Monday, February 25, 2013

I'm right behind you, sir.

I was never a member of the Mutual Admiration Society.

I don't dispense many compliments. Too many people do. They've lost their value. And become as useless as currency in Zimbabwe. Did you know people in that country literally use money to wipe their butts?

"Honey, can you bring me a roll of million dollar bills?"

I hold back on praise and admiration so that when it is given, it means something.

The other thing about compliments is I don't get that many either. Which suits me fine. If you ever wanted to see me speechless or leave me tongue-tied, the best prescription would be a sincere, heartfelt expression of flattery.

Other than a shocked "thank you", I simply don't know the correct response. I suppose I could reply with, "Thank you, your hair looks nice." Or something along the lines of, "Thank you, by the way I liked the question you asked in the meeting," but those seem forced. They reek of pandering.

Of course, this hasn't stopped many folks today.
Particularly those in my line of work.

In years gone by, ad agency ass-kissery was practiced in confidential memos. Any face-to-face apple-polishing was conducted, discreetly but with great regularity, in the executive conference rooms fashioned from the finest Peruvian mahogany.

But, like so many fallen Arab dictators, discretion has become the latest victim of social media.

Today Lickspittling has it's own Facebook page.  A Tweetdeck. And of course the obligatory Foursquare account. Time, geography, dignity, these are all boundaries that have been successfully eliminated, so that the brown-nosing can rear its ugly head anywhere, anytime.

I call it PDS.
Public Displays of Sycophancy, and it's quite revolting.

I could go to my Facebook news feed or my updates and grab screen shots to show you some examples. But I don't want to shame the fawners.

Besides, if you're a sucker-upper, you already know it. And now, thanks to Mark Zuckerberg and company, the rest of us do too.

No comments: