not only means different things to different people, but it also has different meanings related to the context of its usage. Here are just a few uses of
m sure you can think of many more.
s time to leave the house and you call your family, someone says,
ll be ready Soon
. This usually means about five to ten minutes.
Watching the recent political races, the news stations (FOX, CNN, etc) all say, the results are coming
. This turned out to be about 3-4 hours. Then they say,
, which turned out to be about 2-3 hours. Then they say
any moment now
, which turned out to be over an hour. Talk about holding an audience!
s about fixing something, and someone says,
ll fix that soon
, that is most likely measured in days, maybe weeks.
s go on a vacation
... usually means within six months.
re sitting at a restaurant waiting for your food to be delivered and the server comes over and says,
m sorry, the kitchen is a little backed up,
but your food will be out Soon
. This usually means between 10 and 15 minutes. If that time passes the server comes back and says
the food will be out Very Soon
another 5-10 minutes
Your car panel says
change oil Soon
. This is an interesting variation as it
s a function of miles, so if you travel 50 miles a day,
usually means within a week or two. If you drive infrequently,
can mean a month or two.
re waiting for your flight and the inbound flight is delayed. The airline people announce that the plane will be there
Soon or Very Soon
. Of course, you can track the inbound flight, which is sometimes 20 minutes away, plus another 10 minutes to taxi to the gate, so
could mean 30 minutes.
Before you board a plane they start announcing that you
. This usually means about 5-10 minutes.
Lastly .. you tell your kids
Santa will be here Soon
This means when they fall asleep
We use words like Soon, Very Soon, and Momentarily
. We also sometimes give an exact number such as
give me 10 seconds
which usually means about 30-60 seconds. When we say
this often means 3-5 minutes.
So even when we attempt to be precise, we
Before you respond with
, take a short moment to think about how much time you really need and how you can be ready, or be finished, or deliver something in that time. Then you can say a bracketed times slot and deliver to that time.
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