My recent speech impediments

Recently, I’ve developed a few odd speech impediments. I’m not sure where they’ve come from or whether it’s just a result of working in a busier environment with customers and so I’m talking more.

The first one is definitely a talking-more thing. When people say thank you for something, I always say, “No problem.” It’s a bit nonsensical anyway because why would there be a problem with them saying thank you? And surely it’s for them to say ‘no problem’ because I’ve done something correctly when they asked me for it. Or maybe it means, “There’s no problem in getting it for you.” In which case, it is me who needs to say it.

Anyway, whatever the reason, I usually say ‘no problem.’ But because there are lots of customers, I’m trying to speak quickly so I can serve the next customer and I keep saying, “No ploblem.”

I’m not sure if they’ve noticed but it’s happening 50% of the time now. When I open my mouth to say, “No problem,” I’ve no guarantee whether I’ll say problem or ploblem.

The second one is something I imagine a grandma might often say. I keep telling people I’ll just “pop and” get them something.

Sample conversation in which I say “pop and.”

“Hello, how can I help you?”

“I’d just like a pot of tea please.”

“Ok, great, that’s going to be £1.75 please.”

“Can I pay by card?”

“Yes, that’s fine. If you just put your card into the machine and it will give you the instructions. I’ll just pop and make your tea while you’re doing that.”

I’m sorry? Pop AND make your tea? Why not just say “I’ll make your cup of tea while you’re doing that”? Am I implying that I shall pop before doing the pot of tea? And what on earth might this ‘pop’ consist of?

People say, “I’m just popping to the shops” or “Pop the kettle on.” The ‘pop’ in itself is kind of a byword for the word that should have been there. So what does my ‘pop’ mean? It’s totally superfluous to the sentence. I’ve already said, “I’ll make your cup of tea” so the “pop and” is simply in there for show.

And now I’ve noticed it and become conscious of it, I’ve been saying it for loads of stuff. It’s got out of control.

“I’ll pop and get you some bread for your soup.”

“If you sit down, I’ll pop and bring you the scones when they’re ready.”

“That’s £3.20, thank you. I’ll pop and get your change for you now.”

“I’ll just pop and get you a wine glass for your drink.”

8 responses to this post.

  1. Reminds me of my kids imitating their teachers. You know how it is, when you`re up there in front of people all the time, you naturally fall into key phrases. As long as you don`t start plopping ploblems all over the place, you should be fine!


    • I’ve plopped a few ploblems today actually. The first being that I turned up for work an hour early cause I read the rota wrong. So there was a full extra unnecessary hour of ploblems being plopped.


  2. I’ll just “pop and make your tea” is delightful. So much better than the head nods or shoulder shrugs. As far as expressions go, I’ll take “pop” anything–shows action, and with a smile, it’s great!


    • Ok. I guess I’ll keep popping then. I must’ve said it about 500 times yesterday and really noticed each time. Maybe I’ll just let the popping flow and not be self conscious about it?


  3. When we were living in Korea, I learned to read Hangul which has a letter that is pronounced either “r” or “l” depending on its context. That fact get nestled deep within my brain and now I can’t get it out, so I often mispronounce r and l words too!


  4. I don’t know what the ploblem is with “pop”. It is endearingly British!


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