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  #1  
Old 07-30-2014, 03:55 PM
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Default Sneeze dilema

OK so not one to start debates. I work in an office full of cubicles. Being the semi new guy I try to be courteous and respectful at all times. Its hard to do that when I sneeze and they say the usual "God bless you." I don't say anything in response. My job place has many religious people and it makes me a little uncomfortable how they interact with me based on their beliefs.Most have religious quotes or pictures up all over their cubicle, my supervisor even has a bottle of holy water on her desk. I guess I'll have to suck it up for now, it sounds really petty of me. Just food for thought, how do you respond when someone blesses you after a sneeze?
Or overly religious people at work? And I mean the ones that blast the religion talk show all day at work, and say amen ever 5 seconds. Some of the stuff being spewed out of those talk shows are ridiculous.

How do you deal?
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:08 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

A simple thank you is probably better than not acknowledging them. I try to be PC and say gesundheit (translation: good health) when I'm not the sneezer.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:15 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

I'm very non-religious so I sometimes face the same dilemma. You don't want to act rude but you're also not going to say something that makes you uncomfortable. I don't have a problem with "god bless you," though. It's more a figure of speech than some holy sacrament. Just say "thank you" and move on, no big deal. If you have a sick coworker and everyone's like: "I pray for your good health," and you don't pray, that's fine, you don't have to lie. Say "Get well soon" or "wish you the best." You can be true to yourself without offending anyone.

As for blasting talk shows, will you get in trouble for putting in earbuds? Or could you ask someone to turn it down?
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:16 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Thats what I say too, gesundheit. Or I give them a nod. I try not to be rude or insulting at work but its sometimes irritating. For example, the woman behind me blast hers religious radio, I'd have no problem if it wasnt for that fact that the talk personalities literally call gays, atheists, muslims, and basically anything not christians, a sin. Seriously! I was in shock. It literally preached the evils of science and how gravity is not a law since its inanimate. Stuff like that gets me really pissed. But I dont ever treat my coworker with disrespect.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:20 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by CreeplyTuna View Post
I'm very non-religious so I sometimes face the same dilemma. You don't want to act rude but you're also not going to say something that makes you uncomfortable. I don't have a problem with "god bless you," though. It's more a figure of speech than some holy sacrament. Just say "thank you" and move on, no big deal. If you have a sick coworker and everyone's like: "I pray for your good health," and you don't pray, that's fine, you don't have to lie. Say "Get well soon" or "wish you the best." You can be true to yourself without offending anyone.

As for blasting talk shows, will you get in trouble for putting in earbuds? Or could you ask someone to turn it down?
For the blasting radio thing I cant use headbuds at work. I mean I'm kinda new so I gotta be as professional as possible. But I do play my own music at a low volume. Barely audible outside my cubicle wall. I mean I know its not a big crazy deal but it has me thinking a lot. Mainly that it boggles me that people cannot understand the idea that not everyone is going to believe the same as you do and then get ruffled when they find out you dont.

I guess its this whole office culture going on really that bugs me. Everyone has to say good morning with such a huge smile. Weird stuff man
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:32 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

I'm an atheist that has to work with a variety of of believers. I just don't get hung up about it. Everything in life is a choice between joy/love and fear/hate.

As far as the radio-man hate-monger. Gravitation is a fairly complex topic. If someone misinterprets the metaphorical story of genesis as being literal, we can hardly expect them to have the capacity to comprehend the nature of fundamental and emergent forces. Most of the time, radio-hate-mongers are just putting on an act and playing a character in order to generate controversy and increase ad revenue. It's exactly what performers like Alice Cooper do. It's a show.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by KamaK View Post
I'm an atheist that has to work with a variety of of believers. I just don't get hung up about it. Everything in life is a choice between joy/love and fear/hate.

As far as the radio-man hate-monger. Gravitation is a fairly complex topic. If someone misinterprets the metaphorical story of genesis as being literal, we can hardly expect them to have the capacity to comprehend the nature of fundamental and emergent forces.
Totally agree with you about it being a choice. I don't let it affect my treatment of others but it really gets me thinking.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:45 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by KamaK View Post

As far as the radio-man hate-monger. Gravitation is a fairly complex topic. If someone misinterprets the metaphorical story of genesis as being literal, we can hardly expect them to have the capacity to comprehend the nature of fundamental and emergent forces. Most of the time, radio-hate-mongers are just putting on an act and playing a character in order to generate controversy and increase ad revenue. It's exactly what performers like Alice Cooper do. It's a show.
True, that. The difference is that some of them actually believe what they're saying. Yes, there are people who believe that the universe is literally 6000 years old and humans once rode dinosaurs like horses.

