Can anyone out there give me some responses to these greetings?
1. What's up?
Typically, one would say, "Not much." But what else? Would you just have to tell what is happening to you?
2. What's is it going?
I would say, "It's going fine/well/good", or stated why your are not so.
3. What's happening?
How you respond to that? Would you just have to tell what's going on with you?
I'm not an American so I can't really help to accurately but most of these 'greetings questions' are not meant to be taken literally and answered literally.
Also, number 2 should be 'How's it going' not 'What's it going'.
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Anonymous1. What's up? -- In AmE, at least to me,this question is something like saying "Hi" or "Hello", and the questioner doesn't enquire about the wellness of the other person. A few possible answers:"What's up?"(like exchanging "Hi"), "Not much". The question can also mean "How are you?" or "What is new?".
2.What's is it going?--The sentence structure seems weird to me. In AmE, one might ask "What's going on?" or "How is going"?. Some of the possible answers, in addition to your answers: "Not much","Not bad","pretty well","pretty good","life sucks!,"moves along well"...etc.
3. What's happening?--Here, the answer might depend upon the context of the question. The questioner might be interested to know either what is happening with the work or task that the other person is currently doing or how the other person is doing in general.
But, wait for natives.
All right. / OK / Could be better; could be worse. / Can't complain. / Same as always.
What's up? or What's happening?
Nothing much. / Same old thing. / Same old, same old*. / Just the usual. / Nothing too exciting lately.
You can add How about you? to any of these reponses.
*Don't pronounce the "d" in "old" in this expression!
For us non-natives who are reasonably fluent with the language, colloquialisms are where we lose out, and that's where EF helps us the most!
Anonymous:I am an American and I just wanted to point out how we use the word Hi much more than Hello. Hi is shorter and seems friendlier and not so formal.
When asked "how are you", most people really don't want to know how you are, that is a rhetorical question to which you are expected to reply "fine", "great", "not bad" or some other short, non-informational answer. If you reply "terrible, I had the worst weekend..." you probably wont make friends very quickly.
Sometimes I hate the expected rhetorical replys and try to think of something interesting to say... but for common everyday conversation... most Americans will give the boring dusty old rhetorical repley
Anonymous:Right on. I agree with your assessment on that nowadays "How are you?" is not a typical greeting expression or a question asking for a response but rather a rhetorical question (greeting?) that the one who asks that question does not necessary expect to receive an actual response but just a "gestual" response.
On the other hand, it seems important to bring out to the surface for all you English language fans out there that "How are you?" still functions as a form of regular generic questions to some extent and the giver of the question will still expect to receive some kind of a formal answer.
So, it is up to the sayer and the receiver of the expression to ascertain and judge the nature of the question and of the appropriate response to be followed.
People are waiting to help.
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