Public Service Announcement

Backhanded Compliment … Meet The Back Of My Hand

tina-fey-thumbs-downWe’ve all been there. We look good. We feel good. We want to strut a little. Then all of a sudden you run into “that” friend. The friend that loves nothing more than to investigate what you are wearing, doing, and seeing with a fine tooth comb. That person mine as well be a hurricane that will wipe away and destroy all the goodness you have going on with one simple comment, that goes something like this: “I wish I had the confidence to pull off something so see-through.” Umm … wait what? Are you saying I look good and confident, or are you really telling me my outfit is see-through?

When you receive a compliment, all you should be doing is blushing and saying how flattered you are … and a little taken back by how nice this person is being. Your hand will go to your heart and your face will shift as your are saying “Awww!” and then you will say, “oh my GAWD … THANKS!” You might even give them a little friendly shoulder punch. It will feel like a breath of fresh air. It will feel like spring time with no humidity. It will feel like the first sip of wine after a heinous week. It will make you glow.

Backhanded compliments, on the other hand (no pun intended), deserve to go to the back door. What is the damn point?! Are you THAT insecure that you feel the need to insult me, yet don’t have the balls to follow through so you just sugar-coat it with a little positive adjective to make me feel all warm inside?

You know when you’re given a backhanded compliment when you start to say, “thaaaan…” but stop and say, “wait, what?” instead to yourself. You still say, “thanks” minus the blushing and the feeling of taking that first sip of wine after a shitty week feeling. Because really, you are trying to dissect what the person just said to you and see if it truly was a compliment. Most of the time, if you are scratching your head in confusion … it was a backhanded compliment. I think we should change it to something more delightful like, “YOU JUST GOT BHC-ed!” I’ll come up with some hand motion to go with it shortly. Hey, it’s a work in progress.

Now I get it, you are probably saying, “seriously … what the hell are you talking about. Maybe you should stop being so paranoid and just accept a compliment when it is given and stop being a bitch,” But let me give you a taste of some common BHC’s that you (probably) have encountered. And then I will do the “I told you so dance” … ahem:

“You’re so fortunate that you can go shopping so much when you don’t have family and a mortgage.”

“It’s so refreshing to meet someone who likes simple things.”

“I love that you don’t care what people think!”

“You’re so brave for wearing that.”

Grrr ::shaking fist::: just stop. Everyone stop BHC-ing one another, for the love of sweet Jesus. Didn’t your parents teach you, “when you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all?” They probably did, except some asshole found a loophole, also known as backhanded compliments and that is how people get around it. Listen, you either like something or you don’t. I don’t think people should shell out compliments unless they are REALLY passionate about something. Like if I see a girl walking down the street in shoes I would sell my mother for, I would say, “hey …random girl … those shoes RULE!” And then she would think I was hitting on her … and probably run away, but come on, you know what I’m saying!

So I challenge you all to give a REAL compliment today. Don’t bring someone else down just because you are feeling shitty and jealous … just do it. It will feel good. If it doesn’t … well, there is always wine.




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