Dulce, utile, et decorum est pro patria scribere
Use Your Library
One of the ways to use your local public library is to get them to buy books you want to read. Most libraries accept suggestions for purchases, whether via online form or in-person paper form. I recently suggested that the Cincinnati library purchase the new book by our friend and reader Dave deBronkart, Laugh, Sing, and Eat Like a Pig, based on the blog he wrote during his year-long bout with cancer. If and when the library buys the book, they’ll notify me. You might do the same at your library, and ask anything else you want to read.
Post-Christian, Post-Literate World
Heard on TV news:
There was a bomb threat at Lourdes on the Feast of the Consumption.
I’m no expert on the church calendar and I did look this up: there is a Feast of the Assumption, but not the consumption. Maybe the news reader was thinking someone went to Lourdes to be healed of tuberculosis?
Cheers mailman Cliff Clavin said:
Every day I have to trade wits with the Flanagan’s dog.
We may match wits (compete) with a dog, but even Cliffie didn’t trade his wits with a dog.
Another One for the -Ages
Kathy Robinson-Taylor (find her Beason News column at the Hur Herald) added this to the –age list: tunage, meaning music, not fish.
By the way, Dave DaBee wrote:
I assert that suckupage is suck-u-paj, and he meant suckuppage.
Hmm. OK. Maybe.
On a radio cooking program:
Yellow or white onions are meant to be cooked with, they’re not made to be eaten raw.
Unless you’re talking about hybrids, you can’t really talk about what vegetables are meant for. We may prefer to cook with the stronger tasting white and yellow onions, and perhaps the milder red onions and Vidalias were hybridized. But once you start talking about what onions are meant or made for, you’re getting close to saying God created them for a particular purpose. Could be true, but you might as well say a pig’s ribs are meant to be barbecued. I think they are, but the pig doesn’t, and who knows about the Creator?
Ever wish you could unsend a hasty e-mail? It’s sort of possible. There are two ways. If you use Outlook Express, all sent mail goes to a holding file called Sent and you have to go through another operation to actually send it.
Gmail now has a beta function that gives you a tiny window of opportunity to unsend mail, but you have to be quick, there are only a few seconds between hitting the send button and the actual transmission. In Gmail, go to Settings at the top right corner of the page. Go to Labs. Look through their list of new features in beta (experimental) stage and enable Undo Send. Then when you send a message, a yellow box appears briefly above the mail where you can click Unsend. Of course I usually think of unsending something about 24 hours too late.
More in Sorrow
This may be the first time I’ve ever disagreed with the righteous Anne deBronkart. In the last PO I wrote:
Remember Dave’s book, Laugh, Sing, and Eat Like a Pig: Fred wondered if the last comma in that series affects the meaning, that is, does the comma make it mean, or not mean, laugh like a pig, sing like a pig, and eat like a pig. In this case, I happen to know that Dave sings in barbershop quartets so he doesn’t sing like a pig, and doesn’t laugh like a pig. Eating like a pig remains.
This seems like an "argument" that cannot be won. Obviously, as what you might call a traditionally-trained punctuater (read "old fashioned" - a fine drink, by the way), I'm in the minority here with my adherence to the comma after the last item in a series. F'rinstance:
Laugh, Sing and Eat Like a Pig = Laugh however you want, but Sing and Eat like a pig? Whereas Laugh, Sing, and Eat Like a Pig = Laugh (like a hyena, if you wish), Sing (like a nightingale, if you can), and Eat like a pig ...
All due respect to Fred, but I think the last comma makes a difference BECAUSE the Laugh and Sing then are freestanding, so to speak, not included even by implication in the "like a pig" phrase... I also enjoy Old Fashioneds, which bartenders don't know how to make these days, so I may well be out of luck in both the punctuation and drink categories. More's the pity…
Maybe the argument cannot be won but it can be continued. I think it's possible to attach one modifier to a string -- you can do it in the front ("She wore a blue dress, hat, and shoes") so why not in the back (“like a pig”)? I never heard a rule about having to repeat a modifier for every element. However, if you don’t repeat it, the meaning may be ambiguous.
Let’s all hoist an old-fashioned* on this one anyway.
* Bourbon, bitters, splash of water, sugar, maraschino cherry, orange wedge. Sounds good to me.
This and Thatage
Mike Sykes sent a bit of this and thatage:
· On disgruntled: I've certainly heard of someone being in need of regruntling, though not often.
· And I've certainly heard of someone being considered not very couth.
· We used to cross to France on a cross-flannel cherry.
· I'd never heard of “dilemna” either, until just last week, when I read:
(World Wide Words is always good.)
· On mixed singles and doubles: I've seen it said by someone I respect that "they", "their" will soon follow "thou", "thine" in being acceptable as a neutral singular as well as plural.
