Boş Ver

"Boş ver" is one of my favorite Turkish expressions. I learned it at the beginning of the school year when talking to my friend Ozgur.  It literally means "take empty" and, paired with an upward flick of the hand and shrug of the shoulders, it essentially means that you're letting something go, or reducing its effect on your life. I appreciate the saying as a way of moving through life. Feeling slighted by friends or colleagues? Boş ver. Someone elbowed ahead of you on the metro? Boş ver. Your 5 TL umbrella broke in a rainstorm or you stepped on an unsteady cobblestone that drenched you with water? Boş ver. Get stuck behind a barrage of arm-linked slow walkers on Istiklal? Boş ver... Someone took the last simit at the bakery? Who am I kidding, there's always more simit. But, if they ever ran out? Boş ver... you get the idea.

Philosophically, it's liberating, reminding one that nothing is so important that it should stick to you and weigh you down. Instead, you should let it roll off you like water off a karabatak's back, and the only thing you should be taking with you is refreshing, weightless air.


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