The Art of Flattery

The Art of Flattery

It’s the 21st century and surviving has never been as tiring. The “Living Phenomenon” on the other hand seems to be something that went extinct during the IT epidemic. In such times of work and worry when people are feeble and their spirits lay jaded, their key to survival is one sole mantra, “do it or delay it”. Well the word delay is just a translucent cover for the ever essential ego of mankind. We all know that the time never comes. It is sucked in the black hole of procrastination.

Everyone is selling something, be it goods, services or even love and other emotions. The better seller ends up being the happy and content citizen. On the other hand if you fail to sell you stay frail and pale.

So going by code it surely is the need of the hour “TO SELL!”, “TO GET THINGS DONE!!”  Now ‘THINGS’ stand for an enormous domain of stuff, an unfathomable number of chores to deal with. So we worthy beings came up with something universal. Something everyone, no matter how young or old good or bad would fall for. It was the key to the key to survival. The ultimate ambrosia to all pains and laments, the art of flattery.

As silly as it may sound flattery has played a pivotal role in shaping moments of mutual agreement and satisfaction among people. The practice ages back to the time of kings and queens when authors and even scholars used to flatter the reigning ruler. The tradition has been perfected, developed and mastered by the masses since. Nowadays even shopkeepers selling tunics pull off worthy feats of flattery on the face of their ignorant clients. The buyer giggles and blushes as she savors her new found beauty wearing that pink lehenga. The merchant leaves no stone unturned as he brings to comparison Bollywood beauties and  sometimes even the moon. In most cases the flatterer emerges victorious. He is praised by his fellow mates as he masters the ultimate skill in the business, FLATTERY.  We all have that friend in school who comes in handy during projects, map work and stuff. Well there surely are some fools who use the risky and daft method of threatening, but on the other hand there are also people who get stuff done with nothing but smiles and sycophancy. I myself recently became a prey to some sweet talk. Funny thing is the vendor didn’t flatter me completely, there was someone else too. The new face cream seemed to have extracts right from the top of Mount Everest. The freshness and coolness offered by it was somehow linked to the snowflakes and the cold breeze up there. I bought it, the cream of course and headed back home, a fool. I had two things in my mind, one, if anyone had shown some more reluctance he might have started off with mars regarding the extracts and second if the cream were a girl they would sure have lived a happy life. Flattery with elders, more precisely teachers is like masters in the art of flattery. It’s not everyone’s cup of cake. You overdo it, you’re busted. If you find the right tone and gesture you may just get away with it. Then there’s your boss. Here flattery is not just some old crafty trick, it’s your job, your life. You don’t overdo it, you’re busted. Getting girls….. Hmm let’s not talk about that. Winks, pickup lines, quirky glances, giggles are all siblings of flattery.

The weirdest thing about flattery is that most of us know when are being flattered. Deep inside we know how we look, how good or bad something is or how much one cares for ones boss. It is just about that moment, when the words feel real pleasing and satisfactory. We go with the flow. After all listening to one’s own praise is something that can make a beggar richer than a millionaire. The science and mystery of flattery lie in the words used.  So friends next time you find yourselves in flattering grounds buckle up and give it your best shot but do remember Anne Bradstreet’s words…

“Sweet words are like honey, a little may refresh, but too much gluts the stomach.”