The Loser Letters
Mary Eberstadt wrote a book called The Loser Letters satirizing recent vehement anti-God ‘n’ religion books by Hitchens, Dawkins, and the rest. Someone on the side I learned that enthusiastic atheists have a web site for Brights, as they call themselves, people who believe in what they call natural but not in what they call supernatural. Pretty much saying I’m smart and you’re dumb, nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah. Wouldn’t you feel a bit embarrassed to form a club and call yourself the Brights or the Good Lookings or the Superiors? Anyway, if you register on the web site you can call yourself a Bright too. Meanwhile, you may be a Dim.
The Weekly Gizzard: Moi on Examiner.com
August 26, 2010
Jennifer Rubin reported in the August 23, 2010 Weekly Standard that the Justice Department has launched an attack on the elections board of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, because its Puerto Rican population supposedly requires ballots in Spanish. …
August 21, 2010
The was crushed when the World Trade Towers fell on 9/11. For various reasons the small church. Meanwhile, a big mosque is planned …
Buy Sonny Robertson’s intro biography on CD, When Sonny Gets Blue, at CafePress. (Note that if the text on the spine is misaligned, it’s the fault of CafePress, not me.) Also, four of his early pre-blues R&B dance songs are now on YouTube. Search for Sonny Robertson + The Tabs.
I’m publishing for the Kindle digital reader with Amazon and on Lulu.com for download to computer and for printing. Amazon now has a downloadable Kindle reader so you don’t have to spend hundreds on the little handheld device. Most of these titles are available in both locations. Search for Rhonda Keith on Amazon.com Kindle store and Lulu.com.
The Man from Scratch is about cloning, escort services, murder, and restaurants in
A Walk Around Stonehaven is a travel article on my trip to
The Wish Book is fantasy-suspense-romance featuring the old Sears Roebuck catalogues. Novella.
Carl Kriegbaum Sleeps with the Corn is about a young gambler who finds himself upright in a cornfield in
Still Ridge is about a young woman who moves from
Whither Spooning? asks whether synchronized spooning can be admitted to the 2010 Winter Olympics. Humorous sports article.
Blood, Sweat, Tears, and Cats: One woman's tale of menopause, in which I learn that the body is predictive; I perceive that I am like my cat; and I find love. Autobiographical essay.
Parvum Opus Volume I. The first year (December 2002 through 2003). You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll get PO’ed. Collection of columns.
NEW PRODUCTS in CafePress:
Scot Tartans: T-shirts and more (custom orders available).
T-Shirts & mug: FRESH PICT, with two ancient Pictish designs
BUMPER STICKER: FRESH PICT, white on blue, with 10th Century Pict-Scot Merman Cross (blue on white also available)
SIGG WATER BOTTLE, ORGANIC T-SHIRTS IN GREAT COLORS, MINI-CAMERAS, DENIM SHIRTS, MUGS, TOTE BAGS, MOUSE PAD, TEDDY BEAR, AND MUCH MORE AT Parvum Opus CafePress shop: (NOTE: There are problems viewing this site with Firefox but Earthlink seems OK.)
NEW: Click to Embiggen boxer shorts
Eschew Obfuscation bumper sticker
FRESH PICT items
Graphic covers of my books
Dulce, Utile, et Decorum (Sweet, Useful, and Proper), title of new collection of Parvum Opus, Volume I
BUMPER STICKER: Dulce, Utile, et Decorum
No Pain, No Pain
Star o’ the Bar
Veritas Vincit (Truth Conquers) with Keith clan Catti insignia
Flash in the Pants
If you're so smart why aren't you me?
PWE (Protestant Work Ethic)
I am here maternity tops
I eat dead things (doggy shirt, pet dishes, and BBQ apron)
If you don’t see exactly what you want — a particular design or text on a particular item — let me know and I’ll customize products for you.
Trivium pursuit ~ rhetoric, grammar, and logic, or reading, writing, and reckoning: Parvum Opus discusses language, education, journalism, culture, and more. Parvum Opus by Rhonda Keith is a publication of KeithOps / Opus Publishing Services. Editorial input provided by Fred Stephens. Rhonda Keith is a long-time writer, editor, and English teacher. Feel free to e-mail me with comments or queries. The
Translate into 12 languages, including two forms of Chinese, using Babelfish.
Or click on underlined book links.
Parvum Opus now appears at http://cafelit.blogspot.com/. It is also carried by the Hur Herald, a web newspaper from
WHEN SONNY GETS BLUE! At last, the first installment of Sonny’s biography is out on CD, When Sonny Gets Blue at CafePress.com/sonnyrobertson. Check out the video and music clips of great blues man Sonny Robertson and the
PEACE MISSION INDIA blogs the progress of Pastor Roy Jacob’s mission to build churches in India. Now 79, Pastor Roy (who is an Indian) has built 10 churches, and has a girls’ school to rescue girls from the mountains and jungles who otherwise might be married off as children or perhaps sold.
SEARCH IT OUT ON AMAZON : "It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter." Proverbs 25:2;
"Get wisdom! Even if it costs you everything, get understanding!" Proverbs 4:7:
The poet Muriel Rukeyser said the universe is not composed of atoms, but stories. The physicist Werner Heisenberg said the universe is not made of matter, but music.