In an excerpt from his most recent post, Voices in Dark Skies, a low-flying mallard inspires S.K. to examine why most people rarely take the time to think before they speak:
For some years now, I have been hyper-aware of how few people take the time to truly think about things before they try to formulate opinions. If you stand in a group and ask a question out of nowhere — “Why do you suppose women with red hair really do seem to be more gregarious? — the answers will come quickly and in battalions. But when the question is of more weight and substance than hair color — “Can we know that our sufferings have meaning, even aside from the pat answers we’ve been taught?” — the responses are no less swift and no less numerous.
But have the people tossing out the answers really stopped to think about these things? I do not believe they have. I believe people in this age have become convinced that to be unable or unwilling to articulate an instantaneous and reasonable-sounding response is a gross sin. It doesn’t matter that most snap-back answers are verbal Cool Whip. To be without a quick answer is much worse than simply offering a stupid response with boldness.
When is the last time you heard a person, after being asked an out-of-the-blue question, answer, “I don’t know. I’ll have to think about that?”
I deliberately answer in just this way when I am asked a question that catches me off-guard, and I can attest that the people doing the asking do not like it. Not one bit. To deflect a question with a stated intention to ponder carefully what the other person has asked is to say, “I’m going to slow things down, and I’m going to dissect what you asked, and why you asked, and I’m going to draw my own conclusions.” Oh, no…they’re not going to have any of that.
Read the whole thing here.