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dadelus
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11 Mar 2010, 3:19 am

I had a sort of amusing experience the other day at work. I was part of a taste panel testing marshmallows. I was told to read through all the instructions before beginning.
One of the first instructions stated "rinse with water before tasting". I took this to mean that I should rinse the marshmallows before tasting and did so.

A few years ago I helped a police friend of mine do some training of new recruits in how to arrest a person. My friend knows how I can be and asked if I could be "very literal" for the recruits. I don't recall all the phrases the recruits uttered but do recall my friend sitting on the ground laughing.



League_Girl
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11 Mar 2010, 3:31 am

I am very literal. I have gotten better over the years but I still take things literal. But I have gotten the sense to ask what someone means when they tell me to do things that doesn't make any sense. Such as with the marshmallow thing. I would have been asking "why?"

Anything that doesn't make any sense I just assume it can't mean that. Then I don't understand.


Here is one I will never forget, my office clerk tells me to bring up six rollaways. I do that and I leave them there and go back to my work. At the end of the shift, he asks me why aren't they made and I tell him I don't know and he asks me why didn't I make them and I tell him I didn't know I was supposed to. He asked me how long had I been working there, and said I should know and he said why would he ask me to bring up six rollaways and not have me make them? I said maybe he had someone else in mind to do it. He wasn't happy with me all because he didn't tell me to make them but he said I didn't use my common sense. He told me when someone asks for a rollaway, someone is going to have to make them now before giving it to the guest and our boss might be asking why weren't they made. I felt stupid and bad. Where was my logic?
I decided next time he asks me to bring them up, I will ask if he wants me to make them or not. I decided to do the same with other office clerks if they tell me to bring some up. Ask if they want me to make them.



Magicfly
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11 Mar 2010, 7:21 am

Haha yeah....the only example I can think of right now is from when I was 15, I'd phoned into the local radio station for something-or-other, my foster sister was in the room, and the dj heard her giggling so he asked me who was with me, I told him that Jenny was in the room with me, so he said,

"Say hi Jenny-in-the-room"

So I said,

"Hi, Jenny-in-the-room"

I didn't realise what he was meaning was for HER to say hello, not me :oops:



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11 Mar 2010, 7:25 am

dadelus wrote:
One of the first instructions stated "rinse with water before tasting". I took this to mean that I should rinse the marshmallows before tasting and did so.


What did it mean? Rinse your mouth? They should have written that if that was the case. It's an ambiguous instruction.



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11 Mar 2010, 7:38 am

My sister has a tendancy to take things literally and gets upset that people don't say what they mean.

I don't do it as much as her, but I can relate to the experience written here. I put a phonecall through to someone at work the other day and when he had finished the call he stood up looked at me and said, "I almost fainted." I replied, "head rush? Did you stand up too fast." He laughed and said "no, I mean I didn't expect to get that phonecall." I should have realised what he meant because this person he was speaking to is always being asked to call in and report when he has finished a job, but rarely calls in. Oh, well.

I don't know if this is the same, but there are some phrases that I don't like because I take them literally. I tend not to use phrases like this, but find it slightly grating when other people do. I work for a construction company and one of the project managers talks about "bottoming out" a job. I don't like that phrase because in my head it doesn't really mean anything. I always picture soil being patted down - like when you plant a tree and pat the soil down around it. But I have been working here a year and a half and I still don't really understand what it means to bottom out a job. I think it means to finish it. But I don't know why. Also, if a company goes out of business he says that the company has "gone to the wall". I just imagine a group of former employees of that company standing with their backs against the wall because they now have no job and they are just hanging around.



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11 Mar 2010, 7:43 am

Moog wrote:
dadelus wrote:
One of the first instructions stated "rinse with water before tasting". I took this to mean that I should rinse the marshmallows before tasting and did so.


What did it mean? Rinse your mouth? They should have written that if that was the case. It's an ambiguous instruction.


I'm wondering the same thing about what else it would have meant :?


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11 Mar 2010, 7:50 am

I'm very literal 90% of the time. If it's like a stock phrase or something that's said often, then I usually know what it means, but if it isn't, then I take it literally. I was on a forum a while ago & the creator posted a suggestion that he would rename the forum this perverted name. I thought he actually meant it & was really bothered by it, but apparently the other people knew it was a joke & one guy even put a picture of one of those "head/palm" things. I felt really bad about that & like I was being made fun of (because I was).

