This Monday ...

... is particularily troublesome when said on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

When you say this Monday, do you mean this Monday of this past week or do you mean this coming Monday of the week following this one?

And when you say next Monday, do you mean this coming Monday or the subsequent Monday following this coming Monday?


Image nabbed from here.

Comments

Barbara said…
I simplify this by adding "past" or "coming" before the word "Monday". Otherwise, it could go either way. One of the pitfalls of language...
KayMac said…
I don't know...I am lost!! ;-)
Richard said…
barbara: I had a much longer post, but in a fit of editorial pique, slimmed it down.

This was the original:

This Monday ...

... is particularily troublesome when said on Tuesdays and Wednesday.

When you read This Monday, did you think about Monday, 26-February-2007 or Monday, 05-March-2007?

Does next Monday make you think of Monday, 05-March-2007 or Monday, 12-March-2007?

I think the problem is that this Monday is ambiguous and does not clearly state to which this the Monday belongs. Is it the Monday of this week (in which case it is past) or is it this Monday coming? It can be clarified by saying, "This coming Monday," or "This past Monday."

There is a similar confusion with next Monday. Is it the Monday next week (in which case it is this coming Monday) or is it the Monday following this coming Monday?

My own take on this is that unless something is explicitly stated as past, then it is present of future. So, if you tell me about this Monday, I will understand it to refer to the present or closest future Monday. If you tell me about next Monday, I will understand it to refer to the subsequent Monday following the present or closest future Monday. I will also ask you, "Do you mean this Monday of this week, or this Monday of next week."

When you say this Monday, do you mean this Monday of this past week or do you mean this coming Monday of the following week?

And when you say next Monday, do you mean this coming Monday or the subsequent Monday following this coming Monday?


kaymac: are you really now?
I'm with barbara but I can see where people get mixed up!

And "I'd gladly pay you Tuesday (next!) for a hamburger today!"
(Compliments of Wimpy from Popeye!)
busybee said…
let's not complicate the already complicated life....

just say "yesterday", if said on tues,

or say "two days ago", if said on wed,

or say "next monday", if meant to be the coming mon

:D
Richard said…
MOI: I always qualify the Monday with coming or past.

bee: oh, no, Bee, that will never do. For me "next Monday" is the Monday following this Monday.

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