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#1
Old 10-04-2005, 12:41 PM
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What do you mean by “Next Saturday”?

If someone says that some event will occur “this Saturday”, I’d venture to say that 100% of us would agree on what that meant.

However, if someone says “next Saturday”, the meaning might not be so clear. I believe some people understand that usage to mean the very next Saturday to occur, while others understand it to mean the one AFTER that one. That is, some people distinguish between “this” and “next” while others do not.

Never having thought much about it until now, I think I might use both “this” and “next” to mean the very next one but make a subconscious distinction based on the way days are laid out in rows on a calendar, using “this” when the day in question is in the same row as the current day, but “next” when it is in the next row. (For example, if today is Wednesday, I’ll probably say “this Saturday”, but “next Monday”, in both cases meaning the very next instance of those days.)

Where do the rest of you come down on using these words? Does “next” mean very next or the one after that? Do you think you consciously or subconsciously distinguish based on calendar row.
#2
Old 10-04-2005, 12:59 PM
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My husband and I have gotten into too any pointless arguments over this one. I'm pretty carefull to say "this coming Saturday" or "this past Saturday" to mean the Saturday immediately next or past, and "next Saturday" only if I'm talking about the one after that.

Just "this" alone would, for me, be synonomous with "this coming", but hubby thinks it refers to the closest Saturday, past or present - "When was your zoo trip?" "We went this Saturday."

"Next" I do acknowledge can be confusing, but I almost always mean "skip the first Saturday on the calendar and go to the next one."
#3
Old 10-04-2005, 01:09 PM
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"Next" has always been ambiguous to me, and I think it depends on the number of intervening days. If it's Sunday or Monday and I say "next Saturday" I will generally mean the upcoming Saturday. If it's Thursday or Friday, "next Saturday" will usually mean the one next week.

Generally, I try to avoid the confusion, and I will either say, "this Saturday" or "a week from this Saturday."
#4
Old 10-04-2005, 07:32 PM
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I usually distinguish by saying "this coming Saturday" or "the Saturday after next".
#5
Old 10-04-2005, 08:10 PM
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"This Saturday" or "next Saturday" would both mean the immediately following Saturday, to me. "Saturday week" would mean the Saturday after that.
#6
Old 10-04-2005, 08:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatBaldGuy
"Next" has always been ambiguous to me, and I think it depends on the number of intervening days. If it's Sunday or Monday and I say "next Saturday" I will generally mean the upcoming Saturday. If it's Thursday or Friday, "next Saturday" will usually mean the one next week.
That's how I am, too, and my husband and I have had many a discussion/fake argument about my usage. I think he thinks that "next" should always mean the one that occurs next on the calendar, even if that's tomorrow. So I've taken to saying, "Next Saturday -- not this Saturday, next Saturday -- I'm taking the car in to the shop."
#7
Old 10-04-2005, 08:22 PM
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Next Saturday, to me, means the next Saturday that we will experience. The one immediately ahead on the calendar.

To avoid confusion, I'll say "Next next Saturday" if I mean the one after that. Or just draw out the word so it's "Neeext Saturday." Usually while moving my hands forward in a motion resembling a "travelling" call in basketball. You know, to show that it's further away.

Strangely, my friends understand this.
#8
Old 10-04-2005, 09:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatBaldGuy
"Next" has always been ambiguous to me, and I think it depends on the number of intervening days. If it's Sunday or Monday and I say "next Saturday" I will generally mean the upcoming Saturday. If it's Thursday or Friday, "next Saturday" will usually mean the one next week."
That is what I use it as too.
#9
Old 10-04-2005, 09:08 PM
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And how about "next Saturday' v.s. "Saturday next". Do these have the same or diffeent meanings for you?
#10
Old 10-04-2005, 09:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatBaldGuy
"Next" has always been ambiguous to me, and I think it depends on the number of intervening days. If it's Sunday or Monday and I say "next Saturday" I will generally mean the upcoming Saturday. If it's Thursday or Friday, "next Saturday" will usually mean the one next week.

