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Enough With The Compliments!

Updated on August 24, 2013

“Look at you…The Tap Dance Kid!” I was at the market and saw a little boy wearing shiny shoes, with silver metal, at the toe and heel. “These aren’t tap shoes!” “…uhm…uhm…” was all I could muster to say. The little boy ran yelling to his mother, “M-a-a-a-a…I told you these shoes are u-g-a-l-l-y-y-!

The shoes would not have been u-g-a-l-l-y-y as he exclaimed, had they been tap shoes, but since they weren't...I silently agreed, and pushed my shopping cart real fast to get away.


It was funny…I mean real funny; certainly not to the little boy though. I hoped that I didn’t run into the little boy or his mother again; I could only imagine him rolling his eyes at me, and then a can of string beans hurling through the air, and knock’n my glasses off!

While I thought it was funny, I still felt bad for the attention the little boy received because of me. I rationalized that it’s only partially my fault; equal fault belongs to the mother for buying the ugly shoes, and the designer for making them…I felt somewhat better.


Before I left the store, I thought I would redeem myself, by paying a compliment to someone who I could clearly discern between what is…and what ain’t. So, I finished shopping, and moseyed my way to the checkout.

There is a man standing in the checkout to the right of me; he wore a pair of nice leather gloves. I proceeded with caution, given that I may have scarred a little boy for life, and just as the words “I like…” lulled from my tongue, I realized that he wasn’t wearing gloves after all!

Because I can think quickly on my feet…most times; I was able to turn “I like…” into “I like this market, don’t you?” He replied that he did, although he looked at me rather strange. I needed to get out of that market real fast, AND I needed to keep my mouth shut, unless I was asked if I wanted paper or plastic!

I love chatting it up with folk, striking up a conversation, and being the person who others strike a conversation with. I love compliments; I love extending them, and certainly receiving them. Obviously I have a problem, when it comes to extending compliments based on a visual appearance.

Perhaps I am the only person that this happens to…I’m unsure. I am however going to be careful and extend compliments on someone’s style of dress or physical appearance, when I am absolutely certain that it is what it is. I don’t know yet how I’ll be certain, so until then…I'm keeping my mouth shut!


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    • imatellmuva profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Somewhere in Baltimore

      cheatlierepeat,it is obviously a part of our nature, and we take what comes with it, or in my case what I cause from it!

      Your son reminds me of one of my nieces, who will bid a farewell to all when she leaves. I can tell that she feels really good about doing that; thinking that she's made someones day...and she has!

      I can only hope that she doesn't turn out anything like her Aunt, and send small children running from embarrassment!

    • cheatlierepeat profile image


      6 years ago from Canada

      I will talk to anyone. I am that person you meet and after you leave you realize you just told your life story to a stranger. I love people, I love interacting. I always talk to people in stores, on sky train, anywhere!

      I've noticed my 10 year old can be chatty as well. He always calls back "have a nice day", when we exit the elevator.

      Great hub!

    • imatellmuva profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Somewhere in Baltimore

      I'm learning my lesson Marla...truly I am. Like you I am the person who will offer advice on a comment or conversation overheard. I am also the person, who people come to if they have a question; I don't know why that is...I just except it.

      I do steer clear of comments like you mention, "My, what a big boy...", and ask for the age. My own son was big and tall for his age, and comments like that was a constant reminder...and actually an annoyance for me and him.

      I should have learned from my own personal experience with my son, to always proceed with caution. There's a lesson in all that we do and say.

      Thanks for stopping by.

    • Marla Neogra profile image

      Marla J Neogra 

      6 years ago from Parkersburg, West Virginia

      Personally I too do tend to interact with others in public to the point of embarrassment for my children (who are all grown now by the way). I however usually try to make more generalized comments or apologize for overhearing and offer advice. People generally ask me questions out of the blue as well which frustrates my family, but I promptly reply with my answers or comments as if it was the most natural thing in the world. Thanks for your comments and as you say I would avoid actual compliments and stick to generalizations like "my what a big boy! How old are you?" ....Then I always add a year when I say "I thought you were at least ___!" Since children like to appear older than they are.

    • imatellmuva profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Somewhere in Baltimore

      Thanks Christin S! I wholeheartedly agree...but maybe, just maybe, when I'm in the market, I should stick to the price of margarine or sumth'n!

    • ChristinS profile image

      Christin Sander 

      6 years ago from Midwest

      very funny hub! I enjoyed the laugh. I find it refreshing when a person is willing to give compliments to strangers - the world needs more of that! I hope that future endeavors work out better for you in this department lol.

    • imatellmuva profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Somewhere in Baltimore

      Thanks Aunt Darlene...every time I step outta the never fails.

      Thank you for your continued means a lot to me.

    • imatellmuva profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Somewhere in Baltimore

      WD Curry 111, I have not been to San Francisco. I am just someone who almost always has something to say.

      Like you, I will say something to the person being a jerk. I am the person who will likely say what others are thinking. My honesty is one of my best virtue's, but at times that same honesty comes with a sending little boys running, and yelling that their shoes are ugly!!

      While I might curb the compliment thing...and likely I won't, I'll still keep picking up a conversation with anyone...about anything.

      Good to see you WD...

    • profile image


      6 years ago


    • WD Curry 111 profile image

      WD Curry 111 

      6 years ago from Space Coast

      You seem familiar to me. Have you ever been to San Francisco?

      Anyway, I have a similar personality type (maybe). I always strike up conversations with people. I figure it comes from the time I spent in South West Texas as a boy. There is lithium in the water and everyone is always in a good mood. It is vast, open country, and people yearn for a little contact.

      Since the real estate bust, things are rough in Florida. We are a one car family now, and I often ride the bus. It gets more crowded everyday. I find that few people are comfortable when I turn Texan.

      I have found that the opposite of compliments win me more approval. If some guy is being a jerk, I let him know it and suggest appropriate behavior. The other passengers smile and nod in agreement.


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