For the sake of saying it

How many times have you found yourself saying mundane things as a response to something that somebody says to you? Yeah we've all done it, we all do it, it happened to me this week.

Simple things like, "Oh well, never mind", "It'll all turn out in the end" or "Something will come up". Why do we say these things? They are almost an automatic response, without real meaning or more importantly, they seem so unsincere, even if they are meant to be. More often than not we say them because we don't know what else to say - as if we are trying to fill a gap in conversation, or just for the sake of saying it.

Would it not be better to say nothing? Do we have to fill those silent moments? Can we not live with silence?

People dream of leaving the maddening crowd of the city and living in the open, tranquil sprawl of the countryside or even by the sea where only the soothing sound of the waves can be heard, yet we still can't leave a moment of tranquility in conversation. As if we can't leave it as it is like the unspoilt countryside. Like in the film Pulp Fiction when Vincent (John Travolta) and Mia (Uma Thurman) are at dinner together, and she asks him: "Don't you just hate that? Uncomfortable silences. Why do we feel it's necessary to yak about bullshit in order to be comfortable?"

Instead they should be moments of thought or reflection. We aren't always looking for an answer, but just to be listened to. As much as I think being spontaneous is important in life, maybe we should be left to think in these moments. If we thought for just a split second more we would be able to deal with them better.

To coin the phrase 'Silence is Golden', we should learn to appreciate these moments and to leave them for what they are. Sometimes putting words in to spaces can be like fitting a square in to a circle. The human race has been gifted with lots of words, to communicate by word of mouth, but it has also been gifted with silence. We need to learn what to put and where. Place and time. We have to know how to stay in this world, not so much understand it.

In the words of Mia Wallace: "That's when you know you've found somebody special, when you can just shut the fuck up for a minute and comfortably enjoy the silence."


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