Monday, 8 February 2016
"Let's Keep In Touch"
What does "let's keep in touch" really mean today?
According to this website for English Language Learners this is what it means:-
"Keep in touch is an idiom. "In touch" means "in or into communication". In business, keep in touch usually means "keep posting information to each other". For close friends, I usually take it as "let's stay close" (as in close friends), by making a call or writing (or tweet, post, etc.) to each other from time to time."
Did you notice that in the definition given above the "keeping in touch by writing" meant posting on Twitter or Facebook or other social media formats?
This prompted me to look for other definitions...like this one from a site called 'English Language and Usage'
"Let's be in touch I say this to someone I've never before met, but during the course of our conversation an important matter emerges which affects us both. It seems important that we maintain contact.
Let's keep in touch I say this to a colleague with whom I have worked for several years, but our future paths are about to divert.
Let's stay in touch I have just attended a conference of people working in the same industry. many of the participants were new faces to me, some were old friends. At the end we all appreciate that we have gained a lot from the meeting, and someone says 'let's stay in touch'
I have exaggerated the differences here and any of the three could easily be interchanged with either of the others. But the beauty of English is that there are always multiple ways of saying almost the same thing. So this gives rise to a potential richness, and possibilities for finely nuanced expression. One can bring joy to ones fellows through sweet words; as long as one never forgets that 'sweet words butter no parsnips'."
I have been 'keeping in touch' with several penfriends since I was eleven...by old fashioned 'snail mail' and it is such a joy. I write letters and emails to my family too. These are the most important people to keep in touch with...just because they need to know that I am here, when needed.
Am not a complete Luddite' and love the immediacy of text messages and share SKYPE interactions with my son and youngest grandchildren.
Give 'Facebook' and 'Twitter' a miss as having tried them found that they are just too inane for me.
Do we really need to keep in touch with old school friends? Haven't we moved one, gone our separate, normally very different ways into adult hood. Do we really want to go back and reconnect?
Personally, I feel no need to keep in touch with school friends or past work colleagues.
Then there are those old neighbours who move away, or we move away. We always say "keep in touch" but do we?...really? In my experience, no. Once you move away a new life starts and the old is just part of the past. I do keep in touch at Christmas and birthdays with three past neighbours, but there have been others who moved away and never kept in touch even though we had been good friends.
"Let's keep in touch" seems to be one of those glib throw away phrases often used with people that you don't have any interest in talking to or who you don't intend to stay in touch with. Which is all rather sad.
Having recently been on the receiving end of a "We'll keep in touch" promise that I believed was genuine and I confess, was rather hurt, when I soon realised that the person who said it had no intention whatsoever of "keeping in touch"
Think I will start a campaign to urge us all to 'think before we pledge to keep in touch' and only say it if it is truly meant.