“We’ll Be Seein’ ya” and other commonly used phrases

I heard this phrase for the first time in a while, and it made me laugh. We all have little phrases like this we commonly say. This isn’t one of mine, though likely I have plenty I don’t even realize I am over and misusing.

How many times do we use phrases like that out of habit when they don’t really apply. The most common I hear is “How you doing?” when you first start talking with someone. Bank tellers, cashiers and other people you really don’t know really don’t care how you are doing, but this is the first thing that gets said. Usually, the response is “fine” or “great” and then you ask them back how they are. Pleasantries aside you get down to the intended conversation. Do we say these things really to be pleasant, or simply out of sheer habit? I have a friend who’s dad has made it his personal joke to respond to this common question with “terrible,” “just awful” or something similar to catch people off guard.

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I don’t watch a lot of TV these days, at least not general TV for the sake of just watching. When I do, I like to catch a few particular shows if they happen to be on. I hate reality shows in general, I find no desire to watch people argue about things that really don’t matter and basically put on a strange act to try and garner the most camera time in their 15 minutes of fame. There are a few that I enjoy though that I don’t know if they really fall under “reality shows” but the generally get typed like that. They are the shows that actually do something good with their funding, like Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and the car shows like Overhaulin’ and Trick My Truck.

It is on the last show mentioned, Trick My Truck, that the shop owner gives a corny little speech at the end about how they are happy to have helped the trucker by making his truck something special. At the end of his speech, he always uses his signature sign off, “We’ll be seein’ ya.” Some writer obviously decided the show needed that endearing little phrase at the end to tie them all together. I prefer to use the opportunity to jump ahead 30 seconds on my DVR if I happen to have some show time in memory from pausing earlier, which I usually end up doing because of the common kid-based interruptions.

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To give him credit, in this case, he is actually referring to him and his “crew” when he says “we’ll” so the phrase actually works. What made me laugh this morning is when an individual uses the phrase. It was just two guys chatting outside the convenience store that had obviously bumped into each other when filling up or grabbing a fountain drink. I happened to be walking buy when the “We’ll be seein’ ya” popped out and they parted ways. I laughed inside and actually thought about looking around and behind him and asking, “where are the other people?” I know, petty and not all that funny, which is why I actually didn’t do it.

Brian Regan, the comedian I have mentioned several times on this site has a great bit about the “you too” misuse. In his joke, he talks about a taxi driver wishing him a nice flight and a waiter wishing him a nice meal, and how his habitual response of “you too” just not fitting those kinds of situations. I crack myself up when I incorrectly say something completely of habit because I think back to this joke. Isn’t it a lot like when young kids make that oh so embarrassing
a mistake of calling their teacher “mom” for the first time?

We are creatures of habit, and our speech is laden with little idiosyncrasies like this. What are your some of your favorites?