Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Have a Good One!

"Have a good one!" Store clerks, bank tellers, and other casual contacts close encounters with a cheery "Have a good one!" I always want to ask (but am too polite to do so), "Have a good WHAT?"

One assumes they mean "Have a good day," but do they really? They could just as easily have said that. It has the same number of words, even containing the same number of letters. So there's no greater expenditure of resources in saying "Have a good day!"

So do they mean have a good ... life, romance, dinner, trip or what? It seems a bit like the one-size-fits-all ball caps that fill the top shelf in my closet. With some fiddling on my part, most of them can actually be worn. But regardless of how well they're adjusted, they never fit as well as one that was properly sized to begin with.


  1. Very deep, . . . . . and very true.

  2. Jim,
    This has been an issue with me for a long time too! Thanks for saying it. I think we are a linguistically lazy society. People look for innumerable ways to use contractions, pseudonyms, acronyms, etc. in an effort to avoid the use of complete sentences. And the internet has made it even worse. I still remember learning how to diagram sentences in grade school in Knott County: subject, object, verb. I still try to use complete sentences & think everyone else should also. Keep up the good work.

  3. I like the casualness of "have a good one" and am afraid I use it all the time to mean have a good "whatever", meaning whatever you're doing may it be good. It's the thought behind the sentiment that counts and not the words?

  4. Thank you! I couldn't agree more! I cringe every time someone says "Have a good one" and I also feel like saying "A good WHAT?" It makes no bloody sense. I thought it didn't make sense to me cos I speak British English and not American English and perhaps I was missing something from the big picture, but I am glad to see I am not alone.

    1. I'm always cheered when someone agrees with me. Thanks, for stopping by.