The Truth About Compliments

The Compliment MachineIt was reported in a recent Forbes piece that the people of our nation’s capital are receiving some much need love from The Compliment Machine. Created by Washington, DC artist Tom Greaves, the Compliment Machine is a “bright red-and-white striped box” that has been placed on the streets of Washington and passersby can hear a reassuring voice stating compliments at random such as “You have nice eyes” or, “People are drawn to your positive energy.”

According to the report, “Greaves compared the machine to children’s soccer teams, where “win or lose, everyone gets a trophy.” Oh brother. Greaves believes that the machine makes the city’s streets less mean.

My take on it? How about the Truth Machine? A Truth Machine can look just as modern and artsy as the Compliment Machine while also providing a public service. Observe.

“In life there are winners and losers. Your soccer team lost. Try harder next time.”

“Your new 90’s-style “bowl” haircut is so last decade…last century….last millennium.”

“That dress makes you look fat. I’m surprised your husband didn’t tell you.”

“When she said “Let’s just be friends”, what she meant was ‘My other friends will laugh at me if I date you.’”

“Guess what. Your boss confided in me that he is going to give you that raise you requested. Sike!”

Yes, the truth can hurt. But as the old adage goes: what doesn’t kill you still might make you feel bad for a while, but at least you won’t have to pretend your soccer team won.

Josh H.

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