8

There is a man who projects an attitude of "the things you like are so boring." He isn't really mean about it. He just doesn't care about things that are important to me. What words could I use to describe him?

  • 9
    I thought about it for a few seconds, but decided I didn't really care about your problem. – Hot Licks Jan 9 '15 at 1:25
  • 3
    You'll have to forgive him Good A.M., it's the apathy of the elderly. Hot Licks is very, very old - almost venerable. – user98990 Jan 9 '15 at 1:49
  • 1
    @GoodA.M: You can either search from top right corner or you check related questions when you typed the title of your question. Also, you can include your research to your question and mention words that do not fit. Based on your additional comment, self-regarding came to my mind, meaning concerned about only one's own interest. Is it what you are looking for? – ermanen Jan 9 '15 at 2:19
  • 2
    You could say that I'm pretty self-centered. – Hot Licks Jan 9 '15 at 2:44
  • 1
    Good AM, in the first @ermanen comment, the reddish text is a link to the question that is related to this question. english.stackexchange.com/questions/125868/… Your OP seems to be closer to his not caring about you. – ScotM Jan 9 '15 at 15:26

13 Answers 13

10
+200

Cavalier comes to mind, especially if he seems to consider himself better than you.

Showing a lack of proper concern; offhand:

Etymology:

cavalier (adj.) "disdainful," 1650s,

from cavalier (n.).

Earlier it meant "gallant" (1640s).

cavalier (n.)

1580s, from Italian cavalliere "mounted soldier, knight; gentleman serving as a lady's escort,"

from Late Latin caballarius "horseman," f

rom Vulgar Latin caballus, the common Vulgar Latin word for "horse" (and source of Italian cavallo, French cheval, Spanish caballo, Irish capall, Welsh ceffyl), displacing Latin equus (see equine).

Sense advanced in 17c. to "knight," then "courtly gentleman" (but also, pejoratively, "swaggerer"), which led to the adjectival senses, especially "disdainful" (1650s). Meaning "Royalist adherent of Charles I" is from 1641. Meaning "one who devotes himself solely to attendance on a lady" is from 1817, roughly translating Italian cavaliere-servente. In classical Latin caballus was "work horse, pack horse," sometimes, disdainfully, "hack, nag." "Not a native Lat. word (as the second -a- would show), though the source of the borrowing is uncertain" [Tucker]. Perhaps from some Balkan or Anatolian language, and meaning, originally, "gelding." The same source is thought to have yielded Old Church Slavonic kobyla.

The progression of meaning from gallant, a possible opposite of this man's attitude, to disdainful, a synonym of cavalier, reflects the class tensions that grew between the aristocracy and the common man during the Age of Enlightenment. Since he

"isn't really mean about it"

this dual implication may capture the essence of débonaire disdain or putting on airs (OED air 2.1).

  • 6
    Or it's synonyms: offhand, indifferent, casual, dismissive, insouciant, unconcerned. If I cared I would say that "insouciant" is probably the best choice. – Hot Licks Jan 9 '15 at 1:27
  • If you threw insouciant into an answer, you might get a green check mark, but that would indicate you care ;) – ScotM Jan 9 '15 at 1:45
  • 3
    If I cared I would have spelled "it's" correctly. – Hot Licks Jan 9 '15 at 1:48
  • 1
    This word seems to bark up the right tree, and gives me a good place to start in the thesaurus. Interestingly enough, he can be a gallant fellow when he needs to be. – Good A.M. Jan 9 '15 at 22:01
  • 1
    It seems only appropriate for a cavalier to bark horsily up a tree. – Erik Kowal Mar 15 '15 at 8:38
17

He's indifferent to your concerns.

(Once upon a time we could use insensitive here while remaining relatively neutral, but the fact that people generally don't like other people being insensitive to them led it to acquire a strongly negative nuance).

