Monday, April 30, 2007

I hear what you are saying, but I don't know what you mean

I was standing in line at lunch time waiting to buy my sushi and spring rolls at the local Asian market when I overheard the conversation of someone walking by. Almost every other sentence coming out of the mouth of this one woman was, "You know what I'm saying?"

Her companion just kept nodding, but it was pretty clear that not only did he not know what she was saying, but he wasn't even really listening. I think the problem with this communication was that, in my experience, most people who interject much of what they say with, "You know what I'm saying" are engaged in that major league jibba jabba my good friend Mr. T doesn't have time for.

"You now what I'm saying" is interchangeable with:
You know what I mean?
All I'm saying is...
Am I right?
Ya know?

The jibba jabba response to such useless questions is often:

I hear what you're saying.
Yeah, I know.
What your saying is...
So, you're telling me...
You're right, you're absolutely right.
Get out of here.


You basically can carry on an entire conversation of "you know what I'm saying" without ever saying anything. For example:
Idiot #1: All I'm saying is that he doesn't know what he was talking about. You know what I'm saying?

Idiot #2: So you are saying that he doesn't know what he was talking about? I hear that!

Idiot #1: Exactly, that's what I'm saying. Like I said, he doesn't know what he was talking about, ya know?

Idiot #2: I know what you are saying. You are absolutely right. He doesn't know what he is talking about. Ya know?

Idiot #1: Yeah, he doesn't know what he is talking about. That's what I said.

Idiot #2: What?

See what I'm saying? So I have prepared some conversation stoppers for people who use the annoying phrase and other annoying verbal ticks like, "You know what I'm saying?":

No, I don't have a clue what you are talking about.
I hear what your saying but it sounds just like, blah, blah, blah.
Did you say something?
Do you speak English?
Stop saying "You know what I'm saying" or I'll dope slap you from here to the next corner.


Enough said?

17 comments:

Shandi said...

These types are terribly boring people. If they don't keep reminding you that you're supposed to be listening, you might just slip off into a coma. I find that other tactics include talking very fast, talking over other people, and filling in silence with "aaaannnndddd, uuuuummmmm, and soooooo". They're too afraid you'll interupt or lose interest.

Of course I never do this. ;-)

Tim ID said...

Shandi, I hear what you are saying. I also forgot that these same people like to punctuate what they are saying by poking you in the arm repeatedly. I've always wanted to say, "Poke me again and you'll be pulling away a stump."

leather squirrel said...

Je ne parle pas anglais. Je suis un ├ęcureuil.

Lights in the wake said...

I think that it's very considerate for people to ask you if you know what they are saying. God forbid you lost track and are just too embarassed to ask.

Tim ID said...

So Lights, what exactly are you saying? I mean, I hear you, but I'm not tracking.

Tim ID said...

Hey, move on squirrel. We don't speaky the rodent here. You hear what I'm saying?

Steve said...

One thing I hate about programs we get from the USA over here is when you guys continually use the words.....


"OH My God." not once but several thousand times...
Ya know what I'm saying?????

Tim ID said...

Oh my god, you're right Steve! I hear hear what you're saying. Or as they say in your country, "Bugga."

Shandi said...

Oh my God, I have a friend who constantly says, "You have to understand..." It's like a reminder to pay attention. I think this qualifies as the same kind of thing. You agree?

kristy said...

And don't forget the people who blather long strings of nonsense and end them by asking, "Does that make sense?"

Uh...no.

Tim ID said...

Shandi, OMG, like, I don't think I understand what you are saying, you understand?

Kristi, I know exactly what you are saying, but I suppose that doesn't make any sense to you.

R. said...

The Jester runs a few circles around The Idiots yelling "I know what you mean, I know what you mean!" Then he drops trow and takes a crap on the floor.

The shocked and disgusted Idiots animatedly give their story to the cops.

In the back of the patrol car The Jester is laughing so hard he can't catch his breath.

The cops wear placid masks and wait for answers more substantial than "you know what I mean" so they can fill out their reports.

During an interview with a potential employer The Jester tries to explain with a straight face why he is in the Sex Offender's Registry.

We are just as absurd in our inanity as in our imaginations. This realization helps to keep me humble when I wish to lash out against people who experience their absurdities differently than I do.

You dig?

Tim ID said...

R.
Some people call it sling blade, I call it a kaiser blade. Does that make sense to you?

Blazngfyre said...

Aight ..... can you hear me?

Angel Without Wings said...

Its all double Dutch to me

anna said...

I'm one of those people. Go ahead... hate me, mock me. I can take it.

Tim ID said...

Blaznfyre, What?

Angel w/o Wings, Bugga!

Anna, We are not laughing at you, we're laughing with you! :)