Phrases that sound strange when you say them?

I’ve never been able to use the phrase “my pleasure” in response to a thank you without it sounding really strange to me in my head. Almost as if it’s out of character for me. When other people say it, it doesn’t register as bizarre at all, only when I say it. Anyone else have similar words or phrases?

Not sure if this is what you’re getting at but here’s one I think is a bit strange:

Used to it.

I’m not used to it.


“There’s nothing for it.”

re: “My pleasure.”

I think it’s even worse when people just say “Pleasure” when they mean “My pleasure.”

“A whole 'nother” has always bothered me. Why can’t people just say, “Another whole” or “A whole other”?

LOose WOMan

and especially…

Caribou Gone!

Just blows my mind.

“No time to lose.”

Still don’t have the hang of that phrase.

Try saying it like: No Time Tolouse.

That might help.

A long running TV commercial hawking ice cream:

It tastes naughty, but it’s not.

Sounds to me like:

It tastes snotty, but it’s snot.

“How are you?”

I don’t really notice if people ask me how I am, but I cannot bring myself to ask someone else. I know that if I talk to the person for another 30 seconds they will probably tell me exactly how they are really doing anyway. Usually when I do ask how someone is doing, they will say they are doing fine, and then either go on to tell me all these things that would have told me they were fine anyway, or they insinuate that they are decidedly not fine. It’s just a pointless waste of 3 seconds, if you ask me.

“You’re welcome”

I do say it because it’s the polite thing to say and I have to be polite at work, but it’s cringe-worthy. Especially if the person is not welcome to ask you for a million favours in the future. I much prefer “no problem” and will use it wherever possible.

I am always struck by how this greeting, along with “What’s up” and the hundred variations thereon, stands out among all the others like two giraffes grazing in a coral reef. I could never quite get used to the fact that speakers of English could throw out a bona fide question like that, and then not expect an answer in response.

Some guy you met in a lecture last week walks past you in the street, catches your eye you and says, “How are you?” It might be that I have a mild form of verbal OCD, but I become very uncomfortable at this point. There’s ninety degrees of space you can talk to without interrupting your stride or breaking your neck, and the guy is only in that space for the briefest of moments as you pass each other, roughly a second, maybe two if you’re both very slow walkers. Stopping to give a full answer is out of the question, since that would demand more conversation than anyone is willing to deal with during a solitary evening walk in town, as well as induce arbitrary blocking of sidewalk traffic which might earn me the displeasure of the crowd walking with and behind me. A quick, “I’m good, thank you,” would work, only about three seconds after this I will feel like a bad person for not having asked him how he was. I can also pre-emptively greet him, but that only gives him the prerogative to interrogate me on how my day, weekend or month was, and also means that there would be no chance at all that we’d just brush past each other without him recognizing me, saving me the anguish of having to deal with another one of these things. I can also reciprocate with a greeting of similar sort: “'Sup”, or any one of the hundreds of variations thereon, but that would give him persmission to tell me about how his day, weekend or month was, and will require both of us to stop walking and hold up traffic.

I have solved this problem through my recent acquisition of an iPod and a pair of noise-reducing earphones. I still hear and see these casual acquaintances on the street, but now if I ignore them, they’ll think it’s because I can’t hear them.

Doesn’t stop the more enthusiastic ones who jump right in front of you screaming, “HIII!!” or who gesticulate like drunk Italians with spasmic motor dysfunction*, though. I am considering the purchase of a pair of Joo Janta 200 Super-Chromatic Peril Sensitive Sunglasses as a precaution.

*I have nothing against drunks, Italians, or other people with spasmic motor dysfunction. It’s just a convenient comparison and description.