Saturday, January 9, 2016

When Did "Borrow" Became The New "Have?"


A few weeks ago, I was talking about movies with friends at a nearby coffee shop. The two of us loves movies, and can go on and on about the various genres that are familiar to us. My friend is a fan of action movies while I love romantic comedies. He told me that romance films never really touched him as a person. I found that interesting because a lot of girlfriends tell me how he is a true gentleman to them, as if he lives and breathe romance.

Still, I gave him a few romantic comedy films he should try out. One of them happened to be on what I call my "cinema shelf." He asked me if he could "borrow" the movie. I agreed and gave him the DVD. It's been weeks since he never gave it back. I asked him what's taking it so long to return the movie. He responded simply saying "I thought you were making me have it."

Another time, I had a classmate in my Shakespeare class who asked me if she could use one of my pens. It was a perfectly detailed gel pen that costs me a lot of money for one pack. It didn't really matter the cost because as a writer, I care about the quality of a good pen. How are you going to write good stuff if the pen feels weird in your hand.

She liked the pen so much that she asked me if she could borrow it. Not only did she say borrow, she specifically said "You don't mind if I borrow your pen...for life."

That one quote struck and caused me to nearly curse a few people out regarding the word itself. I don't know when in the world did this happen in life, but I don't like it. It twists my brain and leaves me in a state of confusion. I grew up understanding the two words "borrow" and "have"differently. They both have different meanings.

When it comes to borrowing there is an expectation that whatever you're borrowing will be returning. It's like renting. You can't have it forever and you need to return it soon. That is my view on borrow. If you ask a person if you can have it, you're requesting that you keep the item forever with no strings attached. No one is expecting you to return it. It's yours forever.

How did "borrow" become the new "have?" I don't understand.

When you want to borrow something from me my expectation is that you will return it to me. I don't care if it's a pen, a DVD, or a book. You borrow it, you return it. Now if you tell me on the other hand that you want to have something of mine to have, and I accept, then it's yours. I know it's not borrowed and it's yours forever.

I don't know about you, but I cannot support this theory that "borrow" has become the new "have." I know trends change, but this is crazy. I can't think of "borrow" and "have" in the same category.

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