’22 A To Z Challenge – V

HUSBAND-SPEAK – or – LONG-MARRIED-LANGUAGE
How to say a lot, without saying anything

What do you want for supper?HMmmh?
Archon, I’m talking to you!  Are you paying attention??!Uh-Huh!
Shall I make Mac-and-Cheese?Unh-Unh.
What about liver and onions? –Ggcck!!
How about some potato pancakes?OOOyum!
We got our credit card statement today.  We owe $1200 this month. Oooff!
My sister called.  She’s coming to visit, Sunday. – Tthththbbh.

She says you should get your ass off the couch, and get more exercise. – Humph!

And now, some words about words that aren’t actually words.  They are

VOCABLES

any word, either written or spoken, regarded simply as a sequence of letters or spoken sounds, irrespective of its meaning – like Tabernacle – pronounced Tabber-nack – Which French-Canadians use as profanity.  Or Sapristi – which is used as an expression of surprise, or a meaningless intensifier.

a vocal sound intended to carry meaning;

I know how to keep my mouth shut.  I almost starved to death one time.  Wouldn’t tell my parents that I was hungry.  Never again!!  I better not keep this up, or I’ll end up saying nothing about everything.  The only things quieter would be a nod, or a head-shake, but you’d still hear the marbles rattle, and perhaps a few fall out.

Don’t slip on any when you come back on Wednesday for a bonus comedy post.   😆

O No – O Not

 

Once upon a time, in olden Greece, there lived two little vowels, almost identical twins.

Recently, I was watching videos…. Perhaps on a site I shouldn’t have been at.  😳

Attention!  Your computer has notified us that it has been infected by a very contagious virus.  You have been locked out so that we can contain it.  Please call the toll-free number listed below so that we can erase it and prevent further infection.  Failure to do so can result in a permanent shutdown, and loss of files and data.

Not that I’ve ever received such a notice.  😉

I watched a young man talking about realizing something about these two Greek vowels.  In English, there is only one letter ‘O,’ but it is pronounced in two ways.  There is the long O, like in the word No, and the short O, like in the word Not.

In Greek, there are two Os – Omega, and Omicron.  He had just become conscious of the fact that – the long O, the big O – was Omega, and the short O, the small O – was Omicron.  It’s so blindingly obvious…. after someone points it out to you.

He looked so familiar.  Who was this young man taking so much delight to explain such a minuscule linguistic detail about a foreign language, with such fervor?  My old eyes aren’t what they used to be, but I’m pretty sure it was me.

My next post, on the rapid increase of initialisms, will all be in English, despite the fact that there really is no such language.  FYI, LOL, LMAO, ROFL, FWIW, IDK, LY, TTYL.

First And Ten Fibbing Friday

Here I go with Pensitivity101’s first ten (in the second week) of 2023:

1. Aurora Borealis is also known as

Ashley Carbonera, but only by people who knew her before she became a famous porn star.

  1. Who was Farouk Balsara?

He was a Syrian refugee who sneaked into the UK by floating across the English Channel on a raft he built, using plans he got off the internet from some Colombian who floated into the USA.

  1. Chasing Cars is by which group?

The Stray Dogs, before they changed the name of the group to The Stray Cats.

  1. What is Detritus?

That was Baskin & Robbins 32th flavor of ice cream.

  1. Eggplant is also known as

The colour of Elton John’s favorite pair of shoes.

  1. Who is Filbert Fox?

He is/was the best friend of Gilbert Grape, in the movie adaptation of his life story.

  1. Gentoo is a what?

The family who run my local “Curry In A Hurry” outlet.  😳  I stop there every time after my mandatory sensitivity training sessions.

  1. Rutabaga is also called

A Swede, by many Brits, until Sweden found out about it, and threatened to stop exporting Volvos, Saabs, and replacement mobile phone parts to England, unless it stops.  The Scots also have a derogatory term for Swedes, but no-one can understand what they’re saying, so the Swedes just assume they’re drunk – as usual.

  1. What is IPlayer?

He’s the thoroughly-modern male who relies on his electronics to get lucky in love.  He has swiped right so many times, the notches on his bedpost are threatening to collapse it in mid-tryst.  Ooh, kinky!

  1. Jambo is a greeting in which language?

India Elephant – in African elephant, it’s Tantor.

’22 A To Z Challenge – U

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What word or phrase – beginning with the letter U – will I choose as a theme, this time?

As the singer, Tom Jones says, It’s Not Unusual.  But then, can you really trust a man who was willing to lop off his last name, to take advantage of a movie presentation of an old, smutty novel, to help kick-start his career??  😕

Words in the dictionary, beginning with the letters X, Y, or Z, are not terribly plentiful.  Words beginning with U, seem a bit more abundant – until you realize that most of them are un-something – the negatives of a bunch of positive words.