Generally, I try to avoid the confusion, and I will either say, "this Saturday" or "a week from this Saturday."
me too
but if there's some ambiguity remaining, I'll use the calendar date as well
(This Saturday is the 8th; Next Saturday is the 15th)
#11
Old 10-04-2005, 10:49 PM
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This is precisely why I always used to teach my EFL students to use "This coming Friday / This past Friday" or "Friday of next/this/last week." That, or just include the date with the day.
#12
Old 10-04-2005, 10:51 PM
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"Next" always means "of next week" to me. Today is Tuesday, so this Saturday is four days away, and next Saturday 11 days.
#13
Old 10-04-2005, 10:57 PM
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I think "next" could mean either the very next one that's going to happen, or the one after that. I tend to say "this coming Saturday," which I think is clear means the very next one, even if it's tomorrow, or "a week from Saturday" to mean the one after that.

Strangely, I agree with Antigen that stretching out the word "neeeeext" and possibly even leaning forward while gesturing, as if perhaps you are going to fall right off the calendar week and into the following one, also does a good job of conveying that you mean the Saturday after the coming one.
#14
Old 10-04-2005, 11:00 PM
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My own use of "next" in this context depends on how close Saturday actually is. For example, if today is Sunday or Monday, and I say "next Saturday", I very likely mean the first Saturday that will occur after that statement. However, if it's Thursday or Friday, my own use of "next Saturday" will more than likely refer to the Saturday that is more than one week away.

Tuesday or Wednesday is hit-or-miss, depending on how aware I am of the calendar. In other words, if I say "next Saturday" on a Wednesday, I could be referring either to the next Saturday on the calendar (three days away), or I might be referring to the Saturday after that (ten days away).

For consistency's sake, I use just plain "Saturday" to mean the next Saturday on the calendar. On Thursday or Friday, I might make this very clear by saying "THIS Saturday," but not usually.

If I'm talking to someone face to face, I often look and/or point at a calendar--regardless of whether I say "this Saturday" or "next Saturday", just to be sure that we are referring to the same date. If I'm on the phone or IM'ing someone, I will usually include the date if it's crucial that the other person understand exactly what day I am referring to.
#15
Old 10-05-2005, 02:08 AM
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To me:

This Saturday means the one coming up.

Next Saturday means the one after that.

But I've definitely encountered confusion because my definition and someone else's didn't match up, and suddenly we're making plans for different weeks... So now I try to just use dates.
#16
Old 10-05-2005, 02:11 AM
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I don't even bother with that whole mess. I just say the day and the date: "It will be on Saturday, the 8th."
#17
Old 10-05-2005, 02:41 AM
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And of course if it is some woman that you have the hots for "next Saturday" means never.
#18
Old 10-05-2005, 03:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatBaldGuy
"Next" has always been ambiguous to me, and I think it depends on the number of intervening days. If it's Sunday or Monday and I say "next Saturday" I will generally mean the upcoming Saturday. If it's Thursday or Friday, "next Saturday" will usually mean the one next week.

Generally, I try to avoid the confusion, and I will either say, "this Saturday" or "a week from this Saturday."
That's pretty much how I use it, though if there's any ambiguity I'll check the date with the person I'm talking to. It's caused some disputes even within my family, though. My father insists that next Saturday is the next Saturday (ie, right now next Saturday to him would be the 8th), and when I was younger he even went to a job interview on the wrong day because of that. Needless to say, he didn't get the job, though why he didn't confirm the date is beyond me.
#19
Old 10-05-2005, 04:58 AM
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Instead of saying "Next Saturday" I always say "A week from Saturday".

Yeah, I have to dumb myself down sometimes..
#20
Old 10-05-2005, 05:11 AM
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Today is Wednesday, October 5. Saturday October 8 is "Saturday" (or either "next Saturday" or "This Saturday", if you must). Saturday, October 15 is "Saturday week".

Saturday, October 1 is also "Saturday" if the past tense is used, as then that's all you need. If context doesn't make it clear, it is then "last Saturday". Saturday, September 25 is "last Saturday week".

The "________day week" or "last ________day week" bit is something I find very, very useful. Americans don't seem to use it, and here in Australia, it's hit and miss whether somebody will understand it. My parents both use it, and we never have any misunderstanding. My older sister, on the other hand, has never grasped the concept at all.

