Back when I was teaching the entire world to write, I used the word “concrete” all the time. Now I know how abstract that word was for the people I was trying to reach. No word or idea is abstract if you know what it is, but if you don’t, it’s obscure. My “concrete” was abstract. In my effort to nudge them away from “big” words with ambiguous meanings I employed examples. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.

I think of my niece when she was 2 and we were at a restaurant. She was running around and I was sort of “riding herd” on her to be sure she wasn’t getting into trouble. At one point I said, “Where are you going?”

She said, “There!” and pointed.

I said, “OK, but where’s THERE?”

She pointed and said, “THERE!!!

I said, “Honey, you have to tell me where. THERE is too vague.”

“OK,” she said, “I’m going to vague!”



12 thoughts on “What?

  1. Ha! I think they were fooling around with “stuff” on WordPress today as at one time it was totally different. There wasn’t even any place to “save.” I’m sure you know the difference between the old editor and new editor, but just in case–in one, the save, post, categories and tag selectors are on the right, the other on the left. They sometimes switch without your asking them to. Usually at the top of the screen there is a “switch to new editor” button and the controls go to the left when you select it. I prefer them just for the category and tag section as the search function is better.

  2. Children are amazing! Just love this comment from your niece. We’ve been involved with grandchildren lately and continue to be amazed!

  3. Your niece is quite smart. Wonder what would have happened if she came up with her own dictionary. A friend’s little girl used to call stairs the ups and downs. She had tons of those.

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