Andy Ihnatko talks about charm

In a blog entry titled Liquid Charm Is On Backorder, And I’m #918 On The Waitlist, Andy Ihnatko has this paragraph on the problem of trying to emulate charming rogues:

But does the general male populace appreciate that Colin Farrell arrived at Charm Island only after successfully navigating some desperately long odds? Of course not. So off they go, pointedly not shaving. They start cursing during wedding receptions, appearing in public wearing a crusty vintage Harlem Globetrotters tee shirt, smoking plastic-tipped fruit-flavored cigars in restaurants and stabbing them out in the desserts of nearby patrons. Through miracle or accident, they may find themselves speaking to women; on these occasions they eagerly speak of how much time they spend vomiting during any given day. They are serenely certain that the giggles and phone numbers they receive as a result are all completely genuine.

There is a fine line that divides the rogues from the jackasses, and if you’re on the jackass side of this line, charm will obscure this fact for only so long. Charm, like any other power bestowed upon you by Fate or radioactive spider bites, should be used only for good, or perhaps to extricate yourself from sticky situations. With great charisma should come great responsibility.

3 replies on “Andy Ihnatko talks about charm”

I’m not necessarily in the set of people with charm… but I don’t assume I am either, so I usually avoid the Charmless Jackass set too. The number of people in said jackass set, though, is frequently astounding.

What’s interesting, though, is how some people can move between sets – perfectly charming in some situations, horribly jackassish in others. It’s as if the charm is something they can turn off (or that it’s something they can fake)

But I’m probably just talking out of my ass here – being 11 hours away from summer work term can (and has been known to) do that to me. The most important question: does the Accordion lead to charm, or does charm lead to the Accordion?

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