[M.M.X.I.V. 346] Health or blessings

Ah… you don’t have to worry.  This is not something where you, ah, have to choose.  Rather, language, ah, chooses it for you.  Ah, because it may be chosen by standards set.

Ah… ah… ahhh…

AH-CHOO!

(Notice: I did not actually have a sneeze during the writing of this post. :p)

Whew.  Now that I have that sneeze out of the way, the reason for the post: I am fascinated by responses to a sneeze in several different languages.

  • In English, the most frequent response that I hear is “Bless you.”
  • In Spanish, one of my high school teachers responded with “Jesus!” (pronounced hey-SOOS)  I have also heard “Salud” in response to it.
  • In German (or Yiddish for that matter), the word is “Gesundheit.
  • In Hebrew, a sneeze is responded to by לבריאות

I find that quite interesting.  Other than English and some Spanish-speakers, the other languages for which I know respond to a sneeze with a “health” based word.  (In Hebrew, the word literally means “to health.”)

The reason I wrote this post: On Wednesday, when I was proctoring the exam, one of the students sneezed and then self-responded with “Jesus!” (pronounced JEE-zus).  It reminded me of a non-self-response, as mentioned in the list above.  You never know what strange things will create a blog prompt!

I know that in the olden days, some people believed that a sneeze was used to exorcise demons, and hence the response “bless you.”  Yet, in today’s society, it is known that a sneeze is either due to a common cold, something tickling one’s nose, and several other reasons.

I will admit that I am quite noisy when I sneeze, which is definitely something that I inherited from my Dad.  But, suppose that a person sneezes more than once, which often happens.

“Ah-choo!”

“Gesundheit.”

“Ah-CHOO!”

“Squared.”

“ACHOO!”

“Cubed.”

Of course, then it sort of breaks down.

====================================================

Today is the three-hundred and forty-sixth day of M.M.X.I.V.  That makes forty-nine weeks and three days.

Today is the three-hundred and forty-eight day of Mission 441.  Ninety-three days remain.

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5 thoughts on “[M.M.X.I.V. 346] Health or blessings

  1. I can relate completely to this post. In part due to the fact that I have a cold at the moment. But I also have a few “blessings” to offer when someone sneezes. Like you, after three sneezes I have something to say, though not as nice. More a long the lines of “OK, that’s enough, I get the idea.”.

    In place of Gesundheit, I like to say “Gazoomba” because that’s Maggie-speak.

    Like

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