First, the whole "say something after a sneeze" is very silly. People don't have special sayings for when you cough or burp or hiccup. My understanding is that this saying arose in the Middle Ages because people thought that your soul left your body when you sneezed and before it returned the devil could sneak in. Talk about your sophisticated theology, ranks right up there with "step on crack, break your mother's back".

When someone sneezes, I go the Seinfeld route and say "you're so good looking". My students are perfectly conditioned to it by the time they graduate. If I sneeze and someone says "god bless you" I'll usually say something like "Arf!", just a non sequitur acknowledgement.
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Old 07-30-2014, 04:52 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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First, the whole "say something after a sneeze" is very silly. People don't have special sayings for when you cough or burp or hiccup. My understanding is that this saying arose in the Middle Ages because people thought that your soul left your body when you sneezed and before it returned the devil could sneak in. Talk about your sophisticated theology, ranks right up there with "step on crack, break your mother's back".
That's why I don't say thank you. Because to me it just doesn't make sense. When one farts they say excuse me. One coughs they dont say anything most of the time. A hiccup is also followed by excuse me. Its just odd for a sneeze to be treated special haha.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:04 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

I'd get out of there quickly if I had that kind of drivel on the radio and couldn't complain to my manager about it. I'd probably snap within hours.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:08 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

In some latin cultures, they say "Jesus" when you sneeze. When it's a double sneeze, it's "Jesus y Maria". When it's a triple sneeze, it's "Jesus y Maria y Joseph". I think they start listing the 12 apostles after that....
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Almost everyone that I've ever met in my life has some religious belief. Most of the people that I love and respect. Some of the kindest and smartest people. I just let it go now. I don't want to argue with these people over evolution, or heaven, or the fact that I believe we 're just big apes cruising around space on a giant rock. It's all just too short to waste time fighting about things that will not be agreed upon in my lifetime. If Halley predicting comets couldn't convince people , how can I hope to persuade "Bob" in Human Resources.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

I think of "bless you" as more of a courtesy remark than anything else. Even I use it, and I'm not religious. Just like when I ask, "How are you?" I don't necessarily really want an answer. I'm big on social etiquette so this one doesn't bother me in the least.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:29 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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I think of "bless you" as more of a courtesy remark than anything else. Even I use it, and I'm not religious. Just like when I ask, "How are you?" I don't necessarily really want an answer. I'm big on social etiquette so this one doesn't bother me in the least.
I guess I'm on of those people that actually answer to "How are you?" =( Have to stop being so literal.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:33 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

You can always say Bless you, and then reply thank you. No religion involved. If you aren't the sneezer you can always say nothing
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:38 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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You can always say Bless you, and then reply thank you. No religion involved. If you aren't the sneezer you can always say nothing
Wouldnt blessing someone imply bestowing some supernatural's good will on you. Like I said before, maybe I'm too literal and petty. Saying nothing will appear rude to them i believe.

My job has a morale committee where they discuss interpersonal problems and feelings. Maybe I could bring it up to them just to see what they say.
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:57 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by hyruleherojoe View Post
Wouldnt blessing someone imply bestowing some supernatural's good will on you. Like I said before, maybe I'm too literal and petty. Saying nothing will appear rude to them i believe.

My job has a morale committee where they discuss interpersonal problems and feelings. Maybe I could bring it up to them just to see what they say.
Not at all, I'm absolutely with you here.

With regards to the morale committee, I'd much rather discuss your colleague's radio. If you put in a complaint about the overtly religious and discriminatory content then that might get some traction. You don't even have to be offended. Just point out that a potential client entering your office could be if they heard it.

We have a similar policy at my work. I work in the community a lot and if a service user makes a racist or discriminatory remark, we point out how it might make somebody they don't know feel. It usually nips it in the bud very quickly (and if they don't stop...).
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:51 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by JimFiore View Post
My understanding is that this saying arose in the Middle Ages because people thought that your soul left your body when you sneezed and before it returned the devil could sneak in.
I have always understood that sneezing was one of the earliest symptoms of the Black Death and that the blessing was intended to protect you from further and more fatal ones, which tallies with "Gesundheit".

