Monday, November 3, 2014

Pleonasm Prevention Society

I have made this letter a rather long one, only because
I didn't have the leisure to make it shorter.
~Blaise Pascal-1623-1662
French mathematician, physicist and philosopher

Totidem verbis, this post inaugurates the Pleonasm Prevention Society. The organization is open to all the redundant speakers out there; those of you who tend to use far too many words when writing or speaking.

If you are a reader who has been the recipient of any one of my wordy e-mails, you understand why I have signed on as the first member of this society.

Membership in the Pleonasm Prevention Society will be granted when you acknowledge your prolix ways and determine to pare your verbosity. It’s possible I will be the only member of PPS. It’s also possible I’ll never be able to live up to its stated membership criteria.

Of the many friends with whom I communicate via e-mail, there are only three or four who even come close to matching the length of my notes. Not surprisingly, those three (or four) all tell me they enjoy my extensive blathering, and I certainly savor reading the mail they send.

Lately I’ve been practicing a bit of verbal apery. Meaning, I attempt to truncate my written responses so that they more closely match any short, staccato notes received.

A few of the one or two line e-mails I’ve been receiving come from those who previously wrote much longer communications. It finally dawned on me: these are friends who are now using their smartphones—typing away on that minuscule keyboard, FYI-ing, OMG-ing, BTW-ing and LOL-ing, seldom do I receive TMI.