If you look around, the world seems like a big, scary place full of stalkers, crazies, and people out to take advantage of you. Plus a few Nigerian princes who really really want to give you a fortune.
With all the people you meet online and in real life, you need a quick way to determine who is trustworthy and who is lying about wanting to give you an inheritance from a great aunt you never knew existed.
I have a simple system for deciding who to trust that has very rarely let me down.
1. I trust you if you love cats
Anyone who loves cats is automatically my friend. Logic tells me there are probably some nasty, untrustworthy people who are crazy about cats, but I can’t bring myself to believe it.
If your best friend is the furry sort, you’ve been chosen by a disdainful little deity with more sense than most people.
If you’ll happily sleep falling out of bed so you don’t disturb Mr Whiskerson, you understand the importance of putting someone else’s needs before your own and you must be a decent person.
If you type with one hand half the time because Patch is sleeping across your other arm, you understand you’re not in charge of your day and I know you’re an easy-going type.
If you love cats, I’m happy to assume you’re my kind of person.
2. I trust you if you love my favourite books
Reading a book I love takes me to the world of the book. I live there for the duration of the book, and when I return to the ordinary world I feel bereft.
Meeting a person who loves the same world is like travelling to the other side of the planet and meeting a person from my high school. No matter how little you used to have in common, you’re instantly friends.
I know it sounds crazy, but I think there’s something to it. How often do you love a book that portrays world views you vehemently disagree with?
If you’re anything like me, not too often. We like books that (subtly) make arguments for things we already believe.
So isn’t it reasonable to think people who love my favourite books are likely to agree with a lot of my world views?
Don’t answer that, but I think so.
How do you decide who to trust?
Edit: For a hilarious take on the opposite, Reasons I distrust you, hop over to Anna Kaling’s blog.
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