We have this phrase

take somebody/something seriously

to believe that someone or something is worth your attention or respect

As a teacher, it’s important that the kids take you seriously.

It’s only a joke – don’t take it seriously!

Similarly, can I say "You are taking it so simply" or "You are putting it so simply" when you want to mean that person is looking at the matter superficially because he is thinking about the matter in a simple way and does not have any deep understanding of it?

Say, I posted a question on Quora asking if I can say "Our school has a trip to the zoo next week” or “Our school is having a trip to the zoo next week".

A native English speaker said “Neither one makes sense. They should be: “Our school [is][will be] taking a trip to the zoo next week.”

Then, I thought that person was "taking the question so simply" or "putting the question so simply" (I am not sure if that is the way to say it) because I think the verb "has" here means "organize" not "go on a trip". It seems that Americans prefer "I am taking a trip" while the British prefer "I am going on a trip"

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    "Putting it simply" usually means "explaining something in a simple way" (to help a child or a non-expert to understand it). "Taking it simply" isn't idiomatic. Apr 4, 2023 at 16:47
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    It's not idiomatic to use simply as the antonym of seriously in such contexts. The adverbial sense you seek can be conveyed by, for example, You're taking this too casually / light-heartedly / nonchalantly / ... Apr 4, 2023 at 16:50
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    Is this question supposed to be about the use of simply, or going on / taking a trip? Apr 4, 2023 at 16:54
  • @FumbleFingers comment is the answer. Moreover, you misuse "superfluously" in your question. Apr 4, 2023 at 19:48

1 Answer 1

  1. You're looking at it so simply

The phrase is not idiomatic in English. An improvement would be to replace "so" with "too" and swapping simply with simplistically

  1. You're looking at it too simplistically

Cambridge defines it as

in a way that is simplistic (= making something complicated seem more simple than it is):

  • The issue should not be viewed simplistically.
  • Interpreting data too simplistically may obscure critical information.
  • Maybe I am looking at things too simplistically, but some of the solutions to our problems are obvious.

Alternatively, one could reply with:

  1. You're missing the point. I'm asking whether the present simple or the present continuous should be used in this situation.

We use this expression to tell someone that they have misunderstood or overlooked the main crux of the issue.

miss the point

to not understand something correctly or what is important about it:

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