I never noticed if I’d ever used this word, or even if I ever heard it regularly in conversation. Sure. Seems like a pretty ordinary word. At its base, its meaning is fairly positive. [Physically secure and certain, non-failing, reliable; “Yes, of course”.]
Then why does my wife get pissed off when I use that word?
“You wanna change the laundry over?” Sure. “Grrrr… I hate when you use that word”.
“You wanna go out for a drive?” Sure. “Grrrr… if you don’t want to go, then just say so!”
I think it’s because there are connotations of informality in its use, and that informality implies a diminishing of the certainty of the commitment derived by the dictionary meaning of the word. Does that sound smart? Sure it does.
But what the heck. I figured I’d try to stop using the word. It’s not such a big deal, is it? Surely, I can manage that. I found myself using the word involuntarily and then tagging on a little extra to reinforce my commitment to be certain. “Sure… uhm… I’d love to clean the bathrooms.” “Sure… er… I’d be happy to start the BBQ now.” All those extra words were starting to piss me off.
Then I started noticing how often the word gets used. Everyone apparently uses the word on a regular basis and I’m pretty sure that they use it in a pretty positively intended way. “Hey, wanna go to the park?” Sure. “Yo, dude, can you skateboard on someone else’s parking lot?” Sure. “Mister, is it ok if I clean your windshield?” Sure.
And guess what? Wifey uses the word quite often herself. AND she uses it in a mostly agreeable way. Sure means “ok” to her. But that’s not how I take it. Not anymore! I choose to take it in a negative way.
“Hey, darling-wife-o-mine, you wanna go for a coffee?” Sure. “Jeez, you don’t have to be so saucy. I was only asking a question!”
“Hey buddy, can you put the receipt in they bag?” Sure. “Jeez… can you believe how rude that guys was?”
Heh heh… I’m such an asshole.
Am I having fun? Sure. Is my wife? I’m not so sure.