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In General

It is a beautiful 60 degrees outside. I know because I just left my cave of a study carrel in the library and went to the student union for some food and a break. I’ve been working on my degree paper since about 11:30. I’m proud of myself, too, because I’ve actually added some length. I’m still far below the page length I need, but hey, let’s stay positive, huh?

The guy I rode the elevator with asked me how my day has been so far, and I hesitated before telling him that it was going well. He noticed the hesitation, and I told him that I was actually accomplishing something, so that was good, but I still have so much to go, to that was bad. As he was getting off on the floor below mine, he told me, “There’s one rule in writing,” and my writing instructor ears perked up, “in general lies the enemy.”

My first interpretation was that writer’s need to be specific, a rule I am constantly reminding my students of. Then, I realized that maybe he meant, “‘In general’ is the enemy.” Alas, my newly revised introduction begins, “In a very general sense, agreement is simple….”

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