Speech and voice quality have always been important to me. There is an epidemic of sorts right now that is driving me bonkers: people begin their spoken sentences with “So…” or “OK, so…” Much like when the Gen-X or Gen-Y people used ‘like’ all the time (and still do), this affectation with ‘so’ is mind-boggling. The problem is, I find myself doing it;  I am aware and am actively trying to stop myself from saying ‘so’ when I start a sentence. What’s even more interesting is that when you Google “Starting a sentence with so” there are tens of millions of hits. MANY people have written about this. SO, I am not alone.

Here is part of the Macmillan Dictionary definition of ‘so:’

So can be used in the following ways:
as an adverb (followed by an adjective or another adverb): Why are you so angry this morning? ♦ It all happened so quickly. (with a verb): We were so looking forward to meeting your family. (followed by an auxiliary or modal verb and then its subject): ‘I’m hungry.’ ‘So am I.’ (followed by an adjective and ‘a’ or ‘an’ and a singular countable noun): The garden seemed small for so large a house.
as a conjunction (connecting two clauses): There weren’t enough beds, so I had to sleep on the floor.
as a way of starting a new sentence: So, when do you start your new job?
in the conjunction phrase so that: He was standing in the shadow so that I could not see his face clearly
And the 7th usage in the definition:

Spoken used for introducing a known fact before you make a comment to show that it does not matter:

Okay, so the guy made a few mistakes. That doesn’t mean he isn’t a good player.

Well, perhaps ‘OK, so…’ isn’t so bad after all. It’s not, ya know, like, ya know, as annoying as like, people saying ‘like’ all the time. Right?

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