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Lately, it seems that every conversation I have, the person on the other end of the line has to say…”To Be Honest”. It’s said with an interesting undertone. Some say it when they want to share a secret and some say it when they’re trying to prove that they’re being open and upfront.
The moment I hear these words though, an internal alarm starts to go off. I feel that the next words that are going to come out of this person’s mouth are not very honest.
When you have to say that you’re being honest, I start to think that the rest of the conversation was a lie. Why would you need to preface a sentence with these words?
I know I’m being pedantic. The phrase is something people say as a figure of speech. But, it’s slowly become a pet peeve of mine.
I would imagine that the phrase has come about as a twist on the phrase “to be frank”. While “frank” means “honest” but, I feel it has been stretched out of context. I think what people really mean to say is that they are being direct.
I do enjoy how language has evolved over time especially in speech. I myself must have a dozen instances of incorrect usage. Sometimes we pick up words & phrases, using them in a manner that we think is right. Ultimately, it may mean a completely different thing. But, as a friend of mine once told me… “As long as you understand what I’m trying to say, why does it matter if I use the phrase incorrectly?”
To be honest, it probably doesn’t matter.