Honesty or Gesture?–Have A Nice Day … November 24, 2014

Your friend approaches and speaks “How are you doing _________”. You respond with the usual “I’m fine”. The social pleasantries. These empty and dishonest gestures sometimes referred to as the social graces.

How often have you asked someone “How are you?” and really meant it? It is a simple greeting. You might as well had said “Hi”. Most often you could not care less even if they might die tomorrow.

I think that instead a simple hello should be mouthed, especially to those who you do not know beyond casual status. Save the inquiry about health for those you really care about. I know I would rather it be an honest inquiry rather than a perfunctory reflex. Let it be that way with the shaking of hands also that it be reserved for those you really care about rather than the common stranger. After all… is the catching of disease worth shaking everyone’s hands?

If you truly loathe someone why be so dishonest as to exchange the social pleasantries unless of course it will gain you something. Then again, you would not be dealing with someone you truly loathe unless it were a necessity. Most likely they reflect your disdain and realize the pleasantries are merely a façade. Keep your interactions on the level of mere reciprocity.

Honesty is not always the best policy if it adversely effects those you care about, in my opinion. But I would prefer that you actually mean it when you make your inquiry about my health. I intend henceforth to respond as if you do. So if you do not want to hear an honest assessment of my well-being or not so well-being, please do not use that particular social pleasantry.

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