Originally Posted by patrickBOOTH
Strange. I use not a problem frequently. You're welcome seems too inviting. I'm no doormat, dammit!
Originally Posted by Thomas
Just now I'm reminded the responses I've heard to "Thank You" have been "Nothing to thank" (Icelandic) and "It's nothing" (Spanish)
Originally Posted by Douglas
Mandarin and French, too.
Understood, and in the situation where someone does a small (or even large) favor or gesture worthy of elicitng a true "thanks" from me, I don't mind a "de nada" - they're letting me know that they were happy to do it/ think nothing of it,/it was no big deal/ they weren't put out by it,/etc. And I know the analogy can be carried over to the coffee guy, but my feeling is that my 'thanks' is really about giving him the opportunity to acknowledge my patronage (I'm a regular, tip well, smile, don't hold up the line, etc.). They haven't really done anything for me to thank them for. Their 'not a problem' response turns the customer/server relationship on its head. I know it's not a problem for them to give me the cup of coffee I've paid for - it's their f#cking job. "You're welcome" says thanks for coming in & giving us your business - it was my pleasure to serve you. "Not a problem" coming from a service industry employee says 'whatever dude, I'm a slacker, you want coffee-I gave you coffee, what's the big deal?'
I think part of the problem w/ "not a problem" is that it has morphed into a you're welcome-type repsonse, whereas I recall it being used more in the context of a can-do/nothing is too difficult/rest assured the job will get done-type of response. It was the kind of thing your contractor would say in response to a request for a special, very important yet extremely difficult detail you want added to the custom built-in bookcase.Edited by romafan - 2/28/13 at 8:01am