Philology

 

I’ve noticed something in my own speech patterns that seems to confuse the hell out of most people I talk to. Instead of asking someone, “Do you like” or “What did you think of,” I will say, “How do you like,” and “How did you find…?”

Example: Cameron, a 19-year-old biology student, has his PSP on his desk. I ask him, “how do you like your PSP?” He’s confused. I repeat the question, and he’s still baffled. That seemed strange to me, but when I asked, “Do you like it?” he understood.

That confusion happens less frequently than when I asked someone, “how did you find” whatever we’re talking about.

Example: Holly, an RN at Sparrow, has “RN, BSN” on her name tag. I asked her where she earned her BSN and learned it was through MSU. “How did you find the program,” I asked, meaning “was it good, did you like it, was it difficult” all sort of rolled into one. She seemed to think I was asking her, “how did you physically locate the program?”

I rephrased.

“Did you like it?” was too generic – I was less interested in how much she liked it than in what she thought of it overall. I suppose I could have just asked her that – “What did you think of it?”

What confuses me, though, is where I picked this up. Was it at the ranch, surrounded by native Spanish speakers and learning Spanish? Is it through my British friends or through watching Brit TV?

 

Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *