Uniqueness in Our Words

All these words we use, anybody can be a genius now. It used to be you had to have a thought no one ever had before or you had to invent a number. Now, it’s like, “Hey, I’ve got a cup in case we need another cup.” “Dude, you’re a genius!” ~ Louis C. K.

Reading all the tweets takes you ten thousand eternal years. ~ Randall Munroe

Every once in a while somebody will ask me what I studied in college and I will respond English (or Writing on occasion) because that is the objective truth of the matter.  Sometimes they’ll take the question further and then ask me why I studied that, which, on one hand seems like a reasonable questions, but when you really take a moment to consider it, it is kind of a loaded and challenging question to answer.  Sure, I’ll spout off something about loving writing and reading, maybe make a mention of how I’ve found usefulness in the knowledge a acquired, but it is all just skimming the vast complexities of why I chose that topic of study over some other topic.

Hence forth my new response, to the question of why I chose to study English language (and Writing in particular), will be because it assures my appreciation of doing something unique everyday.  What is that uniqueness?  It is this, right here, right now.  Writing, talking, combining words into some degree of logical order and them in turn having some form of meaning that can be observed by passing audiences.

I cannot remember when I was first made privy to the awareness that by sheer probability, every day I say something totally unique (not necessarily the idea itself, but the words used to say it).  It has stuck with me though, and always fascinates me.  There are so many words, in just this language alone, there are some many possible combination and variations, that the uniqueness of  sentences is a statistical guarantee.

Maybe this doesn’t mean a whole lot in some sense.  It isn’t like anybody is actively fact checking to see if an exact combination of words has been used before or not.  Your not about to be given a medal for being the first person to say something a particular way.  But, it does, in my mind, make the whole communicating through language, already a pretty impressively fascinating and exciting thing, all the more amazing.

Enjoy what you say, because you very well may be the first person to ever say it (you might be the last too).

~ by Nathaniel on March 4, 2013.

One Response to “Uniqueness in Our Words”

  1. You mean you didn’t study English so that you can have “all the jobs”? (My son Andrew shared this with me. He’s graduating next month with an English/writing degree. We’re hoping he can get all the jobs too.) http://forlackofabettercomic.com/?id=35

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