The English language has a key attribute – using one word to convey the meaning of many, and that is the way most people generally follow. But the converse is also possible and it is the hallmark of a small and gifted band of people (unjustly termed “verbose” instead of the correct word – articulate) of using many expressive and exact words and phrases (though longer, and what are vulgarly called “high-sounding”) in their speech. Let me give you some examples. Take proverbs for instance. They are generally and popularly defined as short expressions of popular wisdom. The operative words here are “short” and may be construed as meaning easy and simple to understand – but that is for the limited of intellect generally. There are times when shorter versions may be imperative but mostly speech must reflect the glory of the language – especially this language.
Below you will find remastered (according to the theory I just propounded) equivalent of some common proverbs. I have purposely refrained from giving their commonly-heard versions alongside. It is on you, dear readers, to see how many you can decipher. (I must say I am indebted to Michael Porter and his sparkling little book for these – though I have issues with the title he used)….
~ A person experiencing a sudden drop from a relatively erect to a less erect position, should entertain the possibility that their inflated self-image is unendorsed by the general consensus
~Short lengths of wood and non-metallic mineral masses may inflict specific orthopaedic trauma but the use of onomastic syntax will never precipitate the onset of ontological distress
~ Those who indulge in delayed gratification often accrue entities of a desirable nature
~Whether or not a gaseous liquid reaches its gaseous state is contingent upon the visible electromagnetic radiation from the cooking vessel reaching the retina of a sentient being
~ An increase in the precipitance of a given action results in an exponential reduction in performance (which often equates to the distance travelled divided by the time)
~The individual who postpones risible behaviour until his contemporaries are expressing mirth by a series of spontaneous unarticulated sounds and corresponding facial movements, will blithely continue this restorative therapy for the greatest duration
~ You would be ill-advised to form an opinion or estimation of a set of written, printed, or blank pages, fastened along one side, based solely on your perception of its protective binding or enclosure.
~ Much slender-leaved herbage elicits in an observer the uneasy feeling that it possesses stronger characteristics of the verdant portion of the visible spectrum when it is situated on the less accessible of two or more contrasted areas.
~ Despite its apocryphal ability to cheat the machinations of the Grim Reaper, the life of many a small feline mammal has been tragically curtailed by its inquisitiveness and quest for knowledge
~ One who solicits the string with which a malignant destiny directs the action of its puppets, forfeits all power of volition
~ If the head covering is congruent with the circumference of your skull, appropriate it for the protection and adornment it provides
~ A subordinate evil spirit with whom you are relatively well acquainted is preferable to one to whom you have not been formally introduced
~ Drawing a line is easier than drawing a blank, since excusing a fault or offence, and renouncing any residual resentment which it may have engendered, can be accomplished with greater ease than banishing it from one’s conscious thoughts