Dear Queenie,

What do you say to someone who is showing off something new, like clothes or a piece of jewelry or whatever, and you think it’s just plain ugly or vulgar or cheap?

Queenie, are you supposed to lie to spare their feelings?—Etty Ket

Dear Etty Ket,

Remember that old saying, “If you cannot say something nice, do not say anything at all”?

But usually you can find something nice to say, like the clothes fit well or are a pretty colour, or the jewellery really sparkles or shines in that light, or the cheap whatever-it-is must have been a real bargain.

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