Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Ending Sentences With So

There are some repeated aspects of American slang that really make my crawl skin. There are the ones that have persisted such as using "like" multiple times in a sentence (not as a similie or expressing preference), ending a sentence with "at" unneccessarily (such as "Where are you at?"), and including "you know" without waiting for someone to acknowledge that they in fact know what the other person is speaking about.

The recent addition to this list is ending a sentence with "So....". Some people just don't seem to know how to end a thought. Now they have a clever escape mechanism, which is to just say "so" and lift their hand in the air. For example:

Person1: Did you go see that movie I told you about?
Person2: You know, I was like thinking about it and then Angelo called asking me where I was at. I told him and he was like why don't you come watch the game. So...

I beg you people, can we just end add "there you go" so it is a complete sentence.

32 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am 100% with you on this one. I may be imagining this, but I find that people from my home state (Wisconsin) appear to do this more frequently. It appears to be a regional thing. I brought this up to my wife, who's family does this all the time. It now drives her nuts.

Anonymous said...

People here in North Dakota do it all the time...bothers me immensely!!

sg said...

This is beginning to annoy me very much. I think that a lot of people have become so uncomfortable with completing a sentence/thought and having it hang out there. It's as if they're using the "so" as a way to say, "I'm done talking."

Something that I've been doing recently to my girlfriend, and I can only imagine she'll smack me someday because of it, is following her "so" up with a, "so ... what?" My thought is if you're ending with that word, surely you're about to say something else.

Anonymous said...

What can we do to alert more of the English speaking population to this tremendously annoying habit so we can all cut it out?

A "No So" or "Say No to So" or "Don't Say So" campaign? I'll make the signs!

So........

adogg said...

Represent VA! They do it here, too (especially all those suits in DC)


But wait! What about all those people that START sentences out of the blue with "So"?!

Society is the meat in a "so" sandwich.

Are we burning ourselves out by getting frustrated with this sort of thing? Perhaps our need to be individuals pushes us to be hyper-observant and hyper-critical?

Anonymous said...

I notice it a lot when a person is talking about himself. Ex:
"What did you do this weekend?"
"I went skydiving on Saturday and then I climbed a mountain on Sunday. It was pretty fun, so...."

I always think the next few words that the speaker wants to say but never does is something like "so I'm really freaking cool", or "so I think I'm better than you".

Anonymous said...

I am with all of you. I have a co-worker that uses the word "so" excessively. I have a hard time concentrating on what she is saying. I thought it was awesome when SNL came out with that skit (not sure who it starred) and she would try and one-up everyone with "so i like live on Mars. so. . ." Hilarious

Anonymous said...

I have to say, the man I'm with does this a LOT, and honestly, it's not that I am trying to be critical or excessively "individual", it's just that ending sentences in so... and filling the space between sentences with so... leave me feeling like there is no SPACE for me to reply, converse, and respond or affirm/accept what was said. And when there's no space for me to do that, I feel I might as well be a Lamppost he is talking at. I trust for him, it is important that he's talking to me... I guess I'd just like to feel I can contribute and respond. Isn't this REAL conversation?

Anonymous said...

I hav a like a rly bad hedache

ty guys :(

Anonymous said...

Kristen Wiig's SNL character Penelope demonstrates how extremely annoying and hilarious it can be when a speaker can't effectively end a thought, so...

Anonymous said...

I'm glad that I'm not the only one who notices this, and who is annoyed by it. I used to work as a cashier in retail and I would hear it all the time with upper class housewives who thought they were better than everybody else, and not exactly as a ending to an unfinished thought. They would do this at the end of a command or a request for something, like "I'm going to need everything double bagged so...." or like one time I had a lady bring up an item tag, which are found on items that are usually in the backroom, so i didn't know it was on the floor, so when I went to call back for the item, she said, "There were some right over there, somebody just needs to take it out to my car, so..." And it's always a drawn out so and it seems its mostly with women. I also notice their facial expressions, its almost like they're annoyed and don't want to talk to the cashier. This is in Missouri and in Washington state, by the way.

Josh said...

It's not always a bad thing...

"why do you love me so?"
"I'll eat you up I love you so"

can't think of any others...anyone?

but usually it's annoying, so..

:-P

Anonymous said...

The topic of this discussion is misnamed in my opinion - saying, "that is not entirely so," would be ending a sentence in "so".

What you are talking about is beginning a thought, but then abandoning it, and leaving the rest to the interpretation others. I think that it is a rather pleasent way of leaving something that does not need to be said, well, unsaid. People talk too much as it is, so...

just embrace it.

Jason said...

I'm so relieved to find this thread, as the "hanging so" phenomenon has just about driven me insane. I've even started to notice it on scripted t.v. shows, which is even more insidious because it implies that this abomination is being accepted into written language. Here is the response that my wife thinks is most fitting:
So-hanger: "blah, blah, blah, so..."
Responder: "So, I'll just draw my own concluations."

Jason said...

Sorry, that last word above should have been "conclusions."

Anonymous said...

