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Time to get my snark on . . .

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Posted: Friday, November 19, 2010 3:08 pm | Updated: 3:16 pm, Fri Nov 19, 2010.

Since I've been playing nice for a couple of weeks, it's time to get my rant on. It's been a rough week and I gotta vent.

The topic today is "Stupid Responses"

Let's jump right in, shall we?

1. When someone says "How's it going?" they typically are asking how your day is treating you, maybe how your project is moving along . . . something of that nature. Stupid response: "It's going." - WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? It means you're too ambivalent about your own life to formulate a real answer. This answer is the equivalent of a non-answer in that the person isn't invested at all in how their day is going. Might as just make some grunting noises or say nothing. It's less annoying.

2. When someone says "How are you?" They're usually inquiring about your state of mind, your health, your basic well-being. One would assume. Some people respond to this question with "Well, I'm here." - I DIDN'T ASK YOUR LOCATION YOU MORON!! Have the courtesy to respond to a question regarding your well-being with an appropriate answer - even if it's not a positive response - make the effort. If you feel lousy, be honest. Maybe you'll get a pass on a tough assignment or at least the offer of something to make you feel better.

And the flip side if this coin: If you ask someone how they're doing, make eye contact and stop moving long enough to get a response. It is, after all, a question. Wait for an answer. Show interest. Otherwise don't ask, because you really don't care how they're doing.

3. When did the gracious act of saying "Thank You" become so insignificant that the common response has ceased to be "You're Welcome?" More often than not, you'll hear "No Problem," or "De Nada," or . . . one of my favorite non sequiturs: "No worries." If you did someone a favor and they feel grateful enough to thank you, take the high road and tell them they're welcome. You were glad to do them a favor and would gladly do it again. By saying "No problem," you've essentially told them that if it were a problem, you wouldn't have done the favor or bought the gift, or whatever. That's why people thank other people for whatever the thing is: It's something you did for them.

Now, if you don't intend to ever do another favor for this person, by all means, don't say "You're Welcome." That would be a lie and you would be a hypocrite. In this case, when they say "Thank You," you can reply with "Yeah, well, that'll never happen again, so don't bother asking!"

And they probably won't.

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • Maggie Creamer posted at 11:59 am on Sat, Nov 20, 2010.

    Maggie Creamer Posts: 43 Staff

    I totally agree on the "no problem." At Christmas every year, my dad and I discuss our displeasure with this term when invariably our waitress says it. It makes me remember to not use it since it's such prevalent response.

  • posted at 4:45 pm on Fri, Nov 19, 2010.


    Okay, I'm guilty of the "Its going..." Meaning that's probably the best part of that particular day is that it is going...away.
    I'm agreeing 100% on the "No problem". If I thought shopping at the XYZ store was a problem, I would go somewhere else. I would go to the ABC store which is in Maui and they always respond to thank you with Mahalo. A universal greeting that says "You ae welcome to come in, put your feet up and set a spell. You are our guest." Mmmmm...Maui......

  • Jim Anger posted at 4:20 pm on Fri, Nov 19, 2010.

    Jim Anger Posts: 89

    Very good rant Drools! There are ways to intercept those "non answers"...Here! Let me share: When you say "Thank You", you can instantly neutralize that irritating "no problem" response if you say "Thank You...you huge freakish problem!" Try it! - It works EVERY time.
    Also...try completing each sentence with the phrase "underneath the sheets" See if THAT doesn't stop the mundane "its goin'" response. "How's it goin...underneath the sheets". That'll get um thinkin, trust me! Or, you can invent your own language! "Ningo tunnakka! tellspurie!" Smile, tug their left ear...and walk away! It'll not only draw a reaction...some of the dumber ones (you know who you are) will want to learn this new, hip, "Julie's so with-it" language! So..."Belongangwa Drools! Belongangwa!"

  • Julie Govette posted at 4:17 pm on Fri, Nov 19, 2010.

    Julie Govette Posts: 46 Staff

    Not only do I want that — I'd like to know more! How long have you had this problem?

  • posted at 4:15 pm on Fri, Nov 19, 2010.


    I call it Socially Awkward and Disconnected Syndrome. SADS. I've been afflicted by it before, and realized the cure for it is to take one's head from one's non-sunny area and become more socially cognizant.

  • Brandi Poole posted at 4:14 pm on Fri, Nov 19, 2010.

    Brandi Poole Posts: 79

    I do too! Someone telling me about their hemmorhoids is a lot more entertaining than the "Ehh," I get more and more often. It means that they want me to know something about their life. When someone asks me how I am, I can answer, "Great! I just heard this really funny story about hemmorhoids!" I get to be a hit, pass along a little joy, and walk away smiling, cause I don't have hemmorhoids!

  • Mike Govette posted at 3:52 pm on Fri, Nov 19, 2010.

    Mike Govette Posts: 25

    I agree with these "non-answers" being too common. But it seems that common courtesy has been relegated to these nonsense responses. A checker at Best Buy asks "Did you find everything?", to which you can repsond as Stephen Wright does, by saying, "Of course not, where would I put it?"
    I try to use these answers whenever I can, because, sadly, people asking how I am usually also don't mean it. They don't really want to know. It's like they are tipping their hat and you're supposed to tip yours back.
    So, I may not repond properly, but at least I try for some entertainment value.
    The honest response to "How are you?" may be "Awful, I have hemmorhoids", so really, do you want that?
    I do.


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