Photo Courtesy of Anne Crick

April 29, 2016

MOHAPATRA | Why Chat, Why Ramble

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You probably wouldn’t think about having a discussion on poetry and Shakespearean sonnets with a cashier at Target on an off rush hour weekday afternoon, but I would. I’ve also heard why so many people think their Friday nights are “going to be lit” on my walks back from the slope, which honestly, made some of my homework laden weekend nights “lit.” You would consider having a prelim and three other things due on one day the end of the world, but I would remember the woman I met at the Stella’s bus stop – who had a smile on her face as she told me about having fifteen dollars to her name and her son driving past her without recognizing her just as her phone died – she told me that things never get “bad enough.”

I was advised as a kid to avoid talking to strangers, and I did adhere to that advice for the longest time, until I realized it was  the randomest of conversations that made my day. These exchanges have turned many strangers into friends. I have been preached to about the virtues of being a good listener too many times, but everyone seems to – much too often – overlook the importance of talking to have a quality something to listen to. So this one is for my fifth grade math teacher who ticked me off by reminding me that I was blessed with two ears and only one mouth so that I would listen more and talk less: with my incessant chatter, I am doing both, and unapologetically so.

In a schedule packed with routine and repetition, I have repeatedly found respite and inspiration in my rambles and often off-beat conversations. A major reason I have an obnoxious dearth of BRBs is because I have lost too many “hold your silence for five minutes” bets. Fridays mean discussion sections for my Government major life; Tuesdays and Thursdays mean workshops for my Creative Writing minor life. Every day means too many hours chattering away in Libe for my “Wow can you really talk that much” life. You could call this blog I run alternate Fridays one of my rambles and rants, and I would completely agree. I have caught myself relentlessly apologizing for “going off on a tangent,” for “rambling,” and for just being a chatterbox in general, but I find these chatterbox tendencies are the ones that enrich my otherwise somewhat mundane existence in their little ways, and I am thankful for that.