"Oh, I Can't Complain"

Submitted by Matt Birkenhauer

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

"Oh, I can't complain." As a stock response (what linguists sometimes call an example of "phatic" communication), I find this phrase really annoying for two reasons 1) It's not true because you CAN complain, if something shitty is going on in your life. And you probably should complain, as long as you don't go on too long about it and bore your listener. 2) If "Oh, I can't complain" is the most positive thing you can say about your life at any one time, I think you need either an attitude adjustment or a change of perspective.

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