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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Oh, Sure, I Hear What You’re Saying, But…

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to Virtual Friday, a day when us 80% workers stand up, confused, enthused, and bemused and wonder what the hell happened to working full time.

Can ya dig it?

O Mighty iPod, Transmitter of Tunes, Partner in Revelry, what’s the haps?

Many Shades of Black by the Raconteurs
Conventional Wisdom by Built to Spill
Sea Lion Woman by Feist
I Want Some More by Dan Auerbach
Pigs in Zen by Jane’s Addiction
I Never Said I Was Deep by Jarvis Cocker
Way Down in the Hole by Tom Waits

Hmmm. Well, there are a lot of bands here with connections to other bands: Raconteurs/White Stripes, Dan Auerbach/The Black Keys, Jarvis Cocker/Pulp…

And are we not all connected, on some level?

I'm Very Deep today.

Years and years ago, when one wore thongs on one’s feet and a hoe was something you found in the garden, Minnesota was a rather homogenic sort of place.

As the old joke goes, we had two kinds of music: Country and Western; or, as is still the case in some areas, was a land where salt and pepper are considered spices.

When I was a child, we weren’t that far from the days when getting an orange in your stocking for Christmas was a delight rather than some sort of joke played on you by a much older relative. Chili powder was almost embarrassingly exciting, Dad brought home a coconut we opened in the driveway with a hammer, and ravioli was a foreign word that may or may not have had something to do with that 30-foot telephone cord you stretched from the kitchen wall to the basement for a little alone time with your “boyfriend”.

We were simple folk.

And now, just about every day, there is a new word, a new meaning for a word. The TV spews slang in its attempt to make you feel that it’s current. Its commercials create non-words to sell products (my son once “febreezed” a room). A continual influx of immigrants ensures that there are new, real words added to daily use, well, daily.

Si, you say, pero

And I say, “Pero what?”

And then you say, I’m not sure we need any more words!

And then I say, in the words of My Father the Smart Ass, what are you, some sort of Communist?!

And then you say, hey! I can get this kind of abuse anywhere! I’m outta here!

The language is changing daily. Googling? Snarky? In 20 years I won’t know what anyone is saying.

The way things are going, it might be a relief.

I’m so stoked I’m LOLing.

25 comments:

darsden said...

LOL okay Pero...lol down here in cajun country that is a boat similar to a canoe :-) Woman you ipod holds music people I have never heard of. LOL Happy Friday Weekend to ya Pearl

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

English is about the only language where you can take a noun and "verbify" it. See, just like that.

The problem being that we inherently understand what is going on when someone either anthropomorphizes a word or verbifys it.

Even worse is making gerundives out of other words in order to help make adjectives.

Pearl said...

dar, a pero is a boat?! On the bus, "pero" is Mexican for "but..." :-)

mjenk, great. Now I have a headache. :-) Anyway, business is the worst for ruining the language. It is, after all, very impactful.

powdergirl said...

Now why you wanna get all 'up in my grill' like that Pearl?
And have you seen the 'grills'? Ugh!
Not only do I hope I don't understand the words in 20 years, I hope also for blindness!
That or I'll just stay drunk : )

Pearl said...

powdergirl, not only will I get up in your grill but I will stand NEXT to your grill when it's time for dinner.

Mmmmmm. Grill.

You can bring the Daquiri Wacker!

Marisa said...

Your description of life when you were younger made me think, "oh, my God...we were raised in the same household and by the same parents, oh but wait, I was raised in a little rinky dink place in Nova Scotia, so small you would miss it if you blinked traveling through... and you grew up in Minnesota...a world apart but not so different.

Douglas said...

The surest sign that Minnesota is no longer the state of your youth (misspent or not) is the presence of Senator Al down there in DC.

Pat said...

I've noticed the "verbifying" thing, too: box - boxed, party - partied, blog - blogged. Nouns evolve into verbs faster than you can blink.

You make me laugh every time I read your blog.

ellen abbott said...

Gotta love a living language!

SparkleFarkle said...

Thought this VIDEO TREAT might be today's perfect fit! (You'll have to scroll down a smitch to get to the clip.) Enjoy!

♥ Braja said...

Look what they've done to my song, ma....

Or now that song would be, "....to my language, ma"

Pearl I don't recognize any of your songs. Ever. Am I the village idiot? Possibly. 9th year in India, who'd recognize any of that?! :))

Tamsin said...

I'm with Marisa on the description of your childhood. Except, of course, to me you were describing Norway in the 1980 :)

Red Squirrel said...

