Taking something literally: Example of the day....

Page 1 of 2 [ 20 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

Magna
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 21 Jun 2018
Gender: Male
Posts: 6,932

16 Aug 2018, 12:51 pm

I know I've seen posts related to taking things literally, but there's no sticky and a search for this topic only reveals very old threads.

This morning, my wife took a walk with the dog. When she returned home she was telling me about how there were certain trees which were dropping their dark blue/black berries all over the paved walking path (It was most likely an invasive species known as "Buckthorn").

Direct quote from her: "People were walking and rolling on them..."

Me: "People were rolling on them?!?" I pictured people down on the ground rolling around on top of the berries on the path.

My wife: "NO! You know, rolling through them on their bikes with their bike tires."

Me: "OH, I seriously thought you meant they were rolling around on the ground.."

Any things that you've taken literally recently?


_________________
"There is no love of living without despair of life." - Albert Camus

"Ain't nothing but a stranger in this world
I'm nothing but a stranger in this world" -Van Morrison

"Are you Bluish? You don't look Bluish."

AQ-43 (32-50 indicates a strong likelihood of Asperger syndrome or autism).
EQ-14 out of 80
Rdos: Your neurodiverse (Aspie) score: 173 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 39 of 200
You are very likely neurodiverse (Aspie)


naturalplastic
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 26 Aug 2010
Age: 65
Gender: Male
Posts: 24,608
Location: temperate zone

16 Aug 2018, 1:22 pm

Well...even the way that your wife meant it was rather literal. Bike tires do "roll". And even pedestrians, when they step a hard round berries, tend to "roll" a little bit(or their feet roll) because the berries act like little wheels or ball bearings. Rolling like your on roller skates. Not rolling like youre an aviator making a barrel roll in your plane.

Its not quite as figurative as, for example, "raining cats and dogs".

My turn.

I was talking to a young lady on a website last night, and we asked each other where in the nation we are. She said that she was in "the dirty South". I had never heard that expression before. Thought that it might be some kind of naughty joke referencing stereotypes about hillbilly inbreeding or something. Something "dirty" in that way. But when I googled the expression it turns out that it just means "the deep south", or the "Gulf States". Don't know what "dirty" has to do with it. Whatever. Ya learn sumpin new everyday.



Mythos
Velociraptor
Velociraptor

User avatar

Joined: 12 Aug 2018
Gender: Male
Posts: 457
Location: England

16 Aug 2018, 2:43 pm

Is that exactly what she said? I feel like, as somebody who doesn't often take things too literally and can pick out sarcasm from a lineup if I had to, she wasn't being particularly clear.



Canadian Penguin
Deinonychus
Deinonychus

User avatar

Joined: 7 May 2017
Age: 51
Gender: Male
Posts: 315
Location: Canada

16 Aug 2018, 9:35 pm

Mythos wrote:
Is that exactly what she said? I feel like, as somebody who doesn't often take things too literally and can pick out sarcasm from a lineup if I had to, she wasn't being particularly clear.


Agreed. That wouldn't be particularly clear to me either.

I don't often take things too literally and get sarcasm most of the time, though I've a better time understand it in text than verbally for some reason.

I like to think I have a good sense of humor, but have a difficult time trying to tell if someone is trying to be funny or serious.


_________________
Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.


Magna
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 21 Jun 2018
Gender: Male
Posts: 6,932

16 Aug 2018, 10:11 pm

Mythos wrote:
Is that exactly what she said? I feel like, as somebody who doesn't often take things too literally and can pick out sarcasm from a lineup if I had to, she wasn't being particularly clear.


Yes, that's how she said it.

I can get sarcasm if the person being sarcastic exaggerates for the effect. If a person intends sarcasm but does not exaggerate their voice, no roll of the eyes, etc I can rarely pick up on that. Instead, to my question of: "Really?" I will hear: "I was being sarcastic."

Non-emphasized sarcasm delivered in the same tone as any other aspect of conversation violates what I perceive as a rule of sarcasm. Not that I make the rules...


_________________
"There is no love of living without despair of life." - Albert Camus

"Ain't nothing but a stranger in this world
I'm nothing but a stranger in this world" -Van Morrison

"Are you Bluish? You don't look Bluish."

AQ-43 (32-50 indicates a strong likelihood of Asperger syndrome or autism).
EQ-14 out of 80
Rdos: Your neurodiverse (Aspie) score: 173 of 200
Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 39 of 200
You are very likely neurodiverse (Aspie)


League_Girl
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 4 Feb 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 24,949
Location: Pacific Northwest

17 Aug 2018, 12:11 pm

Sounds like your mom was not very clear enough with her speech. I would have been baffled too at that comment and ask, "What? Rolling on the ground?"

I remember one saying when a teacher said these students were feeding their faces and that made no sense because faces don't need food. I asked "what?" and another teacher told me "I thought you were literal." I was like "what?" and she said they were eating and where does food go when you first eat and I said "Your stomach" and she said it goes in their mouths first. I finally understood and thought it was a joke the other teacher had told. But nope, it's an actual saying.


_________________
Son: Diagnosed w/anxiety and ADHD. Also academic delayed.

Daughter: NT, no diagnoses.


lostonearth35
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 5 Jan 2010
Age: 46
Gender: Female
Posts: 9,768
Location: Lost on Earth, waddya think?

