Do we do nice things to people we like and bad things to those we dislike? Or do we grow to like people for whom we do nice things and to dislike those to whom we are unkind?

“When Ben Franklin ran for his second term as a clerk, a peer delivered a long election speech censuring Franklin and tarnishing his reputation. Although Franklin was furious he set out to turn his hater into a fan, but he wanted to do it without “paying any servile respect to him.” Franklin’s reputation as a book collector and library founder gave him a standing as a man of discerning literary tastes, so Franklin sent a letter to the hater asking if he could borrow a specific selection from his library, one that was a “very scarce and curious book.” The rival, flattered, sent it right away. Franklin sent it back a week later with a thank-you note. Mission accomplished. The next time the legislature met, the man approached Franklin and spoke to him in person for the first time. Franklin said the man “ever after manifested a readiness to serve me on all occasions, so that we became great friends, and our friendship continued to his death.””

“He that has once done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another, than he whom you yourself have obliged.” – Ben “The shit” Franklin