Thursday, August 6, 2009

Pet Peeves

Everybody has our own pet peeves. I have so many of them that I am not even going to try to list them all out here, but here's one: When I ask a multiple choice question, don't answer with true or false.

"Yes" or "no" does not answer the question of whether you want "A" or "B."

"Would you like an apple or an orange?" "Yes."

Is that "yes, I'd like an apple," or "yes, I'd like an orange," or "yes, I'd like both"? I can't read your mind, hence the question in the first place.

The other thing is, if you are answering a negative statement, "You don't like apples, do you?" Please elaborate after "yes" or "no." And here's why.

The proper way to answer this question is:

"Yes, I like apples." or "No, I don't like apples."

Unless you are speaking in Chinese, then the proper way to answer it is to address the statement: "Yes (the statement is true) [I don't like apples.]"

When I am conversing with Chinese people, I definitely have no idea whether the "yes" or "no" are Chinese yes/no or English yes/no. And from personal experiences, MOST native English speakers will tend to reply the Chinese way, despite the fact that they do not speak a lick of Chinese or understand the structure of it.

So, in conclusion, for the love of God, answer the entire statement, even if you are typing on your iPod/cell phone.

Mucho gracias.

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