Friday, August 22, 2008

Stupid, stupid, stupid

Those people who write things like “He shouldn’t of done that” when they mean “He shouldn’t HAVE done that”, just how thick are they? Do they really not notice that the sentence “He should (or shouldn't) of done that” makes NO SENSE WHATSOEVER?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Have you noticed?

You can smile, laugh, snort, snore, cry, talk, cough, sniffle and smack your lips (and more) while you’re asleep… but you’ve GOT to be awake to sneeze.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Way to go, Enid!

How about that! Enid Blyton voted best loved author in an adult poll – and if I’d had a say, that’s where my vote would have gone, much as I love Roald Dahl and Stephen King and Bill Bryson too. (Beatrix Potter, on the other hand, would not have been considered for a spot in the Top Ten.)

Enid Blyton was one of my favourite authors as a kid – hell, I’m only minimally embarrassed to say that I read her fairy stories and all her school stories even now. St Clare’s, Malory Towers, The Naughtiest Girl series… all still firm favourites with me. For some reason, I outgrew the Famous Five a long while back (basically when I began to find Julian an annoying too-big-for-his-boots teenager rather than an ideal older brother!) and I never did like The Secret Seven at all, not even as a young ‘un.

I’ve always thought it a shame that recent reprints of her books are “cleaned up” for her modern, supposedly more politically correct readership. It’s stupid to call her racist and old-fashioned and sexist because she was only reflecting her times. Are they going to sanitise ALL books from previous, less politically-correct eras? It would not only be impossible, it would be impossibly stupid to even try. All you would need, if you were an anal policy implementer who follows the letter of the law and not its spirit, is a foreword to explain that certain terms/attitudes that appear in the books are not polite or tolerated usage now, but are left in for authenticity!

Anyway, three cheers for Enid Blyton. Long may her stories live!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Sunday Scribblings - "Observations"

In general:

- It rains mostly after I finish watering my plants. If I wait for any looming rainclouds to release their load, to save me having to bother with the watering, the clouds will hold off or disappear altogether until I give in and water the damn plants. THEN the clouds reappear - and it pours down like there’s no tomorrow.

- I respond to the melody of most songs, rather than the lyrics – a trait for which I’m eternally grateful because it enables me to:

1. be fond of some Hindi and Tamil movie songs which otherwise I would have to ignore for their banality and/or disgusting suggestiveness;
2. enjoy folk songs and music in general from around the world even if I’ve no idea what the songs are about.

- It’s a bad idea to wait for any machine to do its thing quickly, especially if you’re in a hurry for the output. Even worse to hover by its side, thereby confirming to the machine that you're in a hurry. (The colour copier at work takes forever to calibrate itself JUST when I urgently require multiple copies of a report. The thicker the report to be copied, the longer it takes to start up. Ditto with the electric glue binder contraption – the amount of time it takes to heat up when you’re by its side is practically infinite. But if you switch it on and go away, it not only heats up quickly, it also cools down as quickly and then shuts itself off, leaving you back at Square One.)

- Male celebrity hairdressers who appear in TV ads for hair care products usually sport greasy, lank hair – quite unlike that of their “clients”.

- Anyone in senior management who laughs all the time - especially at inappropriate moments - when speaking to you, is not to be trusted.

- Chefs who dismiss vegetarians and vegetarian food are arrogant idiots who don't deserve their title.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Berry amusing

Overheard at work recently:

Somewhat irate caller to my boss : Why haven’t you responded to my email and phone calls?
Boss, just as irate : I’ve left only about three bloody messages on your answerphone over the last couple of days.
Caller (a bit deflated) : Oh. Really? Odd, I didn’t get them.
Boss (triumphantly) : Well, obviously your bloody strawberry is no bloody good then, is it?

*sound of muffled giggles from my corner*

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Dear Chinese Government...

If the need to be seen as perfect is so imperative, so overwhelmingly important that you have to partly fake your opening ceremony fireworks videos, fill seats in your stadium with battalions of fake supporters, even go to the extent of having a little girl sing live from backstage while a supposedly prettier little girl lip-syncs on TV, shouldn’t you at least ensure that your fa├žade is perfect, that the news of such pathetic cover-ups and fill-ins doesn’t get out and mar the supposed perfection of your pollution-free city, your desirably wonderful country, your sartorially impeccable citizens, your admirable ethics, and everything else?

