Read Better

The more text speak we churn out, the more compressing things into 140 characters, the more we use the word insane for a club night as well as a cathedral, the less thought we put into describing things and the shitter our english becomes.

Reading Tess of the d'Urbevilles sledgehammers this home every day; every other page makes me think differently about something i assumed i'd taken for granted. Below are examples, i've put my version of what Hardy is saying above his.

They got pissed in the pub

The stage of mental comfort to which they had arrived at this hour was one wherein their souls expanded beyond their skins, and spread their personalities warmly through the room.

He's a bum

He was what was locally called a slack-twisted fellow; he had good strength to work at times; but the times could not be relied on to coincide with the hours of requirement; and having been unaccustomed to the regular toil of the day-labourer, he was not particularly persistent when they did coincide.

He blanked her

She nudged him, while he, looking through her as through a window-pane, went on with his recitative.

She was bummed, but it was all in her head

The past was past; whatever it had been it was no more at hand. Whatever its consequences, time would close over them. Meanwhile the trees were just as green as before; the birds sang and the sun shone as clearly now as ever. The familiar surroundings had not darkened because of her grief, nor sickened because of her pain.


Imagine us reacting to our kids' language with the disdain our parents show at ours.

That would be bum out. 

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