A big example is this sign down the street from where we used to live. There was this empty field & in front of the field was this sign that said "PERSON DUMPING WILL BE PROSECUTED". I took that to mean that any person caught dumping a human body into the field would be prosecuted & was really baffled & freaked out about the sign. Why would someone need a sign to tell them not to dump the body of the person that they had just killed in the field? lol, it took me like three years to realize it meant no dumping "garbage" lol. But that's not what the sign said. I wish I could find a picture of the sign. I checked google images & couldn't find it.


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Magicfly
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11 Mar 2010, 7:59 am

lyricalillusions wrote:
I'm very literal 90% of the time. If it's like a stock phrase or something that's said often, then I usually know what it means, but if it isn't, then I take it literally.


I'm the same, I've learned what a lot of them mean over the course of my life, but sometimes they still get the better of me, I've only just found what a common phrase around here means......

"You've got tatties in your ears" (tattie=potato)

I always thought it meant that a person's earwax looked a bit like a potato, I was wrong! It's apparently a reference to how dirty someone's ears are as in,

"You're ears are so full of dirt, you could grow potatoes in there!"

I don't really get it, why not just say to the person they have grubby ears, or is the premise that if you make a joke about it, it's not as insulting to point out something like this?!



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11 Mar 2010, 1:53 pm

lyricalillusions wrote:
There was this empty field & in front of the field was this sign that said "PERSON DUMPING WILL BE PROSECUTED". I took that to mean that any person caught dumping a human body into the field would be prosecuted & was really baffled & freaked out about the sign. Why would someone need a sign to tell them not to dump the body of the person that they had just killed in the field?


That's classic :lol:



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11 Mar 2010, 3:30 pm

I would have done the same thing with the marshmallows.



MichelleRM78
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11 Mar 2010, 3:32 pm

I am NT, and I am sure I would have done the same with the marshmellows, LOL.

Michelle



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11 Mar 2010, 4:18 pm

I remember from school when sb left their rucksack in the classroom and teacher told me to go to another class and ask if it is sb's. So I went and said hello, is this rucksack sb's of you? One girl said oh, it's mine! so I gave her. Their teacher said You should say thank you! so I said thank you! Everybody was laughing on the floor :lol:

I always had a problem when people want thanks, apologies or sth like this, so if she wanted...


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11 Mar 2010, 4:28 pm

dadelus wrote:
I had a sort of amusing experience the other day at work. I was part of a taste panel testing marshmallows. I was told to read through all the instructions before beginning.
One of the first instructions stated "rinse with water before tasting". I took this to mean that I should rinse the marshmallows before tasting and did so.


OMG I would have done the same thing hahahahahahahaha

But I don't think I often take things that literally, and I would have felt weird about the water even if I thought I should rinse the marsh,allows- did they dissolve? How'd they taste? LOL



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11 Mar 2010, 4:59 pm

I only realised how literal I can be quite recently. I think it is actually one of the things people like about me, because it can be very funny. When I see other people being literal I can also find that very funny, as I tend to naturally be literal, but at the same time can see what is really meant and it can make things very amusing. I do know an Aspie who takes all things extremely literally and people do make fun of him. I have more insight (unless I am tired or feeling depressed) and can laugh at myself when I do it and see why other people find it funny. I have developed a scepticism about anything that doesn't sound plausible, which means it is very difficult nowadays for people to wind me up.



KarBaum
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11 Mar 2010, 5:35 pm

I was going out to a club once with a group of acquaintances that I did not know well, and I did not know how to dress, so I asked a friend how to dress to impress people, and she said to "dress up". She meant, apparently, to dress nicely. I, instead, wore a banana costume.



MichelleRM78
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11 Mar 2010, 6:06 pm

KarBaum wrote:
I was going out to a club once with a group of acquaintances that I did not know well, and I did not know how to dress, so I asked a friend how to dress to impress people, and she said to "dress up". She meant, apparently, to dress nicely. I, instead, wore a banana costume.
:lol:

:lol: That made my day, LOL. That's awesome!