A Good Bluff

The whimsical ‘life is just a game’ analogy is not unfamiliar to most of us. Apt at defining a broad, albeit entirely useless, sense of things, there is some truth to the fact that our little stint with a mortal life has a distinct element of luck to it. It is also true that some of us are playing with more of a full deck than others, and yet others insist on, with varying degrees of success, stacking the deck in their favor. We would all be wise to recall that the world in which we live is governed as much by appearances as realities,
necessitating a good bluff as much as a good hand. Winning after all, is relative to what each man has to decide for himself constitutes victory. Genghis Khan for instance is reported to have said something to the effect of: “it is not enough for me to win – everyone else must lose.” It goes without saying that if such is your idea of victory, one would need not only a great bluff, but a fantastic hand as well. So how did people like Genghis Khan, Alexander the Great, or even the Norse vikings of old play this game called life? Was it their bluff, an invention older than the game of poker, that was so convincing, all the other players tossed their cards in desperation? Was the possibility, the very notion of defeat, so inconceivable to them (and their enemies as well) that no challenges were even ushered, and not a moment of doubt shown?
At the end of the proverbial day, there’s 52 cards in the deck, and you can’t fold forever. Maybe they realized that early and set about making damn sure all the other players realized it all too late.


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