E.g. Someone says "You smell bad!" but in a cheerful/positive tone, usually for being funny or sarcastic.

The exact words are negative, it's just the body gesture/facial expression/tone being cheerful/positive in a mismatching way.

I'm also looking for a verb form of it, describing the action of expressing the negative meaning with such a manner. E.g. A:"You smell bad!"(in a cheerful manner) B:"Uh, you're ____ it."

  • 1
    I think "facetious" works well as an adjective and "mask" as a verb.
    – vickyace
    May 29, 2016 at 12:37
  • If you can’t find a single word for the verb, you could consider “Uh, you’re sending [me] mixed signals.”
    – Papa Poule
    May 29, 2016 at 15:49

2 Answers 2


Perhaps it is facetious, defined by oed as

Treating serious issues with deliberately inappropriate humour.


Try mask, defined by Merriam Webster under synonym discussion

Suggests some often obvious means of hiding or disguising somethin.

A- you smell bad!

B- uh! You're masking it (with your demeanor)

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