17 Aug 2018, 12:21 pm

Taking things literally isn't really a problem I have, usually. It's my lack of ability to tell if a person is just joking or being serious.
For example yesterday on Youtube I saw a guy ranting about everything wrong with Zootopia, and he was yelling that rabbits can't talk, they can't be police officers, and Walt Disney must be rolling in his grave. And all I could think about was why the man whose earliest creations included a rabbit named Oswald, although he originally didn't talk because films back then were then were still silent, would be turning in his grave, not to mention all the other animals he created that spoke and acted human. I couldn't tell if this guy genuinely thought is was "wrong" to have animals talking and acting human in animation just because they don't irl or he's just being a troll.



Mesocricetus_auratus
Emu Egg
Emu Egg

Joined: 22 Jul 2018
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 8
Location: Birmingham, UK

18 Aug 2018, 6:25 pm

"Can you staple these together?"

I staple the handouts together.

"...I meant into individual handouts."

...

"Can you put these on ice?"

I put the packet of cans on the ice. "Do you mean just on the ice or buried in the ice?"

"I mean take the individual cans out of the packet and put them on ice."

At least I didn't just say "yes". Although there was a job interview at the charity, PDSA:

"Do you know what the PDSA is?"

"Yes"

"..."



AnnWFoxPoint
Butterfly
Butterfly

User avatar

Joined: 15 Jul 2018
Age: 67
Gender: Female
Posts: 15
Location: Wisconsin

18 Aug 2018, 6:57 pm

One of my kids got into it with her second grade teacher who told the class to "Just do your best" on an assignment.
My daughter took too long on the assignment, exasperating her teacher. She was, of course, trying to do her very best.
This phrase means to not try to do your best.
I know what it means. I know why my daughter misunderstood.
I'm usually pretty good with words.
But if you don't get this, I can't explain it to you.



MrsPeel
Veteran
Veteran

Joined: 1 Oct 2017
Age: 49
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,086
Location: Australia

18 Aug 2018, 8:47 pm

I always get caught out with the question "Where do you work?"
For some reason, I usually name the physical location of my office, instead of the company name.
Even understanding the problem I still keep getting it wrong, because realisation of what they are actually asking me always comes too late, after the words are out of my mouth :oops:



AltoClarinet
Yellow-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Woodpecker

Joined: 2 Jan 2018
Gender: Female
Posts: 54
Location: Montreal, Canada

18 Aug 2018, 11:07 pm

Recently I was watching a new play. In the beginning, there are two female characters, one of whom is a college student. The other female character is in the student's room giving advice, and the college student is getting annoyed and sarcastically calls the other character "Mom." I then spent half the play wondering why this mother-and-daughter pair was acting more like same-age friends, and then about halfway through, I realized the "mom" comment was sarcastic and they were in fact same-age friends.



Joe90
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 23 Feb 2010
Gender: Female
Posts: 18,733
Location: Maidstone, UK

21 Aug 2018, 10:32 am

I don't usually take things literally but I did a few weeks ago and it was embarrassing.
I was with my cousin and a few of his friends and we were talking about a woman we know of who does relaxing meditation techniques and things like that to customers at her house. I said, "I wonder what she has inside?" and my cousin said, "probably has weed." I wasn't thinking along the lines of drugs, so I said, "I didn't know she was a gardener too?"
Then seeing their reaction it clicked, so I said, "oh, right, weed, I get what you mean now."


_________________
Female
Aged 30
On antidepressants
Diagnosed with AS, ADHD and anxiety disorder
Empathy score: 61 out of a possible 80. (High)


GregCav
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 16 Apr 2013
Age: 54
Gender: Male
Posts: 679
Location: Australia

22 Aug 2018, 5:24 am

MrsPeel wrote:
I always get caught out with the question "Where do you work?"

I always get offended when people ask me where I work. It feels very private to me, and I don't want to go telling everybody I've just met where I work.



domineekee
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 14 Jan 2018
Gender: Male
Posts: 4,983
Location: UK

22 Aug 2018, 5:52 am

I bumped into an acquaintance (we didn't actually bump)
I asked him how work was going and he said.

"It's stacked up till November"

Because there were other conversations going on I couldn't concentrate and ended up asking him what "stacked up" meant.
:oops:
I couldn't really catch much of what he said and zoned-out really badly about 3 times during a 2 minute chat.



Biscuitman
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 11 Mar 2013
Age: 41
Gender: Male
Posts: 2,222
Location: Dunking jammy dodgers

22 Aug 2018, 6:33 am

I don't really suffer from this, but one small area I struggle with is following written instructions. Not long ago I tried to cook something (rare for me!) and the instructions said 'mix in a pan', i thought it was odd that the material I use to mix it in should matter but that is what it said so it's what I did. I took a pan out of the cupboard and move all ingredients from the bowl I was using into a pan and carried on mixing. I didn't seem to be getting anywhere until my wife pointed out that 'mix in a pan' means mix it over heat i.e start cooking.

why not just say that??!



alpacka
Deinonychus
Deinonychus

User avatar

Joined: 24 Apr 2016
Gender: Female
Posts: 381
Location: Neverland

22 Aug 2018, 8:07 am

I have heard my whole life that I take things way too literally and "I have to be so clear when I talk to you", I think it´s much fear when I´m working (thats why I avoid it) the difficulties to understand each other.


_________________
Beauty is fleeting, but a rent-controlled apartment overlooking the park is forever