Is This You? Whatever vs. anyway
Sometimes I feel like Peter Pan in the respect I shall never grow up. That isn’t a bad thing in some ways. Like I will always get sticky ice cream on my shirt when eating an ice cream cone in the summer. I will squish the ice cream into those little squares in the bottom of the cone with my tongue and stick that last big bite in my mouth all at once finishing off the cone with a big ol’ smile and brain freeze.
But inevitably there are times I must be a grown-up. Even though for the most part I don’t take adulthood all too seriously, I know by little things I think, say and do that dang it, I’m a grown-up. This became apparent recently when I noticed I don’t communicate like I did when I was a teenager, or even a young adult.
But before we discuss communication by mouth, let’s discuss communication by clothing. Not short shorts or skinny tops or jeans that are priced higher with the more holes they have in them. I say if you have the body for those, then go for it. But with some dignity and modesty, please. I’m talking about when I finally noticed wearing clothing with obnoxious wording or in any way adorned with teddy bears, kittens and fairies just didn’t feel quite right on me anymore. Not that there’s anything wrong with some of those types of clothing. And I still occasionally sneak in a T-shirt basically advertising a place I have visited or for those who know me — where I have worked. But I’m now a tad bit more discerning about what I buy as noted by the fact I pass up the 3 for $10 T-shirt table when on vacation. Oh, and the few sweatshirts with thoughts printed proudly on the front I wear over and over again are ones that are near and dear to my heart and my psyche. Like “Don’t give up your Day Dream.” Yeah, I’ll never grow up all the way.
Words are, of course, the most used way we communicate. I admit I’m not up on the cyber lingo of today. Anything past “BFF” and “lol” is a bit foreign to me. But when I was in my teens I was introduced, much to the dismay of my mother I’m sure, to the use of the word “whatever” in answer to questions and instructions grown-ups would try to relate to me. I now see how infuriating it could become. When I was told to be home at a certain time I could say, “Whatever.” Doing the dishes would be asked of me, “Whatever,” was my reply. What’s the matter with you mom would ask. “Whatever,” again I retorted. Try it out sometime. It was a wonderful word that could be used everywhere and for everything. But now I see I was going through a teenage rude phase. But, whatever.
Over time I grew out of the “whatever” stage, to the happiness of those around me. But now I recently found myself ending thoughts and conversations with another watch word that apparently has also become near and dear to my heart: Anyway.
Anyway, like whatever, can start or end a conversation or steer a conversation from one topic to another. This word isn’t as usable as whatever, or “whatev” for short. But it gives you time to slip away from a conversation.
Let’s say you find yourself being talked to and maybe have had enough of the conversation but aren’t sure how to drop it and move away. Try this … just sigh and say, “Yes, well anyway.” And just scoot away. I find the talker will most of the time just mumble something like “yeah” or “uh huh.” And voila! You’re free as a bird to fly away and eat fresh road kill. Yummy! I always wanted to be a bird, flying free and seeing the earth from above — until I realized they eat dead stuff. Well, anyway …
Works pretty good, huh?
Trina lives in Eureka, Nevada. Her book ITY BITS is on Kindle. Share with her at email@example.com