(image from here--Umberto Boccioni's Unique Forms of Continuity in Space)
The other day Sam and I were wondering if there have been so many people on the earth that everything you could ever think of to say, has already been said by somebody at some time or other. (In some language.) Would it be possible to combine several words into a sentence that had never been said? (This train of thought began because Sam said something about "gabbling goldfish" and I said, "I bet no one in history has ever put those two words together before." Then we were trying to decide if the fact that the words were alliterative made them more likely to have been said at some point, or if it didn't matter.)
Anyway, I frequently find myself saying things that I know are being said, probably at the same instant, by mothers the world over ("Wait until your mouth is empty before you talk," or "Be nice to your baby brother.") But occasionally something will come out of my own mouth, or one of my boys', that might conceiveably have never been said in the history of the world. Something that if you had told me, ten years ago, that someday I would be saying/hearing those exact words in that exact order, I would have laughed in disbelief.
Here are some recent occurrences:
- "Mommy, Sebby's biting the weight machine!"
- "They're just imaginary mints! You can't fight over them!"
- "Forks aren't for poking into the cracks of the table."
- "Sebby, if it's in your underpants, get it out. Rocks aren't supposed to go in our underpants."
- "Don't cry about it! It's just a pretend wrecking ball! It's not actually going to wreck our house, unless it asks us first."
- "Spaghetti doesn't go in your pocket!"
- "Nobody's popping anybody. People can't be popped."
- "Just let him have his fluffball! There are enough fluffballs for everyone!"
- "Your pajamas are not windmills!"
- "Please don't flap your carwash brushes at the table."
- "Yes, I know those are my arms, but not all arms go 'ding ding ding' or have flashing lights on them."