I am willing – I positively revel – to be G.O.D. – the Grumpy Old Dude blogger, grumbling about this and that.  But I don’t want the entire, overarching theme of my website, to be negative.  I don’t mind bitching about certain foibles of society, but overall, I want it to be

UPBEAT

A musical term which has come to mean; optimistic, cheerful, happy

I am positive that Donald Trump, and many other politicians, are total, and complete ASSHOLES!  Perhaps we should try to choose political leaders who are UN-assholes….  Are there any??!  😳  Maybe we could issue a UKASEedict, order, directive, ruling, decree, fiat, proclamation, that no assholes are allowed.  Now that would be positive!

On my way out, I’d like to introduce you to my new, non-sequitur pet, an

URUBU

A Portuguese, vulture-like turkey buzzard.  Handsome little devil, isn’t he??!  😉

’22 A To Z Challenge – T

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my continuing program of offering as little useful information as possible, I present another little present from my Scottish heritage – not a Tartan, but a

TARTLE

Scottish dialect: a hesitation when introducing someone, because you forgot their name,
What does “pardon my tartle” mean?

From Scottish, it is also; to hesitate in recognizing a person or thing, as happens when you are introduced to someone whose name you cannot recall; so you say, “Pardon my tartle!”  They have you, coming, and going.

If you are wondering – as I do – where I get all this useless minutia, we can blame the wife’s Italian forebears.  The Romans had gods and goddesses for just about everything.  One of their lesser goddesses was

TRIVIA

Two roads diverged in the wood, and I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference.

Trivia
Trivia, the Roman goddess of crossroads and guardian of roads. Her name is derived from the Latin word ‘Trivia’ meaning “three ways” from ‘tri’ meaning three and ‘via’ meaning way or road. In Latin, ‘trivialis’ appertained to the crossroads where three roads met, which came to be known, in towns, as the ‘trivium’, or the public place. As the guardian of roads, she watched over the public paths and roads and protected travelers. She was also recognized in three aspects as part of a triad of goddesses consisting of Trivia, Luna the moon goddess and Diana the goddess of the hunt.

While you rest your probably aching brain, I’ll get a little loony with Diana, and hunt up a theme for Wednesday’s post.

***

Bonus Trivia

Where it says, “all this useless minutia,” above, Grammar Checker wants me to write, “this entire minutia,” which is not the same thing at all.  😛

’22 A To Z Challenge – R

 

 

It’s said that the Inuit have 19 different words for snow.  Not to be outdone, the British have at least that many words for the concept of

RAIN

I use the word ‘rain’, loosely and generically, to depict moisture in the air.  Each word is a hairsbreadth away from its mates, in describing the exact level of cold, damp, and discomfort produced.  Fog can be from light enough to safely land an airplane, to Pea Soup, which is so thick that you can break your nose, walking into a lamppost.

As the water particles become larger, and more likely to descend as precipitation, the British lexicon progresses from fog, to mist, to mizzle, to drizzle, to showers, to rain.  But it doesn’t stop there.  Brits variously describe their rain as, downpour, drencher, soaker, toad-strangler and kerb-cleaner.

Not to be left out, the Scottish language has generously donated the word

RAWKY

which means foggy, misty, cold and dreary.  If you’ve watched the James Bond movie Skyfall, when he retreats to his family’s Scottish estate, you’ll have caught a glimpse of it.  During this past summer, the BBC, and the police, received a spate of panicked calls from concerned citizens who had witnessed a strange glowing orb in the sky, and feared they were being invaded by space aliens.  They were reassured when told that it was merely the sun.  It does come out and shine – occasionally.

***

Any too-brief post about R, can only benefit from the inclusion of a reference to my Mountain Ash-tree strong GREAT-grandson

ROWEN

He, and his wardrobe of knitted clothes, and his vocabulary, and his curiosity, are all growing by leaps and bounds.  Like many other young lads, he appears to have only two settings, a squirrel-on-meth, Nature’s version of a perpetual-motion machine, and, like a switch was thrown, a somnolence, a catalepsy so swift, that he can fall asleep while putting food in his mouth – at which point, at least one grateful parent often joins him in a brief nap.

Tune in again in a couple of days for Smitty’s Bible-Study seminar.  Remember to bring your King James Version, and fasten your seatbelt.  👿

Lies My Grammar Checker Told Me

The guy who programmed my Word program Grammar Checker, must have been on some wild, non-prescription medication.  If I paid any attention to it, I’d probably end up the same way.  The suggestions – corrections – range from highly disappointing, to Oh F**k No!  I finally decided to keep a list.  Here are a few, with my corrections of Word’s ‘corrections.’