I think we've all become inculcated into expanding our vocabulary to make up for the next generation coming through who seem to know 12 words, of which 11 have had the vowels removed and the other is 'lol'......

mrwriteon said...

You just keep on going -- that was fun. As for the changing lingo, yeah, it will, as it always has, and since I am a traditionalist, it continues to piss me off. And my mother would have slapped me for using the word 'piss' and my dad thought Franco-American spaghetti in the can was pretty exotic.

Eric S. said...

The changing lingo, keeps us all on our toe's. Or perhaps lost in conversion.

Pearl said...

Marisa, the bulk of Minnesota, wedged as it is between North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Iowa, is very rinky-dink (and I just love that phrase by the way! The neighborhood surrounding the University of Minnesota is called Dinky Town!!). Small towns, good people, hard workers, and not much diversity or desire for diversity. Not so different from most of North America (or Scandinavia, where most of MN used to be from…)

Douglas, MN has, from what I can see, always been rather on the workers’ side. For the most part, we don’t care what you do, just for cryin’ out loud don’t be so obvious/vocal/uncouth about it. Inter-racial marriage? We don’t care. Gay Pride? Good for you. All depends on where you go, of course, but most of MN is pretty inclusive.

Pat, I’m glad you come around. :-)

Ellen, I’m torn between loving the changes and wondering why things just can’t stay the same! What bugs me, honestly, is when a word is used incorrectly so often that it loses its original meaning. Like “awesome”. Your date wasn’t awesome. Your vacation isn’t awesome. Your kid’s not awesome. “Awesome” means it was awe-inspiring. The Grand Canyon inspires awe. A cathedral may be awe-inspiring. But see? When you start talking like that? Everyone thinks you’re cranky. And I am not cranky, dammit!!!

Oh, Sparkle, that was really cool!!! Thank you!

Braja, you are probably not the only one not recognizing the bands, but most of them are not old. Jane’s Addiction was early 80s. Tom Waits has been around forever. I just luz me some music – long line of musicians over here, and the little bestids scream in my veins if I don’t continually build on what’s happening!

Tamsin, I thought all the Norwegians moved to Minnesota! :-D Even have a touch of Norwegian myself (Larsen on my mother’s mother’s side). But that’s why Minnesota is so cool – all the lovely Scandinavians!

Red Squirrel, shoot. I never thought of that. Bears closer inspection though, doesn’t it? The phrase that makes me want to tear at them with my nails? “Where you at?”

Mrwriteon, ooh, you said a bad word!
We were not allowed to even say “shut up”, and the word “piss” was so far out there as to shock. We were hardly allowed to say that something “ticked” us off because it was too close to “piss”.
And I feel bad even typing that word. :-D

Eric, I’m not sure what the evolution of the language will do to us, but I’m sure in 20 years I’ll just be scratching my head shouting, “what?! What’s that mean?!?”

Maureen@IslandRoar said...

Ah, those were the days...
Kinda makes me nostalgic for "thee," and "thou."

Pearl said...

Maureen, you just reminded me of a button I had on my jean jacket in the 70s: "Buggeth Off".

:-)

ha ha I was so funny then!!

Sucharita Sarkar said...

You have an influx of new words from the immigrants, we in India have a lot of old-words-used-in-a-new-way by our own folks that completely puzzles us sometimes. That is the fallout of having English as a second language...Jai Ho!

troutay said...

Ah Pearl of Wisdom:

Yep, those oranges filled up the toe of a sock didn't they?
But not all immigrants were scandahovians. Some of us are French
passing through Nova Scotia on our way some place else. And I laugh at the way you all say "bullion" cubes.

I think a pero is a dog isn't it? Or is that perro? I have no clue

Chris@Maugeritaville said...

I'm afraid we're about three generations (at best) from a society where no one speaks . . . they just text in abbreviations.

Reverse evolution, perhaps.

Joanna Jenkins said...

You crack me up every time....

"....30-foot telephone cord you stretched from the kitchen wall to the basement for a little alone time with your “boyfriend”."

And I bet you only had one phone too?

Have a great weekend Pearl!

Kavi said...

And then there is Rap. The first time i heard 'rap' i looked around to figure what mistakes had been committed to get a 'rap' !

Greenfingers said...

I saw Jane’s Addiction in a little bar in London 21 years ago! Showing my age here! And Built To Spill...fantastic!!

mapstew said...

Only one I knew was 'Sea Lion Woman'!

Accidently wiped my iPod today! Of EVERYTHING!

First reaction; Shit!(actually, cocksuckinmotherfuckinhunkoffuckinpussyshit!)

Then; WOW! Whole empty iPod to fill! (Rubs hands together with glee!)

happy weekend. xxx