Although the "God" bit is implied in "bless you", I don't think I've ever heard the whole thing said over here.

But what is really, really important is that you should never say "Thank you" after somebody says "Bless you", because every time you do, a fairy dies. This is FACT.
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:07 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by JimFiore View Post
First, the whole "say something after a sneeze" is very silly. People don't have special sayings for when you cough or burp or hiccup. My understanding is that this saying arose in the Middle Ages because people thought that your soul left your body when you sneezed and before it returned the devil could sneak in. Talk about your sophisticated theology, ranks right up there with "step on crack, break your mother's back".
I've always read that it had a lot more to do with the Black Plague. Sneezes (along with other flu like symptoms) were one of the first signs, and it was very bad news to get the good ol' Bubonic. Hence, the original sentiment was typically genuine, and I imagine followed by whomever said it taking some distance from your person immediately.
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:48 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

You don't have to say anything after they say bless you. There is no 'responsibility'.

If they get their panties in bunch, which I hope is not happening, then it's on them how they take the silence.

I sneeze... a lot. I never expect a Bless You... In fact, I kinda let on not to say something because you'll be saying it about 10 more times in the next minute and that gets tiresome.

Thus I never say Bless You when people sneeze too.

Note: I thought this was going to be a thread of sneezing while playing. That's actually a small fear of mine. As is a major scratch or my glasses starting to slide off my face. Like I said, it's just small fear.
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:53 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by hyruleherojoe View Post
Wouldnt blessing someone imply bestowing some supernatural's good will on you. Like I said before, maybe I'm too literal and petty. Saying nothing will appear rude to them i believe.

My job has a morale committee where they discuss interpersonal problems and feelings. Maybe I could bring it up to them just to see what they say.


bless


: to provide (a person, place, etc.) with something good or desirable



The last one seems to fit according to Merriam Webster
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Old 07-30-2014, 08:56 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

I've often wonder why we hold so tightly to superstitions from the Middle-Ages. People are just people. We have all been programmed this way, and people kinda expect it, religion or no religion. Personally, I don't say bless you because I think it's silly. I don't like to sneeze at the office either because I don't want somebody blessing me. Then I have to say thank you for something stupid that holds no value in my mind. But, I'll play along just to alleviate any bad vibes.

As far as the woman who blasts her music. That is so very uncool to force others to listen to your crap. I had a lady who listened to KIIS-FM in the morning, followed by Country music in the afternoon. It was making me crazy. I asked to switch desks and I made sure she knew the reason why. "It's because of YOU, you dirty-ass blankety blank."
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Old 07-30-2014, 09:00 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Well if a Southerner tells you "bless your heart" that's about the lowest insult you'd ever receive... ;)
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Old 07-30-2014, 09:06 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by Midnite Zephyr View Post
I've often wonder why we hold so tightly to superstitions from the Middle-Ages. People are just people. We have all been programmed this way, and people kinda expect it, religion or no religion. Personally, I don't say bless you because I think it's silly. I don't like to sneeze at the office either because I don't want somebody blessing me. Then I have to say thank you for something stupid that holds no value in my mind. But, I'll play along just to alleviate any bad vibes.

As far as the woman who blasts her music. That is so very uncool to force others to listen to your crap. I had a lady who listened to KIIS-FM in the morning, followed by Country music in the afternoon. It was making me crazy. I asked to switch desks and I made sure she knew the reason why. "It's because of YOU, you dirty-ass blankety blank."
I dont mind the music, I love all types but its the talk show crap I cant stand. My solution was to simply turn up the computer volume on my music. Our interactions are courteous and professional. Just hope she doesnt treat me differently when the holidays come around. haha

On one hand I can agree with others that its not a big deal. I just do my work and go home.
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Old 07-30-2014, 09:59 PM
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Originally Posted by KamaK View Post
In some latin cultures, they say "Jesus" when you sneeze. When it's a double sneeze, it's "Jesus y Maria". When it's a triple sneeze, it's "Jesus y Maria y Joseph". I think they start listing the 12 apostles after that....
Really? Must be those weirdos on the East Coast...