  • 3
    I prefer 'indifferent' to 'cavalier' for this purpose. 'Cavalier' has a connotation of recklessness to it, as in the 'cavalier use of power'. Indifferent suggests something more akin to what the OP appears to be after - your concerns don't enter his mind at all; they are invisible to him. – pyrAmider Mar 15 '15 at 18:54
  • 1
    @pyrAmider oh, cavalier would be wrong entirely; not even close. – Jon Hanna Mar 18 '15 at 11:27
5

Nonchalant

Google definition:

adjective
(of a person or manner) feeling or appearing casually calm and relaxed; not displaying anxiety, interest, or enthusiasm.
"she gave a nonchalant shrug"

  • 1
    I think this is the best choice which is very similar to the answer I was going to give: Lackadaisical, so I decided to give you an up vote instead. – SUM GUY Mar 12 '15 at 18:52
5

"Uninterested" can be used as a general description of an individual, without reference to any specific topic of potential interest.

And "ennuyé" is a useful French word which has acquired some currency in English (cp. "ingénue"); it describes someone affected by "ennui", a condition which indicates a more general and profound level of boredom than the English word "bored".

Or how about "dismissive"?

  • Dismissive approaches what I have in my mind. – Good A.M. Jan 9 '15 at 23:21
2

Apathetic or passive? http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/apathetic

I think apathetic fits the most.

  • Passive does not describe this man in any way, and apathetic seems a bit too broad, because he cares deeply about his affairs. – Good A.M. Jan 9 '15 at 22:00
2

Callous is a great word for someone who does not consider your feelings.

1

There are 2 words that most appeal to me regarding this annoying attitude -especially from students when I'm in the middle of a passionate lecture: insouciant and phlegmatic (as opposed to phlegmish which is spelled Flemish). I prefer phlegmatic also because it conurs up its origin in the yellowish color of a person's complexion when acting with such insulting indifference.

  • phlegmatic seems too general, and I'm still having a hard time wrapping my head around insouciant. – Good A.M. Jan 9 '15 at 23:25
1

disinterested, apathetic adjective: Describes a noun or pronoun--for example, "a tall girl," "an interesting book," "a big house."

  • 3
    It appears that you have given the definition for the word "adjective", not for the adjectives that you are actually suggesting as possible answers.... – Hellion Jan 9 '15 at 18:25
1

From the OED

haughty /ˈhɔːti/

Arrogantly superior and disdainful

a look of haughty disdain

a haughty British aristocrat

1

blasé

/bläˈzā/ Pronunciation

Unimpressed or indifferent to something because one has experienced or seen it so often before.

He is quite blasé about the fact that 2015 is the year where Back to the Future happens in the first movie.

0

uninspired

  1. Characterized by a lack of excitement or liveliness; unexciting or uninteresting: a team playing uninspired baseball. See Synonyms at dull.

  2. Lacking or done without inspiration or enthusiasm: a competent but uninspired student.

  • He is uninspired by you.

  • He finds you utterly uninspiring.

0

This man sounds quite condescending.

:Having or showing a feeling of patronizing superiority.

0

What you seem to be saying sounds more, to me, like one of:

Aloof (Page: 42)

A*loof", adv. [Pref. a- + loof, fr. D. loef luff, and so meaning, as a nautical word, to the windward. See Loof, Luff.]

  1. At or from a distance, but within view, or at a small distance; apart; away.

    Our palace stood aloof from streets. Dryden.

  2. Without sympathy; unfavorably.

    To make the Bible as from the hand of God, and then to look at it aloof and with caution, is the worst of all impieties. I. Taylor.

Distant (Page: 434)

Dis"tant (?), a. [F., fr. L. distans, -antis, p. pr. of distare to stand apart, be separate or distant; dis- + stare to stand. See Stand.] ... 3. Reserved or repelling in manners; cold; not cordial; somewhat haughty; as, a distant manner. He passed me with a distant bow. Goldsmith.

Disinterested (Page: 426)

Disin"terest*ed, a. [Cf. Disinteressed.] Not influenced by regard to personal interest or advantage; free from selfish motive; having no relation of interest or feeling; not biased or prejudiced; as, a disinterested decision or judge.

The happiness of disinterested sacrifices. Channing.

Syn. -- Unbiased; impartial; uninterested; indifferent.

(Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913))

"Disinterested" in the sense of having no relation of interest or feeling applies. I prefer "aloof".

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.