play dumb

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play dumb

To pretend that one has no or little knowledge (of something); to act ignorant or uninformed (about something). I don't think I'm supposed to know that Rick is getting fired, so I'm just going to play dumb the next time I see him. A: "Did Tammy ask you about my date with Steve?" B: "Yeah, but I played dumb about it. I just couldn't handle more of her drama today."
See also: dumb, play
References in periodicals archive ?
According to the Palace official, critics of the drug war should now stop playing dumb given how the people have spoken about the effectiveness of the illegal drugs campaign.
Darius (Josh Stamberg) is playing dumb as he asks Juliette who she is seeking "justice" for.
We plead to all its members to read that piece a hundred times and stop playing dumb. Only they can prevent the travesty of justice that the President could not care less about.
Yes, dumb statements are a fact of life, but you can reduce the negative impact of someone else's dumb statements by playing dumb yourself--meaning that you pretend like you did not see it or hear it when another person does or says something ill advised.
You have an idea, a conversation or even something as big as a soul purpose that's nagging, waiting to be heard, but you're playing dumb and blind, can't hear it, can't see it.
Asking for help isn't a problem, but playing dumb' is a level no girl should sink to just to get a guy."
He's purposely manipulating voters by playing dumb and misrepresenting the truth to suit his political agenda.
"But to instead lose this game by conceding some soft tries and playing dumb rugby is very hard to swallow.
To that end, his tactics involve communicating less to allow space for listening, self-correcting, understanding, and connecting; having restraint in talking, responding, proving someone wrong, comebacks, and giving oneself credit; stopping conversational escalation; playing dumb when necessary; avoiding faulty questions; having a goal, approach, and good start to a conversation; avoiding the urge to solve problems; learning to let go; letting difficult people win; using neutralization to avoid overreaction; changing the situation; remembering that not all topics are fair game; appreciating boring interactions; and using storytelling.
"How did all that revolutionary talk of the seventies land us in a place where being female means playing dumb and looking good?" she demands.
Anyone who still claims Lance Armstrong didn't dope his way to seven Tour de France titles is either playing dumb, plain dumb or Lance Armstrong.
I'm done playing dumb, good-looking girl roles," she says.