In Mexico they just say "Salud" which means "Health". It also doubles as a toast.
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Old 07-30-2014, 10:26 PM
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Originally Posted by hyruleherojoe View Post
On one hand I can agree with others that its not a big deal. I just do my work and go home.

Personally, I would suggest learning some of the songs and singing along, complete with improvised interpretive dance moves. A big part of being a performing musician is being able to emote or feign enthusiasm even when you don't have anything left to give. Nothing wrong with turning the experience into real practice.
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Old 07-30-2014, 11:08 PM
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Originally Posted by BacteriumFendYoke View Post
With regards to the morale committee, I'd much rather discuss your colleague's radio. If you put in a complaint about the overtly religious and discriminatory content then that might get some traction.
That might work. I only hope the OP doesn't work for Hobby Lobby.

Regarding the origin, it might have been the Black Death, I don't know. I read that bit about the soul leaving the body some years ago and can't recall the source. But either way it's a silly superstition. After all, nothing fails like prayer.
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Last edited by JimFiore; 07-31-2014 at 01:41 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 07-31-2014, 12:09 AM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by JimFiore View Post
Regarding the origin, it might have been the Black Death, I don't know. I read that bit about the soul leaving the body some years ago and can't recall the source. But either way it's a silly superstition. After all, nothing fails like prayer.
I decided to not be lazy for once and googled it.

In fact, the plague does not cause sneezes, but back when, people thought it did, and used "bless you" as a ward/hope that the person would not die of plague.

Anyway, that's how I disarm people who say "bless you" to me. I respond: Thanks, hopefully I won't get the plague, if your blessing holds any water, I'll be safe.
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Old 07-31-2014, 12:36 AM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

YOU:
"Ah, ah, ah, choo!!"

THEM (in a chorus):
"God bless you."
"Gesundheit."
"Bless you."


YOU:
"Thank you. Now shut the hell up and leave me the f**k alone!!"

Nobody will ever bless you again after that!
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Old 07-31-2014, 12:53 AM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

I'm as atheist as it's possible to be, but I don't see any reason to react to a "bless you" for a sneeze.

Everything else, take on its own merits. A loud, intrusive radio would annoy me regardless of what it was playing.

BTW - what does holy water taste like? I drink the regular sort, which has no holes at all.
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Old 07-31-2014, 01:30 AM
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BTW - what does holy water taste like? I drink the regular sort, which has no holes at all.
I don't know but I'm guessing it goes well with Swiss cheese.
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Old 07-31-2014, 01:54 AM
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I decided to not be lazy for once and googled it.

In fact, the plague does not cause sneezes, but back when, people thought it did, and used "bless you" as a ward/hope that the person would not die of plague.
I was curious too. According to Wikipedia, there are a number of possible origins including those mentioned (plague related, soul leaving body). Another was that people believed that your heart stopped beating and saying "God bless you" was a way of saying a short prayer that your heart would restart.

But the coolest thing I discovered was that there is a proper name for "sun sneezing": photoptarmosis,or photic sneeze reflex. I discovered I had this when I was a child. Sometimes when coming out of a dark room into bright light I will sneeze (especially going outside in the summer or on a clear, bright winter day). Usually, I will sneeze twice and in some cases three or four times quickly in a row. Interestingly, sneezing is not something that happens a lot when I get a head cold. So the vast majority of the time, when I sneeze it has nothing to do with being sick.

And truth be told, I kind of enjoy the sensation of sneezing. There's the anticipation, the tingly build-up, the sudden forceful release and resolution. I wonder if Freud would have anything to say about it? "Sometimes a sneeze is just a sneeze!"
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Old 07-31-2014, 02:51 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by mmulcahy1 View Post
YOU:
"Ah, ah, ah, choo!!"

THEM (in a chorus):
"God bless you."
"Gesundheit."
"Bless you."


YOU:
"Thank you. Now shut the hell up and leave me the f**k alone!!"

Nobody will ever bless you again after that!
Now this made me laugh a lot!

Quote:
That might work. I only hope the OP doesn't work for Hobby Lobby.
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Old 07-31-2014, 04:46 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Just say thanks and go about your day. Most people around here are lazy and just say "bless you."

