Amusing article in the LA Times this week on the art of flattery.

I was often told by the lawyers in my shop at the FTC that I was the "best ever" head of the Office of Policy Planning at the FTC, and my students frequently tell me I'm one of the "coolest" law professors ever. So, notwithstanding the suggestion of the article, obviously not all such comments are merely insincere flattery.


cirby (mail):
Best. Post. Ever.

10.21.2005 6:46pm
I once told a partner that he was my favorite partner because, unlike all the others, he was smart enough to see right through my insincere compliments.
10.21.2005 6:57pm
Alfred Brophy (mail):
Thank you, Professor Zywicki, for that informative post. Not only were your comments humorous, but the link provided important (perhaps even crucial) career advice. You're the best—well, you and Lawrence Solum, whose recent post (through Paul Caron) may save me a ton of money on my next visit.
10.21.2005 7:17pm
The coolest trustee of Dartmouth College ever, Zywicki combines incisive writing with deep humility.

What a loser.
10.21.2005 7:45pm
Bill Dyer (mail) (www):
Note to aspiring bloggers looking to increase their traffic via frequent links from the Volokh Conspiracy: Zywicki's a self-declared "easy mark."
10.21.2005 9:48pm
frankcross (mail):
Todd, much can be read into the choice of compliments paid one. Did anyone call you sexy?
10.21.2005 11:09pm
Zywicki (mail):
Not yet--but I certainly hope your Comment inspires further sincere compliments along those lines!
10.22.2005 11:40am
Rebecca Oris Davidson (mail) (www):
About the "best X ever" construction, that is not usually (in my experience) insincere, even if it may not be strictly true. I've probably called a dozen movies the best movie ever, and meant it every time. It is usually meant and heard with a touch of hyperbole, and is frankly a little disturbing coming from someone older than "Generation X," whether they mean it or not.
10.22.2005 1:01pm
NYU Jew (mail):
As a former Prof Z student, I can insincerely say that Todd Zywicki is the best prof ever. I can sincerely say that he is the coolest I've had.

No comment re: Todd's sexiness.
10.22.2005 9:58pm