Demonstratives for Abstract / Non-Present Things

It just occurred to me that I don’t know how to handle these. Intuition tells me that it would be あれ/あの but figured I’d get verification.

For instance:

That (hypothetical) scenario/situation
That donut (that I ate)
That thing I saw previously that I am now describing to you

It’s heavily context dependent, but both あ and そ families are used.

In a veeery general veeery loose explanation.

If you are referring to something you just mentioned, you are supposed to use そ.

昨日マックに行ったんですけど、そのマックにまさか首相がいました!

If you are talking about something both you and your listener are supposed to know previously you use あ

あのマック覚えてる?
どれ?首相がいたやつ?
それそれ!

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Tofugu article on it is quite nice btw.

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Ahh, thanks for this. Of course, an abstract topic would have a completely abstract response.

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Tofugu also has another article that explores this particular topic more in-depth!

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Ohhh, that was the one I remembered lol.
I posted the article and was like “I’m so sure it was more detailed than this… I wonder why”