Saturday week
[this/next] Saturday
- today -
last Saturday
Last Saturday week

It's a joy to talk to people who undderstand this. However, because many people don't, I take the added precaution of not using the day name at all if it is very close, prefering "tomorrow", "the day after tomorrow", or "in three days' time".

I really don't know why people stuff this up so much.
#21
Old 10-05-2005, 05:28 AM
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I think it varies even in my country depending on where your family came from, or where you live. Me, I say "last Saturday", or for the one before "Saturday before last". The upcoming one is Saturday, and then "Saturday after this one" or "Saturday week" (I think the "week" addition is dying out, I don't seem to hear it as often as I did in the era straight after that in which a major British influx of immigrants took place.)
#22
Old 10-05-2005, 09:30 AM
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Mine's a lot like yours, jebert. "Next" refers to what's coming up in the subsequent calendar week (October 9-15, for example), not anything that happens in the current week. Therefore, October 8 is this Saturday, October 15 is next Saturday.

My husband's more of the "next = one immediately coming up" crowd, and sometimes it causes us no end of confusion.

Maybe I'll switch to the "Saturday week" thing, but then he'll probably think I'm pretentious.
#23
Old 10-05-2005, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLoadedDog
Today is Wednesday, October 5. Saturday October 8 is "Saturday" (or either "next Saturday" or "This Saturday", if you must). Saturday, October 15 is "Saturday week".

Saturday, October 1 is also "Saturday" if the past tense is used, as then that's all you need. If context doesn't make it clear, it is then "last Saturday". Saturday, September 25 is "last Saturday week".

The "________day week" or "last ________day week" bit is something I find very, very useful. Americans don't seem to use it, and here in Australia, it's hit and miss whether somebody will understand it. My parents both use it, and we never have any misunderstanding. My older sister, on the other hand, has never grasped the concept at all.

Saturday week
[this/next] Saturday
- today -
last Saturday
Last Saturday week

It's a joy to talk to people who undderstand this. However, because many people don't, I take the added precaution of not using the day name at all if it is very close, prefering "tomorrow", "the day after tomorrow", or "in three days' time".

I really don't know why people stuff this up so much.
I have a friend from the South (South Carolina in fact) that taught me this contruction. It is the BEST INVENTION EVER! OK, maybe not that cool, but still pretty cool.

By extension, you can also use a <Day of Week> week week construction. There's Friday (the 7th), Friday week (the 14th) and Friday week week (the 21st).
#24
Old 10-05-2005, 09:53 AM
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There is an American version of the "Saturday week" thing the Australians/New Zealanders keep mentioning that I use. I usually say "next week, Saturday". No confusion about that one. For this coming Saturday, I usually simply say "this Saturday".

The only time I feel comfortable saying "next Saturday" is if the day I am saying it is Saturday. Then people know I mean one week from that day.
#25
Old 10-05-2005, 09:59 AM
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I, too, find the term “Next Saturday” too vague to use. If I hear someone use the term, I'll ask for clarification. Best to use “This Saturday” or “This Coming Saturday”.
#26
Old 10-05-2005, 11:31 AM
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This Saturday is the coming Saturday. Next Saturday is the Saturday after that. Last Saturday is the preceding Saturday. Any other Saturdays are specified by a date.
#27
Old 10-05-2005, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke of Rat
This Saturday is the coming Saturday. Next Saturday is the Saturday after that. Last Saturday is the preceding Saturday. Any other Saturdays are specified by a date.
That's how I do it, too.
#28
Old 06-18-2013, 11:58 PM
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Much simpler than all this rhetoric

Here is the example I was taught years ago and it addresses this question once and for all: you're standing 'next-in-line' at a bank (yes yes I know that there are ATMs now) or in an airline check-in or baggage check-in queue. You're 'next-in-line' also means you're first in line. The teller or the agent yells "NEXT !" at the top of his or her lungs for all to hear. YOU advance confidently to the available teller or agent. You do NOT turn to the person behind you (maybe you do if you are chivalrous) and say "I think they mean you, please go ahead." When you're next-in-line and at the front of the line, you're the first to be called. Thus NEXT Saturday is the first Saturday from today, there is no skipping.
#29
Old 06-19-2013, 01:05 AM
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but lines are not dates, it is more appropriate to compare it thus:
last year/month/week, this year/month/week, next year/month/week
last saturday, this saturday, next saturday.

