Words are the definitive way to communicate knowledge, although another way to phrase it would be that they are the ultimate signifiers. Towards the end of the book, there is a claim that all that’s left are words, and to me this meant words without meaning (124). I think words lacking meaning play a large role in Oedipa’s paranoia, as one of the few times I remember receiving an explanation for the meaning behind something in this book occurred when Cohen explained what crying was, and Oedipa responded by saying his fly was open, but personally I thought the crying at an auction was quite obvious, regardless of any potential deeper meaning (151). It seemed like the explanation went against some rule in this book, hinted at by the (incidental) breaking of a societal convention. Oedpia, and I believe I as well, have been strongly conditioned to believe that words, because they exist to communicate must have meaning, and as we operate under that bias paranoia surfaces.