Right then, ladies and gentleman, riddle me this.
I spent the long Easter weekend at a general science fiction / fantasy convention. As it is very much the flavour du jour, there were a lot of Steampunks out and about at the Con, and I myself pretty much exclusively wore Steampunk. Most of my outfits had hats. And most of my hat-accompanied outfits had some cleavage. Interestingly, when I was showing cleavage, men would compliment my hat. Even men who weren't dressing Steampunk. Even men who were working at the hotel where the Con was had. Saying things such as "What a lovely hat." "Ma'am, I have to say I admire your hat." "My, your hat is quite charming." These were men ... generally not steampunk men ... complimenting my hat.
Intriguingly, they weren't always looking at my hat ... or looking me in the eye, for that matter.
I posit that, if you are staring at my cleavage and complimenting my hat ... you are not really admiring my hat.
So, I am wondering, has "I must compliment you on your lovely hat" become a euphemism for the less politically-correct, "My what lovely cleavage you have"?
Chapeau-Curious in Canada