Did we use "go ahead and…" as much before Office Space?

Usually when a movie makes fun of a particular turn of phrase, you expect non-self-aware, non-jokey usage of that phrase to go down while jokey, deliberate usage rises. But in my completely unscientific survey of business conversations conducted by me in the years since I first saw Office Space, I'm pretty sure our collective use of "Go ahead and…" to signify a gentle imperative has actually increased. Hunh.

Read and post comments |
Send to a friend

QotD: I'm reading (or about to read)…

What books are on your nightstand?

Would you like a particular book to appear on my nightstand? I'm currently accepting nominations.

Read and post comments |
Send to a friend

Healthy Boy Brand Has A Posse.

Look for the picture of the baby on the label, they said. This is the best, they said. It's the invincible sauce.

They were right. I'd had sweet chilli sauce on fried chicken before, but da'a'a'amn. Frankly, if there's a way to defeat it, I'm not seeing it.

I know the purists will quibble — "you're a yankee" and "why do I need sawce on mah fried chicken?" Well I didn't say you did, friend. Give it a try. It ain't no thing. Let the baby improve your chicken. Look at how it clutches the bottle like a cherished security blanket. How are you going to argue with a sauce called "invincible"?

Oh it's not wrong. It could be more right, but it's not wrong.

Read and post comments |
Send to a friend

A Cautionary Tale Regarding Over-vigorous Bed Making

After reading an article favorited by Gregg about how to keep a cleaner house, I decided to turn over a new leaf and make my bed every morning starting this past Monday.

Monday and Tuesday's bedmaking went off without a hitch. No hospital corners as of yet, just a bed made well enough to lend an air of respectability for the throngs of pedestrian traffic that pass through my bedroom daily. Why am I doing this again?

But this morning, I found out there is such a thing as too much enthusiasm when making a bed. When I snapped the sheet in the air to get rid of the wrinkles and folds, it caught in the ceiling fan and freaked the living hell out of me for a few desperate moments. Fortunately, the laws of physics came through for me and I was neither chopped up into cuts of meat nor wrapped around the fan's central axis like Bugs Bunny.

Read and post comments |
Send to a friend

My Favorite Rappers Are Older Than I Thought.

Look at this birthday list from OhWord.com:

Jay-Z – Dec 4 1969 (frontin ass 60's baby)

Marley Marl – Sep 30 1962
Rza Jul 5, 1969
Gza August 22, 1966
LL cool J Jan 14, 1968
Kool G Rap Jul 20, 1968
Big Daddy Kane Sep 10, 1968
Rakim Jan 28, 1968
DMC – May 31, 1964
Run – 60's baby
Prince Paul – Apr 2, 1967
Raekwon – Jan 12, 1968
Posdnous – Aug 17, 1969
Trugoy/Dave – Sep 21, 1968
Erick Sermon – Nov 25, 1968
Chuck D – Aug 1, 1960 (DAMN NEAR A 50's BABY)
Flava Flav – March 16, 1959 (ACTUAL 50's Baby)
DJ Muggs – Jan 28, 1968
Dr Dre – Feb 18, 1965
Ice Cube – Jun 15, 1969
Ice T – Feb 16, 1958 (ACTUAL 50's BABY)
Biz Markie – Apr 8, 1964
MCA – Aug 5, 1964
Mike D – 60's baby
Ad Rock – 60's baby
KRS-ONE – Aug 20, 1965
Freddy Foxxx – 1969
DJ Premier – March 21, 1966
Guru – July 17, 1966
Nate Dogg – August 19, 1969
Kool Keith – 60's baby

Read and post comments |
Send to a friend

QotD: Teacher's Pet

What was (or is) your favorite subject in school?

I love(d) studying dead languages. I really got in to Sanskrit. There are great teachers, great learning materials, and teaching methods that have been time-tested for hundreds of years. In other subjects I always hated memorization. But when I started studying forms and declension tables I came to appreciate its role in learning, and how a set of knowledge can quickly move from memorized but not functional, to practical and useful. It's torture while you're memorizing it, but once you have it in your brain it's not very hard to make it into something you use without thinking.

I also love the mnemonic devices. They teach little kids nursery rhymes that are actually coded grammar rules. You learn a few silly little nonsense phrases as a child, and then many years later someone points out to you that those phrases contains all of the important grammar, spelling, and pronounciation rules. How cool is that.

There's a thrill to decoding an ancient text and really understanding how the words work together at a deep level, even if it's something zillions of people have translated before you. I never got the same thrill solving a calculus problem, though I know some people do.

The same did not hold true for living languages — I studied Italian for quite a long time and it never really got its hooks in to me. I did it, and I liked it, but I didn't pour myself into it like I did Sanskrit and Tibetan. It didn't reach the right part of my brain or something.

Read and post comments |
Send to a friend