Thursday, May 20, 2010


One thing I like about English is how you can be concise. Short words. Short phrases. Short sentences. Not like no French or Spanish or Russian, where words roll on and on and take up half again as much print space as English.

"Drink Double Cola!" A word like Drink, short, compact, a word the size of a bullet.

"Ram Showed Up, and Ram Got Tough!" Well okay, not quite the wording of the pickup commercial, but it's the way I hear it in my head. Every word a blunt monosyllable. Tough: a word as compact and condensed as a computer chip, yet short and brusque as dirt.

You can't do this with some of those la-dee-da languages out there, they just ramble on and on. But English is a small canvas overnight duffle, small and plain but soldierly tough, almost telegraphic.

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