Niagara Gazette

Columns

April 19, 2013

HAMILTON: Are we to be tinkled or tickled by each other?

Niagara Gazette — Do we get tinkled or tickled by each other?

The answer to that question may influence your destiny.

Many children hate to have their hair washed. Little Legend, Samika Sullivan’s 3-year old angel, vehemently expressed her anger on the night that she had to have the sand washed from her head; the sand that one of the little boys at her day care class had tossed there.

The next day, strapped in the backseat of her mother’s automobile, she overheard her aunt asking her mother how she had endured the washing and Samika told her that Legend was really ‘pissed’ off at the boy for throwing the sand in her hair. Legend immediately chimed in, “Yeah, I was ‘pissed’ off.”

Legend’s aunt then said to the child, “I’m sorry; we shouldn’t have used that word. That is not a very nice word to say.”

Seemingly advanced beyond her few years, Legend felt a bit of remorse and said, “Oh,” and thought about it for a moment; then continued by asking, “Well, is ‘tinkled’ a nice word?”

When Samika agreed that ‘tinkled’ was a nice word, Legend enthusiastically responded, “Well, I was ‘tinkled’ off at (that boy)!” she said.

Legend seemingly has recognized that there is a nice way even to express anger, even if that nice way says exactly the same thing as did the other. It is a testament to what Limbaugh says, in that, “Words mean things.” With the syllabic brush of the speaker’s thoughts, their words paint a colorful, abstract, verbal picture upon the mental canvass of another person’s mind.

But, too often; others have a differing preference for oil, acrylic or watercolored words. They then have come to hold others more accountable, not for what they painted, but for which medium they used and how it was interpreted; and the message wrapped in those words can easily be lost.

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