Gary, Gary, he's our man ! (garyfuckingoak) wrote in linguaphiles,
Gary, Gary, he's our man !
garyfuckingoak
linguaphiles

How do you mean ?

Okay, so I'm a native English speaker, but I do have a few habits with my phrasing that are not commonly used by other native English speakers.
The main one is the fact that I tend to replace 'what' with 'how.'
As in, where most people would say, "What do you mean (by that) ?" I say "How do you mean (by that) ?"
I don't substitute what all the time, like, for example, if I want to ask someone what they are doing, I would not ask them how they are doing, because I would most likely get a completely different answer from what I want.

Now, my question is, is this common anywhere else ? I mean, do other languages do something similar, and, if so, how do you diffrentiate ?
Also, would anybody consider this type of phrasing odd ? The majority of my friends are not native English speakers, so I hear this phrase and similar ones quite a bit, but I've never heard any other natives use it.

(Sorry if my question seems vague; I'm horrible with asking questions clearly.)
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