I’ll be honest, I find the art of the compliment a rather disturbing thing. Allow me to elaborate.
As people say “it is better to give than to receive”, I shall leave the best until last and discuss receiving compliments first. Well, that and the fact that I don’t get them often. Ha.
No, in all serious, I’m rather abysmal when it comes to receiving compliments. I don’t go all “oh yeah” and do a dance so awesome that it makes unicorns cry rainbow tears of joy that could cure the world’s crushing debt problems with enough left over to get the Welsh language heard all over the world, because that would be rather arrogant of me.
No, all I do is go in myself. I go rather shy, whimper the words “thank you” and get the conversation away from me as quick as possible. It could be as small a compliment as “you’ve got good grammar”, and I’ll still find it hard to believe. Well, unless it’s something I think is true also.
I mean, not being big-headed here, but I do believe that I can manipulate the strings of the English language and tweak them so they will do my bidding in creating a correct sentence, though I believe that my lack of words and knowledge of rules hold me back. Why am I going on? No idea. Why didn’t I just say “I can create half-decent sentences” instead of that fail of a sentence? Only a son of someone with an equal amount of vowels and consonants in their first and surname can answer that.
As you can probably tell, I find it even harder to give compliments. Why? Well, a number of factors come to play here.
Lets take an example that I had first hand. Last year, I saw someone. Well, I saw at least a hundred people last year, but you know what I mean. Anyway, this someone was a girl who I know, and saying that she looked pretty would be an understatement. Granted, she always looked nice, but you know what I mean. As she walked towards me, what did I say? Well, the obvious
I talked about the weather. Smooth, aren’t I?
But, what can I say? If I did say something complimentary, there was a very high chance that it would just come out in a “I’m not confident in what I’m saying” kind of way, which could result in her thinking that I’m lying. And even if what I did potentially say sounded fine, the chance that she had heard it before was higher than Jimi Hendrix in his heyday. Though, I don’t think he had hay, he had a guitar you know what I mean.
Anyway, what I also thought was how could she receive this compliment. Maybe, if I did say something about her looks on that day, she could have taken it as me trying to make a move on her. Either that, or mentally putting me on her “creep list” that she could possibly have. And yes, I have all these thoughts in as little as three seconds. I may not be well designed for compliment giving, but I do have a fast mind. I can even think about stuff in my eyes closed. It’s a talent that took a long while to master, though Britain’s Got Talent didn’t agree.
Another thing that I would find awkward is, what if there was a group of people, how do you act then? Do you just compliment the ones that you believe deserve the compliments? If so, then you might be insulting the others in the group without wanting to. Or, do you say something to all members of the group? Something like “Carla, you look rather beautiful tonight. Tina, you’re also looking rather nice. Anna, it’s nice for you to turn up too”? Though, in doing this, I would be making some sort of “class of beauty”. And even though they secretly know it, and I know it, it would be totally wrong of me to actually state it.
So, does this mean that I should just make a generic comment on all of them, something like “you all look rather lovely tonight”? But if I did, the compliment would just be some words mixed together to create something that is said everyday. Like “hello’. Or “bubble wrap”.
I don’t know much, but I know that I sound like a rather soulless person there. Well, not soulless, but hopefully you’ll get where I’m coming from here. And if not, you can always pretend, eh? Ah, that’s one thing about me that I might change if I had the chance, so then I could be a decent actor. Ah well.
I thank ye, world.
Past Dear World articles from CrazyDistortion Sub-Editor include:
Drink & Drugs
Facebook’s NSPCC Campaign
X Factor And The Christmas Number One