nice is different than good

The movie "Into the Woods" is a mixed bag of tricks if you ask me. The stellar cast drew me in. I had no clue there was a Broadway musical and all the double entendre and such that was coming my way.  So, I took all of my children to see this movie that is not a children's movie.

But enough of that. I don't want to go on a rant—today. 

I want to talk about the morsel of pure understanding that I uncovered. It might just be me, but when someone is being nice: showing good manners, talking sweetly, etc., I have always assumed that meant good. Well, after watching "Into the Woods" and hearing that dryly put line from Red Riding Hood "Nice is different than good," I see niceties in a different light. 

While it is still good to be nice, nice words and nice looking outer shells do not necessarily mean that person is a good person at heart. Intentions are something to take into consideration. Some people are only nice in order to get what they want—to manipulate a situation and people. And that is not good. I like to call that charming. I hate to put a negative connotation on such a lovely word, but it has been done before, and it's the best word for this context. 

Sometimes pretty faces with their pretty words as they push and persuade or double dip relationships are only playacting at good. They want to have it all. How can you be good when all you want is your own interest or have loyalty and love for both worlds when you have to lie to one or both to keep up the appearance of doing good? It seems that nothing will be the result. No real connections, no true loyalties, no confidence to stand on. No substantial happiness.

My big question and what I want to know a real answer to is: Can anyone have everything if they are being truly good to no one? While goodness doesn't guarantee happiness and success, it does have a positive long-term effect on lives. I have several trains of thought going in all directions, but I will focus on one to wrap up.

I'm thinking that it is impossible to have much of anything worthwhile, let alone everything, because nice is different than good. And nice laced with lies isn't actually nice at all.




6 comments:

  1. You sure have me thinking on this one. I read this post earlier and am coming back to respond after thinking. Nice is not good that is for sure. Nice laced with lies is not good. In addition, good laced with evil is not where I want to be. I suspect that if I were to be writing my epitaph today, I would want people to say I was honest, fair and caring. Honest doesn't mean I don't have secrets, Fair doesn't mean I treat all people equal. Caring means I try to give what I can to those who need it the most. Whatever, you have left me thinking.

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  2. I think, in answer to your question, "Can anyone have everything if they are being truly good to no one?" that the answer is a resounding no. Everyone's definition of "everything" may vary, but if someone is not truly good to anyone they will be quite lonely and unhappy.
    I clicked on your blog as a fellow purple lover but leave still thinking about your question.

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  3. I think, in answer to your question, "Can anyone have everything if they are being truly good to no one?" that the answer is a resounding no. Everyone's definition of "everything" may vary, but if someone is not truly good to anyone they will be quite lonely and unhappy.
    I clicked on your blog as a fellow purple lover but leave still thinking about your question.

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  4. I have always believed that nice means nothing at all and discourage my students from using this word. However, you present different possibilities for nice that mean anything but nice. Using your example, a charming person sounds like a nice person but the way you meant it is in the conniving sense. So I'm concluding that nice is not very nice at all.

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  5. I now need to see the movie again.

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  6. I wrote a long comment and went to post it and it disapeared and I don't feel like retyping the whole thing. The main gist is:
    Sometimes, good isn't nice. Sometimes doing the right thing hurts others. But I'd still rather be good than nice.

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