When the conduct of men is designed to be influenced, persuasion, kind, unassuming persuasion, should ever be adopted. It is an old and a true maxim, that a “drop of honey catches more flies than a gallon of gall.”
– ABRAHAM LINCOLN
Of the 100,000 species of flies, far more would prefer a steaming pile of shit over a drop of honey. So in terms of diversity of species of flies attracted, the shit wins. The same would hold for absolute numbers. Shit only lasts so long, and therefore natural selection has certainly favored flies that can find the shit first. (source ).
Given that an average fly is unlikely to make it into a honey bee hive and escape with any booty at all, (to say nothing for his life!) – I’d say that natural selection has NOT very likely programmed the fly’s instincts to seek out honey.
It is true that flies like sugar, and honey is sugary. (source ). Thus I would imagine that honey is decent fly-bait, but you will probably attract yellow jackets or wasps with the honey first, then you’ll probably get stung and your face will swell up.
But back to flies….
It is unclear whether equal amounts of honey and shit will attract equal amounts of flies. If anyone tries the experiment, I’d like to see the results posted on youtube or something. However, it is certain that a fistful of poo from virtually any mammal species will attract way more flies than a spoonful of honey — let alone a drop.
Similarly, I think that human behavior can be more effectively influenced with the employment of shit than with the strategic use of honey.
Ask a man to jump over a hurdle and offer him a spoonful of honey as a reward for doing so, and he will likely be uninterested. Up the ante to a bucket of honey, and he is likely to think you’re a frigging weirdo for walking around with a bucket of honey.
Tell a man to jump over the hurdle, or you will throw a big wet steaming wad of shit at him, and he will likely jump over the hurdle to avoid such unpleasantness – which may include not only being covered with shit, but then also being covered with flies until he can clean off the shit.
Even if he is much bigger than you, and knows that he can kick your ass for throwing shit at him, you still likely win. Aim for the eyes. If you hit him in the eyes with shit, you can temporarily blind him, hit him with a rock, and then run away. He will instinctually know this. If he doesn’t, you can tell him, and no matter how dumb he is, he will probably get it.
Lets say you miss his eyes, and just aim for center mass — right square in his chest. Even if you throw the shit on his shirt, most men would rather jump over a hurdle than have to wash shit off their shirt. Hell, he will have to choose between cleaning the shit off of himself right away, and chasing you down and kicking your ass. No matter what, he’s got shit all over himself because he didn’t listen to you and just jump over the damn hurdle.
I’d do almost anything to avoid being hit in the face with a pile of shit. Honey, eh, I can do without it. If you want to motivate a man, do so by showing him that by failing to do what you want, he’s gonna get shit on himself.
Abraham Lincoln was full of shit.