HAS your nemesis just revealed they’ve been given an ample pay rise or tricked some hapless moron into marrying them? Put on a brave face with these coping strategies:
Pretend you already knew
You can’t let them see the dawning pain in your eyes so make out that a mutual acquaintance already gave you the news, and you’re bored of it. Their sour expression as they attempt to conceal their disappointment gives you at least a soupçon of revenge.
An understated, unbothered reaction is the last thing your bête noir wants, so a single ‘cool’ will curdle their triumph. On paper you haven’t done anything wrong, but you both know you’ve essentially said ‘I couldn’t give less of a shit.’
Remind them it’s not that much once you deduct tax
‘Won’t that affect your tax band?’ will take their simple joy down a peg or two. If you see vulnerability, don’t hesitate to run the numbers right then and there. If their news is nothing to do with money, this is a great way to show that you weren’t listening.
Picture them in an accident
Keep it light to begin with, maybe a bird shitting on their head or their car getting keyed. If their good fortune continues scale it up to something more hardcore, like falling down the stairs while carrying a basket of rusty knives.
Punch them on the arm
Thumping someone while saying ‘Good for!’ is societally acceptable because it not only communicates simmering resentment, it also blows off steam under the guise of camaraderie. Remember: throw the punch with your whole body, not just the shoulder or the arm, to inflict maximum pain.