It takes time to refine blathering skills. Not everyone has the patience for mediocre blather.
Blather gets a bad rap, for good reason. Most of it is worthy of disregard. But done right, blathering is an artful form of entertainment. A good blatherer can drift a loosely knitted topic in a wide arc circling several themes in babble-like fashion before coming back to point. Many TV series employ this form of blathering.
The other day I was listening to a guy jabber on about his dog. I wasn’t so interested in dogs, especially his dog, but he kept me hooked by engaging a few of us with snippets of his dog stories. His dog yak took us into his family and through several semi-absorbing stages of his kinsfolk history. As we strolled through various family vacations to aspects of a particular vacation which was in itself a location of interest, he was back to the dog and his original point about how it was eventually trained. It was a blather experience saturated with plenty of rich airy verbiage yet it filled the airspace with entertainment.
This chatter-friendly guy was deftly able to detect listener drift, then either altered a component of his prattle or added a colorful highlight making sure his impromptu audience was continually engaged. His blathering skills separated him from spewing verbal vomit or just running at the mouth.
Now thanks to the world wide web, blatherers have a new platform. Or rather, it has created an entirely new set of blatherers who’s numbers have been multiplying exponentially. Written blather has the advantage of being editable, umpteen times, with a much wider reach, whereas verbal blather is mostly impromptu and exposed — a nugget in time, consumed then gone.
The world is full of expounders and listeners. A well balanced human likes both. To achieve that well-balanced state, I heard through the grapevine (yes, there is such a thing) that it helps to develop better verbal blather.
This post may be considered short-form written blather, with hardly an arc and barely a point — sorely missing good blather. Perhaps, I’m thinking, I need to work on better verbal blather. So yesterday I circled back and found the guy with his dog story and asked him his secret to developing good blathering technique. He said, with deadpan seriousness, that better verbal blather increases the likelihood of world peace. I returned the serious deadpan look as he then told me that better blather takes practice by reducing mind mush (pointless mental blather) and increased spouts of talking aloud to oneself, with emphasis on articulating the following phrase five times as fast as possible: Bee Buckle Bendy Baby Baked a Batter of Better Blather.
Shrinking the level of mind mush may prove to be too much, but what the hell, I’ll give it a shot. Those around me will need to understand that the constant talking to myself and repeating the above phrase will someday arm me with better blather. I’ll keep the idea of world peace tucked snugly in my back pocket.