Saturday, June 5, 2010

Brevity

When the kids were little, I told them that soon their grandfather would stop talking. They asked why. I said because he is approaching his limit of 1,000,000 words and when he reaches that, he won’t be able to talk anymore.

“What?”

Matter of factly I told them that this happens to everyone. You are only allowed to speak 1,000,000 words during your life and that’s it. They sat there and pondered that pending event until I started laughing and they realized I was joking.

Back in high school I noticed that my friend Rob normally was a person of few words. He could just sit there and play his guitar while the rest of us chattered away. We’d ask him, why don’t you ever say anything? His response was that he had nothing to say. Unlike many of us, myself included, it didn’t bother him the least to have long periods of silence; he never felt compelled to talk because the silence seemed uncomfortable.

The older I get, the more I appreciate an economy of words.

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