I think there are really two main groups of people in the world. Those that give out compliments like Tootsie Rolls at a Memorial Day parade, and the people who give out rare compliments like Scrooge McDuck sharing his gold with the Beagle Boys. Or something else that happens infrequently.
I am clearly a card carrying member of the Tootsie Roll group. Particularly with Hallie, I honestly worry that I praise her too much, like she's going to start tuning me out soon. Then my approval won't mean anything at all, because hey, mom always approves. I'm hoping that that isn't how it works, but should I back off a little?
Then there is the Scrooge McDuck group, and I like the way this group operates. It's like inflation in the economy (except, obviously I don't like inflation. Right? Inflation is the bad guy in economics? So maybe it isn't really quite like inflation. I never did well in my economy classes. What was the name of our professor Stacy?) If you rarely give out compliments, then it means a lot more when you actually do to the person who recieves it. At least, that's always the way it is in movies when the stern, taciturn father finally tells his son that he loves him and has always been proud of him and all the women in the audience are silently weeping into their wadded up tissues. My compliments rarely have that affect on people.
Now, to clarify. When I give a compliment, it is always a sincere, honest approval of something that I genuinely like. I don't go around tossing out empty Tootsie Roll wrappers that I've refolded to look like they have candy in them, if you know what I mean. Oh, you don't? Well, I mean I don't give out fake compliments. The thing is, I pretty much like everything... Let me use movies as an example. When we go see a movie, you can pretty much guarantee that I will like it, and Devin will not. You could make some money on us if you could ever find someone to bet against you on it. (is that how betting works?) See, while there is a whole entire group of movies that I will just never go watch because I have no interest in seeing them, of the movies that I will see I don't ask for much: entertain me, and keep it clean. If you follow those two rules, in my eyes we pretty much have a winner. But for Devin to start giving thumbs up you have got to work out your plot, your acting, your cinematography, the background music, your CGI, and you better not catch yourself being cheesy. No joke here, folks. And that's why it really means something to make it onto the list of movies Devin likes. It doesn't take much to get on mine.
And that's kind of the way I am with everything. Did you try? Did you make an honest effort? Do you do your best? I like you for that, and I'll find a way to compliment you. Or are you wearing pretty shoes? Done your hair a new way? Look extra happy?
But does my compliment feel empty because you know that I'll turn around and give one to the person behind me, too? Even if mine was completely sincere? I know that I've deviated a little off my scheduled topic, but I got all worked up thinking about compliments from your comments on my last post I had to slip this one in here. And be honest with me. I can take it. If I need to search out a help group for people who are compulsive complimenters, that's what I will do.