I don't think the impact is as much as you've made it out to be, especially in regards to regular conversations with other human beings.
It may not be; thus, the thread for discussion which starts out, "... I can't help but wonder"
But to have fodder for more, consider the following similar words. Some are quite common, some don't reach above the 6th grade reading level, others are esoteric and uncommon. I believe there is a time and place to use each (some more than others). If this is true, even to the smallest degree - that each has a slightly different intonation in meaning (and thereby increasing the potential for communicative accuracy) then my point's shown. Here we go, I'm am amateur so don't laugh too hard
Let's take a word you've just used: "Regular" in the context of something that reoccurs. I've pulled out synonym and related words courtesy Merriam Websters
. Each of these, within this context, has some overlap in meaning with our word.[INDENT]regular
[/INDENT]Some of these could be used outright and we'd still have a close
match. Others are further out. But your sentence could have virtually any of these words inserted and, with adjustments, change the meaning only slightly; now - and here's the critical point - if such could be done and communicate a slightly-different meaning, then it follows that one would need to understand such words
(i.e., have that vocabulary) in order to communicate subtle differences in meaning.
This, of course, assumes that we equate the ability to communicate in subtleties as important in order to be accurate.
I hope this makes sense. I'm running out of ways to articulate this thought.
Thanks again for engaging