The stoic man is essentially a pessimist. I say essentially because the stoic's lofty ideal to merely withstand all the madness of this world without himself going mad might be viewed, albeit from a necessarily low vantage point, as a sort of optimism. “It can be done,” says the stoic, proudly eating sour grapes, grim-faced, from his fortress of solitude. "If there be any goodness in the world, it is only a small goodness, a nymph from fairyland not worth pursuing." Otherwise, the stoic's idea of goodness only goes as far as his pessimism allows; to the negation of awfulness. His reality is the eye-drying reality of blood, sweat and tears. The stoic never discovers the secret to his nemesis, the meek man—the guardian of true optimism. He never answers the riddle of the smile blazing across a humble heart.