'That’s what you’re wearing is it?': Six sick burns from mother to teenager

COMEDIANS slapping down hecklers have got nothing on a mum’s cutting comments. You’ll be familiar with these from your adolescence:

‘That’s what you’re wearing, is it?’

Diplomats would struggle to find phrasing so neatly balanced. A direct criticism can’t be pinned down, but it’s enough to sow the seeds of doubt so that, enraged, you’ll change your outfit anyway. Or else be paranoid all night about how you look. Either way, she wins.

‘I couldn’t possibly eat a portion that big’

Another masterstroke in psychological warfare. It sounds like she’s criticising herself, when she’s actually telling you you’re being a greedy pig. Bonus points to her for passing on her lifelong unhealthy relationship with food and dieting.

‘I’m not saying anything’

Interchangeable with a pointed look, this one can be deployed in almost any situation from messing up train times to spilling a cup of tea to introducing her to a romantic partner. It roughly translates to ‘you’re a f**king idiot’ and, frustratingly, most of the time she’s right.

‘You’re just like your father’

An efficient choice which neatly transposes any criticisms she’s made of your dad over to you in a handful of words. Given that she regularly calls him a ‘useless ham-fisted lump’, it’s pretty clear that this is thinly veiled abuse.

‘Almost as good as your sister’s’

Whether it’s academic achievement or something more pedestrian like baking a cake, your mum loves to compare you to your sibling and find you less impressive. She does it the other way round too, leading to a lifetime of resentment instigated purely for your mum’s entertainment.

‘Stop making a scene’

The death blow. When she’s inevitably angered you to the point of retaliation she can effortlessly deflect it back onto you by suggesting you’re being hysterical. The only comfort for you is that you’ve learned from the best and can take it out on your future children.

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Football? Never heard of it, says Arsenal fan

A MAN who up until yesterday was an ardent Arsenal fan is now feigning ignorance about the sport of football as a whole.

Wayne Hayes’s sudden football-specific memory loss coincides with Arsenal’s punishing 4-1 defeat to Man City last night, an event which he also claims to have no knowledge of whatsoever.

He said: “Foot… ball? No, you’ve lost me, sorry. Is it a new thing?

“I’m sure it’s very fun, whatever it is, but I’ve simply never come across it. I’m guessing it’s a niche pastime that not many people are into, otherwise I probably would’ve heard of it.

“Take yesterday evening for example. I went to bed nice and early, did a spot of reading, and didn’t stay up late crying over the fact that the Gunner’s hopes of becoming Premier League champions continued to slip away.

“As I’ve already outlined, I don’t know what any of those words mean. So stop coming up to me with a shit-eating grin and asking me about last night’s game. Please. I beg you.”

Friend Tom Booker said: “I should probably tell Wayne to change out of that tear-stained Arsenal shirt, but maybe it’s too soon. He needs time to mourn.”