in any case, the POV for the queue example is the teller, not you. so the last customer has already left the bank, the teller is finishing up this customer in front of her, and is now yelling for the next customer to come forward.
#30
Old 06-20-2013, 03:34 PM
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I tend to use next, meaning the next to occur Saturday. Unless we are very close to Saturday, like it is Friday, I'll say next Saturday or "not tomorrow but next Saturday."
#31
Old 06-20-2013, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronnie-boy View Post
Here is the example I was taught years ago and it addresses this question once and for all: you're standing 'next-in-line' at a bank (yes yes I know that there are ATMs now) or in an airline check-in or baggage check-in queue. You're 'next-in-line' also means you're first in line. The teller or the agent yells "NEXT !" at the top of his or her lungs for all to hear. YOU advance confidently to the available teller or agent. You do NOT turn to the person behind you (maybe you do if you are chivalrous) and say "I think they mean you, please go ahead." When you're next-in-line and at the front of the line, you're the first to be called. Thus NEXT Saturday is the first Saturday from today, there is no skipping.

When the teller yells "next" the teller is referring to the next customer they will serve. It has nothing to do with line placement.

I also disagree that "next in line" and "first in line" are two different positions. The person first in the line is at the window. You are next after them.
#32
Old 06-20-2013, 03:48 PM
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I am so glad to find out that this is unclear to others. My mom explained to me when I was younger, somewhat impatient with my slownness, that 'next' Saturday does not mean the next Saturday. It actually means the Saturday after that! So I've learned to make the adjustment and to double check when people say next anything.

'Next door' - Do you mean the next house or the one after that?
'Next week' - that's a tough one - do I skip a whole week like we do with days?
#33
Old 06-20-2013, 04:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronnie-boy View Post
Here is the example I was taught years ago and it addresses this question once and for all: you're standing 'next-in-line' at a bank (yes yes I know that there are ATMs now) or in an airline check-in or baggage check-in queue. You're 'next-in-line' also means you're first in line. The teller or the agent yells "NEXT !" at the top of his or her lungs for all to hear. YOU advance confidently to the available teller or agent. You do NOT turn to the person behind you (maybe you do if you are chivalrous) and say "I think they mean you, please go ahead." When you're next-in-line and at the front of the line, you're the first to be called. Thus NEXT Saturday is the first Saturday from today, there is no skipping.
That's nice and logical, but it doesn't matter. What matters is how people use the word. To me, "next Saturday" is the Saturday a week from "this Saturday." However, I usually say it as "not this, but next Saturday" to make it clear. Most people I know seem to use "next" to mean not the upcoming one, but the one after that.
#34
Old 06-20-2013, 04:08 PM
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One of various other threads on the subject:
http://boards.academicpursuits.us/sdmb/...d.php?t=607896
#35
Old 06-20-2013, 04:15 PM
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Don't get me started on highway signs that say, for example, "Gas -- next exit."
#36
Old 06-20-2013, 04:18 PM
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This coming Saturday. The one after that is either Saturday a week, or a week from this Saturday.
#37
Old 06-21-2013, 12:01 PM
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I don't say "next Saturday" because it's always open to interpretation. Unless it is Saturday, then "next Saturday" would probably be interpreted correctly.
#38
Old 06-21-2013, 12:05 PM
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It means the next Saturday, not the one after the next one. However, when you use the expression, you should always clarify it. Unless it is Saturday, then you have to be an idiot not to understand what it means.
#39
Old 06-21-2013, 12:39 PM
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It's ambiguous, so don't say it, and if someone else says it, ask what they mean.

Interpretation 1: the next occurring Saturday (also known as "Saturday" or "this Saturday")
Interpretation 2: the Saturday after this Saturday (also called "a week from Saturday")

Both interpretations are justifiable, so just don't use it unless you don't care if the message is received.

