This I Believe

Janina - fairfax, Virginia
Entered on December 5, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

Every so often in a group of people who regularly gather to talk abut pointless happenings or to complain about insignificant things for lack of anything more meaningful to contribute to a given conversation; someone ends up saying something that is passable of a profound thought. Every so often someone comes to a breakthrough in their own thinking and in that moment happens to share it with the group. However, all too often they feel as if what they are saying is too out of place, too person, too profound, so they instinctively add the obligatory ending to their comment that we know so well, two simple words “or something”. In saying these two simple words the speaker renounces any responsibility for their thoughts, completely devaluing them, and refusing to defend them. “Or something” is additionally often replaced or combined with its sister sayings “I don’t know” or “maybe that’s all bullshit” and a personal favorite “whatever”.

This phenomenon is something that has always irked me. Just as soon as someone has finally had a break though in their own thinking where they are able to take a stand on an issue they feel compelled to negate its value by attaching the obligatory statement “or something”. Why is it that we feel the need to do this to ourselves? What is the point of doing this? Do people do it so they will not be held accountable for the repercussions of their own thoughts? Do people do this out of shyness? Do people suddenly feel uncomfortably exposed when they express something of value to a group? Why is it that in our proudest moment where we for once demonstrate a personal part of our intellect do we feel the need to backtrack as fast as we can by simply adding “or something”.

This tradition has gone on too long. And needs to come to an end! Society must begin to demand people’s thoughts and opinions to come out into the open. Society must emend out backward tradition of accepting useless complaints and mindless chatter in everyday conversation while condemning personal thought and individual points of view. It is time we started using our words as a precious commodity. We need to take back control of our language forever banishing filler and complaints and embarrassing individual breakthroughs thoughts and ideas in everyday conversation, and most importantly demanding that people take full ownership and pride in their thoughts forever banishing “or something” from the modern lexicon. Perhaps I don’t know what I’m talking about. Perhaps this is nothing more than a grouping of run on sentences and babble. But I believe people need to own up to their ideas, be proud, be individual, yanno….. or something.