“How Very…”

Dear Reader:

Why do so many people want to pick on one of my all-time favorite words….very? I remember my senior high school English teacher handing me back the first draft of my first attempt at a term paper….with lines drawn through every “very” on the page. How “very” rude!

I am sorry but I simply can’t help myself. I am a “very” expressive person when I use “very” to describe my adventures through life…both very happy and/or very sad. Life seems kinda blah to me without a “very” in it.

Apparently Mark Twain (supposedly) once said:

“Substitute ‘damn’ every time (sic) you’re inclined to write ‘very’; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”
— John Willard, English Usage, 2017

Come on now Mark…what’s the problem with a good dessert with a “very” on top?

Apparently language critics gave poor President Woodrow Wilson a hard time for using “very” too many times in his speeches. One critic said that the over-use of “very” is a feminine trait and alluded to the fact that Woodrow Wilson had been around his wife and three daughters too long and that “very” side of him was rubbing off  by his association from living in a”fortress of femininity.”  (How very insensitive!)

I think Wilson should have replied to his distracters with this bit of scripture.

John 14:12-14

12:  “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth in me, the works that I do, shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do because I go unto my father.”

Jesus  made another adverb out of an adverb…with very and verily. How very cool is that?

I couldn’t help but laugh at the humorous tongue-in-cheek summary of the article by Merriam-Webster (“The Problems with Very” or “Other People’s Problems with Very“)

“...So let’s have a quick recap on the matter of very. You may use very before a past participle, unless it sounds bad, in which case you should not use it. You may use very as an intensifier before adjectives such as angry, unless you use it too much, in which case you should use it less. And in the matter of rhetorical proclivities you should use very whenever you feel like it.”


So until tomorrow “Oh…how I love having fun with words. Can you imagine living in a world without them…it would be a pretty lonely world…in fact a VERY lonely world.”

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Honey forwarded this insightful message she received from an email from a friend…I wanted to share it with all of you.

Six Little Stories

1. One day, all the villagers decided to pray for rain. On the day of prayer all the people gathered, but only one boy came with an umbrella.

That’s FAITH.

2. When you throw babies in the air, they laugh because they know you will catch them.

That’s TRUST.

3. Every night we go to bed without any assurance of being alive the next morning, But still we set the alarms to wake up.

That’s HOPE.

4. We plan big things for tomorrow in spite of zero knowledge of the future.


5. We see the world suffering, but still we get married and have children.

That’s LOVE.

6. On an old man’s shirt was written a sentence. “I am not 80 years old, I am sweet 16 with 64 years of experience.”


*Thank you Honey for sharing…I needed to be reminded of this message VERY much! 🙂

Time is winding down on John and Mandy’s 10th anniversary trip…John and Mandy, I just hope you return relaxed and filled with beautiful memories of this special occasion! Love you! Travel safely!

*I am hoping and praying… now that I have raised my hummingbird feeder up several feet and placed more greenery around it …that I will be typing away one day and see a sparkling sensation in the form of a hummingbird. What a delight that will be!


About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to “How Very…”

  1. Hey Becky – I’m with you on VERY!! I even use Very, Very….!!! And if anyone needs further justification for using very, here’s another Scripture….Psalm 46:1 -God is our Refuge and Strength, a VERY present and well-proved help in trouble. AMEN.
    PS ~ Thanks again for your wonderful writings! I enjoy them very, very much every morning!
    With my love and prayers, Mary


    • Becky Dingle says:

      Oh Mary….how VERY wonderful to hear from you. In fact…it has been a VERY long time…but your comment was worth waiting for…VERY insightful and VERY WITTY. A great way to start the day and hey ….if VERY is okay with Jesus…then it is completely justified in saying it a lot….VERY VERY VERY often! Have a VERY fabulous day! Don’t be a stranger! 🙂


  2. bcparkison says:

    This is funny and very much to the point.


  3. Jo Dufford says:

    This was a great blog today. I looked up some synonyms for “very”, but they just really don’t quite “measure up”. Merriam Webster’s summary said it best for me. I absolutely loved Honey’s “Six Little Stories”, and I know that I shall quote them from time to time. I’m back, cookies or no cookies!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.