Tuesday, April 16, 2013

N negates NOTHING

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What was that? Nothing. *Bangs head*
What did you do? Nothing. *Runs for cover*
What did you just say? Nothing. *Ducks the oncoming argument*
What's going on? Nothing *Avoiding further interrogation*
What are you thinking? Nothing. *Laughs out loud*
So? Nothing. *Couldn't care a hang*

And so we have the most (mis)used word in the English language. It denotes hurt, angst, fear, annoyance, indifference, escapism and so much more, all encompassed in one little word. NOTHING. 'Everything' can be categorized into 'Nothing' effectively. And it all stems from two simple words 'No' and 'Thing'. It is our innate nature to refuse and shake our head, sideways, along with it. It somehow validates the state of nothingness.  Because NO is really the first word we learn as kids. Don't believe me? Here's a recap! 
Nooooooooooooooooooooooo, don't touch that!
No, you can't have it.
No, because I said so!
Nope, you can't eat that.
No. No. No. A thousand times No.
Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooo not that way, you nincompoop!


And so No becomes an important part of our vocabulary. When you add Thing to it, it simply carries more weight. You don't need a grammatically correct sentence to sound emphatic or magnanimous. Nothing works its magic, every time, every where. "No, Nothing" has gone down in history as the famous last words of most wives, before an icy stare and stark silence. Two negative words, double positive impact. To be used in extreme circumstances only. 

Somehow, we find solace in the solitary word, though. We assume that the message has been passed on clearly to the other party of the conversation. And even if it is misunderstood, too bad, we meant 'nothing'. 

Now here is the catch. Nothing almost, always, means Something. Everything can't be Nothing, but Nothing can be used to denote Everything. Nothing can imply Anything if you don't know Everything. But if you are aware of Something, then Nothing cannot just be Anything

So what exactly am I getting at? Nothing.


42 comments:

Ritu said...

This brings back memories of the younger son's college days ... the talkative school boy who had to give me a minute to minute recap of his day at school suddenly clammed up. Me : How was your day He: Okay, Me: What happened, He : Nothing, Me : Do you have assignment, He : Nothing, Me : (Digging) Did you have fun, Him : It was okay, nothing happened, okay!

Me : Backing off and giving up!

Laxmi Chundi Addanki said...

No, not nothing - you got to something more than nothing, that lies beneath the 'nothing' that was expressed like nothing (actually, nobody) could ever think of! :-)
Now I need to give you a hug! :)
xxx
L

Ruchira said...

I have nothing to say here today :P

Rickie said...

What a 'philosophical' post! Aapne to Nothing kehte kehte hi everything keh diya! :D

JANU said...

Too good. Alas! Nothing more to add :P

Shilpa Garg said...

Oh yes, this nothing speaks a lot! To get something out of this nothing, a lot of prodding needs to be done though! Good one for N :)

Suzy said...

Yep Nothing was very effective during those University years and now I hear it often. The "no no" baby is so cute.

goingbeyondthepages said...

ha ha :D Well I am adding this word to my son's vocabulary now :)

-Jaspreet

Afshan said...

hahaha !
This is such an awesome post and the video mY GOD >....such a rolu polu
wanna hug him !
Nothing always means something to me !

Cynthia Rodrigues Manchekar said...

Somehow women are more adept at squeezing every drop of significance out of nothing. Great post on the nuances of the most overused word, Nothing.

Blogwati Gee said...

I totally understand that Ritu. Been on either ends now!

Blogwati Gee said...

Awwww Laxmi, hugging you back. But I swear I had nothing in mind when I penned this :)

Blogwati Gee said...

Now that is something, ain't it?

Blogwati Gee said...

Hello, something, something......some hunny bunny????

Blogwati Gee said...

Something, anything..................nothing?

Blogwati Gee said...

Thanks Shilpa. And such hard work it is.

Blogwati Gee said...

Oh that baby was quite the inspiration for this post :)

Blogwati Gee said...

Good luck. You are very brave!

Blogwati Gee said...

You are bang on.........Nothing always does. :)

Blogwati Gee said...

Cynthia, women are naturally deemed to be CIA agents, lol.

hitch writer said...

nothing for me to comment!!?? lol that is not going to happen :D

but yes... I do say nothing a lot... I hate telling the whole story... typing any day over talking !

Rainbow Hues said...

Nice post... I am very much dependent on 'nothing'. I hate to explain myself to certain people and my defense usually is 'nothing'

Shail Mohan said...

Nice post. Reminded me of a verse I wrote, Everything and Nothing:
http://shailsnest.com/2009/09/04/everything-and-nothing/
Take a look when you are free :)

Corinne Rodrigues said...

That's a whole lot of something about nothing and as usual everything is good! ;)

Cuckoo said...

Okay Vinita, what I wanted to tell you about the post...okay, nothing.

:)
Meera

Roshni AaMom said...

You last paragraph reminds me of the joke about three boys named Everybody, Somebody and Nobody!
Big A's first word was 'NO!!", which made me realize how often he must have heard that word from me!! :D

Blogwati Gee said...

I just did. It was wonderful and so apt. Thanks for sharing.

Blogwati Gee said...

Anything you say haan, Rorinne Codrigues. And by God you are right though :P

Nandana said...

You made all this out of nothing ? Now that's something! :D

Blogwati Gee said...

Making love out of nothing at all....I guess :D

Blogwati Gee said...

And now you know! Improve vocab right away Roshni or you will be posting you tube videos too. :P

And I must look up that joke, faintly remember something about a job that somebody had to do.....right?

Blogwati Gee said...

I bet there was something in that :D

Blogwati Gee said...

Don't we all? Nothing is a life saver.

Blogwati Gee said...

I can talk. Don't expect the chronicles of Narnia though. I ain't listing everything about my day here.

sharmila k said...

Nothing of yours makes sense !;)

sridevi datta said...

I have a little everything of nothing . So does that make me something , anything or nothinggggg at all ?

G Angela said...

I just loved the baby ! and I like what you wrote on NOTHING !!Thanks for sharing !

Pallavi Purani said...

The last paragraph makes so much sense. It must be taught to kids like a rhyme. :)

Blogwati Gee said...

Yup, I agree. :D

Blogwati Gee said...

Depends on which thing you give importance Sri :)

Blogwati Gee said...

That baby is a delight....but so true about what they learn!

Blogwati Gee said...

Lol, I just went with the flow Pallavi......I think Adults need to learn that first, no?

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