I tend to get misunderstood fairly often. When I'm talking to people, there'll be moments when I realise... I'm quite good at reading people's body language
, and sometimes I just know
that what I've just said has been completely misinterpreted. A slight frown in someone I have just indirectly complimented, the intake of breathe and indignance that indicates a disagreement from someone I know agrees with me.
Thing is, it's not usually because I've left something out (except when I'm trying to explain computers to my mother). It's usually because the words I use have too many shades of meaning that only I am familiar with. At first, I thought it was just the way language works: when you learn a word, and when it is used in new ways around you, you associate different meanings with it depending on what sense it's used in. Think soy - it has a new meaning for you since thefez got hold of it, no?
Then I realised that it's not just the people closest to me who understand what I'm saying. In fact, not even them sometimes - I've given up mentioning certain things to my family because my frontal lobes sieze up with all the information I need to impart to get them to understand exactly what I mean. Too much traffic, server down. Other people, people who I've never met or really talked to, get what I mean with no apparent effort. People who study philosophy or psychology or who just plain have huge vocabularies.
When I was a kid, you see, I was the reader of the school. There was this fundraiser, we'd get sponsors to pay us to read books, and each class member had to set themselves a target for how many books they would read each week. Most kids put 1 or 2, some had 3 or 4. I had 10 (admittedly I cheated by reading weeny little books like fighting fantasy if my week had been too full to get all my reading in, and I counted the Lord of the Rings as 3 books). I kept up the pratice throughout high school, actually just giving up on the last few years and passing my exams on trivia gleaned from popular science books like a brief history of time.
But, I digress. The point is, I understand the English language really well. Some areas of specialisation are foreign to me, but I'm a really good all-rounder. I see a lot of conflicts and tensions around me which are easily solved by explaining the nuances of each person's case to everyone involved (peace is sometimes surprisingly easy to make). I'm literate like I'm meant to be, and a lot of the time I feel like I speak an alien tongue.