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Originally Posted by hyruleherojoe View Post
Thats what I say too, gesundheit. Or I give them a nod. I try not to be rude or insulting at work but its sometimes irritating. For example, the woman behind me blast hers religious radio, I'd have no problem if it wasnt for that fact that the talk personalities literally call gays, atheists, muslims, and basically anything not christians, a sin. Seriously! I was in shock. It literally preached the evils of science and how gravity is not a law since its inanimate. Stuff like that gets me really pissed. But I dont ever treat my coworker with disrespect.
I'm "religious" and that crap pisses me off too, but we all hear crap like that all day long on just about every subject. You have to tune it out. It's the only way you'll stay sane.
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Old 07-31-2014, 05:15 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Maybe try this: Next time you sneeze, and someone blesses you, ask them why they say that. It will force them consider what exactly they are saying. If a person blesses you...that implies that they have that gift, right? Isn't that a little presumptuous? Isn't blessing the domain of the Gods? Do people really have the ability to bless someone? I thought blessing someone or something was really a divine thing. God has blessed us with this bounty. Or, Fred has blessed us with this peach cobbler. I guess they are both valid. But blessing someone without providing any material thing is really just lip service, a colossal cop out lol. Next time someone blesses you, maybe ask to substitute their well meant but useless blessing with a few bucks instead. That will put a stop to it lol.

Sometimes I sneeze 15-20 times in a row. It's like a mini orgasm in a way, it's hard to stop once you're past the point of no return. I dig it. Eventually, I tire of sneezing and I blow my nose.

DrummerWorld, where no topic is too trivial. Love this thread Joe.
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  #36  
Old 07-31-2014, 05:24 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

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Originally Posted by JimFiore View Post
But the coolest thing I discovered was that there is a proper name for "sun sneezing": photoptarmosis,or photic sneeze reflex. I discovered I had this when I was a child. Sometimes when coming out of a dark room into bright light I will sneeze (especially going outside in the summer or on a clear, bright winter day). Usually, I will sneeze twice and in some cases three or four times quickly in a row. Interestingly, sneezing is not something that happens a lot when I get a head cold. So the vast majority of the time, when I sneeze it has nothing to do with being sick.
Another weird aspect to the "sun sneeze" is that not everybody does it. I don't remember the exact number, but something like a third, or fifth of all people do not react to the sun in that manner.

Edit: Crap! According to your link, I have it backwards... Only 15-35 of people actually do react that way! Weird. It definitely affects me. When I was a kid, when I felt the itch to sneeze, but just couldn't make it happen, I'd go outside and try to trigger the sun sneeze.
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Old 07-31-2014, 05:28 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

"Bless you" bothers people? Really? Two little innocuous words have prompted all this? Beats a kick in the arse.

I couldn't give a toss about God or his blessings. But it's hardly worth throwing Christians to the lions over. And it sure as shit ain't worth working yourself into a lather on a drum forum.......I'm sure life will present you with a real problem soon enough. Just smile and go about yer business.
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Old 07-31-2014, 05:28 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Quote:
Originally Posted by larryace View Post

Sometimes I sneeze 15-20 times in a row. It's like a mini orgasm in a way...
A nasal orgasm, huh?

I wonder if I can give my wife one of those? Hmmm?
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Old 07-31-2014, 06:22 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Quote:
Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Sometimes I sneeze 15-20 times in a row. It's like a mini orgasm in a way, it's hard to stop once you're past the point of no return. I dig it.
Who'd a thunk that Larry was multi-orgasmic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
"Bless you" bothers people? Really? Two little innocuous words have prompted all this? Beats a kick in the arse.
It doesn't bother me if someone says "god bless you" after I sneeze but it certainly would be bothersome if I had to deal with all that radio BS the OP has to put up with.
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Old 07-31-2014, 07:32 PM
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Default Re: Sneeze dilema

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
"Bless you" bothers people? Really? Two little innocuous words have prompted all this? Beats a kick in the arse.

I couldn't give a toss about God or his blessings. But it's hardly worth throwing Christians to the lions over. And it sure as shit ain't worth working yourself into a lather on a drum forum.......I'm sure life will present you with a real problem soon enough. Just smile and go about yer business.
This is it for me. If this makes you that uncomfortable, you're in for a rough ride in life.
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