Lessons Learned

*sigh* Signed up for a writer’s email list in order to get a free “prequel” to a giveaway novel. That’s two freebies–coulda been pretty sweet, but. . . Read the prequel. *meh* So-so. Too many places where it was skimmed by incompetent (or no) editing, after having been written by a Dunning-Kruger-ite who thought he knew what too many words meant that he did NOT know the meanings of (well, either that or he was just intentionally writing gibberish in those places).

Got my first list emails. Yeh, incompetent writer goes on and on about how he’s trying to “change the world” with books that “mean something” (whatever THAT means). Yeh, didn’t read the freebie novel. The freebie novella was enough to convince me, but a fiction writer who isn’t FIRST concerned with being a good storyteller and writer is only, at best, going to change the world for the worse if his writing succeeds at anything at all.

Takeaway: sometimes “freebies” are more costly than they at first seem. I’ll never have back the time I spent on the novella or reading two of this writer’s emails.

Shoulda known, though. He refers to himself as “Author [So-and-so]”–an almost sure sign of an unconscious insecurity (based on REAL incompetence) covered over with a casually assumed expression of self-importance.

Law Enfarcement in America’s Third World County™

Just another *cough* typical *cough* interaction with putative “law enforcement” in America’s Third World County™. . .

[Phone rings]

Me: Hello.
Caller: This is [some redneck] with the [Third World County™] Sheriff’s Department. What can I do for you?
Me: You called _me_. What do you want?
Caller: Dispatch gave me your name and number and told me you requested a call.
Me: What name?
Caller: Junior [Redacted].
Me: Junior [Redacted] lives two miles from me. What number did dispatch give you?
Caller: [recites my landline number]
Me: That’s not Junior [Redacted]’s number.
Caller: Sorry.
Me: *click*

I should have asked if dispatched was referring to Junior [Redacted] or Junior [Redacted] Junior, his son, although they live (lived? Is Junior [Redacted] still among the “quick”?) in “manufactured homes” catty-cornered from each other. . . (and Junior [Redacted] Junior now runs the family business).

Dangerous to Whom?

The Puffington Host touts the bill referenced in the linked article as “The Most Dangerous Bill You’ve Never Heard Of.” Dangerous to whom? Certainly not to citizens who are concerned about the tsunami of “feddle gummint” encroachment on their rights. Hmmm, must be dangerous to statists and other anacho-tyrannists. . .

This bill is barely a start on reversing the illegitimate encroachment on God-given rights that darned near the whole apparatus of the “feddle gummint bureaucrappy” has become.

*meh* What Do I Know, Anyway?

Confession: I saw “It’s a Wonderful Life” once, when I was 18. Didn’t like it. I found it to be too artificially manipulative and full of stereotypes. The plot was also dissatisfying.

It’s a lousy Christmas movie.

*shrugs* What do I know, anyway. . .

Med Services as an Example of What Is Wrong With Society

After my Wonder Woman’s recent adventures in things medical, where every person asked the same questions over and over, in order to fill out yet another form (when multiple times the same questions had been asked, answered and entered into electronic databases), I am thinking of having a “medalert tag” made that says something on the order of,

“No known allergies to any medications. Severely allergic to being asked the same questions over and over. Will charge $100 for each time the same question is asked when it has been previously answered.”

I understand the “cover your ass” aspect of our current med system, brought on by stupid legal practices that are counterproductive for everyone but lawyers, and by (mostly) “feddle gummint bureaucrappic” interference in medical services, but really? Assholes asking the same question that has been asked by someone else and answered IN THEIR PRESENCE?

OK, maybe I can abate my charges a bit and only charge $50 for every 15 minutes of bullshit. *heh*

Pop Culture Is “Misunderedumacated”

Two simple examples:

Geographical “illiteracy”: time after time on “remodeling” or “house flip” shows, folks referring to a peninsula as an “island.” Sometimes, folks’ll refer to the same feature as both. Folks who have no concept of the difference between a peninsula and an island are illiterate.

N.B. “Material literacy“. . . ain’t. Literacy, that is. Having common, ordinary, everyday words in one’s (written or verbal) vocabulary and not knowing what those words mean? Yeh, “misunderedumacated.”

Here’s another very simple example, though just one of many in the long, long list of words people use without even knowing what they are saying: lay vs. lie:

“Lay” takes a direct object: one lays down a book. “Lie” takes a subject: I lie down on the sofa.

The (simple) past tense of “lay” is “laid.” The (simple) past tense of “lie” is “lay” or when “lie” is used in the sense of “wittingly utter a falsehood” the (simple) past tense is “lied.” At least the past participles are easier: lay?[has/had/have] laid; lie?[has/had/have] lain; lie (utter falsehood)?[has/had/have] lied. *heh*

Ain’t English fun?

If you ever have trouble remembering which to use–lay or lie–just remember: Bob Dylan got it wrong. “Lay, lady, lay, lay across my big brass bed. . . ” would have had red pencil through each of the “lays” had he submitted it in an English class. . . if the teacher had been literate, that is. 😉

BTW, the “subject/object” issue raises its ugly head all over the place, but it’s especially glaring when people use the first person personal pronoun,”I,” in an objective position, when “me” is called for.

It’s just people who aren’t really literate showing their “misunderedumacation.”

It’s the Little Things #3,485,326

I had to chuckle. While listening to a rendition of “Mitt hjerte alltid vanker” (a yootoob low quality recording, but still beautiful), I read a few of the comments. First one commented that “Norwegian is such a majestic language.”

OK, a wee tad amusing by itself, but the song was in. . . Danish. Close (very close), but no cigar. Amusing.

The Joys of Good Grammar

The joys of good grammar include clearer communication, but also include the “joy” of sometimes making an otherwise enjoyable set of lyrics grating to the ear. *heh* For example, John Jacob Niles should be retroactively slapped upside the head for,

I wonder as I wander out under the sky,
How Jesus the Savior did come for to die.
For poor on’ry people like you and like I…
I wonder as I wander out under the sky.

No, “like you and like I” has the pronouns in the objective case position, not subjective case. The often made lame excuse of adding a mental “are” is no better than correcting it to “like you and like me.” In fact, it’s worse, apart from “like you and like me” ruining Niles’s rhyme scheme.

It’s unfortunate that Niles died in 1980, because he really deserves a dope slap for this abomination. I’d offer remediation for this stanza, but then I’d have to fix the rhyme schemes of the other two verses to match, and I’m not quite sure it’d be worth the effort. Of course, that would afford the opportunity to fix the really awkward last line in the second stanza. . .

Nah. I’ll just pass on the whole thing.

As Seen on Farcebook

Seen on FarceBook: “bordum.” No, cupcake, for you that’s “bore-dumb.” For everyone else, it’s “boredom.” *sigh*