I have chronic bad news fatigue. How about you?
Maybe this will help.
See you on the other side, hopefully with a bit more bounce in your step and a smile on your face!
It’s time again for more wack-a-doodle news from your
ace cub second-hand reporter.
Okay, so here is the latest crop of Portlandia-ish news items I thought you might find Outlandia-ish.
I hope you enjoyed another installment of Outlandia News brought to you by your
only favorite dizzy blonde reporter-ish.
Editor’s Note: The story I ran in the last edition about the Poop App was, unfortunately, a hoax. A cruel, cruel, hoax. No Pooper-Uber, People. You have to self-scoop…for now.
This is my 600th post. I should be celebrating with a vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free cake, but that would be sheer lunacy.
I should be celebrating with them while eating a vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free cake. (Booze makes all cakes taste divine.)
I could joke about my prolific obscurity all day, but I have more pressing issues to contend with.
The Big Butinski has been on my mind ever since I had a recent conversation with my mother.
What the heck am I talking about?
I know you’re asking because:
The Big Butinski isn’t an incredibly pushy person; it’s a pathetically small, ubiquitous word (most commonly used as a conjunction) with the power to ruin marriages, collapse financial deals, and wreak havoc with one’s diet plans. It’s the word I cleverly highlighted in orange. It’s the word, “but.”
Here’s what you should know before you hear the conversation with my mom.
Okay. I called her. and here is how the conversation went (sort of):
Me: One ringie dingie. Two ringie dingies. Three ringie dingies.
Mom: (With the hesitation of someone reluctantly opening the door to encyclopedia/vacuum/computer virus salesperson) Hell…o?
Me: Hi, Mom! It’s me! How are things?
Mom: Oh. Lorna. Hi. Good. I guess.
Me: What’s the matter, Mom? Is everything all right?
Mom: Yes. Fine. I’d love to talk, but I’m in the middle of doing dishes. Can you call me back?
Me: (Pausing…making “Oh no, she just didn’t” face…recovering*) Sure. Sorry. I’ll call in an hour or so. Love you!
Mom: Make it an hour and a half, okay? Love you, too. Click.
*This is not the first time the dishes have won out over me when I’ve called her. Also, the last time I flew home, I had to wait a whole day to see my mom because she was taking a bath and had a salad to make for a family get-together my sister had planned. As I said, she has her routines.
I wasn’t upset. Indeed, I chuckled.
Then I got to thinking: “I’d love to talk, but…” If she really meant what she said before the “but,” everything after the “but” would never have come out of her mouth. This suggested an informal linguistic rule—another cultural verbal “tic”—that now sticks in my lexiconic craw:
Some examples may help:
Like in every aspect of the English language, there are exceptions to every rule. “Buts” don’t always negate what precede them. But, the rule holds in enough cases for you to be aware of it.
I thought that alerting you to an annoyance in our language might be fitting since my blogging career started with such a big bang 600 posts ago with a little ditty called “To be Honest With You.” It, too, dealt with a lexiconical bugaboo of mine. It was my first post, and it was Freshly Pressed. The only one that ever got that recognition. And I was so new to blogging that I thought that WordPress was just welcoming me into the fold!