press a kiss on his lips. “That, my dear, wonderful sir, would be quite impossible. After all, you are the nicest, most dependable man in the world.
Anna Campbell (A Grosvenor Square Christmas)
You begin to think, maybe erroneously, that this other kind of anger is really a type of knowledge: the type that both clarifies and disappoints. It responds to insult and attempted erasure simply by asserting presence, and the energy required to present, to react, to assert is accompanied by visceral disappointment: a disappointment in the sense that no amount of visibility will alter the ways in which one is perceived. Recognition
Claudia Rankine (Citizen: An American Lyric)
Neither will I.” Kyr’s attention went past Nykyrian’s shoulder to where Maris stood. “Gods, you get more disgusting every time I see you. Have you had surgery yet to become a woman? Not that anyone could ever tell the difference.” Maris tsked at him. “Oh, my brother… you always underestimated me. That’s all right, though. I have the satisfaction of knowing that I’m the only creature alive who has ever knocked Nykyrian unconscious. Instead of insulting me, you should have teamed up with me. Then you could have killed him and completed your assignment, and not have that ugly blemish on your record. That must really suck for you. But I wouldn’t know. My military record is flawlessly perfect.” This time, Safir was the one possessed of a coughing fit. Infuriated, Kyr responded to Maris in Phrixian. Maris made an air kiss at him. If looks could kill, Maris would be a stain on the wall. Kyr swept her entire group with a withering grimace. “I shall see all of you later.” “We’re so looking forward to it,” Caillen called after him. “Fuck you very much, Commander. Have a good day.” As
Sherrilyn Kenyon (Born of Silence (The League #5))
Fuck, fuck, fuck. Why the hell did I say that? As soon as Furi saw the hurt on Syn’s face, he’d immediately wanted to take those spiteful words back. Furi was scared shitless, and he was indeed projecting, just like Syn said he was. It wasn’t Syn’s fault that his life was so fucked right now. Actually, if it weren't for the cop, Furi would be going through this on his own; honestly, he’d be dead now. Syn was trying to stick by him, contrary to what Furi’s mind was telling him. Syn was trying to put forth the effort to be with him, and Furi wasn’t cutting him an inch of slack. Now here he was in his apartment, under his protection and he’d just insulted him so cruelly that Syn couldn’t respond.
A.E. Via
If you confront insult or antagonism, your first impulse will be to respond in kind. But if you think, as it were, This is an emissary sent from the Lord, and some benefit is intended for me, first of all the occasion to demonstrate my faithfulness, the chance to show that I do in some small degree participate in the grace that saved me, you are free to act otherwise than as circumstances would seem to dictate. You are free to act by your own lights. You are freed at the same time of the impulse to hate or resent that person.
Marilynne Robinson (Gilead (Gilead, #1))
Personalizing matters can make them more sensitive and activating—and the lack of boundaries combined with the fragile ego experienced by narcissistic and toxic people means that even a passing comment, a late response, or a confused expression on the face of the other is personalized and responded to as a threat or an insult.
Ramani S. Durvasula ("Don't You Know Who I Am?": How to Stay Sane in an Era of Narcissism, Entitlement, and Incivility)
If the information theory is correct—that aging is caused by overworked epigenetic signalers responding to cellular insult and damage—it doesn’t so much matter where the damage occurs. What matters is that it is being damaged and that sirtuins are rushing all over the place to address that damage, leaving their typical responsibilities and sometimes returning to other places along the genome where they are silencing genes that aren’t supposed to be silenced. This is the cellular equivalent of distracting the cellular pianist.
David A. Sinclair (Lifespan: Why We Age – and Why We Don’t Have To)
Khalil seemed to have gotten the communitarianism thing off his chest. Let me ask you something, he said, with mischief in his eye. The American blacks - he used the English expression - are they really as they are shown on MTV: the rapping, the hip-hop dance, the women? Because that's all we see here. Is it like this? Well, I said slowly in English, let me respond this way: Many Americans assume that European Muslims are covered from head to toe if they are women, or that they wear a full beard if they are men, and that they are only interested in protesting perceived insults to Islam. The man on the street - do you understand this expression? - the ordinary American probably does not imagine that Muslims in Europe sit in cafes drinking beer, smoking Marlboros, and discussing political philosophy. In the same way, American blacks are like any other Americans: they are like any other people. The hold the same kinds of jobs, they live in normal houses, they send their children to school. Many of them are poor, that is true, for reasons of history, and many of them do like hip-hop and devote their lives to it, but it's also true that some of them are engineers, university professors, lawyers, and generals. Even the last two secretaries of state have been black. They are victims of the same portrayals as we are, Farouq said. Khalil agreed with him. The same portrayal, I said, but that's how power is, the one who has the power controls the portrayal. They nodded.
