Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Smiling Is Beautiful But...

Don't Fake It.

Kindness is important to me, but like smiling and laughing, it has to be real and unforced. I'm not a big fan of excessive "niceness" and other forced ways of interacting. I prefer an honest asshole to a fake nice person because the fake nice person is just an asshole in disguise anyway. It's like people who wear a lot of perfume...I wonder...Jeez what the Hell do they smell like without it!?

Think about how much fake smiling and laughing goes on. The amazing thing to me is that people who do lots of fake smiling and laughing actually think they are fooling people. Maybe they are, but I think anyone who puts any energy into it at all can look around and see for themselves who's really smiling or laughing and who's faking it. I see plenty of people who never really laugh, never give in to the fully spontaneous loss of control that real laughter requires. 

Polite, or social laughing or smiling can be helpful in certain situations but I've never liked the admonition to "Smile!", or the lyrics in Charlie Chaplin's famous song, "Smile". I find the melody very beautiful, but if a smile is fake or put-on or intentional, I think it does more harm than good and pushes a person's real sense of how they are actually feeling further and further away. I think the health benefits of smiling do not extend to fake smiling. Unless it’s vital to hide how you’re really feeling, I think smiling when you're really feeling sad or angry or scared is not a good thing.

So I say, both to you and to myself: Be kind when you feel kind, smile when a smile comes naturally, laugh when something strikes you as funny. Don’t fake it. Wait until it’s real. 


  1. "I prefer an honest asshole to a fake nice person because the fake nice person is just an asshole in disguise anyway."

    Eh, I'm with you, but you're half a foot off the toad there, I think so. What might come across as simply "fake" to you may be much more complicated. Shyness, especially, can cause what to others can pass a fakeness. I'd much prefer to be around shy, fake-seeming people than assholes, and those shy fake-seeming people are surely not assholes.

  2. Four freaking times trying to get through that messed up code thing.

  3. I agree with your first comment Thom. But I don't really consider a shy person's smile "fake"...It seems like a genuine attempt to communicate lack of malice. While a fake nice person's smile is at attempt to disguise malice. And I'm not sure what you mean by "messed up code thing"...GB