Let’s start with ‘guy’ above, which it insists on adding a comma after, sectioning my independent clause into a smaller, subordinate one.  Now it’s spotted the word ‘guy,’ and wants me to change ‘which’ to ‘whom.’

Archon: God is perfectly loving.
Word: God perfectly loves.
This changes my passive adjective into an active verb.  What He is, is not necessarily what He’s currently doing.  Now it wants me to remove the comma after the first ‘is.’  If I do that, it will want me to remove the duplicated word.

Archon: I’m okay.
Word: I is okay.
Well, I’m not okay with that verb form.

Archon: I only did one sit up
Word: I only did one sits up
I know!  It’s my fault.  I should have put a dash between sit and up.

Archon: I need another drink
Word: I needs another drink
Now I need two drinks.  Oh look, it’s changed its mind.  Oh damn, you can’t see.

Archon: the asshole who screwed you
Word: the asshole that screwed you
No, no!  If we’re going that way, it was a penis that screwed you.

Archon: Sorry man, it’s trick or treat
Word: Sorry man, its trick or treat
That one is subtle, but it burns my ass.

Archon: row, row, row your boat
Word: row, row, and row your boat
Row, row, row your silly recommendations away from me.

Archon: people always seem to know it
Word:  people always seems to know it
It doesn’t seem to know how many, the word “people,” represents.

Archon: letting myself go
Word: letting me go
I do myself.  Everybody else does me.  There’s a rule there that I can’t remember – something about reflexive.

Archon: will never see the light of day
Word: will never sees the light of day
Poor Will, his eyesight is lousy.

Archon: Just to clear things up
Word: Just too clear things up
That is too much to accept.  Dear Lord!  Now it wants to capitalize ‘Too.’

Archon: mattresses aren’t on sale
Word: mattresses isn’t on sale
Unless “Mattresses” is a book or movie, I aren’t accepting that construction

Archon: Turns out I just have kids
Word: Turns out me just have kids
Turns out me don’t trust Grammar-Check

Archon: a chocolate box, and a chocolate Lab, are
Word: a chocolate box, and a chocolate Lab, is a
One plus one equals a plural verb

Archon: it means to lift or raise
Word: it means to lift or rise
Active vs. passive – It raises a question of who writes better English.

Archon – 14 <-> Word – 0  The deterioration of English language usage is not circular.  It is a continuing, downward spiral.  ‘We’ become wrong because we listen to supposed experts, and the supposed experts are wrong because they listen to, and read, our current usage.   👿

’22 A To Z Challenge – M

 

 

 

 

 

 

Forgotten Words – Forgotten Attitudes

What do we want?

GOOD MANNERS

When do we want them?

Right now!

Are we likely to get them??!

F*&@ no!

In a world where the words we use, and our attitudes, are supposedly of utmost importance, words are regularly passing out of use from the English language.  We become dumbed down intellectually, ethically, and spiritually. Here are a few words which have been forgotten, though they were in regular use just a few decades ago. Interestingly, they’re all related in meaning:

Modesty

Humility

Courtesy

Honesty

“I pray thee then, write me as someone who loves his fellow man.”  (Abou ben Adhem)

Donald Trump is gone, although, if he can evade the FBI on his magpie collection of classified documents, he’s threatening to return in 2024.  While he facilitated much of the above, and vindicated it to a too-large swath of the American population, he was not the cause of it.  He was merely a visible symptom of the cultural rot.

As ye sow, so shall ye reap.

Be nice to each other out there.  Okay?  The life you save may be your own.

Thus endeth the reading of the first lesson.  More of the usual drivel soon.

International Fibbing Friday

Since pensitivity101’s security clearance is higher that Top Secret, she was recently asked to be a charlady at an International Committee Conference on Averting Needless Travel Expenses from Unnecessary Conferences, held in beautiful Blechly-on-Stench.  She came out of the men’s washroom with a double-handful of foreign words that she invites us to fib about.  Since they’re politicians’ words, and already coated with lies, no-one may notice.

  1. What is an abbozzo?

This is a term that I learned from my bent-nose, ex-co-worker, Melvin Goombah.  It is the giant hug I give someone when they buy me a calzone.  I could show you a sketch that a street artist did of me embracing someone who did.

  1. What does it mean to absquatulate?

I don’t know, but I’m getting my ass out of here as soon as possible, before anyone discovers that my vocabulary is not as broad as I claim it is – and I’m takin’ the petty cash with me for travel expenses.
3.  What is a biggin?

