'Gesundheit', 'bless ya' are stupid and should be eradicated :)

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by floyde, May 8, 2008.

  1. floyde macrumors 6502a

    floyde

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    #1
    Think about it, it serves no purpose at all to wish somebody good health after they sneeze, not to mention that sneezing is not necessarily a sign of poor health :rolleyes:. There is 100% certainty that a person's health wont improve after hearing the "magic words". In addition to that, it's annoying for the sneezer to have the obligation to say "thanks" immediately after having convulsively expelled air and saliva at 150kph :eek:.

    I don't know how common it is in the US or UK, but around here, if you don't say bless ya (salud in spanish) people will give you a funny look like your some sort of mannerless criminal. I'm doing them a favor!! Anyway, I've quit saying that for good, it feels refreshing ;) </end useless rant>
     
  2. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

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    Jan 6, 2004
    #2
    its just a social phenomenon that developed due to either superstition or religious practice to try and give hope when the bubonic plague was spreading about as it was thought to be a symptom or sign that someone might have it.

    granted, yes it is virtually meaningless today, it is just a social 'norm'. the reason for the funny looks is because you're going against those norms that people are accustomed to.

    /shrug.


    in other words: it doesn't matter either way.
     
  3. tersono macrumors 68000

    tersono

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    #3
    'Shaddap' always seems more appropriate to me ;)
     
  4. keysersoze macrumors 68000

    keysersoze

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    #4
    How about DIE!!!!!!


    jk jk jk
     
  5. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

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    #5
    DIAF is better, imo. :p at least it has a better ring to it.

    just kidding of course though.
     
  6. riscy macrumors 6502a

    riscy

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    #6
    The educated people here know what the response originally signifies, but most people have no idea why they say what they say.

    I say let it continue so that the ignorant are eventually made aware of the black death references etc - it is so much fun to see the lightbulbs appear over their heads :) as they say "Oh, really. I never knew that!"
     
  7. irmongoose macrumors 68030

    irmongoose

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    #7
    I agree. However, to not look like an *******, do you think we here could collectively come up with an alternative phrase? Something that doesn't imply an empty "wish for good health", but at the same time fills in that awkward silence while they wait for you to say something.


    irmongoose
     
  8. keysersoze macrumors 68000

    keysersoze

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    #8
    it's a very good point about the awkward silence. It's like saying Bless You is too much, especially to, say, a stranger on the subway next to you. But otherwise it's just silent. Like no one cares. There must be a happy medium.
     
  9. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

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    #9
    I usually find "Good One!" or "That one had a 3 foot spray radius, high five!" work well.
     
  10. bigandy macrumors G3

    bigandy

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    #10
    So far as I'm aware, the oldest explanation for this practice comes from the belief that sneezing caused your heart to stop. The 'bless you' was intended to continue life, and protect your soul.

    But I agree, it gets boring repeating that, I'm sure. I sometimes alternate 'bless you' with 'Merry Christmas', or 'Ooh, rain!'. I still haven't found a funny one :eek:

    :rolleyes:
     
  11. riscy macrumors 6502a

    riscy

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    #11
    Or "Can you spray that again?" or

    "Good projection, but not much substance" or

    "Excellent volume, but no real body" or

    "Are you talking to me or are you chewing a brick" (huh??)

     
  12. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

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    Jan 6, 2004
    #12
    well there is only an awkward silence because its expected to hear or someone say 'bless you'.

    get rid of that expectation = get rid of awkwardness.
     
  13. Kamera RAWr macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

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    #13
    I personally don't think in matters either way. Yeah, I suppose it is rather meaningless to say, but who cares. I don't think people you'd say it to take it as anything more than empty words anyway. If you don't say them, fine... if you do, fine too.
     
  14. spamdumpster macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 22, 2008
    #14
    Being good atheist/nonbeliever types, my wife and I thought it would be funny to say "sneezy sneezer" every time someone sneezed.

    Then we imagined our 3 year old yelling this out in public when someone sneezed and decided to just keep our moths shut.
     
