D L Henderson
3 min readMay 1, 2024


Dear Emma,

Do I want to fight? Well, no, of course not...

If someone challenges my opinions, do I think they want a fight? No. It's just conversational discussion and/or debate.

Do I defend my opinions by accusing the other person of some moral fault or some intellectual shortcoming? Quite frankly, I hope I never have, but my memory is so unreliable these days, maybe I have, or maybe what I wrote was taken the wrong way?

All I know is I'm not one to "other" people, but I am not hesitant to challenge anyone's opinions on this free-for-all web platform.

Now, I am wondering, is "sondering" a word?

I looked at your on-line reference for "sonder." It also had quite the long list of additional words not found in Merriam Webster, I suspect with similar etymologies... My generation did not have nearly as many dialectical idioms as has this last half century, and I'm too old to bother trying to keep up with the current lingo. But allow me to make the point that there are actual words in Merriam Webster that are quite suitable to convey the same ideas...

"Sonder" sounds like a cliquish, made up word to me - like so many modern words and phrases that only certain groups have access to their meaning. The word sounds like a variation of the word "wondering" to me, or, more specifically, as in the verse in the old-timey song, "I wonder as I wander..."

I wrote an essay on the difficulty of communication online. Briefly, because there are no facial expressions or voice inflections to help communication, many misunderstandings develop.

Then there are acronyms:

"How many acronyms are there?

Results: We analysed 24,873,372 titles and 18,249,091 abstracts published between 1950 and 2019, which yielded 1,112,345 unique acronyms. We defined an acronym as a word in which half or more of the characters are upper case letters." - Jul 23, 2020 - https://elifesciences.org/articles/60080.

It all can be very confusing.

Well, I am getting off topic in my response to you.

So... as for not giving you an inch, I'll give you a mile. (Also, I do apologize for thinking your referencing the pictures as AI-sourced also meant that your essay was sourced in the same way.)

I've traveled many a mile and seen a lot over my many years. And, in my opinion, I still observe that there is nothing new in your essay, besides your language. Yes. People are complex. Yes. People have different experiences. Yes. We often are most like ships passing in the night...

However, don't be offended, because this old adage is true, "There is nothing new under the sun." There are much more in similarities in people than differences. That is to say, from my meat and potato perspective, there is a vast commonality throughout the world in all manner of cultures and nationalities. That is why I attested to the fact that I found nothing "existentially edifying" in the writing. (Again, I apologize. I thought I was responding to a machine, and would have chosen my wording in a more gentle aspect so as not to hurt your feelings.)

Anyways, I guess that's about all I have to say this morning as I go about my daily routine...



D L Henderson

Born 1950; HS 1968; Born again 1972; Cornell ILR; Steward, Local President/Business Agent; Husband, father, grandfather; winner/loser/everything in between