Los Angeles here. We are ripe with the dangling so's. My response is to challenge the speaker with a "Sooooooo, and?" The speaker usually turns red with embarrassment, and tries to end their sentence properly. Too late, buttercup. Come talk to me when the next fad rolls into town.

Sometimes I like to repeat the "So." with a down-tone and then simply walk away. I think most people don't realize when they are making a dangling sentence, and mocking them is an effective wake up call.

Warrior Girl said...

I live in the mountains in Colorado and have been working with people who leave every, single, sentence hanging with the word "so..."

Conversations on the phone, banter in the office, clients who even come in, it's an ocean of this and it drives me absolutely insane! Entire 20 minute conversations where every single sentence ends in so...
And I keep waiting for them to finish their thought, but it never comes. Make a decision people and end the thought! aah.

Funny thing is, when I point it out that they're doing it, whether by saying "so...what?" or bluntly asking if they notice they're leaving their thought unfinished, they tell me I'm being picky or anal and everyone does it.

I consciously don't do it. I don't use "like", or "you know" either - this one's big up here in snowboarding country too - and I'm consistently asked where I'm originally from.

Thank you so much for posting this, I now know I'm not alone in my obsession with this stupid speaking habit and how much it drives me nuts.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful thread! I knew I wasn't alone being annoyed at this - most annoyingly used to express condesension, self importance, or pretentiousness. "You like that restaurant? Well, I don't like it, my brother is a chef, so...."
This was perfectly spoofed by Bill Murray in Ground hog day - "Not bad Mr. Connors. You say this is your first lesson? - Well my father was a piano mover, so..."
Also used as a dismissive, as a synonym for "you're not worth talking to any more..."
Geico commercial - "Shoot, I don't Have a phone... 'cause I'm a POTHOLE!?! So....."
Any other pop culture instances?

Anonymous said...

I noticed 3 American Idol contestants ending their sentences with "so" in the past 2 weeks. There were probably many more instances.

Anonymous said...

I've finally got the page for YOU...

http://www.facebook.com/pages/I-Hate-People-Who-End-Sentences-with-so/111273948912982

Anonymous said...

I can't believe I'm not alone on this one. Literally, and I mean, LITERALLY everyone I know - all my friends, anyway, more often than not end statements with that Godforsaken word. I am a real grammar freak, and I can easily spot almost any error. This? This doesn't even qualify as an error. It's an over-used colloquialism that is not only incorrect, but obnoxious. Everyone always tells me that it's an "opportunity" for the other person in the conversation to finish the thought for the original speaker for one of two reasons: One: The original speaker is incompetent of finishing his own statements, or Two: The original speaker thinks he or she will sound more sophisticated if he or she leaves his or her conclusion to be unsaid, and apparently, therefore implied. While those who think this way couldn't be more wrong, they continue to irritate us with no regard for our collective pet peeve.

joe said...

I livei in florida and people here also end their sentences with so. Is like a plague thats out of control. I dont know why it drives me nuts it just does. My girlfreind does it all day long.

Anonymous said...

I hate English Butchers. Ending sentences with so is the most annoying fad ever. I'm in Richmond, VA and it drives me insane. I always say, "so what?" They finally finish their thought, but life would be so much easier if they would just do it themselves without being asked to finsih their sentence. I don't have to ask them to finish their work, so just finish your sentences please! Other times I will just stare at them and then when they say what, I'll say I was waiting for you to finish your sentence. It does embarass them, but they continue to do it.

Anonymous said...

I work with someone who ends ALL sentences with either "so", or "but" ANNOYING!!!!!!

clairelynette said...

Ending or beginning a sentence with a "so" is annoying; ending or beginning a sentence with a "so...yeah" makes me want to cut my ears off. This is especially true if the speaker is also afflicted with uptalk and/or creaky voice syndrome. It's superfluous and I'm praying for it to end.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness. I thought I was the only one.

Contrary to what others believe, I think the dangling so tells the listener "I've made my statement and we are done." I think it is a "dis-invite" to comment.

Anonymous said...

The 'so...' thing drives me crazy. I've even caught myself do it a couple of times, and really hope those were the only times it happened. My brother-in-law uses it numerous, NUMEROUS times a day. Argh!

rob said...

In addition to ending with so, I've noticed a lot of people ending questions with the word "or." Many of which could've been yes or no without it. For example, "Did you watch the game last night, or...?" A friend of mine does it every time, and to make things even worse, he says something like "err" instead of "or." It drives me insane, but not as much as the main topic here so...

Anonymous said...

top [url=http://www.c-online-casino.co.uk/]uk online casinos[/url] hinder the latest [url=http://www.casinolasvegass.com/]casino games[/url] unshackled no deposit perk at the foremost [url=http://www.baywatchcasino.com/]casino games
[/url].

Anonymous said...

and so ?

Anonymous said...

Why do you care so much about this "so" called issue? In my opinion, as long as they are not bragging, I don't give a flying cock about it.

Mo said...

Oh, goodness, thank you! I can't stand this!

I'm surprised this post is from 2008. I didn't realize it had been going on, uh, SO long.