  15. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #15
    I prefer "happy handful" myself...

    Then again,
     

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  16. notjustjay macrumors 603

    notjustjay

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    #16
    Meh. If you don't like it, don't say it.

    I sneeze, I say "Excuse me", and as far as I'm concerned, we're done. You needn't say anything back.
     
  17. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

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    Jan 14, 2007
    #17
    I think its weird too, but I say it quickly like blessyou. Not God Bless You!

    It's more of a politeness thing. It seems like most people here say it and if you don't its not a big deal but if you're with friends/family its the right thing to do.

    Just say thank you if you sneeze and someone says bless you.
     
  18. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #18
    Let's do away with the meaningless "How are ya?" and "Have a nice day" and "Enjoy" and "Take care" while we are at it. If the speaker doesn't mean the words, and is not expecting any response...

    On the other side, I would also like to ban the disinterested grunted response "Uh huh" after someone is told "Thank you". "No Problem" is almost as bad, but at least it gets across the idea that the person has heard the thanks.
     
  19. floyde thread starter macrumors 6502a

    floyde

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    Monterrey, México
    #19
    But that serves the purpose of not getting on the wrong side of people automatically. Saying something after a person expels bodily fluids serves no purpose at all.

    I'd be ok with it if we also had a phrase for when people farted. :D (I still have to figure out what that phrase would be)
     
  20. tersono macrumors 68000

    tersono

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    #20
    LOL - that works too :p
     
  21. zap2 macrumors 604

    zap2

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    #21
    I've tried to stop, it just seems useless, but sometimes, my old habits get the best of me
     
  22. Gelfin macrumors 68020

    Gelfin

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    #22
    I must say, I don't really mind. Cultural traditions don't need to go away just because they were born of superstition. As long as they don't do any harm and people no longer believe the superstition, there isn't really a problem to solve.

    Similar example: I still celebrate Christmas with my family. It's a part of my culture, even though it has no superstitious significance to me.
     
  23. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

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    #23
    Gelfin: I agree wholeheartedly. I don't see how this issue is much different from certain Christians' refusal to celebrate Hallowe'en based on its "pagan origins". :rolleyes:

    Also, I would like to add that politeness has a social utility of its own. There are certain norms that are based on nothing important, yet adherence to them is still considered tasteful. This gives that norm a certain utility, because it gives a certain indicator that we are in "polite company". Politeness engenders civility, even when the norms of politeness are based on nothing useful on their own.
     
  24. Virgil-TB2 macrumors 65816

    Virgil-TB2

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    Aug 3, 2007
    #24
    yes!

    Ooo. :eek: Good Point!

    I absolutely *hate* that.

    I used to have a job at a cash register and complete strangers would always come up and stare you right in the eyes with a big goofy smile and say "How are you today?" as if they actually really, really cared about you and how you were. I mean, what ever happened to just saying "hello"?

    Since I didn't know them, and always try to be honest, I would try to say nothing at all, realising that it was just a meaningless and dishonest social pleasantry. However an absolutely huuge number of people that did this though would *not* let it go and either continued staring at me or just repeated the question until I answered. They had convinced themselves that they both meant the question (WTF? :confused: ) and wanted a response. They were somehow deeply offended by my reluctance to bare my soul to a complete stranger.

    My problem was, being honest, I couldn't respond with the equally meaningless "fine thanks," because of course I rarely was. I ended up settling on answering it with "how may I help you today" which evades the whole thing with a non sequitur and yet was still an honest thought. I mean my job was to help them out, not give them a running commentary on my inner life or the state of my health.

    The funny thing is, the people that do this kind of stuff always seemed to be the Christian, do-gooder type of folks who pride themselves on being nice, honest, etc. and reaching out to the common man, yet in fact, they were the ones being dishonest both with themselves and with me, and I was the one that was trapped into a corner by my own honesty even though I am an Atheist.

    And don't even get me *started* on the whole "thanks/your welcome" thing. :mad:
     
  25. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

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    #25
    Its just part of our culture. To be honest there are far more important things to be worrying about than this.
     

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