DAY TWO: Ending every email with a compliment

2 Sep

WHAT a fraud. What a skulking, low-down dirty snake. To feign positivity to a string of unsuspecting stooges when merely feeling ambivalent. Still, here goes.

I decide to channel my friend Jenni, who is always relentlessly upbeat in the face of adrenal fatigue and a declining ad sales market, and manages it with good humour and pizazz. My usual bedside manner swings from terse editor mode – I’m very busy, you know – to infuriatingly vague though, so unsurprisingly some people are alarmed.

“Words, baby, words,” thunders publicist Stacey, who’s onto me. “Mean nuttin without the honest intention, which you don’t have. You will just sound like a publicist.” She’s got a point. Coming from me, a cheerful reference to someone’s attributes sounds vaguely threatening (“I’m not sure if that’s a compliment,” Zan observes). In the case of those I barely know, I find myself resorting to a deranged: “You’re tops!”, which I’m sure they are.

This experiment does have its practical advantages. For example, the time I slapped on my out-of-office with the message “It’s deadline. The answer’s no”, I wound up inviting a whole steaming heap of bad karma to my door, whereas today I’m getting smiley emoticons back tenfold. It’s like one of those chain letter scams where you send off ten pairs of new undies to ten people and get ten thousand back.

Those who ignore my courteous comments, however…? Noted.

Keeper? Sporadically. If they deserve it.

%d bloggers like this: