jump to navigation

From See To Shining See May 21, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Home & Garden, Mindfulness, Nature, Word Play.
Tags: , , , , , ,
40 comments

Florida is not all blue skies and palm trees.

2015-01-20 16-36-42_0021

We also enjoy pink spring blossoms.

2015-01-20 16-42-58_0028.ajpg

Framed by palm fronds.

2015-01-20 16-43-45_0030a

And budding families of Sandhill Cranes.

IMGP1186

Brilliant reds dot the landscape.

IMGP2608b

While Great White Egrets patrol for lizards al fresco.

IMGP1648a

Gardens may be a wild riot of competing colors.

IMGP1937b

Or a single shade of shade-loving ground cover.

IMGP2535b

That’s why I keep my eyes open when prowling from see to shining see!

IMGP2532b

Here . . . see for yourself:

Aah . . . that’s better!

Definition of Service April 15, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Humor, Joke, Word Play.
Tags: , , , , ,
47 comments

250px-New_Orleans_City_of_Old_Romance_and_New_Opportunity_Crop_p_23_MoneybagsHave you ever wondered how the Internal Revenue Service got its name?

Doesn’t the word “service” seem at odds with its function?

I’ve never been able to reconcile “taking money” and “raiding piggy banks” with the dictionary definition of “service.”

Until today.

3D-CowWhile waiting in line at the Post Office to pay my taxes, I overheard two farmers talking.

One of them said he had hired a bull to service a few cows.

Now I understand why it’s called the Internal Revenue Service.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Inspiration:  email from unknown author (sent by Joe M.)

BTW:  Ever notice when you put “The” and “IRS” together it spells “Theirs”?

A Quagmire of Obtuse Construction April 9, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Word Play, Writing & Writers.
Tags: , , ,
65 comments

Sometimes wading through the written word is like getting sucked into an imbroglio of briars and quicksand.

Instead of building from Point A to Point B, certain writers circle around the point they are trying to express, using as many ostentatious, esoteric, and cumbersome words as possible.

Cautious readers must wear hip boots or waders to protect against muck, mire, and the occasional thorn. 

When I can’t follow a writer’s line of reasoning on a subject with which I am conversant, I assume the problem lies with the writer and not the reader.  :mrgreen:

Lest you accuse me of hubris, I followed the less than pellucid wanderings, wonderings, mutterings, and meanderings of Kant, Hume, Sartre, Descartes, and Socrates as a Philosophy major in college . . . without major mishap.

In law school, I studied and digested 75 page “briefs” of the United States Supreme Court . . . with only rare indigestion or stomach upset resulting from the effort.

Based on these experiences, it is my reasoned opinion that good writers, even those espousing philosophical musings, manage to convey complex ideology in a straightforward manner without resorting to obscure references and labyrinthine reasoning.

They bring readers into the fold, rather than leaving them out in the cold.

When writers obfuscate, that propensity may stem from a lack of mental clarity or acuity on their part.  Perhaps they haven’t yet grasped what it is they are attempting to say.

Even if that appears the most ostensible or plausible explanation, I try to be charitable and give them the benefit of the doubt.

After all, if we didn’t know what we wanted to say, would we say anything?

In some cases, I suspect that lack of clarity in sentence after ghastly sentence stems from a latent desire to confuse and mislead readers, by throwing them off the scent.

I know that seems counter-intuitive but watching readers scratch their heads or stall in their tracks may provide befuddled or bemused writers with an ego boost derived from delusions of adequacy.

Who knows?

* He who writes carelessly makes first and foremost the confession that he himself does not place any great value on his thoughts. For the enthusiasm which inspires the unflagging endurance necessary for discovering the clearest, most forceful and most attractive form of expressing our thoughts is begotten only by the conviction of their weightiness and truth – just as we employ silver or golden caskets only for sacred things or priceless works of art. ~ Arthur Schopenhauer

* I have made this letter longer, because I have not had the time to make it shorter.  ~ Blaise Pascal

Aah . . . that’s better!

What about you?  Have you ever waded into a writer’s work and become lost in a quagmire of obtuse construction?  What did you do?

Did you beat a hasty retreat or wallow a while longer?

Related post:  Defending the Chamois (Silver in the Barn)

Skeletons In A Cryptic Crypt March 3, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, People, Politics, Word Play.
Tags: , , , , ,
36 comments

180px-Leonardo_Skeleton_1511A quest in the quire for the bones of the squire

A quick question posed to the right quarters

A quizzical quip about the queen’s mingled bedfellows

Is she queen consort . . . or consorting quean?

Inquiring minds want to get to the bottom of this box of bones!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related post:  A Box of Bones (Kate Shrewsday)

London’s history overflows with quires, squires, inquiries, quips, quests, inquests, and queens.  To learn more lore, you might wade into London by Edward Rutherfurd ~ “a glorious pageant spanning two thousand years.”

Not enough time to ingest a thousand pages spanning two thousand years on the Thames?  Swing by L. Marie’s blog for my guest post set in a Scottish pub ~> The Stanton Effect: Building to the Punchline.

7 Pearls of Dubious Pedigree January 27, 2015

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Mindfulness, People, Word Play.
Tags: , , , ,
48 comments

Every so often, I toss flotsam, jetsam, and/or detritus overboard in order to keep synapses firing at optimal efficiency.

Here for your consideration are 7 Pearls of Dubious Pedigree:

Ringling Museum 018c1.  Judgment is discernment.

Judgment gives us the ability to weigh options and choose between competing priorities.  We would be lost without it.

Fundraisers unite
with one common goal ~ to take
your money and run

Even if you give ALL opposing ideas, thoughts, and opinions the benefit of the doubt, that doesn’t mean they possess any inherent validity.

Some ideas are ignorant, idiotic, and/or just plain evil.

Not convinced?  Keep reading . . .

2. Rejecting Social Acceptability.

Next time you’re in a restaurant (or, better still, the bowling alley!), reach over and grab a handful of French fries or a slice of pizza from your neighbors.

See what happens.

Snoopy-and-Schroeder

3.  The Zeitgeist Movement and the Venus Project.

If parents can’t make equitable distributions between 2-3 offspring, how would society do so for everyone?

“How come Mozart got a GRAND PIANO and I just got a stupid harmonica?”

“Be glad it’s not a rock, Charlie Brown.”

3D-Cow4.  Why are carnivores averse to cannibalism?

Why are cows, pigs, chickens, and turkeys gobbled up while horses, dogs, cats, and rodents are shunned by everyone but Andrew Zimmern?

Why are we willing to donate our organs to science . . . but not to someone’s breakfast table?

5.  A “Pay It Forward” Pyramid Scheme.

There’s a Pay It Forward chain letter circulating through cyber space.

When I saw it for the first time, I refrained from leaving a comment on the post because I did NOT want to be selected to win an “unspecified surprise” . . . not if it meant agreeing to add five more people to the chain by offering to send them an unspecified surprise if they would each agree to add five more people to the chain.

Snoopy2

Etc.  Etc.  Etc.  Ad Nauseum.  The whole thing is just too forced and phony.  A pyramid scheme gone awry.

I’m happy to perform “good deeds” and “random acts of kindness” on an ad hoc basis, but I don’t like gifts with strings attached.

And, even if I enjoyed being manipulated via cyber strings, I’m not going to agree to send out 5 surprises in exchange for one surprise I might not even like.

“Be glad it’s not a rock, Charlie Brown.”

When we are mindful, ample opportunities to be kind appear in our In Box every day . . . without the necessity of entering into contrived cyber contracts.

IMGP1368a6. Happiness is ‘eeling.

Laughter each day keeps the doctor away.

He who laughs, lasts. ~ Mary Pettibone Poole

And even if you don’t get better, you’ll feel better.  It’s a win-win for everyone.

Except the doctor.  But ‘eel get over it!

Eek . . . an eel!
Grasping on to my heel!
Whilst wrapped in chain

Oh what a sight
I shudder with fright
But ‘eel steal my pain

All’s well that ends well

The Eel that Time Remembered (Kate Shrewsday)

448px-Alice_05a-1116x14927.  No Fungus, Please.

When I was a kid, I ate a poisonous mushroom in the backyard and had to have my stomach pumped.

It left a bad taste in my mouth.

That’s why I refuse to eat fungus.

If ever I get around to writing a Vegetarian Cookbook, it will NOT include any recipes featuring mushrooms, toadstools, or truffles.

I’ll call it, No Fungus, Please!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related Posts:  13 Pieces of Potpourri * 13 Unpolished Gems . . . One Stone7 More Unpolished Stones

Homemade Cards and FOXY Gifts December 9, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Amazing Animals, Humor, Special Events, Word Play.
Tags: , , , , ,
43 comments

I’m a frugal Scot at heart.

The idea of paying Hallmark $4 (or more) for a piece of card stock with a few uninspired impersonal words printed on it seems the opposite of frugal.

So, time permitting, I flex my creativity chakra and make cards from scratch ~ like this 30th Anniversary Booklet that BFF is holding:

2014-06-16 11-36-59_0004

Decisions . . . Decisions . . .

The booklet goes on for pages and pages about ways to celebrate our 30th ~ including going on a safari to watch a Zebra chasing a Lion:

2014-06-16 11-37-22_0005

“I  K~E~E~E~L~L  You!”

This year, one of our nieces turned 18.  She wants a pet fox “one day.”  We decided to get her something FOXY for her birthday.

Here’s the card I created to go with the present:

2014-11-18 19-57-12_0023

I had no problem finding illustrations for the card.

Who knew that you could find so many FOXY items for sale?  From hats to scarves to mittens to socks!

2014-11-18 19-58-51_0027

From t-shirts to earrings to stuffed animals to night lights.

2014-11-18 19-57-55_0025

That FOXY Night Light gave me a Bright Idea!

2014-11-18 19-58-05_0026

I’m sure you’re wondering what we got her for her birthday.  Here’s a hint:

2014-11-27 13-05-33_0023

And here’s the FOXY reveal:

2014-11-27 13-10-32_0025

Yes . . . it’s a horse.

2014-11-27 13-11-52_0001

But I think it’s FOXY!

Aah . . . that’s better!

An Unlimited Limerick November 12, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Poetry, Word Play, Writing & Writers.
Tags: , , , ,
36 comments

Something about the cadence and rhyme of limericks always teases a smile out of me.

I don’t mind a few made up words that stretch language to its limits.

There’s something fun about limericks
Especially those that boast gimmericks
They make us smile
And ponder awhile
On the sleight of tongue trickericks

Here’s to the liberal literary license of limericks!

After all, where would Dr. Seuss be
If he had limited his vocabulary
To words already written
Would we be as smitten
If it hadn’t called it a Truffula tree?

Aah . . . that’s better!

Do you enjoy limericks?  With sleight of tongue trickericks?  Are you a fan of the bawdier the better rhymes . . . featuring folks from Nantucket?

 

For NaNoWriMo ~ Two Top 7 Lists November 3, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Humor, Word Play, Writing & Writers.
Tags: , , , , ,
36 comments

IMGP4187

Top 7 Reasons Writers Don’t Read More:

7. They are too busy writing, writing, madly writing.

6. Their reading skills are rusty.

5. They are feeding Tweets to Twitter every 5 minutes (WWPD => 2456).

4. They are bleeding from self-inflicted wounds.

3. They’re worn out from inviting Facebook friends to “check it out.”

2. They are lost in a maze of amazing words.

1. They are daydreaming about writing fame and fortune.

150px-Carlo_Crivelli_052

Top 7 Reasons Writers Should Read More:

7. To take a break from writing, writing, madly writing.

6. To improve reading (and editing) skills.

5. To expand vocabulary and explore the amazing world of words.

4. To shift perspective and look through life via another lens.

3. To strengthen writing muscles by hearing other writers’ voices.

2. To imagine giving (and receiving) constructive criticism with panache.

1. Sheer enjoyment and escapism.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Do you read more than you write?  Or write more than you read?

Quaint Colloquialisms November 2, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Gratitude, Humor, Life Balance, Life Lessons, Word Play.
Tags: , , ,
33 comments

Pooh-With-MailbagAs I read through my grandfather’s letters, his occasional turn of phrase made me grin.

For example, instead of calling someone a jerk (or worse), you might point out that they are “trying to be a bit odd” . . .

* 12/4/55 ~ Following his retirement from post office after 30+ years of service, my grandfather shared:

I am having some little fuss over the records but feel it can be cleaned up. Both Tim and Armond are trying to be a bit odd.

I bought a 160# quarter of beef. Have it hanging down stairs. I hope we continue to eat anyway.

As a pragmatist, my grandfather obviously felt that if you didn’t starve, you were doing alright.  Here’s another example along the same lines:

* 1/1/57 ~ “I read The Bible As History and a notorious new book with a local background across the river from White River ~ Peyton Place.  The author’s husband lost his teaching job in a N.H. High School over the book.  He got another job and did not starve.”

Mickey-OK

And he dished up some good dope:

* 9/14/57 ~ “About the weekend of 25-26: I want to give you some dope on that.

* 11/26/61 ~ “So life goes on and it is foolish to brood over the mistakes we made.”

* 9/20/62 ~ “Don’t work too hard. I don’t if I can dodge it.”

He was happy to be needed . . . or not:

* 7/22/66 ~ “Margaret has gone slumming.  An Art Exhibit in Hanover and some shopping.  I did not seem necessary ~ happily.

Aah . . . that’s better!

“It’s Time To Fly!” October 27, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Humor, Poetry, Word Play.
Tags: , , ,
87 comments

IMGP4171

“Tonight’s Halloween.  Let’s have fun.
Mayhem and mischief shall be done!”

Hilda swirled and twirled round the room.
Fireplace sparks pierced the gloom.

“Where’s my broomstick?  It’s time to fly!”
Pumpkin sat mute.  With no reply.

Hilda reached underneath the bed,
but only found a shrunken head.

She opened drawers and closet doors,
accompanied by creaking floors.

Dust rose and fell as Hilda paced.
Pumpkin glared.  Evil grin in place.

IMGP1797b

Cauldron bubbled with purple brew.
“Broomstick. Broomstick. Where are you?”

The clock chimed twelve and Hilda froze,
as one small tear ran down her nose.

* * *

To enter:  Add a Link to the 4th Halloweensie Contest List on Susanna’s Blog

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,371 other followers