Dec 22, 2008 - Uncategorized    35 Comments

Fight flattery with flippancy

My friend B claims that I seriously lack charm and poise when it comes to accepting compliments. I obviously rejected her claim. Not that I get that many compliments (and I am counting ‘balls breaking bitch’ in the category of compliments) but I thought I was taking them enough élan and elegance. These are the flowing examples cited by my friend as sentences dripping in unnecessary sarcasm.

Compliment 1

Tazeen, you write really well.

My response:

Oh I just rant, if you are half as dissatisfied with life as I am, you too would be able to go on like I do.

Compliment 2

You know, you are funny.

My response:

Really, I thought only court jesters were funny.

Compliment 3

You have very beautiful eyes.

My Response:

Huh! And I thought it was Rimmel’s deep black kohl and my expertise with make up.

Compliment 4

God, you are photogenic, the camera loves you:

My response:

Does that mean I look hideous in person?

Compliment 5

You are smart.

My response:

In the sea of mediocrity, even common sense looks like a stroke of genius.

Another friend who studied psychology as a minor back in college jumped in and called it my denial of my talent. Talent!!! You can’t call being photogenic a talent, can you? She also used words like deep rooted fear of acceptance, delayed maturity and lack of emotional intelligence and God knows what else; I did not hear the rest because I had tuned her off after emotional intelligence.

Come on people, batting lashes at the poor sod who tells you your eyes are beautiful is as clichéd as it gets. Am I the only one who thought my responses were smart, flippant and dripping with self effacing humor?

I believe in fighting flattery with flippancy – no?


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  • Well, u r not the only one .. most ppl who compliment someone expect an embarassed thank you .. when they don’t get it, they go nuts ..

  • loved
    Compliment 3

    You have very beautiful eyes.

    I usually get the beautiful smile with it and then i sulk so bad that they have their grounds erased with a flash of lightening!

    how many times THANK YOU!!!!

  • Haha… I loved your responses, and no you don’t have to thank me. I used to not accept compliments well at some point, but now I just say a thank you and flash a grin 😉

  • I agree with Avionic. Many people who are praising you expect to see a reply brimming with humbleness, or some sort of a counter-praise: “Oh, no, no, you are too kind!” And when the reply doesn’t fulfill this, they sort of feel that the precious words they spent on the praise got wasted.

    And ur responses were smart! 🙂

  • LOL
    Glad to see I have company!

  • Usually when people comment me on my “manly” voice, I say thanks but whats really going on in my mind is “You can have it mate, anytime” . A by product of being called “uncle” over the phone by my sisters’ friends since i was in 8th and not being allowed to sing in the privacy of my very own Bathroom. Sad story really! 🙂

    Nice replies though! , the person(s) at the receiving end must have craved a wall to bang their heads on! 😀

  • long live the flippant

    and one more thing… i believe that common sense is the only stroke of genius there is… lol

  • i’d love to see how you respond to insults..

  • xill-e-illahi,

    Never needed to respond to ‘insults’. What was intended as an insult (balls breaking bitch as cited earlier) i take it as a compliment and respond accordingly.

    I am such a positive person, i only see good in other people.

  • aw dang. i was hoping for even funnier reading.

  • 🙂 well when flippancy started annoying people… i decided to get modest… now if someone gives me a compliments, i grin and say- I know!!!

  • I know only one thing about you i.e. you are an excellent writer…

  • I think those comebacks at compliments are deep down your way of acting modest…

    I think coming with such creative come backs is a talent in itself…but thats what I think….

  • I’m VERY photogenic….

    People love me….as a “Before” picture 🙂

  • can i tell you i loved this post? damn, am scared of complimenting you now! *grins*

  • well you can act flippant all ya want but each time i tell ya you are a celebrity u give an embarrassed laugh 🙂

    are you listening people? Taz has no comeback for that *hint* *hint*

  • i guess it’s just that you’re so humble .. or maybe you’re always aiming for better .. so no matter what others sees in you .. you think it’s way lower than what you really wanna be or achieve .. or maybe you’re just trying to be funny and they took the whole matter way too seriously 🙂

  • the come backs say that you don’t think your talent or abilities have anything special, you probably want to be better but there is nothing wrong in saying thank you, it may please people around you

  • oh i loved the first response most. In order to write, you have to unhappy or in love. I guess you are the person who writes better when unhappy.

  • photogenic, huh. I’m more of a photoshopic. and I’m actually going to use number 1 and 5.

    go flippancy!

  • LOL…Tazeen, your responses are absolutely HILARIOUS!! I couldnt have done a better job myself!

    I dont know, I find it disturbing when people lap up flattery like milkshake and not in that condecending sarcastic way that is so funny:
    Guy: You are so gorgeous
    Girl: I know, aren’t I?

    Sounds ridiculous and narcissistic. I’d tell him to piss of and go stroke a cat or something.

    Flippant is wonderful 😀

  • I enjoy compliments, around 10 years after I’ve recieved them, that is.For those years in between I turn various hues of red and comeback with smart retorts, in my imagination!;))))

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  • So Tazeen writes well, is funny, has got beautiful eyes and is photogenic too! How smart is that! 😉

    Haha, I just tend to ignore flattering comments…

  • the response to “you are smart” is pretty priceless. lol

  • How about simply saying ‘I know’? Works for me everytime.

  • We dont need to acknowledge these attempt by the lesser mortals to please us.

  • random passerby! loved the post!!! 🙂 flattery with flippancy is the way to be!!

    next time someone compliments u..for watever beautiful attribute of yours..try this..” you…anythin would look good right!”

    (err…but im not too sure if one can categorise that as being flippant or just downright rude!) 🙂

  • Ah! Such Bernard Shaw-ish retorts! Even the master would have approved the temerity of the whole event. I was at pains to choose between admiring the witty jabs and wondering about the person who would be willingly shorn of a heartfelt feeling so that she may bare her fangs to the few sham ones.

    What makes it profound reading was that the other day, I came across an author, dreamt of accolades for her work. She never got it in her lifetime. Her name is Jane Austen. The Lord does work in mysterious ways…

  • Saadia,
    I have nothing against compliments, as long as they are given in style. If a man says your eyes are gorgeous, it is just about as cliched as it gets.

    //So Tazeen writes well, is funny, has got beautiful eyes and is photogenic too! How smart is that! ;-)///

    if i am given compliments the way you have, I will sure as hell lap it up.

    @ Che,

    Ah, there is someone who is as oblivious to attempts of flattery as I am.

  • Priceless 🙂

  • but you ARE all those things and i am not a cliched boy telling you this. hmpff.

  • sidrah,

    in that case, thank you
    *Tazeen takes a bow*

  • Hallo Tazeen,

    That reminds me the famous story of Napoleon who invited simultaneously Mme Récamier (a well-known beauty) and Mme. de Staël (a famous writer and intellectual).

    When he was seated one to his right and the other to his left he wished to make a compliment and said: now I am sitting between beauty and intelligence.

    Both ladies resented this to the utmost because they understood one was beautiful but stupid and the other intelligent but ugly.

    Don’t know if the story is really true, may be not. At least one of them should have seen the funny side of this.


  • //”In the sea of mediocrity, even common sense looks like a stroke of genius”//

    How true….

    Destination Infinity

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