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  • Vanessa: Hi.

  • I'm Vanessa from SpeakEnglishWithVanessa.com I hope you'll like this lesson.

  • But if you don't, here are some ways you can tell me you don't like it politely.

  • Let's get started.

  • One of the most important speaking tools is how to be polite.

  • But, it's easy to be polite when you're having a good time, when you're happy.

  • It's a little bit harder to be polite when you're upset, you're angry, or maybe you don't

  • like something.

  • There's a famous proverb, and maybe it's the same in your country, if you don't have something

  • nice to say, don't say anything at all.

  • I think every parent or teacher has said this a million times.

  • But the truth is sometimes we need to say something negative.

  • Sometimes you have to say that you don't like something or you didn't have a good experience.

  • So today, I'm here to help you politely talk about something negative.

  • We're going to talk about 20 expressions that politely mean I don't like it without actually

  • saying those words.

  • I thought about this lesson topic because I live in the South, and it's really typical

  • to hear a Southern woman say, "Bless your heart."

  • This sounds like a positive thing, right?

  • They're blessing you.

  • But don't be fooled.

  • This is coded Southern language.

  • It really means, "Oh, you're not so smart."

  • So for example, if I give a Southern woman some cookies that I made, and really those

  • cookies are awful, she might say to me, "Oh, you made these?

  • Bless your heart."

  • It means that you're a nice person, but you're not so smart, especially when it comes to

  • cooking.

  • Now, I don't recommend you use this expression, bless your heart.

  • This is only for people who were born in the South of the US.

  • I live in the South, but I was born in the North, so I feel like I can't even use this

  • expression.

  • But I wanted to share this with you because sometimes negative language is coded and seems

  • like it's positive.

  • So I hope that the expressions that you learned today will help you to be aware of what other

  • people are saying, maybe they're saying negative things and you don't even know it, and also

  • to help you use this kind of indirect language to be more polite.

  • So let's get started with the first five expressions about how to talk about something that you

  • don't really like.

  • Let's imagine a situation that maybe happened to me.

  • All right.

  • Let's imagine that you go to a play with your friend.

  • Let's say your friend's name is Sam.

  • You're going to go see a play with your friend Sam because your other friend, Sherry, is

  • in the play.

  • She's acting in the play.

  • And really, the play is awful.

  • You don't understand it.

  • It doesn't make any sense.

  • The plot, the characters, the scenery, the story, nothing about it is what you like.

  • This is pretty tough.

  • Maybe after the play when you talk with Sherry, you probably tell a white lie and say, "Oh,

  • thank you for inviting me.

  • It was nice to see what you're working on."

  • You don't need to tell her the absolute truth about what you think.

  • But when you talk with your friend Sam, who you went to see the play with, how could you

  • talk about your true feelings for this in kind of a polite way, but also showing that

  • you didn't really like it?

  • Well, you could say, "It was... interesting.

  • It was... eye-opening.

  • It was... different.

  • It was... an experience."

  • Do you notice with all four of these sentences I'm using kind of positive words, interesting,

  • eye-opening, different, and experience?

  • But there is one thing all of these sentences have in common, a little pause.

  • This is key.

  • It was... interesting.

  • If you say, "Oh yeah, it was interesting."

  • Totally different meaning.

  • There's no pause.

  • The inflection in your voice is very upbeat and positive.

  • But if you say, "It was... interesting.

  • It was... eye-opening," with a little pause, it is completely different.

  • It means it was not interesting, it was not eye-opening.

  • Maybe it was different, but in a bad way.

  • It was an experience that I don't want to have again.

  • This is a coded language with a little pause to tell your friend Sam, "I didn't like it,"

  • but you're not telling him that directly.

  • And you know what?

  • Sam will understand exactly what you mean.

  • If you said that to me, "It was... eye-opening," I will understand exactly what you mean.

  • I'll understand that it wasn't your type of play.

  • You didn't like the plot, the characters.

  • But you want to still be polite.

  • You don't want to say, "Ugh, that was terrible.

  • That was the worst two hours of my life."

  • Maybe you don't want to tell me that.

  • So instead, you'll use one of these paused expressions.

  • You might hear these kind of pauses used with other positive words, but I feel like these

  • four are probably the most common that you'll hear.

  • You might hear this in TV shows and movies.

  • And I hope you can use it too when you experience something that maybe you don't really like.

  • If you want to be a little bit more direct, you could add to the end of those sentences

  • if you know what I mean.

  • So you might say, "It was... an experience, if you know what I mean."

  • This is much more direct.

  • You're telling him, "Hey, it wasn't a good experience.

  • This is coded language, if you know what I mean."

  • It's kind of like you're sharing a little inside secret.

  • So if you add this to the end of your sentence or if you hear someone else say that, it means

  • what you heard is not exactly what I mean.

  • I mean something different.

  • There's another underlying meaning here.

  • It was... eye-opening, if you know what I mean.

  • Wow.

  • My eyes were open to all of the terrible plays in the world.

  • You're not saying those directly negative sentences, but it's helping your coded sentence

  • be a little bit more direct.

  • Now let's go on to talk about 13 ways that you can say I don't want it or I don't like

  • it in a polite way.

  • Almost all of these sentences can be turned to be positive as well.

  • Let's imagine this situation that happens to me all the time.

  • Let's imagine you go to a restaurant with a friend and your friend orders a beer and

  • says, "Want to try it?"

  • So you take a little sip, but you don't like it.

  • How can you express that to your friend without saying, "I can't believe what you're drinking.

  • That's so gross.

  • How could you drink that?"

  • Maybe that's what you're thinking.

  • So how can you say it a little bit more politely with also telling them, "I don't like it"?

