Friday, January 16, 2009

What'dya Mean?

Lately, I've been told my choice of words is cause for concern. Either I have been using a highly provocative set of words, or I am just unaware of the powerful connotations that some people attach to them. I'm going to go with the latter. The word in question was "shameful", as in, isn't it shameful to spend my working hours e-mailing friends. The word "shame" became the basis of at least three more entries.

In the same vein I was discussing how "effing" and sh*t" are used to downgrade the harsher tones of actually using the word that is referred to. Later that night I noticed the stand up comics - ok I was watching Comedy Central - use extremely "harsh' words and often. It was funny. Hilarious even. But, if I were to have read those same stories on screen or on paper I would have been a little dismayed or put off at the story itself, and or the language being used to convey the story. They were terrible, horrid stories that had me in rolling in stitches; absolutely laughing out loud - mostly because the stories are true.

The shameful thing about all this is that what I feel is ok, someone else feels is over the top. My dad's wife says I'm gregarious. I abhor that word. I mean to be that strong. She thinks it's a compliment. I don't. One's choice of words is so very often a shot in the dark. I had no idea I was packin' that kind of heat.

8 comments:

  1. Very good! Words are that just words and tehn after the words theres the interpetation thing going on etc etc no wonder we all have sucha hard time understanding each other let alone understanding ourselves.I just love your insightful posts my dear friend keep up the good work. Hugs to ya!

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  2. "GREGARIOUS." I had to look that word up just to figure out what, exactly, it means. (I thought it meant "resourceful.") Instead, dictionary.com says: gre⋅gar⋅i⋅ous: 1. fond of the company of others; sociable. 2. living in flocks or herds, as animals.

    So which is it? Either you enjoy being the brunt of every other person's joke while they pretend to fee; overly sensitive as they ridicule your choice of words (instead of trying to understand you and how you work) merely to draw more attention to themselves so you'd put a ridiculous amount of effort into trying to figure out what made THEM tick

    . . . or . . .

    You're truly living in a herd (surrounded by a bunch of animals).

    In either case -- I hope your flock is composed solely of vegetarians so that there will be no unnecessary bloodshed. (Then again: Are you a meat eater?)

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  3. er, that was supposed to be "feel" (not fee). Sorry for the dad-burned typo.

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  4. Shame is something our mothers tried to instill into us. "Shame on you" is an expression I heard from time to time :-) I have a lot less shame now. I don't fee it when listening to a crude stand up routine, nor when I park on the road to make a delivery because all of the loading areas have cars parked in them.

    "Gregarious" isn't an insult. You're partaking of a public forum, you respond to comments, and you seem to enjoy comments and respond to them. It's all good.

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  5. I was thinking similar thoughts the other day. After working with commercial fishers for a while I notice a distinct um blue-ification of my syntax. It often takes me a couple of days to get back into minding my P's & Q's around the family.
    I'm trying to teach the Bobette (15 going on 23) how to speak / act with decorum, so that she can choose when it's appropriate to f'n blind. Nothing sadder than those who don't know how to behave in polite company.
    OK, starving kids in Biafra is way sadder - poor choice of words.

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  6. Gregarious - over the top need for social interaction...but I like the herd aspect. I may stay a meat eater just to cull the herd of unnecessary sarcasm..oh yeah!

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