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You Really Don’t Know Who People Are Until You Make A Vicious Snap Judgment About Them

People can be tricky to read sometimes. Often, just when you think you’ve got someone all figured out, they throw you a curveball and you realize you don’t have a clue. I guess human nature is complex like that. So what are we to do? Well, if there’s one thing I’ve discovered over the years, it’s that you can never really know a person until you make a vicious snap judgment about their character.

It’s only after you impulsively assign a fixed set of abhorrent traits to someone that you begin to understand who they truly are deep down.

Believe me, getting to really know someone takes work. You have to make an effort to focus on one superficial aspect of their personality and then judge them for it—quickly and harshly. In an ideal situation, this should happen within the first few minutes of meeting a person and, if possible, before they even open their mouth. But once you do that, you’ll gain a much fuller picture of their psyche, their hopes, their day-to-day life.

Simply put, you just don’t know what someone’s story is until you hastily make one up for them and dismiss anything they might do or say to contradict your initial impression.

I myself can glance at almost anyone for a split second, make a brutal blanket assumption about them, and suddenly know everything that makes that person tick. Maybe it’s the sort of clothes they’re wearing, their body language, or the look on their face, but from that moment on, I just get them, you know? Their whole life makes sense.

I’ve actually become pretty good at gaining insight into people; in fact, I do it all the time. I’ll get introduced to someone at a dinner party, silently brand them as a trust-fund baby or an aging frat boy or a lazy burnout, and then, just like that, I’m able to understand where they’re coming from. Everyone has their own set of life circumstances, individual experiences, and personal attributes that make them who they are, and your only hope of getting a handle on all those things is to adopt and rigidly maintain a grossly oversimplified view of the person. Otherwise, you’re left completely in the dark about their true nature.

Simply put, you just don’t know what someone’s story is until you hastily make one up for them and dismiss anything they might do or say to contradict your initial impression.

For example, the other day I noticed a new hire in our office who was wearing a low-cut blouse, and I immediately concluded that she was a desperate slut—a woman with low self-esteem pathetically flashing her cleavage around the workplace. Sure, I could have gone about my business and ignored the truth about who she really is, but never getting to know the people around you would be an awfully sad way to go through life, wouldn’t it?

Instead, I was able to recognize something about the person underneath—specifically, that she was a cheap whore and, no matter how she might conduct herself in her personal life, she would always be a cheap whore. And what an eye-opener that was! Had I not immediately labeled her following a single offhand observation, I would have remained completely oblivious to who she actually is.

Of course, some people can’t be bothered to take two seconds and put their fellow human beings into a cruel box from which they’ll never escape. And others may wish to reserve forming an opinion on another’s inner life until they’ve gathered a multitude of facts and made a nuanced assessment. It’s a shame, honestly. Those people are really missing out.

They’re also really pathetic fucking losers.