38
   

"So, in answer to your question..."

 
 
JTT
 
  -2  
Reply Thu 18 Oct, 2012 07:06 pm
@Joe Nation,
Quote:
Pray tell, what do you see as the subtle difference between JFK's and Joe's.


In JoefromC's initial post, Joe.

"I've noticed a disturbing trend recently -- people, in response to questions, starting their answers with the word "so."

Then on page two of this thread;

JTT quoted:
So it is widely believed that the recent ascendancy of “so” began in Silicon Valley. The journalist Michael Lewis picked it up when researching his 1999 book “The New New Thing”: “When a computer programmer answers a question,” he wrote, “he often begins with the word ‘so.’ ” Microsoft employees have long argued that the “so” boom began with them.

Joefrom Chicago replied: Yes. That's exactly what I'm talking about. Figures it would start with Microsoft.

You entered this thread with the number four posting, Joe, wherein you illustrated that you hadn't the foggiest notion of the 'so' under discussion.

Joe Nation: Wait a minute, I say (or write) "So", all the time. I'll bet if you looked at my thread responses , it's at the start of 5 out of six of them. I don't where I picked it up. (Vonnegut?)

You didn't understand the 'so' being discussed back on page one. Nothing at all has changed for you, has it?

How did you miss the key word, 'recently' in JoefromC's posting and in mine, describing the recent ascendancy of this 'so'? Why would JoefromC suddenly start complaining about a 'so' that was around in the time of JFK - a half century ago?
JTT
 
  -1  
Reply Sat 20 Oct, 2012 04:36 pm
@JTT,
Well, JoeNation, you asked a question and I answered it. Where are you now?

Quote:
Pray tell, what do you see as the subtle difference between JFK's and Joe's.


When you seek to discern differences between grammatical/semantic nuances, it requires that you try to present accurate representations of the very thing you want to study.

This,

It occurs to me that no less a figure than John F. Kennedy used to begin answers to questions with "So, let me say this about that..... .",

falls somewhat short of that goal.

0 Replies
 
srgtrock
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Mar, 2013 01:31 am
@joefromchicago,
I hear that a lot too, and find it not just stupid, but a bit like the person is ignoring your question and just starts talking about something else, but is a response. "Whats your name?" "So my name is Frank"
"How old are you Frank?" "So I'm 30"
I find it really annoying.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Mar, 2013 09:03 am
@srgtrock,
Yeah, it's like your question interrupted their train of thought.
JTT
 
  -2  
Reply Wed 13 Mar, 2013 10:37 am
@joefromchicago,
Maybe, "so as I was discussing/saying, ..."

Does 'like' also bother you, Joe, or are you used to that?
joefromchicago
 
  2  
Reply Wed 13 Mar, 2013 12:01 pm
@JTT,
Run along, pipsqueak, you have a question that needs answering elsewhere.
JTT
 
  -2  
Reply Wed 13 Mar, 2013 12:03 pm
@joefromchicago,
You're really good at avoidance, aren't you, Joe? Have you scored any ambulance clients this week?
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  -2  
Reply Wed 13 Mar, 2013 12:06 pm
@joefromchicago,
Quote:
I hear that a lot too, and find it not just stupid, but a bit like the person is ignoring your question and just starts talking about something else, but is a response. "Whats your name?" "So my name is Frank"
"How old are you Frank?" "So I'm 30"


And your reply to this was "Yeah"?

Stick to law, Joe You don't wanna be bad at two things.
0 Replies
 
IRFRANK
 
  1  
Reply Thu 4 Apr, 2013 11:07 am
The one that bothers me is the word 'they', or other pronouns referring to a person and then the person identified.

Well my sister, she did this or that.

Or Bob and Janet, they came over the other night.

0 Replies
 
Finster
 
  1  
Reply Wed 16 Apr, 2014 10:28 am
@joefromchicago,
I’m glad to hear it bothers someone else. The only people I hear begin an answer to a question this way are well educated. I am currently listening to NPR and a doctor just answered a question “So...”. It seems as though the person answering this way thinks themself so well informed on the topic that they just cannot wait to give his/her response. Whatever the reason, I find it is obnoxious.
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Wed 16 Apr, 2014 01:55 pm
Some recording artist also began his reply to an interviewer's question on NPR last evening.

