Sounds simple enough in context but in the seemingly peaceful but desperately riddled minefield of straight guy relationship, it can be potentially disastrous. Stereotypically, girl-on-girl conversation deals with style, fashion, clothing etc and thankfully, that's true even for a giggly gaggle of diva doctors in the pantry. Always find it hilarious that the girls find it so simple to compliment each other while otherwise erudite boys can hardly find the words.
Gal A : Darling, that blouse looks great!
Gal B : It does? Where did you get that pashmina?
Gal A : Last week's sale at Prada, darling! God, where did you get those pants?
And they can go on. Sugary sweet compliments from the way they style their hair to even the amazingly supportive uplift their new bra gives ( I seriously kid you not ). For potentially hours judging by the low low low call rates they are charging these days.
In comparison, guys are different. Genuinely voiced compliments on pimped-up vehicles, bitchin' stereo equipment ( or other technogadget paraphernalia ) and insuperable athletic skills are all par for the course, and well accepted amongst straight boys wherever you go. Certainly almost guaranteed to get you in da house.
But comments on personal appearance are something else entirely. Seems almost like a masculine badge of pride for a heterosexual teenage boy to appear quite as filthy / unkempt as possible - or at least appear vaguely oblivious as if his good looks are naturally God-given, occurring from a genetic mischance rather than endless hours of preening and buffing in front of that toilet cabinet mirror.
Tell me, does this make me look fat?
In the proverbial male flock, no straight boy would wish to be mistaken as that vain prissy peacock. Lest he be misguidedly painted as the gay bird.
And even in this learned day and age, that particular schoolboy stigma still haunts. Which is why apart from that particular breed of metrosexuals popping up here and there, straight guys have a peculiar way of exchanging compliments on each other's appearance, usually cleverly disguised as a lukewarm compliment ( only offered after heavy prodding ) but heavily spiced with derision.
Straight Guy B : How do I look?
Straight Guy A : Yeah, you don't look puke-in-my-pants hideous today.
Straight Guy B : Fuck off.
Of course followed by the obligatory hearty pat on the back as an affirmation of undeniable machismo and fraternal camaraderie, possibly even by a disgusting hack and spit onto the ground.
Anything more than that bit of male bonding starts feeling a bit dodgy, possibly verging on unforgivable fagdom as homosexual panic invariably sets in.
Gay man : My God. That shirt looks fabulous on you. I'd fuck you in a New York minute.
Straight man : Grr....Mind if I tear out your spleen?
Seriously. Don't try this at home, or anywhere else - unless you have the uncanny mutant ability to run really really fast ( as most adolescent gay boys have learnt the hard way ). Even I - with my wholly outrageous mouth - would think twice before saying that. Short of a serious hearing disability - or some nascent gay gene, the aforesaid heterosexual hunk would probably feel irresistibly compelled to shed some blood to regain his impugned masculinity. Nothing like a nice bout of painful fisticuffs to resolve the issue of his maligned sexuality.
Not a good way to gain friends, I'm sure. Just take this comparison. Girls can talk about the fit of their jeans complimenting the curve of their butt but can you imagine a bunch of straight guys in the locker room talking about the merits of the Wonder Jock? Doubt even famed metrosexual David Beckham would go around complimenting Ronaldo's sculpted abs after a game. :)