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Sarcasm A Dangerous Tool

Do you ever get angry when someone doesn't seem to understand your meaning? Is your reply tinged with sarcasm as a form of criticism? Well, it all starts with the way we communicate. When I find myself using sarcasm to make a point, I immediately can read the hurt on my partner's face. This form of conversation can elicit an angry reply, or even a more sarcastic comment in revenge.

Some sarcasm can be funny and can even turn a fretful conversation around by introducing laughter. But the sarcasm used must have an element of self-deprecation in order not to feel like a criticism. As the recipient of sarcasm, it doesn't pay to be too sensitive until you know where the conversation is going.

All sarcasms contain nasty barbs that hurt much more than intended. When I find myself talking sarcastically, I try to save the situation with an apology, but without a follow up explanation, the apology could fall on deaf ears.If you know someone who is very sensitive to criticism or sarcastic comments, they can provide a wonderful opportunity to sharpen your own sensitivity. Careful observation of their facial expressions and the way they react to your statements will tell you all you need to know. I ask myself, "Was my comment necessary?" and "Was the hidden barb deserved?" Most people take daily conversation at face value. When sarcasm is introduced, it takes valuable time for the victim to decide whether the comment is humor or whether it was meant as stated.

When I attempt to retract the sarcasm, I found that the damage had been already done, and now I have to live with the result. If I want the mood to remain light and happy, I have to remind myself to talk straight, say what I mean, and at the same time show my partner that I care what they think. My favorite sarcastic comment was made by Jack E. Leonard when he reacted to Zsa Zsa Gabor's entrance in a low-cut gown. He said, "That's a beautiful gown you almost have on.".

.Retired portrait photographer. What do you think?.

By: Kenneth C. Hoffman

Mahogany Wood

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