Thursday, June 21, 2018

What Thank You Brings

No Worries, she said when I requested a booth. And NoWorries again with bread for the table. I never suggested she had anything to worry about or even a cause for concern. A final, NoWorries, when I asked for a napkin and then the check. I’m glad we got through our meal without distressing her any further. By now I was longing for, No Problem. Apparently her serving our lunch resulted in neither worries nor problems…nor early onset Alzheimer’s nor zits nor her rent check to bounce.

How did this happen, all this negativity? When did, You’re Welcome, vanish? say nothing of You’re Very Welcome. Is, No Worries the end point of, Don’t Mention it or Not At All? I want to petition for the return of, My Pleasure or Happy to Oblige. With it might come the restoration of civil discourse and the end of road rage, police brutality and maniacal Tweets.

I fear we’re trending in the wrong direction. At least, No Problem was singular. Now we must be slipping into the abyss of multiple perturbations with plural worries. A problem is like a busted shoe lace or a piece of spinach left on your tooth. But worries seem to me one step before dread. That No doesn't help; why bring it up in the first place.

When I hear No Worries I imagine the server is saying, You’ve been a pain in the ass but this is my job and I can put up with anything till my shift is over since I have a high threshold of endurance. Or is she implying that I shouldn’t fret about having inconvenienced her?

But what if I want to worry? It's like my right not to Have a nice day. Even with my napkin and bread the planet is being choked with foul air, homeless people are begging for shelter, asylum-seekers and refugees in flight for their lives. No worries indeed!

I wonder if Trump said, No Worries, to Kim Jong Un when he promised the cessation of War Games. Also curious what the Korean expression is for, No Worries when Un promised to denuclearize, Hey, Don’t worry about it, Buddy Boy.

We live in a time of obliquity. Not only deviating from moral rectitude but indirectness. Can I get you a drink? I’m good. I didn’t ask whether you’ve behaved yourself today or whether you are an ethical person or a good for nothing. I merely asked whether you would care for a drink.

Maybe all this is a form of poetry. It was Emily Dickinson who said to tell it slant. No Problem, No Worries, I’ll get over it. I’ll take English as a second language. No really, I’m good.


  1. I'm definitely with you on this one. I also get annoyed by people saying thank you back when someone thanks them for being on their show or whatever. What happened to "your welcome and thank you for having me"?

  2. I got this from Google...“No worries.” We used to say good old American expressions like “no problem,” or “no sweat”, but now we've adopted this dumb Aussie phrase probably because most Americans think Australia is in Europe."