This is too funny because my coworkers (all women) all talk about how I playfully ask not to be blessed when I sneeze. I have desert allergies so I sneeze 20 times a day at work. I tell them I prefer "fuck you" to "bless you". But that hasn't caught on well except for with 1 girl. There was a definitive time, about 7 years ago, I was in a room full of Atheists. There were maybe 250 people so sneezes were audible. Nobody said "bless you" and I knew, "These are my people". I'd found out that it started because people thought a sneeze was your soul trying to escape and possibly being intercepted by the devil in the process. I thought, "That is the most ridiculous thing". I had just watched the Seinfeld episode where Jerry put his foot down about kissing hello. So I did the same with "bless you". It was all in fun. But I totally enjoy it and it's a good conversation starter. And frankly, some people think I'm serious about it. Those people are always judgmental and uptight Christians. Really. So it's an effective litmus test for people I don't need to invest energy into. I'm glad I saw this blog. I didn't LOL but I did do a little nasal giggle. And ya know what? I nearly sneezed... "Fuck me".
I tell them I prefer "fuck you" to "bless you". But that hasn't caught on well except for with 1 girl.
That's funny. I sometimes tell my partner, jokingly, to 'shut up' or 'fuck off' when she sneezes... Always good shock value. And she's gotten me back, too. But I've never thought of suggesting that to others...
It doesn't offend me when people say it, because its almost lost religious significance (Unless they put God in front of it), but I don't say it to others, I say Gesundheit.
On a side note: Didn't the word 'goodbye' originate as the phrase "God be with You"? (I may be wrong on this). But its completely lost its religious meaning today.
This or that the devil was trying to steal your soul through your sneeze, so you needed protection.
That's why I don't like "bless you." It serves no purpose. People say it's "polite" to say it when someone sneezes, but why? The devil isn't stealing my soul. I don't say "salud" when someone farts. I'd don't say or acknowledge "bless you" because it's a mindless vestigial saying that has no purpose.
I've actually never associated it with religion. It's just a saying now, like Christmas is just a holiday.
I like our wacky superstitions. They add depth and colour to my life.
Today is Thor's day (Thursday), in the month of Janus (January) on a planet wedged between Venus and Mars.
"Herculean task" means difficult and a mix of genetically mixed tissue is a Chimera.
Phases like "God bless you" are no more offensive to me than "touch wood" (harking back to pagan mythology avoiding bad luck via tree spirits). In fact, it's not that I'm not offended - these peculiar phrases brighten my day.
When my children go to bed, I say "good night God bless" (although it comes out as "G'night g'bless"). It's just an expression (in our house).
If I say "Hi Guys" in the back of my mind is the etymology of "Guy". I don't worry that I am suggesting my colleagues are Catholic terrorists.
As atheists let us celebrate these idiosyncrasies.
They are linguistic milestones that show us how far we've come.
"God bless you" is another of the quaint phrases. To purge our language would be DOUBLEPLUS BAD.
I feel slightly offended when people say "GOD bless you" but it doesn't really bother me, because how would they know?
Unless they DO know and say it anyway. Then that's just rude.
And you don't have to say thank you. When people say Merry Christmas to me I say "yeaaa....Reasons Greetings." So I couldn't hold your lack of gratitude against you! Haha