Who needs adjectives, adverbs, …

Fellow bloggers … I hate to say it, but we are fastly becoming old-fashioned and obsolete with our posts that contain paragraphs, sentences and punctuation. We are known as the long-winded internet communicators. It can take us hours to write a post and our poor readers need to expend at least 5-10 minutes of their lives to reading them. Why are we wasting our time thinking about capitalization, commas and independent clauses when the growing popularity of text messaging has proven that we can share our thoughts with others in just a few short, foreign combinations of keystrokes that in no way resemble the English written words?

Our inner need to explain thoroughly, paint a detailed picture, or simply comment that we agree with another blogger’s post can run several paragraphs long and that is holding us back from our true potential. A simple text message (GMTA – great minds think alike) could say it all in 4 letters and allow the reader’s imagination to fill in the details. If we would simply learn that every word in the English language can be rewritten in 3 letters or less and that 4 carefully chosen letters can relay an entire sentence with no need to worry about spelling or punctuation, we could be composing our posts in less than 25% of the time and space. All we need to do is relax and trust that our readers will figure out what we have to say and allow their imaginations to fill in the details.

And, it is not just texting that proves our society no longer values sentence construction and moving descriptions. Have you noticed how everything you need to say to someone can be held in a 30 second voice message? Or, how the latest highlights of your life can be summed up in a 140 character Tweet or a one-line Facebook update. With all these time-saving shortcuts, who needs adjectives, adverbs, metaphors, punctuation, complete sentences, or even speech?

IMHO (in my humble opinion) I DO !
β€œOne of the hardest things in life is having words in your heart that you can’t utter.” ~ James Earl Jones
My sarcasm with regards to abbreviating and short cut communications is the side effect of being unable to communicate in a meaningful way for the past week. I have had laryngitis for 5 days … I haven’t been able to speak except for squeaks, low raspy, crackly words and whispers. I don’t think I have ever been this frustrated in my entire life. I am normally a great communicator with a lot to say and explain and I did not think that the loss of my voice for a few days would be a big deal. I am creative, I have a computer, an electronic white board, facial expressions and hand gestures … I thought I could communicate well enough to continue teaching as normal. After all, math is just a bunch of symbols, right? I was wrong. Everything takes longer, things I could have easily explained with a few spoken words last week require mountains of effort, drawings and a quickly invented form of shorthand this week. I have been trying to teach my students by gestures, writing, and some times in frustration spewing out a few gravely words. It has been extremely frustrating for me and I am sure the students are grumbling as well after they leave my room wondering what I was trying to explain to them. Trying to work was not the only frustration … I have not been able to talk to friends or family, answer the phone, or even make my own doctors appointment … I feel like I have been shut off from the world … sent to the sidelines to just listen and observe. Which is not a bad thing for a day or even two … but, it has been a week! I want to speak again . . .

Texting has never been my thing and never will be … I don’t want to memorize abbreviations. I don’t want to figure out someone else’s shortcuts or leave what they were trying to say to my imagination. I want to hear it all. I want to say it all. I want to read it all. I thrive on complete thoughts and sentences. I love description and explanations … even if it takes 500 words … I desire to see the whole picture … I want to understand. Texting to me is a very impersonal way to communicate and though it will probably never die completely, I hope that when the newness wears off that people feel a bit of my communicative frustration of the last few days and realize that our English language with all of its confusing rules, structure, and descriptive words is the best way to truly communicate what is in our hearts and our heads.

I need adjectives in my life … however, until I get my voice back, all I really need is some hot homemade chicken soup, hot lemon and honey tea, a warm blanket, soft pillow, a new box of kleenex, and a good movie… and some really good antibiotics.

– – – – – – – –
If you decide to abandon the complete sentences world of internet communication and move to the literary world of abbreviations check out Text messaging for dummies i.e. the middle-aged! or Webopedia for an enormous reference guide of texting abbreviations.

~ by bearyweather on September 17, 2010.

12 Responses to “Who needs adjectives, adverbs, …”

  1. I have the worst time with theses silly abbreviations…I spend more time goggling to find out what they mean! come on people, it doesn’t take that long to spell out a few words! Great post.

  2. I agree with you, but then I’m OLD, not just middle-aged!

  3. Hi. I followed your link from Kathy’s. πŸ™‚

    I’m old (50’s, which I don’t think is old but the young ones do) and have followed the abbreviations from the early days of the internet. I can appreciate a quick text message on the cell phone because I’ve yet to experience a good voice conversation on a cell phone (the call breaks up or the sound is poor). Even so, I can’t get the hang of the sound bite, be it 140 characters on Twitter or one-liners on Facebook.

    The weirdest thing of all is that I rarely, even in a text message, use abbreviations. I know them, I understand them, but I just refuse to use them most of the time. Except for the occasional LOL. πŸ™‚

  4. i write short
    i never worry about CAPITALIZATION
    i seldom think about COMMAtose
    i just want to share good thoughts.
    be well soon

  5. Sounds like we’ve been thinking the same way, bearyweather. I am sorry to hear about your laryngitis and communication challenges. 😦

    The only time I text is when away from home and I want to practice texting skills with my kids. Mostly my daughter. I say, “We’re in Houghton.” Silence on her end. How’s she suppose to respond to that? But sometimes she calls & then we talk away in adjectives and adverbs.

    Hope you get all better soon…

  6. Even as an IT “professional” and quasi-technogeek, I cannot bring myself to write in the modern global shorthand unless I am sending a text message or knowingly communicating with people who use the language commonly.

    I hope your laryngitis has been subdued, thanks for the very interesting and thought-provoking posts! πŸ™‚

    • I can talk today … but, I am still not texting or abbreviating my words ;0)
      I am an IT professional, too … hmmm, am I making a new discovery that techie people don’t like abbreviations? Amazing, since people in our profession are the ones that started them many, many years ago with programming languages. Maybe, we just know that they serve a working purpose for talking to machines and are not the way to truly communicate with other human beings?

      Thanks for stopping by and adding to the conversations.

  7. I spend my days teaching children with language disorders. To be able to enjoy richly written words is luxurious for me. Great post!

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