Knew a lawyer once, who spent a lot of time mocking other lawyers. He was the smart one; they were such fools.
Knew someone in business once, who spent a lot of time mocking others in business. He was the smart one; they were such fools.
Common denominator: when in their presence, most of the time was spent hearing them mock others, or talk about themselves. The social engagement was as an audience member. Cheerleading not required, since they functioned as their own cheerleaders. One’s presence was similar to them talking into a mirror, in circumstances where they wouldn’t appear to be the smart ones in a public place, doing this without an audience.
As might be expected, neither was a leader in his field. Average moving to marginal, at best. Both having cash flows from other sources: parents or spouses. Or both. All the better to feed the exaggeration.
The contrasting humility of the truly talented. Maybe not humility as much as no need to self-aggrandize to know that one has ability. Leave it to others to assess one’s comparative worth.
Unless being assessed by one of the build down ones. Then, of course, you can’t be anything other than one of the fools.