The other day, I was watching You’ve Got Mail, for what may well be, admittedly, the 6th or 7th time, and while I was thoroughly enjoying it, sighing in the same manner, in the necessary parts of the movie, as I did the first time I watched it, and breaking out into smiles of unabashed joy at other select areas, I realized that it wasn’t merely the fantastic pairing of Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, or the tastefully selected soundtracks or even my secret wonderment at Meg Ryan’s ability to be so….. so utterly charming despite her entirely bland wardrobe, minimal make up and the way she walks like a man, that makes it one of my favorite movies.
No, it’s the way it subtly romances the English language.
It’s beautiful really, when you take notice of the things that he says, or she says, or even when she’s thinking aloud and how wonderfully it is articulated.
I do love a movie script that artfully employs the use of language.
What a thing of beauty it is.
Don’t you think so? Don’t you marvel at the way the word ‘Gumption’ makes you feel like warm trifle in your tummy and good Christmas cheer?
The way ‘ foofaraw’ sounds as complicated and confusing as the concept it represents? The way ‘curmudgeon’, ‘coolth’ and ‘brouhaha ‘ make you want to giggle even before you’ve finished giving voice to them?
Did you know that ‘petrichor’ is the name given to the smell that makes everyone’s nostrils smile, the smell of the rain on the earth, or that ‘sehnsucht’ is the inconsolable longing in the human heart for we know not what?
I often have whimsical imaginings.
Imaginings that one day, I would bump into the human embodiment of the language. Man English.
And he would be so marvellous and debonair and I imagine that he would lean in, with his kindly eyes twinkling full of a thousand stories, and say something thrilling like-
“Would you like an adventure now or shall we have our cup of tea first? ”