Webster defines euphemism as-the substituion of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant; also: the expression so substituted.
My mother is rather good at being euphemistic. My father rarely bothers; he prefers being blunt. After she soft-pedaled on her judgement on dinner and breakfast last night and this morning I got thinking of the ways that people communicate their euphemisms. They're usually followed by expressive facial gestures. Or in the case of my father- a rather dry tone which highlights his sardonicism.
Here are some fairly recurrent ones that I've come across.
What they say Vs What they can "actually" mean:
- What an interesting color! = Why not go for a normal color? This one belongs on a circus tent, not your face.
- Such pretty eyes (after surveying the baby/person for 2-3 minutes)= The eyes are the only things I could think of complimenting. The rest is too bizarre for me to put words to.
- What a lively child! = If your kid was any more hyper the Met department would classify him/her as a typhoon.
- That's a very abstract picture, wow!= What the hell is that damn thing anyways? Why can't people draw cows and flowers that looks like cows and flowers?
- He/she's going to be very smart, I can tell (after seeing a slightly large head on a child)= If that kid had a bigger head, he/she would start pinging on radars!
- Mmm...I've never tasted anything like this before. Interesting= Why do you bother to experiment?!! Stick to stuff you know, better yet, order in.
- Sure, It's nice. I (big pause) like it. Sure= Am pausing...get the drift. I hate it!
- Wow..look at the time, has it really been that long? = Jesus Christ!! I thought I was going to die there and still have to sit through that crap.
- Well this has been fun= Yup! just like being operated upon without anesthesia is a bowl of laughs.
- I'll blog again...really soon= Sure I will. Just as soon as my dearly-beloved-child-sleeps-if-he-sleeps-oh-god-please-let-him-sleep-or-I'll-give-him-a-sedative!