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Dublin: 14 °C Saturday 20 September, 2014

10 text messages in your inbox, and what they REALLY mean

Decoding the communications that MATTER.

YOUR PHONE, WHAT would you do without it? Texts are fast going out of fashion in Ireland but there’ll always be the old reliables.

You’re pretty much guaranteed to have received one of these. Here’s what they’re really saying.

1. Mammy prying

It’s Sunday morning and your mam wants to know that you’re still alive after sitting in all night worrying about you and if you were warm enough at that very moment. She’ll send this:

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What she really means: How drunk were you, reassure me that you actually made it home, and are you too hungover to come visit me?

2. Tell me what I did last night

You woke up with a mouth drier than the sahara and you’ve less than a vague idea how you got home. Did you make a show of yourself? Oh my God, bet you pissed everyone off. Time to put the feelers out and send some casual texts to see what the response is like. You’ll say:

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You mean: Are you still talking to me and please fill in the blanks, I got nothing.

3. The dad dismissal

Dad has something urgent to tell you but he’s SICK of looking at that tiny little screen when there’s the news to be watched. Tut. He’ll send this.

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What he really means is: OK, sure, lovely to hear from you. I’ll have a think about it and consult with your mam and we will get back to you ASAP. Don’t go to too much trouble now. Love you, have a nice day xxx Dad

4. Subtle conversation starter

If by subtle, they’re going for ‘blatant’, then this is spot on. Usually utilised by the drunken shift you gave your number to last night, it’s always a question and never just a straight-forward hello.

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What they mean: Is this number actually real and on a scale of no reply to ten, how much do you regret lobbing the gob on me?

5. They’re OUTSIDE

They’ve just pulled up outside to pick you up or go in for prinks but GOD FORBID the door would be touched. What if a weirdo opened it? The text?

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What they are really saying: I’m not actually there yet, but almost there, so you should come out and be at the curb because I’m too lazy to get out of the car. Also, I’m afraid I’ll have to make awkward conversation with your odd housemate again.

6. The auntie occasion

It’s your birthday! Christmas! New Year’s! … a Saturday! Lovely aunties love sending texts to let you know they’re thinking of you, but aren’t quit committing to a call. Here’s what you’ll get ten minutes after some great news:

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What they mean: Your mam tells me EVERYTHING and I eventually want an invite to the wedding.

7. Quick apology text

So they’ve made a typo or had an autocorrect disaster and will make it ten times worse by texting you multiple times to correct themselves, each of which are riddled with errors themselves. STOP. It was an accident, we know.

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What they actually trying to say: Who even knows? We assume it’s, “I can spell, honest”.

8. The attention-seeking mistaken number

Ah yeah, we know what you’re up to. We’ll respond too because it worked. It works every time. You’re still being judged a bit though.

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What they meant, was: I couldn’t think of a decent way to text you out of the blue so I guess this is as good as any. I also look generally popular like I just got lost in a flood of responses.

9. Sorry I ignored you but I need something

We all know how this one goes down, as we’ve been on both sides. Someone texted you an unacceptable amount of time ago to now merit a reply. You originally ignored it but now you open up the conversation to ask them something important and there it is, staring back at your guilt-ridden self. You’ll say:

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What’s implied: I really didn’t only see this now but I wasn’t arsed replying and I think that deserves to be addressed now that I need your help. Please still help. I’m sorry.

10. THE DRUNK TEXT

Did you flinch? Did you flinch in actual horror? They’ve had a few shandies and are thinking about you. Aw, nice.

NOT. It resembles something like this, except a lot more explicit:

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What they really mean: I’m going to regret this immensely tomorrow but I’m mad about you and or have failed to find something better in the pub so you’re the next best option.

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