Friday, 24 August 2012

Long-Winded Vs Curt Messages

“I like long text messages, because I appreciate the effort that's put into a complete thought.” Quoted from twitter @TheseDamnQuote

This quote caught my attention and struck a chord in me.

I am known to be long-winded and one with many many many words. I have been talkative ever since I learned how to talk before I even turned one.

With speech, when I started to go to school, I learned to love writing as well. When people are screaming inside, in protest, in language classes when they are given essay exercises, I find myself actually smiling with glee.

Just run a random check on my other blog posts and you can only count a handful of half-hearted lazy (short) posts. Majority of the posts are quite long.

Anyway, I digress, this phrase 'Anyway, I digress' has been quite a regular 'guest phraseword' in my blog, as I tend to write as if I am talking, branching out to many things before finally coming back to the topic at hand. I can go on forever before going back to the quote: “I like long text messages, because I appreciate the effort that's put into a complete thought.” *forces self to return to topic of the day*

Let's start with an example:

A: Hi, how are everyone at home? The weather is hot over here and the kids are coughing this past one week. Hope your kids are fine. Oh, have you heard from Cherry? Her husband Larry got a new job and is coming back to our town for good. Just to let you know so that we can catch up when Cherry has settled down after her move. Should be happening in the next two months! So excited to meet up with you girl's again!

B: Ok. TQ.

A: See you soon in two months ya? Take care and best regards to your family. Send my love to all.


A: .....

End of Example 1 (text message)

I don't know about you but I have been A my whole texting life.

Emails, letters, any form of correspondence (including the restrictive Twitter), I tend to maximize my words.

Even when I was forced to economize on my words when I was interning at a national news agency (which I joined as a full timer two years later for another two years) I try to rebel and maximize my maximum five paragraphs by writing 30 words in each para as opposed to the recommended 25. I am flouting all journalism rules in my blog anyway so there you have it, a long-winded me.

Back to Example 1: what can you say about the character A? What can you say about character B?

This debate of long vs short, let's keep it to text messages and not anything else, I wonder how the Search engine result will be with the short vs long keywords, anyway, here I digress again.

I have already made a stand by the title of this blog post. Long is a neutral adjective. Short is a neutral adjective but I chose 'Curt' instead of short. Curt is too short, in my definition, to the point of bordering on rude and impolite. This is just my personal opinion and in my short decade of texting, I have learned not to take short messages personally, not to take the curt messages to heart.

It is the same effort like remembering people's birthday. Too much hassle? That means I am not in your priority. And short text messages - wanna save money and keep it within 160 characters? Or another excuse of "I just don't know what to say", or simply dismiss people who are similar to Character A, as "too long-winded" or "a chatterbox", then they conveniently forget to reply, with a thought at the back of their mind, "if I bump into them and they asked why did I not reply to their message, I will just say I forgot and I am too busy".

So, in other words, they are either lazy, no intention to communicate with you, don't wanna bother with making effort to maintain a relationship with you or all of the above. This list isn't exhaustive.

This is another rant, more to musing I think as I have come to terms that not everyone can write as long and as much as me.

However, whoever said people CANNOT CHANGE or are born that way, please take back your words. My man of a few words have been conditioned by yours truly to type longer messages and one of the requirements earlier in our courtship (dating) was he needs to write me an email a day when we were still apart, physically. If not for words, I would not have found my husband. We fell in love even before we held hands or even see each other in person. You see how I manage to steer a neutral topic to a mushy one? End of post. :)

Post-script note: I am NOT advocating long-windedness. More than two syllables in a message are more than welcome and may open up more room for communication and strengthening relationships. 4 characters in a text message costs the same as 160 characters. Communication is the key to building relationship. I teach and lecture on communication, I should know. *wink*

A random pic taken in China of a France's Louvre replica which is actually the roof/entrance of an underground shipping district. Just thought it is random enough to decorate an otherwise picture-less blog post.

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