“You Look Like A Russian Mobster” and Other Compliments

In some ways I feel like I do set myself up for some strange compliments. In other ways, people are just rude. Actually, most of it is people are just rude. Anyway, I frequently get weird compliments. Not just internet stranger weird either! It’s not that I have the most stand-out fashion or take a lot of risks, but I typically am dressed up. Even when the occasion is to dress up. My friends frequently ask me to define what I am wearing when I say “casual” because they need to know if it’s legit casual or Alissa-casual. My best friend has even pleaded with me to not dress up for brunch because she wasn’t about to put in the energy to match “casual.”

Dress: C/O Modcloth (wearing a large) / Lipstick: Exact / Shoes: Almost Exact
Photos by Madison Photography

Blogging hasn’t helped. Being overdressed is a requirement for putting your thoughts on the internet. I think it started with Carrie Bradshaw.

Anyway, enter me wearing this dress at work. Just trying to mind my own business, advancing my career one day at a time. Innocently wearing things that make me happy. Also picture that I am on a video conference call for seven hours. A very, very important video conference call. All day long I was cut into a terrible thumbnail, I now know. At the end of it, everyone goes around and the leader of the call says thank you to everyone. We hang up. I run to the bathroom because, well, video conference calls limit that, and come back. The incredibly well-meaning manager of the meeting came to me and said, “You look like a Russian mobster on the call today.”


Dress: C/O Modcloth (wearing a large) / Lipstick: Exact / Shoes: Almost Exact

I looked at him, under the influence of just seeing Atomic Blonde and said, “I’ll take a Stoli on ice, two cubes.”

However, the entire office heard that comment and decided to weigh in on what I looked like. Of course, all of them said they were said in love. Naturally. But it was then that I was told I looked like a Russian mobster, confirmed x 2. Next was a Russian nesting doll. Now that one I actually could see. I took all of these as compliments because what else are you supposed to do? Clearly everyone felt the freedom to comment on what I was wearing.


Dress: C/O Modcloth (wearing a large) / Lipstick: Exact / Shoes: Almost Exact

This whole thing got me thinking about compliments. What is the weirdest backhanded or general compliment you have gotten? And those, “You look good but would look better if you….” do not count. Those are just insults and we need to stop pretending they have any intention of meaning well. They do not. If they meant well, they would just say you look good. I’m fascinated by the freedom people feel to comment on someones attire. Oh and read this while you’re thinking about compliments.

But whatever, I embraced it. I do look a little Russian here. AND THAT IS TOTALLY FINE WITH ME! They have like all those line dances and other stuff I can’t think of but I’m sure are good. So for now, me and my Russian mobster self are going to continue to be over-dressed and take all the compliments we get.