She’s probably not talking about my well-endowed uncle, Ivor Biggin.  I’ll have to put on my thinking cap about this one.  It might even be a benefit to take a short nap.  I’ll probably sleep like a baby after I have a hot toddy.
4.  What is a daedalist?

I am soooo… glad that it has nothing to do with the Catholic Church pedophile scandal.  That’s about diddleists.  He’s a competitor in the Tour d’Estonia bicycle race.  It doesn’t get the interest and coverage that the Tour de France does.  Estonia being much smaller than France, the entire race is usually over in less than 47 minutes.
5.  What is gamophobia?

It is a fear of romantic involvement or marriage.  I thought I had it once, but my girlfriend assured me I didn’t, and that we were getting married.  And I wasn’t even pregnant!!?
6.  What is a holm?

Holm is the Swedish name for a string of hospices where aging actors and actresses live at the end of their careers and their lives.  For extra humidity, to help moisten their lungs, they are often built down on river flats.  Both Celeste Holm, and Sir Ian Holm have stayed at one.
7.  What is jettatura?

Obnoxious words and phrases evolve to hide their objectionable backgrounds.  In the US, nigger became Negro, and then Black, Colored, and finally, African-American.  So too, has Monied Society become the Idle Rich, Glitterati, and the Jet Set, and, at last, Jettatura, a Portuguese term that hides the fact that they’re still lighting $100 cigars with $100 bills, and carrying Gucci purses and Hérmes scarves worth an average family’s annual income.
8.  What is a keffel?

The things I learn at my Eurofood store!!  While they concentrate on European comestibles, they told me that a keffel is a type of Nigerian pancake, made with flour from ground-up crickets.  It is best, served with poinsettia-jelly.
9.  What is meant by labtebricole?

To B, or not to B??  Turns out that it’s not two Bs.  Someone was a tad generous with the consonants.  The word is preferably spelled LATEBRICOLE.  That’s something that I discovered when I emerged from my hermit cave – my Osama bin Laden spider-hole – to get good enough Wi-Fi reception to research it.
10. What is a lacuna?

Apparently, there’s a hole – a gap – in my language knowledge, as big as the one in Terry Thomas’ teeth.

’22 A To Z Challenge – H

 

Benny Hill!  Benny Hill!  Benny Hill!

What can you say about Benny Hill?

He was a mediocre actor, a funny TV comic, and a brilliant writer and comedian.  To be the writer and comedian, he was also a brilliant linguist, sometimes making puns and jokes in two and three languages.

He got “Son of a bitch!” past the BBC censors by claiming that a French skit character spoke of, ‘Ze sun, over ze beach.’

He talked about having a bent wood chair in his dressing room.  Not a Bentwood Chair – but a bent wood chair, because his dressing room was in the damp, BBC basement.

With the moving of a couple of letters on a sign, he turned
Dr. Johnson
the
rapist

Into

Dr. Johnson
therapist

Not only was he familiar with French and German, but quite knowledgeable about regional British accents, where, if you travelled 50 miles, the common folk could not be understood, and bread rolls had changed names.  Sometimes he used words and phrases that those born on this side of the pond didn’t recognize.

Once, he wrote a bit, making fun of a commercial from Cheer detergent, which had just begun selling in the UK.  We’ll take two dress shirts, and pour blackberry juice on both of them.  Then we’ll wash one of them in Applaud detergent, (So no-one could accuse him of making fun of Cheer) and the other one in Ben’s Cleanso.  Flash out – flash in.  And there you see it friends (Both shirts still badly stained)  Not a haip o’ the difference.

HAIP

haip = “wattle, sheaf or heap of straw etc.”
(Therefore – something small, or inconsequential)
And you thought that the word for H was going to be Benny HILL.

I took its meaning from context, but I had to wait for Al Gore to invent the Internet, and then wait some more until stable genius (Like Mr. Ed), Donald Trump perfected it, to meet its parents online.  I still haven’t, really.  I finally found one word-site which gave the definition, but only said that it was British dialect, and very rare.  It did not say what area dialect, although I suspect Northumbria/Yorkshire – up north, away from London and the universities, where the poor folk live.  If this word were coined in the US, it would be from Appalachia.

Helpful fellow-blogger and word-nerd Daniel Digby, just introduced me to wordhistories.net, a Frenchman living in Lancashire, who blogs about etymology.  At first I shook my head about a Frenchie in England but it makes as much sense as a Quebecois in Ontario.  It’s 300 miles from London to Paris, and 300 miles from Toronto to Montreal.  Perhaps he’s more successful wrestling search engines than I am.  When I get back from Merriam-Webster on Wednesday, we can have a few laughs.   😆