You’ve no doubt been paid a compliment by someone.
But have you been the victim of the backhanded compliment?
You know — a comment that starts out flattering or kind, and then takes an unexpected turn, becoming cutting or cruel?
And the whole thing is delivered with a big ol’ innocent smile, which makes the insult all the more sneaky. Sometimes you don’t even realize you were dissed until you’ve walked away.
Some friends in my neighborhood and I were discussing ‘favorite’ backhanded compliments received over the years during our regular evening walk.
Like the woman on the set of a television commercial who complimented my raincoat saying, “I love your jacket. That is a really hard shade of green for people to pull off.”
Or a fellow dog owner who was told in the park, “Well, I like your dog…I don’t care what all the other people say.”
Or my personal favorite: “I love your red toenail polish. It matches your fake red hair.”
Yes…yes, it does.
Funny how ‘compliments’ like these stick to our brains for years…whereas heartfelt good wishes fall away forgotten. (Probably because they’re more clever, and we wish we had thought of them ourselves.)
Do you have any good zingers to share? Leave them in the comments section for us all to enjoy. But, no names, please. Remember —
We wouldn’t want to offend.