Thursday, June 26, 2008

But, Mr. Thursdale?

"...[I]n seeking to avoid the pitfalls of sentiment he had developed a science of evasion in which the woman of the moment became a mere implement of the game. He owed a good deal of delicate enjoyment to the cultivation of this art… He had taught a good many women not to betray their feelings, but he had never before had such fine material to work with. She had been surprisingly crude when he first knew her; capable of making the most awkward inferences…of recklessly undressing her emotions; but she had acquired, under the discipline of his reticences and evasions, a skill almost equal to his own, and perhaps more remarkable in that it involved keeping time with any tune he played and reading at sight some uncommonly difficult passages."

~The Dilettante, 1903, Edith Wharton

3 comments:

Siegfried said...

I cannot get to the precise and simple meaning of the passage due to its wordiness.
It reads like an exercise in beautiful writing.
I think the more you try to hide your emotion, the stronger and more visible it becomes. Repressed emotions can lead to outburst.
Be nervous in order not to panic. Allowing nervousness or anxiety keeps one from losing control altogether.
Using meditation to control emotions or hide them can only lead to addiction and self-medication when the technique no longer works due to misuse.

Siegfried said...

Controlling emotions in order to give the impression of being nice and self-controlled is self-absorption. And can only lead to neurotic behavior. Most likely.

Sophia said...

It's easier to ascertain the meaning by reading the story. It's very short.

But it sounds like you kinda get the gist.

I think I'd be better off if I could learn to hide my emotions. Sometimes I can do it with certain people, but indirectly I end up betraying myself.

You're right, though. Pent-up emotions are like a balloon about to burst.