Sunday, April 8, 2012


I've spent the weekend in Chicago with my Busty (best + buddy) Amanda (@amandalester), who's not very busty but is hilarious. We were up late at a 90s dance party with her boyf Riley (@riley_bennett), her roommate Emily, Emily's girlf Deanna, Emily's bff Tashia, my friend Brian's brother Keith (@keithhabs) [who is Benjamin Franklin (@gogofrankie) of I Made America (@imadeamerica)], and Keith's girlf Becky. Got it?

Busty and Briley.
Busty's still asleep from this late night of painfully hip things like two-tone Oxford shoes, PBR, and early 90s hip hop BUT WHY WASN'T THERE MORE DESTINY'S CHILD? So I'm taking this time to throw up some wordy things from this weekend in the windy city.

My Daddio called me this morning to say hi because he loves me and because he had a phrase and a word to share. I get a lot of my appreciation for words from my dad. It started with him reading Superfudge aloud to me as a kid, but these days it's Steinbeck excerpts -- usually passages that are so sad they're beautiful. Here's what Dad had for me:
  • "hot day at the zoo" -- Dad suggested this be a band name, but it already is. New England blue grass. He heard it in the context of something stinking like a hot day at the zoo. A very visceral simile. I need a shower.
  • the word "cleave" -- The secret of this word is that it means the opposite of itself; that is, it has two definitions that are antonymous. It can either mean to cling fast to something, like your beliefs -- or to separate from something, or split in two ("cloven").
(Dad calls Busty "Merry Amanda" -- or maybe it's "Mary Amanda", but I'm sure it's not "marry Amanda." I don't know how it started, but he's been calling her that for nigh on fifteen years now. It makes me think of Amanda dressed up like Maid Marian.)

It's Easter weekend, so I've got a neat etymology I learned while writing a horribly, brilliantly blasphemous song. The chorus goes a little something like this:
Jesus, you’re a friend of mine; I like you too much to ever repent of my sins:
as long as they’re mine, you won’t have to pay for them.
Since I’m keeping them, Jesus, just close your eyes and pretend.
As long as we’re here at the bottom, let’s sin.
What I really pat myself on the back for about this song is that it can read two different ways depending on if you think "Jesus" is a vocative or an expletive. Anyway, the great etymology is the word "repent" -- apropos, no? It's from the Latin poenas "pain, punishment" from the Greek poine "blood-money."

Since that's now two things I've mentioned that have two interpretations, I'll take this time to point out some cool ambigrams. Joey loves these. Ambigrams can be the same word that's legible from two different directions, like this:

Or they can be different words
I wanted to be a badass so this second image is rotated with CSS. Sorry, Opera users.

But you should probably check out the Wikipedia article because there are more and they're really cool.

And finally, here's something horrible I saw in Chicago. Happy Easter.

The horriblest thing about this is that to make pretty much any word processor get those opening quotes wrong like that, somebody wrote this then decided to go BACK and INSERT the quotation marks for emphasis. 

1 comment:

  1. Whoa my implied pragmatic relevancy/salience just SKYROCKETED!

    And yes, I do love ambigrams.