Tuesday, November 2, 2010

OK, This One is Just Weird!

So I've been thinking recently about our English language and how weird it is.  What got me started on this was an email from my sister Jackie, who shall remain nameless.  She mentioned in her email placing a "loan" chocolate chip on her peanut butter cookies.  On seeing that, the first thought crossing my tiny little brain was, "What, did she have to borrow the chocolate chips?"  Then thankfully, "Oh, she meant 'lone.'"  It's one of those stupid homophone thingies (I was gonna say homonym, but Wikipedia corrected me) that spell checkers don't catch and even trip up the occasional librarian.

Consider the word quarter.  Imagine you're (Your? Yore?) new to the English language.
"What are these?
"Quartered artichoke hearts."
"Why are they called quartered?"
"Because they are cut into four pieces, quarters."
"Oh, by the way, where will I be staying?"
"You'll be quartered in the enlisted men's barracks."
"Well, I shan't be going there!" (Their?)
So, I was on board this train of thought, thinking about hosting an extravaganza, which got me thinking, "What precisely is a vaganza, and why would having a spare one be a good thing?"

A typographical error on Google later and I was at http://www.venganza.org/.  Not realizing my typo, I drilled in.  Lo (Low?) and behold, there were pictures of people at the Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear.  I've been following the RTRS/F!   It's too incredible to think that this is a coincidence.  It has to be either Intelligent Design or the work of The Flying Spaghetti Monster and His Noodly Appendages.

Navigating various links on the site I arrived at Amazon and "The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster."  This looks good.  The explanation of how gravity works and why people are getting taller is pretty damn amusing.  Personally, I am spagh-nostic, but these pastafarians may be on to something.

But enough about FSM.

Oh, in case anyone is wondering about extravaganza, according to Wikipedia..."The term is derived from the Italian word stravaganza, meaning extravagance."

One last thought.  KVCR was running a story today about the approaching anniversary of the establishment of women's suffrage in California.  It occurred to me, this election day, that the term suffrage makes perfect sense; clearly it derives from "suffering," as in "I have suffraged through a deluge of political advertising."  Fortunately, our suffraging is at an end.  Tomorrow will dawn a new day, the election having passed.


Blogger khanten said...

Reminds me of a post on our sister Jean's (who shall remain nameless) blog in which she said she was trying to be a "roll" model for her students. I pictured her posing as a nice Parker House roll or perhaps a hot cross bun. (Since I'm often hot and cross this would be the perfect roll model for me.) But I shouldn't scoff as I often find myself messing up, particularly in emails, which I frequently don't proof as thoroughly as I might.

November 3, 2010 at 3:29 PM  
Blogger BJackie said...

I'll (isle) have (halve) you (ewe) know (no) I (eye) got those chocolate chips at the Chocolate Chip Lending Library, so (sew) my usage of the loan chocolate chip was correct.

November 4, 2010 at 9:54 AM  
Blogger Hanten said...

I stand corrected. Which sounds like I wear orthopedic shoes.

November 4, 2010 at 8:40 PM  
Blogger Garage Sailing said...

Wow. Now I just want two role up in a corner and dye.

November 5, 2010 at 6:15 PM  

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