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Chris -- 2018-04-11
Inspired to post this after seeing the “could care less” thread. This is common in certain parts of the Finger Lakes region of New York state.
People from at least one very isolated region NEVER say “so do I.” They always say “so don’t I.”
It’s important to note that this is NOT used solely as a way to agree with some negative statement. In other words, while the declaration “I don’t like sardines” MIGHT be met with the reply “so don’t I,” more commonly a positive declaration would be met with it.
You could say “I love sardines,” and the response would be “so don’t I,” but the person is NOT disagreeing, they are agreeing. They also love sardines.
This perplexed the heck out of me when I first moved there and encountered it.
Really interesting—I’d never heard of that, and the name of the phenomenon is delightful.
I was reminded of your post last night as I was riding a bus. The young man next to me was telling a companion about a recent trip to LA, and my ears pricked up when he described an encounter with some geographical chauvinists. “They hatin’ no Bay Area people,” he said. It was clear from context that the people doing the hating hated all sorts of Bay Areans. I wanted to say, “Excuse me, but I’m interested in different kinds of English usage, and I wanted to ask you about that last sentence. Did you use ‘no’ just to emphasize how much those guys hate Bay Area people? Or is it more like ‘any, none’? Or something else?” But social protocols say you should never ask for linguistic glosses when eavesdropping.
I commented on that “could care less” thread, so I will barge in here. I have heard the SO DON’T I, but I cannot remember where. I do not believe this is supposed to be a question. (“So don’t I?” might make literal sense here.) I believe “could care less” originally was a question, but not “so don’t I.”
You guys seem pretty interested in this phenomenon. So ain’t I. (So amn’t I????) Anybody have a theory?
Just ran across another one I’ve never heard before in the comments thread in this blog post:
http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2007 … pendix.php
“So can’t” meant as “so can.”
“The main argument is that the V.A. can get infected and bring about death, yet so can’t a bad tooth infection, but again, it would be silly to argue teeth as being vestigial due to this.”
I asked Lago, the poster of the comment, and he/she confirmed that they are from Boston, and they also use the “so don’t I” wording… all of which you can read in the comments thread…. although I reversed the name of the phenomenon ion that thread.
Last edited by Craig C Clarke (2007-02-19 10:05:45)
As Craig politely implied, our search engine doesn’t really work all that well. In fact, I tend to jump to regular Google and search there for whatever I’m looking for—along with the word “eggcorn”; that approach brings up most posts on the site, but even then there’s a weird sort of “island” of posts that Google doesn’t seem to have access to. So when the regulars point out to newcomers that something has already been posted, they do so in the knowledge that that info can be hard to find if you don’t know where to go looking for it.