“It is a great mistake for men to give up paying compliments, for when they give up saying what is charming, they give up thinking what is charming.” Oscar Wilde


I’m trying to learn to take a compliment. Don’t get me wrong, I am not getting an overabundance of compliments, but when I get them, I want to be gracious about it. I’m not sure why my first instinct, when someone says something nice to me, is to say “shut up, no I don’t.” Something is not right about that. Compliments can be awkward, or confusing, sometimes. This morning I walked in to the kitchen and one of the guys I work with said ‘you look tall today.’ Um, thanks? I don’t know what that means, and I don’t actually know if that is a compliment so I had this witty reply:

“Yeah. Shoes.”

Dorothy Parker’s got nothing on me. I do know that agreeing with someone is not usually the right way to go, like when someone tells me my hair looks good (only women do this) and I reply “I know, right?” Probably not ideal, but in my defense, I put some time into it. I am also not great at giving compliments, because as soon as I do, I immediately worry about having sounded sincere. My cynical nature, I guess.

The other one that throws me for a loop is when I go to get my eyebrows waxed, the girl always says “you have a great brow line.” Again, is thank you the appropriate response here? Because I had literally nothing to do with the construction of my brow line. So I feel like that is a compliment, but it is a compliment for my great great grandmother, who knew enough to have children with my great great grandfather based on the precision of his facial features, maybe? So, good job there. I don’t want to sound like an asshole and agree with her, but I don’t really want to start a fight about it either, so I go with something like “mmmm.” Genius.


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