  • You can say, "I'm not really into it."

  • In this sentence, it is the beer.

  • I'm not really into this beer.

  • If there's something plural, maybe there's a music group that your friend wants you to

  • listen to and you don't like them, you could say, "I'm not really into them."

  • You can change that last pronoun.

  • Why did I add really here?

  • I'm not really into it.

  • Well, this helps actually to scale it back, to be a little bit less strong.

  • It means, well, I don't hate it, but I don't love it.

  • Maybe you really hate it, but you want to just make it a little bit less strong.

  • You can add really to almost all of these sentences that we're about to talk about.

  • You could also say, "I'm not really crazy about it," or just, "I'm not crazy about it.

  • I'm not really crazy about it.

  • I'm not crazy about it," or, "That's not for me.

  • That's not really for me."

  • That's not really for me makes it a little bit less strong.

  • I'm not really a big fan of that beer.

  • I'm not really a big fan of it.

  • Or we can make this sentence positive and say, "I'm a big fan of that beer.

  • I'm definitely going to get some," or you might say a simple sentence, "I'll pass."

  • Make sure you use this hand gesture.

  • You're kind of waving a little bit.

  • I'll pass.

  • You're kind of pushing it aside, and it just shows I'll pass.

  • Thanks anyway.

  • I'm not going to get my own.

  • Thanks.

  • I'll pass.

  • The next sentence you have to be careful your tone of voice.

  • Let's say you take a sip of the beer and they say, "Oh, do you want me to get you one?"

  • You could say, "I've had enough of it.

  • I've had enough of it."

  • Do you see my tone of voice here?

  • I'm not saying this in an angry way.

  • You could say this if you were really angry.

  • I've had enough of it.

  • I can't believe this is still happening.

  • You could say it in a really angry way.

  • Or if you're just saying, "I don't want you to order me this beer because I don't like

  • it," you can say it in a lighter way.

  • "I've had enough of it.

  • One sip was enough for me.

  • I've had enough of it."

  • The next four sentences have a similar sentence construction, so we're going to put them together.

  • You could say, "It's not up my alley."

  • Or we could add that word really.

  • "It's not really up my alley, so I'm not going to get that beer."

  • You could make this sentence positive, "Yeah, that's kind of up my alley.

  • I think I might get it," if you really like something.

  • It's not my cup of tea.

  • It's not really my cup of tea, so I'm not going to get that.

  • It's kind of a little odd here because our example is about beer and this example, this

  • phrase, uses tea.

  • So maybe for beer this might be a little bit odd to use.

  • But let's say you have another experience.

  • You're listening to some music that a friend wants you to listen to, and you don't really

  • like it.

  • You might use this.

  • It's not really my cup of tea, so I think I'm not going to listen to them again.

  • With this expression, you can say, "That's my cup of tea," if you like something.

  • But really, we hardly ever use this.

  • You might hear people use this, but I don't really recommend it.

  • It's grammatically fine.

  • I'm sure you'll hear occasionally some people use this, but you'll most likely hear this

  • in the negative sense.

  • That's not really my cup of tea, so I'm not going to do it.

  • That's not really my cup of tea.

  • That's not my thing.

  • That's not really my thing.

  • The same as the previous sentence, you can say, "That's my thing," but we hardly ever

  • use this in the positive form.

  • You're most likely to hear this, and I hope you're most likely to use this, in a negative

  • form.

  • That beer, nah, that's not my thing.

  • It's not my style.

  • It's not my jam.

  • It's not really my style.

  • It's not really my jam.

  • These two are slang expressions.

  • So if you're talking about something casual, this is fine to use.

  • That's not my style doesn't mean it has to be about clothing.

  • Could just be a type of thing.

  • Not really my style of beer.

  • That's not really my style of thing.

  • I'm not a big fan of it.

  • Let's imagine that situation where your friend lets you drink their beer and they've been

  • talking about how amazing it is.

  • "Oh, I can't wait to go to this restaurant for you to try this beer.

  • It's just mind-blowing.

  • It's incredible."

  • Well, you don't want to disappoint your friend.

  • But if you don't like it, you probably need to tell them in some way so that you don't

  • have to drink a lot of it, you could say, "It doesn't really do anything for me."

  • This sentence is very cryptic.

  • It doesn't really do anything for me.

  • We kind of get this image of fireworks.

  • If it did something for you, that means that you feel fireworks inside of you.

  • You're so excited about it.

  • But really, this beer is nothing special to you.

  • So you could say, "It doesn't do anything for me," or, "It doesn't really do anything

  • for me."

  • You could say, "I don't really care for it.

  • I don't really care for it.

  • I know you really like it, but, yeah, it's just not my thing.

  • I don't really care for it."

  • If that beer is an imperial stout, a really heavy beer, you might say, "Yeah, I'm not

  • really an imperial stout person," or, "I'm not really a beer person."

  • This is describing in general your character.

  • I'm not really a dog person.

  • I'm not really a cat person.

  • I'm not really ... You could put almost any category in there.

  • I'm not really a grammar person.

  • I'd rather just watch movies and listen to English in a more natural, fun way.

  • I'm not really a person.

  • I hope you enjoyed these 20 expressions to help you be more polite in negative situations.

  • So now I have a question for you.

  • Imagine that we're going to a restaurant and I offer you my beer, or wine, or tea, or coffee

  • and you don't like it.

  • Which one of these polite expressions can you use to help me feel like, okay, you're

  • not being rude, but I understand how you feel.

  • You don't like it, and you're just trying to be polite about it.

  • Which one of these would you like to use?

  • Write it down in the comments.

  • Thanks so much for learning English with me.