On the Back Hand Side (Back-handed Compliments)
As you all know I had a recent birthday (the 38 Special), and it should be no surprise that in addition to spending time celebrating and chillaxing I also spent some time in quiet reflection. Now knowing me, you would think translates to something deep and profound…not this time.
Over the years, I have received or witnessed some back-handed compliments that I just had to share. So here is how this post will work. Jab=the insult meant as a compliment; Translation = what I actually heard in my head; Note=why the jab should not be repeated. And here we go!!
My number one all time is…
1) Jab – “You have a pretty face.”
Translation – Wow, I really like your face, mmm the rest of you…not so much.
Note– Isolating certain parts of a woman’s body to admire could be a compliment. “You have nice eyes, smile or feet”. But isolating the face, ta-tas or backside can never end well.
2) Jab – “You are pretty for a black girl.”
Translation – Your race is generally NOT attractive, but you are an exception.
Note-There is no way to say this without sounding racist. You should have stopped at PRETTY.
3) Jab – “You’re a good driver for a woman.”
Translation – If i didn’t know better, I’d say I was riding in the car with a male driver.
Note-No way to say this without sounding sexist. As it happens I was raised by a family of mechanics that built race cars and such. And yes, I drive a stick…sheesh. Two words – Danica Patrick!!
4) Jab – “If you lose some weight I’d make you my woman.”
Translation – If you were slim I would bless you by becoming your man.
Note – How about mmmm, NO. You’re the kind of guy that would run at the first sign of “baby fat”. Think I’ll pass.
5) Jab – “You talk like white people.”
Translation-I don’t hear any of the traditional urban dialect in your speech.
Note-Why thanks!! This one is actually supposed to be an insult, but I just can’t seem to be offended.
6) Jab – “You’re pretty cool for a white boy.”
Translation – As white men go they are pretty lame, but you are the exception.
Note-OMG, I was mortified to witness this one said to someone’s face for a few reasons. Let’s start with it just sounds racist. Then lets look at “cool” being relative, it truly depends on what is cool to you.
7) Jab – “Girl you so sexy, I’ll make you say my name.”
Translation-If we had sex you would be beside yourself with pleasure.
Note-On the off chance this would ever happen with a line like that, we would have another obstacle…I already said your name when we were introduced. You know when you said “My name is…” and I said “Nice to meet you…”. In fact, I’m saying your name in my head right now, “What a (insert explicative here).
8 ) Jab – “You’re the smartest woman I know.”
Translation – I’m not usually impressed with a woman’s mind, but yours is exceptional.
Note-How many women do you actually know in the grand scheme of things? I mean the earth is pretty big and you have met an iota of people on it. Trust me when I tell you that intellect runs in abundance among women in my circle. Being flattered by this statement would be a discredit to my gender.
9) Jab – “Are those your real teeth? So you never had braces?”
Translation – A grill like that has to be manufactured.
Note-If these were NOT my real teeth then that would be very embarrassing to say the least. And for some people straight teeth are in the DNA.
10) Jab – “Is that your real hair?”
Translation – Since black women are notorious for add-ins, I’m sure you are no different.
Note-Yepper, its all mine 90% of the time. Everyone needs help sometime. Either way it is just a tacky question to ask.
Please feel free to share your back-handed compliments.
This was originally posted on www.Jai Stone.com.