Never mind that this thread is 8 years old, so "next Saturday" already passed a long time ago.
#40
Old 06-21-2013, 12:48 PM
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I use these terms unambiguously. I will use "this Saturday" to refer to the first Saturday in the future, and "next Saturday" refers to the one after that. If the day I'm saying these things on is a Saturday, that day would be "this Saturday", but I'd just say "today" and refer to the the subsequent Saturday as "next Saturday".

If I am refering to the most recent Saturday, I will just say Saturday or "on Saturday" with the past tense. I might say "on Saturday" with the future tense synonymously with "this Saturday" but, with the verb tense, it should still be unambiguous.

And if I need more than that, if it isn't Saturday, I'll say "two weeks from this Saturday" for the future or something like "three Saturdays ago" for something in the past. And, obviously, if it is Saturday, I'll just say "in two weeks" or "three weeks ago".

So, I guess this would be a good way of how I might put it in a time line:

If today isn't Saturday: "last Saturday"> "Saturday" > today > "this Saturday" > "next Saturday"
If today is Saturday: "last Saturday" > today > "next Saturday"
#41
Old 06-21-2013, 03:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shiftless View Post
I am so glad to find out that this is unclear to others. My mom explained to me when I was younger, somewhat impatient with my slownness, that 'next' Saturday does not mean the next Saturday. It actually means the Saturday after that! So I've learned to make the adjustment and to double check when people say next anything.

'Next door' - Do you mean the next house or the one after that?
'Next week' - that's a tough one - do I skip a whole week like we do with days?

Your two examples shows how your mother is wrong in the usage of next. Next is Next. It's only unclear when people want to use Next instead of saying a week from this. Next and this are the same.

When the announcer at the end of Batman says "Will Batman escape the Jokers fiendish trap? See what happens next episode. Same Bat-time, Same Bat Channel" Did you mom think that the conclusion would be not the very next episode to air but the one after that? That is flawed thinking.
#42
Old 06-21-2013, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Learjeff View Post
It's ambiguous, so don't say it, and if someone else says it, ask what they mean.

Interpretation 1: the next occurring Saturday (also known as "Saturday" or "this Saturday")
Interpretation 2: the Saturday after this Saturday (also called "a week from Saturday")

Both interpretations are justifiable, so just don't use it unless you don't care if the message is received.

Never mind that this thread is 8 years old, so "next Saturday" already passed a long time ago.
How on earth does 'next Saturday' mean a week from next Saturday? I know people get confused, but I don't know why.
#43
Old 06-21-2013, 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Zebra View Post
Your two examples shows how your mother is wrong in the usage of next. Next is Next. It's only unclear when people want to use Next instead of saying a week from this. Next and this are the same.

When the announcer at the end of Batman says "Will Batman escape the Jokers fiendish trap? See what happens next episode. Same Bat-time, Same Bat Channel" Did you mom think that the conclusion would be not the very next episode to air but the one after that? That is flawed thinking.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
How on earth does 'next Saturday' mean a week from next Saturday? I know people get confused, but I don't know why.
Because, for whatever reason, a lot of people--me included--feel like "this" and "next" should be two different Saturdays. Don't ask me why, it's just how I've usually heard the phrase used, and I don't let logic dictate language, but rather let usage dictate language. In the first example, "this" and "next" don't mean the same thing. "This episode" would be the current episode, the one that just finished. The "next" episode would the one following. I can't explain why "next Saturday" feels to me that it should be a week from "this Saturday," other than "this" and "next" usually refer to two different things (like "take this bus to Albuquerque" vs "take the next bus to Albuquerque" to me mean two different buses) so my brain and the brain of many native English speakers seems to interpret it that way.

I would never ever ever refer to two days from now as "next Sunday." If someone asked me right now "What are you doing next Sunday?" I would assume they didn't mean the Sunday two days from now, otherwise they would have used the construction "what are you doing Sunday?" or "what are you doing this Sunday?" At least that's how it works in my dialect. Like I said, when I use "next," I now say "not this, but next Sunday" or "a Sunday a week from this Sunday" or something like that, because I realize there is some ambiguity but, typically, if someone around here asked me about "next Sunday" today, I would bet that 90+% of the time they are referring to the Sunday nine days from today.
#44
Old 06-21-2013, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
How on earth does 'next Saturday' mean a week from next Saturday? I know people get confused, but I don't know why.
It doesn't. To some, it means "a week from this Saturday".

