nothing to say

imageI have nothing to say today, although some News Of Interest is forthcoming. So here’s the Google Ngram results for ‘I have nothing to say’ (click to embiggen). The results seem to suggest a sharp decline in the recorded use of the phrase since 1900, which may also suggest that we have more and more and more to say as a culture, and less and less likely to think (or admit) we have nothing to say.

I can’t say I’m surprised. I also can’t imagine that everything we’re rushing about to say as a culture is of substantially greater import of what people may or may not have been saying in 1813. James Hogg’s long poem The Queen’s Wake was first published that year, for instance—that’s something.