As a non-native speaker, I sometimes find English confusing. There are some expressions that I personally don’t always believe, like:
1. “I’m just saying.”
I can’t help this. Every time someone or anyone ends their long-winded speech with this line, I’m just skeptical. I don’t buy it easily.
You’re never really ‘just saying’. What’s the point in doing so when all you want to do is just ‘get those words out of your head and through your mouth’? It doesn’t make sense to me.
There’s always an intention in every word you say/write, no matter how small. Even if it means what I’ve just mentioned – letting others know what you think or/and how you feel, especially about certain issues, it is still an intention.
So no, I don’t really believe in anyone who claims that they’re “just saying”. Because if it’s really, literally true, then you’re just creating more noise in the open air (or in this case, trivial content in the digital world).
It’s even worse if it’s useless and somewhat annoying, like you’re intentionally picking a fight or something.
2. “Just joking/kidding.”
I admit that I can get really too serious sometimes, depending on the mood. It also depends on the joke, though. The sexist, misogynistic type? You’re seriously looking for a death wish with me.
I sometimes still believe in this expression. I get it; you’re trying to make me laugh. You expect me to and wish that I don’t get angry too easily, no matter how thoughtless your jokes can be.
However, I can be a really tough crowd if I find your jokes: sexist, offensive, and insulting. How will you know? Well, I can’t tell you everything here. Learn to be thoughtful for once in your life.
If you still insist on examples, I’ll give you two of the easiest ones:
Yes, I’ve mentioned that sexist jokes are the best way in earning a death wish with me. Let’s not go there, shall we? Too disgusting.
Another thing is about my weight. I mean, I’m not stupid that you need to remind me all the time. I know what I look like. I have the mirror and know how to use it like most people do.
Once or twice, I can still let that slide. If you use that joke every time we meet – whether just for kicks or some serious intention in embarrassing me in public? Then it’s just a matter of ‘when’ before I decide to stop hanging out with you, like…at all. Why?
I no longer find you worth my time nor attention, that’s all. I don’t need shallow, small-minded people who think that they’re doing me a favour by constantly insulting me that way.
If you’re secretly insecure, I hope you’re smart enough to find other healthier ways to tackle that. Just leave me out of this. I’m not friends with people like you just to be your emotional punching bag. I’ve got better things to do.
I need to keep my close circle clean.
My point is, don’t use this expression as a mere excuse to get away with your big mouth. Believe me, people can tell the difference. They’re not as daft as you might always believe.
If they get angry over your stupid jokes, then perhaps they’re entitled to do so and you probably deserve it. Deal with it. After all, words bear consequences.
Actually, I wanted to add “No offense” as the third expression on this list, but I changed my mind.
I know I’m serious and temperamental. I’m not going to pretend to be funny just to get people to like me more. This is me. Take it or leave it.
No worries, this doesn’t mean I want to be too hard on other people. I’m not that cruel and I still find that exhausting too. I’ll probably just keep quiet and ignore you when I’m not in the mood.
Consider yourself lucky if that’s my reaction to your stupid jokes. Other days, I might make you cry…and I don’t want that to happen way too often.
By the way, you’re welcome to enlighten me.