The assumption is "this Saturday" is not "next Saturday". The logical conclusion is that "next Saturday" is the one after "this Saturday".

People can argue all day what's right and what's wrong, but anyone who uses "next Saturday" and expects to be understood is making a mistake, unless they've established a convention with the recipient.

If it was Friday and I said "next Saturday", would you assume I meant tomorrow? Probably not.

If I said it Thursday, what would you interpret it to mean?

Last edited by Learjeff; 06-21-2013 at 03:42 PM.
#45
Old 06-21-2013, 03:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
How on earth does 'next Saturday' mean a week from next Saturday? I know people get confused, but I don't know why.
Because it seems wrong to say that "this Saturday" and "next Saturday" mean the same thing.

Say you are standing at a bus stop and two buses are approaching. One is almost at the stop, the other is a block away. You ask the person next to you "Which bus do you take to get downtown?" If the person answered "you take this bus" which bus do you think they mean? What if they answer "you take the next bus"? Are both answers referring to the same bus?

ETA: Just like what Learjeff said.

Last edited by Alley Dweller; 06-21-2013 at 03:46 PM.
#46
Old 06-21-2013, 04:00 PM
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Thinking about it some more, there also may be a tendency to want to groups all near days into a week, so "this Saturday" means something more like "this week Saturday" and "next Saturday" means "next week Saturday." For example, let's pretend it's Wednesday. "What are you doing next Monday" to me has a lot of ambiguity. In that case, my brain is lopping "Monday" into "next week," so "this Monday" and "next Monday" can be equivalent, and I would always ask for clarification. But if you ask, "what are you doing next Saturday?" to me that's definitely not the upcoming Saturday, but the one after that.

I don't know if that's what goes on in English speakers brains, but that feels about right to me. I think of "this Saturday" as the Saturday that belongs to this week and "next Saturday" as the Saturday that belongs to next week. When you ask me on Wednesday about "next Monday," you cross week boundaries, and it becomes much more confusing to me. But maybe that's just me.
#47
Old 06-21-2013, 04:03 PM
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If it's Thursday, and something's happening on the following Saturday, I just say it's happening on Saturday. So in my mind, "next" is something unambiguous, because there is no modifier if it's the upcoming Saturday.
#48
Old 06-21-2013, 04:03 PM
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If you were driving along and I said "OMG I'm gonna hurl; take the next exit..." would you take the next one you got to, or the one after that?

If a casher opens up a new lane and says "I'll take the next customer here," should the next person after the one being served go to her lane, or the one after him?

Next means next, the next one in line, and yes, it's circular. Life is like that.
#49
Old 06-21-2013, 04:07 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: May 2000
Location: SW Side, Chicago
Posts: 41,964
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethilrist View Post
If you were driving along and I said "OMG I'm gonna hurl; take the next exit..." would you take the next one you got to, or the one after that?

If a casher opens up a new lane and says "I'll take the next customer here," should the next person after the one being served go to her lane, or the one after him?

Next means next, the next one in line, and yes, it's circular. Life is like that.
Nobody's gonna argue usage with you on that. But what about the bus example?
#50
Old 06-21-2013, 04:22 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 3,635
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethilrist View Post
If you were driving along and I said "OMG I'm gonna hurl; take the next exit..." would you take the next one you got to, or the one after that?
Context. If there is an emergency in progress that requires leaving the freeway, everyone understands you mean "as soon as possible."

What if right at the exit ramp there is a sign that says "Trucks use next exit"? Does that mean trucks should get off here or wait?

I think the closer you get to an exit, the more ambiguous it becomes. If you are miles away from an exit, then "next exit" seems like it means the first exit you come to. If you are almost at the exit, when you see "next exit" you wonder if the sign is trying to tell you not to take this exit. Your mind wonders why the sign wouldn't refer to the imminent exit as "this exit."
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