Teju Cole (Open City)
I know you're not familiar with what a real restaurant is like, but the front door isn't usually located in the alley," she snapped. He clicked his tongue before responding. "See, for a moment I was wondering if I'd made a mistake coming here. But I'd hate to miss this witty repartee." "It's not repartee if I'm the only one with wit." She straightened, like one of those exotic birds she'd seen in an episode of Planet Earth when they wanted to intimidate predators. "Why do you look like an extra from SVU?" Leo pulled down the hood and took off his sunglasses. "Did you know there are paparazzi outside your restaurant? I'm surprised they're willing to drive this far east." He shook his head to himself. "Why have a restaurant in Silver Lake? It's like the Brooklyn of LA . Shouldn't you be in West Hollywood, where the real money is?" "If I'd known there was a portal from hell located so close by I would've reconsidered the location." Less than a minute in Leo's presence, and she'd slipped back into insult mode as easily as popping dark chocolate into her mouth. The taste of knocking him down a peg was as sweet as always.
Erin La Rosa (For Butter or Worse)
They also led two other criminals to be executed with Jesus. When they arrived at the place called Skull, they crucified him, along with the criminals, one on his right and the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing.”… One of the criminals hanging next to Jesus insulted him: “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!” Responding, the other criminal spoke harshly to him, “Don’t you fear God, seeing that you’ve also been sentenced to die? We are rightly condemned, for we are receiving the appropriate sentence for what we did. But this man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Jesus replied, “I assure you that today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:32-43)
Adam Hamilton (Luke: Jesus and the Outsiders, Outcasts, and Outlaws)
Comparing the EIC to the Nazis is grotesque. Hochschild has nothing to say about this odious rhetorical maneuver, an insult not just to Jews but to the Congolese who fought and remained loyal to the memory of the EIC. Referring to my essay as “polemical” in defense of a book that makes regular references to Auschwitz is rich indeed.
Bruce Gilley (The Ghost Still Haunts: Adam Hochschild responds to Bruce Gilley, who follows in kind)
Personal reflections on my own racism, a more critical view of media and other aspects of culture, and exposure to the perspectives of many brilliant and patient mentors of color all helped me to see how these pillars of racism worked. It became clear that if I believed that only bad people who intended to hurt others because of race could ever do so, I would respond with outrage to any suggestion that I was involved in racism. Of course that belief would make me feel falsely accused of something terrible, and of course I would want to defend my character (and I had certainly had many of my own moments of responding in just those ways to reflect on). I came to see that the way we are taught to define racism makes it virtually impossible for white people to understand it. Given our racial insulation, coupled with misinformation, any suggestion that we are complicit in racism is a kind of unwelcome and insulting shock to the system.
Robin DiAngelo (White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism)
Mahdokht turned pale. She did not know how to respond to this insult. What was this guy thinking ? Who did he think she was ? What did he really want ?
Shahrnush Parsipur (Women Without Men: A Novel of Modern Iran)
When that last forty percent is purged, you respond differently when people insult you, slander you, slap your cheek, or sue you. Instead of retaliating with insult for insult, you extend nothing but the mercy of God. You esteem your testimony as your most valuable possession, and you are determined not to hurt a human being even at the cost of your own head.
Dave Roberson (The Walk of the Spirit - The Walk of Power: The Vital Role of Praying in Tongues)
In this world, as you well know,” the priest responded, “to turn the other cheek is to become a slave. God himself never turned the other cheek. He met insult, or threat, with fire and brimstone. Since man is made in his image, no man can turn the other cheek without being poisoned either by thoughts of vengeance, or by a feeling of his own cowardliness and weakness, for the rest of his life. When injured, a man must take action in one form or another, or he is not worthy of calling himself a son of God.
T.M Cicinski (A Patchwork Of Moonlight And Shadow)
Luther accused Henry and the papists of begging the question, of claiming that the traditions of the church should be observed merely because they were traditions, without considering whether they came from God or from human invention. "I cry gospel, gospel, Christ, Christ; they respond fathers fathers, custom, custom, laws, laws, where as I say truly that the fathers, custom, and law have often erred ... Christ cannot err."-'" Perhaps Luther's greatest insult was to say that no one imagined that Henry had written his book by himself.'' On Luther rolled in a torrent of abuse. "Draw near to my rod, you vainglorious Thomist," he cried. "I will teach you how to argue about dogma."22 At the end he crowed that he had been victorious over the king by opposing God's word to human custom." "Here I stand," he wrote, here I sit, here I remain, here I glory, here I triumph, here I contemn Papists, Thomists, Henricians, sophists, and all the gates of hell all the more in that they are led astray by the sayings of holy men or customs. God's word is over all. The divine majesty works with me, and I do not care if a thousand Augustines, a thousand Cyprians, a thousand churches of Henry stand against me. God cannot err or fail; Augustine and Cyprian like all the elects can err, and they did err.-" The issue, as any Catholic knew, was not whether the fathers could err as individuals; it was whether they had reached consensus on a core of doctrines necessary to be believed. Luther's furious language indicates a willingness to attack that ancient consensus in the name of the gospel and to elevate his own understanding above the agreements of centuries.
Richard Marius (Martin Luther: The Christian between God and Death)
When insult comes our way, we look for a way to respond in love (Matthew 5:38-39).
David Jeremiah (The Rapture)
When insult comes our way, we look for a way to respond in love (Matthew
David Jeremiah (The Rapture)