Shortly after the experiment began, I told one friend that she wears too much makeup. During the next four days before she replied, I suffered excruciating humiliation every time I thought of how I broke social custom. Her response was very mature, though, and together we figured out that my real issue was actually her tendency to dwell on negative topics.
I told a couple people how much I appreciate them. That was one perk -- having a good excuse to tell friends how dear they are to me. Schmaltzy email chain letters are always preaching about how you should live every day as though it were your last, and "tell your loved ones that you care". But most of the time when you go up to a friend on a normal day and start talking about how much you love them, they just say, "What the fuck is wrong with you?"
Not so with the experiment:
niniane: i want to say, with all honesty, that you are an amazing person, beautiful and sweet and so smart and socially gifted
Sha-mayn: awwww. thank you!!!
niniane: you know it is all 100% truth, due to experiment
Sha-mayn: i love honesty week!!!!!!!!
Tonight at the Halo 3 party, I ran into a guy who asked me out last year. This guy was focused on schmoozing, and asked me several times for favors relating to Google despite my reluctance.
One time, as a joke, I asked him if he read The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists, a book on how to seduce women via emotional manipulation (for example, insult her to make her feel vulnerable). It reminded me of his careful motives that laid behind his actions, but I didn't think anyone was ridiculous enough to actually follow the idea.
He replied by gushing about how much he loves the book.
Tonight, standing by the chocolate fondue table:
Guy: "I think you and I didn't click because we're too similar in some ways."
Me: "No, it was because you're annoying."
Afterwards I felt extremely guilty.
Was there any point to saying that, instead of giving a polite answer? Can it possibly generate any constructive result, instead of just being negative?
Some of my other "radically honest" exchanges had more immediately visible benefit.
I don't know.