As if

Posted by R. Berg on April 28, 2002

In Reply to: As if posted by Word Camel on April 28, 2002

: : The exact meaning of "As if" (as a phrase in it's own right, not with anything following it) rather baffles me. Can anyone give me an explanation and examples of how it's used?

: I am not sure what the whole of the original phrase was but it means something is literally unimaginable. So one person might say "You forgot my birthday" and the other replies "As if!" short for "As if I'd forget your birthday!"

: There are probably people here who can explain it better than I can, but that's my understanding of meaning.

"In your dreams!" is used in a similar way. I believe a rough equivalent of either is "You're straying from reality."

"I heard you got a promotion. Your salary must have doubled, huh?"
"As if!"

Both expressions are current among people younger than I. Maybe one of those newer, cooler speakers will step forward to correct any misimpressions.