Today I was sitting at my local coffee place, Joe, listening in on the next table. Because I do that. This woman said to her friend, “You’re so lucky. You have such perfect hair.” Perfect Hair Lady smiled in a guilty way, like she was feeling sorry for those with less fortunate hair. She touched her bouncy curls and said, “I know. I’m blessed.”
Now why couldn’t she have said, “It’s true. I am lucky”? Why did she switch from “lucky” to “blessed”? This drives me nuts. I hear it all the freakin’ blessed time. Most often from celebrities.
Take Chace Crawford, on his looks: “I’m blessed. I have a beautiful mother and a beautiful father…”
Or Jessica Simpson, on creating her own brand of luggage and bedding in addition to comfy jeans, and, of course, excellent pop music: “I’m blessed to have so many ways to express myself.”
Why. Why? I find “blessed” to be so pompous when “lucky” will do just as well. When you’re a kid, you say, “You get to go to Six Flags for your birthday? Lucky!!”
Right? You don’t say, “Six Flags! You’re so blessed!”
So what makes grown people say it so much? Isn’t “lucky” totally sufficient to express that you had no hand in creating your awesomeness? “I’m lucky to have this comfortable duplex” is perfectly good code for, “I’m grateful that I live in a mad crib with sub-zero kitchen appliances, which I own not because I’m better and smarter than you, but because of pure chance.”
I think people see “blessed” as a more self-effacing way of putting it. It’s something that a humble nun might say: “I’m blessed to have this clean wimple, Sister.” But really, it adds a self-centered twist. It implies, “I have what I have because God was smiling on me.”
Would you ever say “We were blessed to find a parking spot”? Yeah, me neither. God, or the Universe, or whatever force is out there is probably not thinking about where you put your car. So why would you think He/She/It gave any thought to your talent? Or how great your friends are?
I’m lucky to have super friends. Not blessed. Blessed should be saved for things you’d pray for, like surviving a hideous and fatal disease. “I’m so blessed to be alive after that bout with Ebola.”
Maybe people use it because “lucky” feels too flip. Like you don’t appreciate your perfect hair, or your starring roles in box-office hits like “Marley and Me.” (You know Jennifer Aniston thinks she’s “blessed,” for sure.)
Or maybe it’s because “lucky” is always paired with negatives. No one ever says “you blessed bastard” or “blessed dog” or “blessed shit” or “blessed sonofamotherf-cker”.
You tell me. Fill in the blanks and let me know which word you picked, lucky or blessed.
- Boy am I _____ not to have cavities after eating gobstoppers all year.
- I’m ______ to have a career that I love.
- Do you know how ______ you are that you got to hang out with Vanilla Ice?
- I’m so _______ to be sleeping with a hottie.
- We got really _______ at the craps table.
How’d you do? Were you compelled to fill in more than one blank with “blessed”? If that’s what you put for #5, we probably can’t hang.
But either way, thank you for visiting this blog. To have readers like you, I am one blessed bitch.