THE PRINCESS BRIDE ON "MASKED MEN":
The Cliffs of Insanity: The Rock Climb
[Finally, Fezzik reaches the top. Vizzini quickly cuts through the rope with a dagger. Fezzik and Inigo peer over the edge of the cliff.]
Fezzik: He's got very good arms.
Vizzini: [Vizzini comes over to look.] He didn't fall! Inconceivable!
Inigo: [looking confused] You keep using that word? I do not think it means what you think it means...[looking back down] my god...he's climbing.
Vizzini: Whoever he is, he's obviously seen us with the princess and must therefore die. [to Fezzik] You carry her. [to Inigo] We'll head straight for the Guilder frontier. Catch up when he's dead. If he falls, fine; if not, the sword.
Inigo: I'm going to do him left-handed.
Vizzini: You know what a hurry we're in!
Inigo: Well, it is the only way I can be satisfied. If I use my right, over too quickly.
Vizzini: Oh have it your way.
Fezzik: [to Inigo] You be careful. People in masks cannot be trusted.
Vizzini: [impatiently] I'm waiting ...
Inigo: [Inigo practices a few steps. He then calls to the Man in Black.] Hello there. Slow going?
Man in Black: Look, I don't mean to be rude but this is not as easy as it looks, so I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't distract me.
Inigo: [apologetic] Sorry.
Man in Black: Thank you.
Inigo: [Inigo unsheathes his sword and practices more steps. Calls again to the Man in Black.]
I do not suppose you could speed things up?
Man in Black: If you're in such a hurry you could lower a rope or a tree branch or find something useful to do.
Inigo: I could do that. I have got some rope up here. But I do not think you would accept my help, since I am only waiting around to kill you.
Man in Black: That does put a damper on our relationship.
Inigo: ... but, I promise I will not kill you until you reach the top.
Man in Black: That's very comforting, but I'm afraid you'll just have to wait.
Inigo: I hate waiting. I could give you my word as a Spaniard?
Man in Black: [struggling up the cliff side] No good. I've known too many Spaniards.
Inigo: Is there any way you'll trust me?
Man in Black: Nothing comes to mind.
Inigo: [very seriously] I swear on the soul of my father, Domingo Montoya, you will reach the top alive.
Man in Black: Throw me the rope.
Odysseus on Masked Men:
In Eyes Wide Shut ("EWS"), the Privileged Perverts all wear masks, as do their puppet-faced prostitutes, in order to keep the fantasy stirring. As Lorenzo the Magnificent says to his masqued guests in my poem, Lorenzo's Parting Thoughts:
Now set down your knives,
the meal's not served yet,
And the more you wait,
the more hungry you get,
And pleasure deferred
Is pleasure enhanced to the
pitch of a higher set, let's get
Involved now ladies and gentlemen --
those waistcoats are confining
And corsets still more yet,
But the masks should stay in place
Lest we get unconfused
And pleasure be aborted
Or anyone refuse.
Masks provide convenient anonymity, protecting one's identity, which may be of of great value, from being associated with despicable acts.
Based on a good identity, trust is given on a word. For example, when Inigo meets Wesley, who is the Masked Man, he and the Masked Man instantly negotiate the basis of trust. Of course Inigo won't trust a man in a mask, nor will Wesley trust a Spaniard. But when Inigo spiritually "unmasks" by revealing his deep love for his father as the basis of his oath, Wesley is immediately trusting, and agrees to accept Inigo's assistance.
After that, even though Wesley continues to wear a mask, he has revealed his essence as that of an honorable man. Although the two plan to duel to the death, Inigo has no mistrust of Wesley, and even allows him to handle his sword, effectively disarming himself. They may plan on dying, but not with distrust and dishonor as their companions.
Of course, the Masked Man is hiding his identity for only one reason. He wishes to test his love, the Princess Buttercup, because he knows she has allowed herself to be promised to King Humperdinck, and this causes him to doubt her love. Like the King who hides his kingship under rags and goes about in the marketplace to hear what is said about him by the commoners, so Wesley wishes to hear Buttercup's true words about him. So in that sense, the mask is an effort to obtain what couldn't otherwise be obtained. Once he questions her and receives satisfactory answers, the mask is off for good.
Masks can have a completely unnerving effect. Last Halloween there was a tall, thin person with a very esthetically designed mask that they never removed. When spoken to, he/she did not respond except perhaps with a tilt of the head/mask. I found myself wishing to relate to the person, but repelled. That was apparently what they wanted, but I found it highly antisocial.
The Privileged Perverts in EWS are only able to do what they do because their conduct is not traceable to their true identity. This is not even libertinism, but mere hypocrisy. Absolutely no new social freedoms are staked out here, and the notion of large numbers of privileged men gathering under cloak of mumbo jumbo to engage in anonymous sex is possibly the single biggest turnoff I've ever contemplated, aside from truly tasteless porn, which can gross you out for weeks.
The Masked "Anarchists" are of course highly suspect. By masking themselves, they insulate themselves from other protesters, who have the courage to be identified with their protest. By seeding the march with cowardice, they injure it right off. By signaling their belief that they can effectively conceal their identities, they reveal their extreme naivete. As if the FBI and Ashcroft's SS can't plant a video at the entrance to their hideout. As if they don't have moles in every "anarchist" group in the country.
No, what's going on here is white kids are playing "Revolution" yet again, being the puppets of the Agent Provocateurs that are forever undermining progressive organizations. These white kids want to play bandits, and thus are easily enviegled into looking like bandits. Believe me, there's no sympathy in a court of law for people whose masked appearance suggests they are well aware that their conduct is illegal.
Of course, when the bust comes down, the Agent Provocateurs get rounded up with everyone else. They just seem to get released sooner than other folks, because "a friend of the Movement bailed me out." Yeah, no shit, like the FBI bails them out, and sends them out on the road again to set up another bunch of fools. Then they come back around to town when it's time to testify against their old pals. And they'll sit there and identify everyone from the witness stand -- "Yes sir, that's Ratface, behind the red bandana, and TreeHugger, behind the blue bandana, and Gisela behind the black keffiyeh -- that's spelled 'k-e-f-f-i-y-e-h,' and it's a concealing headgear popular with Islamic terrorists, your Honor."
How do I know this? Because I have hired and managed snitches as a lawyer, and I have tried several federal drug cases and cross-examined the DEA agents (who usually really like me) and the hired liars the government pays to engage in Agent Provocateurism.
Why do we need Agent Provocateurs to bust up progressive movements? Because otherwise, people will not come up with crazy ideas like kidnapping Patty Hearst like the SLA, or bombing the Draft Board offices like the Weathermen, or holding up banks like the Black Panthers. Take note that when a gang is straight-out criminal, like the meth-dealing bikers, it's very difficult and dangerous to inflitrate them. Also, they can't be labeled as terrorists very well, unless they're Nazi skinheads, but them's "good people," at least they wave the Flag. It's much safer and easier to infiltrate "anarchist" groups -- everyone's 21, dumb and full of come, ready to do any kind of dumb shit to prove to their parents that they can't be bought off with a trust fund. Just send the checks on time and they can keep on rebelling.
So I would advise to stick with Inigo's first plan -- don't trust people who wear masks. The odds that it will be Wesley are so small they're not worth the bet.