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Top Five Tuesday — Top Five Phrases That Don’t Mean What They Sound Like They Mean . . .

As you might imagine, in my line of work I end up having a lot of conversations with people.

Some in social gatherings, others in the hallways at church, others while at the hospital, and still others while in counseling sessions.

And over time, I have learned that certain phrases in the English language don’t really mean what they sound like they mean.  They sometimes mean quite the opposite — whether the speaker is aware of it or not.

So here goes:  the top five phrases where the meaning is something quite different from the vocabulary.

1.  When people say, “to make a long story short . . . “  they don’t.  Get ready to set a spell.

2.  When people preface something with “with all due respect” what follows will likely have very little respect.

3.  When Southerners tell you “bless your heart” they are really asking, “did you really just do something that dumb?”

4.  When people punctuate their spoken sentences with “do you know what I mean?”  or “know what I’m sayin’?” they DON’T want you to answer them with either “yes” or “no.”  They simply want you allow them to keep talking.

5.  When people conclude a conversation with “come see us,” don’t.  It’s just a polite way of saying, “nice talking to you but I need to go now.” 

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