This thread immediately came to mind.
0 Replies
 
mateluna
 
  1  
Reply Thu 22 May, 2014 08:06 pm
@joefromchicago,
Some of the examples, like the girl saying at the end "so... yeah" are not the same. She is making a summary, a conclusion (without saying it), but it is a concluding "so". It alludes to whatever else she said before, and then at the end,
saying "so (then here would be the summary of what was said before the concluding statement)... yeah!"

I've noticed it mostly in young people who are usually university/college graduates, who perhaps want to give an air of importance to whatever they are saying.

The Perry Mason example is also different, because he begins his remarks with a so, but he is then referring to whatever facts were presented to the jury, etc and he says, "so, members of the jury, after carefully blah blah blah)

What this thread is about, is people who begin an answer to a question with a "so", but are not making a summary or concluding remark. I've hear this a lot on NPR, on DemocracyNow! also, on British radio/TV etc.

There is a show on NPR called Le Show, where the host, Harry Shearer, has begun a segment called "the so's of the week", where he plays many examples. Many times the interviewee answers several questions in a row, all beginning with so. Or with right! so

I find it annoying.
0 Replies
 
Chuck55
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2014 09:30 am
@Setanta,
I think the use of the word 'so' is similar the the use of the word 'like'.
Unfortunately, these juvenile trends start with teenagers attempting
to follow others in their attempt to fit in and be "cool" or "with it".
I'm noticing the word "so", in response to a question, by well educated
individuals quite frequently, and find myself right here, confirming the
fact that others have noticed this same foolishness too.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Thu 3 Jul, 2014 10:28 am
@Chuck55,
Quote:
Unfortunately, these juvenile trends start with teenagers attempting
to follow others in their attempt to fit in and be "cool" or "with it".


That's not true, Chuck. Those uses of 'like' are all fully grammatical structures. I believe there are several slightly different grammar uses. Some are similar to the adult 'well'.

That they are of speech, informal speech, there is no doubt but that doesn't make them wrong or bad. They are so well entrenched in the language that you hear 40 plus folks using them.

Just as there is no stopping LIKE, so too there is no stopping the new SO.

0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Oct, 2015 05:35 pm
I thought of you and your thread Joe, while listening to an Irishwoman being interviewed on CBC radio. A woman who responded to every question with "So, . . ." That lasted until she had responded to about a half dozen questions. It is a disease which has infiltrated the entire English-speaking world.
joefromchicago
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Oct, 2015 06:12 pm
@Setanta,
I hear it so often now that I no longer think of adding examples to this thread. It is indeed everywhere.
0 Replies
 
Ponderer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Aug, 2017 05:49 pm
It appears to me ( when someone begins the answer to a question with "So..." , especially in a public setting) that the person is using that word to fix the attention of the audience and give the appearance of authority, as per a physics professor at a blackboard full of equations.
0 Replies
 
Ponderer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Aug, 2017 09:11 pm
It appears to me that when someone begins the answer to a question with "So..." ( especially in a public setting ), that the word is used to fix the attention of the audience and to project an image of authority, as per a physics professor at a chalkboard full of equations.
0 Replies
 
Ponderer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Aug, 2017 09:24 pm
@joefromchicago,
It appears to me that when someone begins the answer to a question with"So..." (especially in a public setting ), that the word is used to fix the attention of the audience and to project an image of authority as per a physics professor at a chalkboard full of equations.
0 Replies
 
Richard A
 
  1  
Reply Wed 17 Apr, 2019 11:32 am
@CalamityJane,
But even German does not use "So" at the beginning to a reply to an information question. A. Wo wohnen Sie? B. *So ich wohne / or / * So wohne ich in Stuttgart. In either case, "so" would sound totally superfluous and gratuitous.
 

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