Words Can Be Delicious, too!

But they can also be bitter. They can be sweet or sour, Rich or bland. But regardless of how they are they are. 

One of the things that I try to teach people when they ask me for help with a speech or other assorted form or presentation is to find out the flavor of every word and to taste the words. To find the underlying emotion and connotation of using that particular word and letting its emotions show every time they say it is a good skill to know.

English professors around the world have tried for decades to try to push us, their pupils, towards becoming cognizant of the inherent power that words have beyond the ordinary existence of the word.

WordFlavors

A word can sway in any direction imaginable. But its power is amplified if it’s the right word.

A word of caution, I’m NOT talking about mincing words and being choosy to mislead. I’m talking about using the emotions behind those words to persuade and dissuade.

Take a second and look at these words:

  1. Fish
  2. Smile
  3. Star
  4. Cocktail
  5. Package
  6. Squishy
  7. Famlity
  8. Spaceship
  9. Tusk
  10. Vertigo

Now do it again, but think about how each word makes you feel.

  1. Fish
  2. Smile
  3. Star
  4. Cocktail
  5. Package
  6. Squishy
  7. Family
  8. Spaceship
  9. Tusk
  10. Vertigo

Every word there brought out some kind of feeling as soon as you read them.

We’ve come to associate them right down the shape of the words. Nasty ends with a glum-looking “y”. Awkward’s got that odd-looking “awk”, and cheer has a peppy-looking “ee”. By looking I mean the physical design of the letters–on any font, too. Don’t believe me? Copy this to word and play with some fonts. Granted, “Chiller” won’t really help my point, but the font was designed to influence the letters and shapes. But try any standard font, and the shapes convey those emotions.

Our trial in life, then, is to learn how to harness those emotions inherently present in the letters, sounds, and words; to taste them and their sounds to show those emotions we want to show.

All aboard!

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