Monday, February 20, 2012

"Are You Alriiiight"?

Oh noes..been a while since I had a proper kinda -sorta rant.

It's only this:  At any given time in any given circumstance someone will: 1.  Cough 2. Sneeze 3. Clear their throat 4. Do the Felix Unger sound in clearing their sinuses 5. Maybe expel gas? 6. Make an audible "ahem"! or something similar.  Point being there are sounds just as I just described that will almost always bring the silly but presumably well intentioned inquiry "Are You Alright"?  WHY?

Save those inquiries for someone in obvious distress--- perhaps: 1.  Fell off a curb and got hit by a car 2.  Choking or gasping and showing a blue face.  3.  Doubled over in pain anywhere.  4. Bitten by a vicious gerbil or woodchuck or 5.  hemmed in by a skunk.  6.  Being butted by a billy or nanny goat.

You get the picture.  You may say, "but Carole, it's all well intentioned.  Why should that bother you?"  Well, probably it does or annoys me really, for several reasons.  1.  It's a phrase  always spoken loudly or shouted at the top of someones lungs who doesn't truly care about the answer.  I have seen many an example of this.  One was where I work out a few weeks ago.

 The person in charge asked an elderly overweight and laboring for breath lady that ubiquitous  question shouted from the middle of the room "Are You Alriiiiight?" and when the poor lady in the chair said "I'm OK" the person in charge just went on with her inane chatter to others.  I got off my machine and went over..stood close and asked if she needed assistance.  Rather than go thru a blow by blow here..I'm just stating an example of what I mean when I say asking that questions is  often said for no good reason, firstly...see examples I stated above for fun and sometimes if someone IS in obvious distress, taking the embarrassed persons verbal word for it when it's obvious the person is in distress.

Yes..I know.  There are naysayers who will argue with me and tell me there are many many times when someone does ask, asks for good reason rather than trying to look like they care, demonstrate that they do care.  I know.   I'm only presenting the other side.   Just my thoughts.  You know how that goes.


16 comments:

  1. Hey Carole, Are you alriiight? Have a great week.

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  2. Yes Carole, even the one that IS in distress will deny it. Glad you went over to see for sure. You have a great insight. Say by the way, Humming birds (two of them) arrived here this morning! I made food and stuck a yarn ball in bush next to one of their nests and poked a hole in it for them to snuggle in. It's too early!

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  3. That was very good of you to check on the woman. Whats' the point of asking if someone is alriiight if th person asking doesn't really pay attention to how they are really doing?

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  4. I know what you mean. I've even seen some ask and keep right o walking. No puppy yet.

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  5. Well just so you know I am alright. Actually about 30-35 years ago "Are you alright" was a catch phrase at work. It meant, "What are you nuts!"

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  6. Nice shot of that US Navy GU-11 unmanned aerial vehicle. I agree that phrase is way over used. I try not to use it unless there's a good chance the person I'm asking will keel over shortly after saying "I'm okay!" which is also way overused.

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  7. Hahaha! Don't get me started on truly lame catch phrases. Add to "Are you alright?" - "Tell me how you really feel" which makes me feel like punching the person. Please, update your moldy 80's unoriginal come back! It was tiresome the first time I heard it. And "Real-LEE" to express unbelief or incredulousness (is that a word?). Wow, how much brain power it must have taken to come up with that witty remark! See, I HAVE gotten started!!! Are you alriiight?

    (Hee, hee. I hope you are feeling better!)

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  8. Carole, I am impressed, you kept your mothers succulent going for 36 years, now that is impressive. I have a succulent that I need to repot. I have had it for 12 years, it's my Epiphyllum. I have a few plants that I need to repot or split.

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  9. ha ha - you did it again - made us all think!

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  10. I guess what you are saying is people do words instead of actions! We live in a profoundly shallow society :( xox

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  11. I guess the truth is often we feel more obligation about such things than actual concern. I told you recently about my struggles with a bone spur...people just don't get what that's like unless they're going through it but when you're in the middle of it and people don't get it it's pretty hard to feel very condoning. Bright side is this will pass imagine what it is for those with chronic conditions etc....ugh!

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  12. This is also like the ubiquitous "How are you?" when the only answer anyone is expecting is "I'm good. How are you?"

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  13. Oh you have a good point! When someone obviously looks not alright, it's really a nonsense to ask "are you alright?" But to be honest, I have used that sentence...haha.

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  14. So darn happy you were concerned enough to go find out if she really did need help. That is just like you.. GREAT! :-)

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  15. Depending on the situation, I usually offer a tissue, a cough drop, or a drink of water - whatever I have that I think will help. If it's something more serious or someone is in obvious distress, I ask if I should call 911 or provide similar assistance (CPR, find an Epi-Pen, etc.).

    I mostly agree that a generic "How are you?" shouted from across the room is probably an empty gesture.

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