Twain’s Civilization

“Civilization is a limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessaries.”

Leave it to Mark Twain to capture a big point in a little sentence. Twain adheres to Strunk & White’s admonishment to omit needless words. It may be hard to say “unnecessary necessaries” ten times fast but the juxtaposition of opposites somehow adds Twain’s trademark humor to the sentence.

Last weekend I packed the family for vacation and was trying to take only the necessities – yet our Sienna was packed full! It’s a mindset I will continue to challenge.

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