If you say, “Thank you.” I respond…

“You’re welcome.”

I seldom (if ever) say, “No problem.”

Maybe I find the improper use of this response annoying because I am a woman  of a certain age. But on some level it just seems wrong to say “no problem” when someone just thanked you.

My husband has argued that people mean – it’s no problem to do whatever you have requested. And after listening to him (which I ALWAYS do) I am willing to consider that he may be at least partially correct.

For example, you’re going to Trader Joe”s, and you want to know if I need anything. I ask you to pick up a couple of items from the store. When you arrive at my doorstep with my vegetable Marsala burgers and Raita, I gratefully say, “Thank you for saving me a trip to the store.” You might respond, “You’re welcome” or “No problem.” I’m fine with either. We’re friends, and you’ve just done me a favor. I agree that “no problem” works.

In this next scenario, I am a paying customer. You work in the store. I approach you, ready to make my purchase. I hand over the merchandise, swipe my card, and sign the pad. You walk around the counter (if I’m in an upscale store) and hand over my purchase. I smile and say, “Thank  you.” How do you respond?

If you haven’t been raised by wolves in a barn, you most definitely say, “You’re welcome.” Whenever a sales person or waitperson or customer service rep says, “No problem,” I am always tempted to say, “It shouldn’t be a problem. You work here.”

What do you say?

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