Rule of Thumb of the Day

Never, ever, ever pay compliments that contain comparatives (e.g. the word "than").

It's from the comments section of this post. I totally agree with it. Paying a genuine compliment is trickier than one might think.

For those who don't know, I maintain a Rules of Thumb wiki that contains hundreds of useful rules across a range of categories.

3 Responses to Rule of Thumb of the Day

  1. Another, similar, rule of thumb. When you apologize, never qualify what you’re saying with the word “but.” It’s tricky to say you’re sorry, but much more effective – and powerful – if you JUST apologize.

  2. Dave says:

    Per the post you reference: a better way to say it is “I had forgotten how beautiful you are!”

  3. Reading the comments in that section has all the intellectual appeal of reading Thomas Aquinas’ arguments on whether or not Jesus Christ was a hermaphrodite.

    I was reading some background for this comment, and the very instant my eyes lit on the words “summa theologica”, the women in the chorus of Burning Spear’s song “Loving Day” sang “summa, summa, summa” (summer…).

    I took it as a sign that I was on the right track.;-)

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