How are you? Fine Thanks!

How many times have we heard or pronounced this sentence before?

How many times have we actually meant it?

Well… it might depend on the meaning that we attach to the word “fine”.

Does it mean “I’m doing ok, nothing really special going on, everything is kind of normal” or is it more something like “I need to say something otherwise I might sound rude, let’s go with the safest thing I can say, regardless on what is actually going on with my life, who cares anyways…”? There might be a ton of other iterations within this spectrum all of which are aimed at concealing what is “really” happening from the inside out.

Why do we do that?