Saturday, April 7, 2007

A bird in hand...

I think words are the most potent thing that Man has created.

Think about it...soothing words poured on a bruised ego can stop the hurt, a few sweetly spoken words can make you fall so helplessly in love that you walk around for days making a complete ass of yourself, and a single word thrown down like a gauntlet can start a life-long feud.

Don't you believe that cliche "Actions speak louder than words"! They never do. Or, "Sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me".

Which brings me to my point today. (It takes me fairly long, but I get there in the end.)

I love words, but I loathe cliches. I dislike generalizations, and I think, a cliche is the worst kind of generalization. (Like something I read on Women's day, check this out: 'A woman smiles when she wants to cry'. We do? Why didn't anybody tell me? I was doing the exact opposite all these years, and now you tell me??)

Take the cliche "Fortune favors the brave." Does it bother you that this is quoted at you by the same person who said "you should look before you leap" last month? That's exactly it...if these sayings were just taken lightly, as a trite, unimaginative way of expressing your opinion, I would've been fine with that.

But noooo. People have to use them as a clinching argument to prove that they are right, you are wrong, and they have the weight of thousands of years of human civilisation in the form of this cliche, on their side.

"You went up to your boss and said that? What are you, crazy? It had to be said, you say? Tsk tsk...you do know that discretion is the better part of valor, right?"

Or,

"Why didn't you tell him? Obviously he picked the other guy, he was brave enough to ask for it! Fortune favors the brave, my friend."

Or, "Everything happens for a reason". Yes, when you break out into a thousand oozing sores and no one wants to come near you, you know that it happened for a reason. The reason is that you ate those prawns even though you knew you were allergic, you idiot, not that a greater good would come out of your discomfort.

And the saying "Still waters run deep." I have met a million seriously stupid people who couldn't think of a single thing to say, so didn't. The waters are still because they are stupid, ergo...not deep.

And before you irritating people shake your heads knowingly and say "an empty vessel makes most sound" - I will end here for today.

:)

8 comments:

Nisho said...

Bravo bravo... excellent post! Thoroughly enjoyed it :-)

Mo said...

Debjeet directed me to your blog. Interesting read.
Loved this para And the saying "Still waters run deep." I have met a million seriously stupid people who couldn't think of a single thing to say, so didn't. The waters are still because they are stupid, ergo...not deep.
:))

Keep writing, I will continue reading!

Ushasi said...

Thanks, mo!:)

Moon said...

This is one blog I keep checking almost everytime I am free to see if some more was added while I was away.
Always knew you to be a good writer and orator. Good going!

Debsena said...

the problem with cliches is that you can never keep track of all of them. when does a perfectly sensible line become a cliche? how hackneyed is too hackneyed? it's even worse for someone who doesn't read too often, like me. :(

Ushasi said...

But there IS a problem with cliches. Everyone agrees.:)
Thanks Debsena!

Diya said...

a stitch in time saves nine. i always wondered why it wasn't eight or ten. now i know! but are we talking about cliches here or proverbs?

Diya said...

the difference, i suppose, would be if someone were to say - 'every stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet' or something ridiculous like that, which is cliched (and clearly not true!) but isn't a proverb. although i totally agree that proverbs can be cliched too and can be spouted out with a most annoying air of superiority!