1. "If Stuart is a freak... it is because he has had the superhuman strength not to be defeated by this isolation. It is because he has had the almost unbelievable social adroitness to be able to fit in smoothly with an educated, soft-skinned person like myself and not make me frightened half to death. If Stuart's a freak, I salute freaks."
- Alexander Masters, Stuart: A Life Backwards
2. "It was not technological insight and adroitness but cupidity, power-hunger, overweening pride, and indifference to the future that kept Western peoples from maintaining their own craft traditions and their tool-using habits. If there had been any appreciation of the immense technological treasure that was being wrecked, or of the powers of the human personality that were thus being sapped, the growing commitment to a monotechnics, based on the displacement of man, might have been publicly challenged and slowed down, or, when necessary, arrested."
- Lewis Mumford, The Pentagon of Power
3. "On one hand she seems so agile, so athletic, and yet I've seen her appear so awkward that it embarrassed me. She gives the impression of a hard, worldly adroitness, and in some situations she's like an adolescent: rigid with ancient, middle class attitudes, unable to think for herself, falling back on old verities...victim of her family teaching, shocked by what shocks people, wanting what people usually want. She wants a home, a husband, and her idea of a husband is a man who earns a certain amount of money, helps around the garden, does the dishes...the idea of a good husband that's found in This Week magazine; a viewpoint from the most ordinary stratum, that great ubiquitous world of family life, transmitted from generation to generation. Despite her wild language."
- Philip K. Dick, Confessions of a Crap Artist
4. "No one knows better than I how unworthy I am.' A sentimental sigh and an inarticulate murmur from Selina showed that this frank avowal had moved her profoundly. Upon Abby it had a different effect. 'Trying to take the wind out of my eye, Mr Calverleigh?' she said. If he was disconcerted he did not betray it, but answered immediately: 'No, but, perhaps - the words out of your mouth?' Privately, she gave him credit for considerable adroitness, but all she said was: 'You are mistaken: I am not so uncivil!' 'And it isn't true!' Fanny declared passionately. 'I won't permit anyone to say such a thing - not even you, Abby!' 'Well, I haven't said it, my dear, nor am I likely to, so there is really no need for you to fly up into the boughs!"
- Georgette Heyer, Black Sheep
5. " he sees positive personal advantage in deception and lying. His real thoughts, his real aspirations, must be guarded in whispers; he must not criticise, he must not complain. Patience, humility, and adroitness must, in these growing black youth, replace impulse, manliness, and courage. With this sacrifice there is an economic opening, and perhaps peace and some prosperity. Without this there is riot, migration, or crime. Nor is this situation peculiar to the Southern United States, is it not rather the only method by which undeveloped races have gained the right to share modern culture? The price of culture is a Lie."
- W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk
6. "A pair of waiters brought a feast to the hotel room and arranged it in the sitting area. They unfolded the hot cart into a table, draped it in white linen, and brought out silver-domed plates. By the time the wine was poured and all the dishes were uncovered, I was trembling with hunger. Luke, however, became fractious after I changed his diaper, and he howled every time I tried to set him down. Holding him against one shoulder, I contemplated the steaming grilled steak in front of me and wondered how I was going to manage with only one hand. Let me, Jack murmured, and came to my side of the table. He cut the steak into small, neat bites with such adroitness that I gave him a look of mock-alarm. You certainly know how to handle a knife. I hunt whenever I get the chance. Finishing the task, Jack set down the utensils and tucked a napkin into the neckline of my shirt. His knuckles brushed my skin, eliciting a shiver. I can field-dress a deer in fifteen minutes, he told me. That’s"
- Lisa Kleypas, Smooth Talking Stranger