Sorry to say, Number-One Chinese Government, that your efforts are like a bad combover on a vain, balding man - he may think that he has fooled everyone into believing he has a perfect, full head of hair, but everybody can see right through the pathetic little deception...

Combovers tend to be less than aesthetically pleasing, and their motive a whole lot less than admirable.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Sunday Scribblings - "Ask"

Questions to ask when you’re bored:

- Why do the numbers on telephone pads read from left to right, in increasing order, but those on calculators from right to left, in decreasing order?

- Does the word “thesaurus” have synonyms?

- Allah's male devotees are promised a heaven full of young virgins to dally with after they die; what happens to good Muslim women, where do they go and do they have a say in whom they get to dally with? Is there a selection of virgin Muslim men available for them?

- And if the virgins in Allah's heaven got there by virtue of their virginity, wouldn’t it be a fall from grace for them to be deflowered by recently arrived martyrs?

- When Muslim women are prohibited from sleeping with strange men on earth, why is it ok for them to do so in Allah's heaven?

- Why does Sir Paul McCartney have a Liverpudlian accent when he speaks but not when he sings?

- If you only use a towel to dry off after a shower, why would you ever need to wash it, since presumably you’ll be clean when you do use it?

- Can you be totally partial?

- How come the Nazis didn’t ever question the fact that Hitler, who said all good Aryans were blonde and blue-eyed, was himself brown-eyed and black-haired?

- Why is there a difference between assassination and murder when in both cases people do not die voluntarily?

- Why are lazy people called couch potatoes? Why not couch parsnips? Or couch carrots, or some other kind of root vegetable?

- Is there a difference between a bra and a bikini top?

- Can you arrest 7 for cannibalism because 7 ate 9?

- Why is laughter “canned” and not “bottled”?

- Why?

- Why me?

- Why not?

Right behind you, lady, and cheering you on

We mustn't give in to those who can't spell.
Just because students can't spell ‘their' and ‘truly' doesn't mean we should accept variations that break all our useful rules

and this comment (in response to the article linked above), cracked me up. It also made sense. I'm SURE I could do "variant mathematics"... :)

"What next? 'Variant' mathematics? One plus one equals three? How about we train a whole generation of engineers or surveyors who can't add up and live with the consequences? Why bother with spelling at all? Anyone for random letters? Ridiculous."
MJ, London.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Tch tch, the standard of editing nowadays...

Seen in an article in The Telegraph online:

"The need to buy ever more powerful computer hardware soon outstripped the founders' credit cards and they sort (sic) backing from outside investors."

That's "sought", dear Telegraph sub-editor. Sought. Past tense of "seek". Sought and sort sound the same, but mean different things. In short, they're homonyms. (Do look that up in a dictionary, because really that doesnt have anything to do with anybody being gay.)

Sunday Scribblings - "Do I have to?"

My life – and I suspect others' lives as well – has been pretty much a continuous litany of “Do I have to?” uttered in tones ranging from whiny to desperate to resigned. Some samples:

“Do I have to?” – age 9, when told by my dad to join in the party games and leave behind the birthday boy’s collection of comics in which I was engrossed.

“Do I have to?” – age 11, when told to get out of bed because I’d be late for school otherwise.

“Do I have to?” – age 13, when asked to babysit a bratty younger cousin who interfered most annoyingly in the games of us older ones

“Do I have to?” – age 15, when told that we had to go to the temple on a festival day (in my defence, it was horribly hot and the temple would be jam-packed with devotees)

“Do I have to?” – age 17, ordered by my grandmother to get betel leaves from the corner paan shop. (To be fair, the prefix “why” was attached to the question that time, followed by “Why cant someone else do it?”)

“Do I have to?” – age 19, to my mother, at family weddings where I was supposed to mingle with strange relatives who apparently ALL knew about me (and knew ALL about me) and whose only question would be “Do you remember who I am?”

“Do I have to?” – age 22, asked to be home by 10pm from an outing with friends.

“Do I have to?” – ages 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, anytime I was told that I was supposed to meet a prospective “groom”.

“Do I have to?” – age 30 onwards, faced with having to pay bills.

“Do I have to?” – dated today, when posed with the prompt on Sunday Scribblings.
Oh... I dont?
Ok then, I’ll get to it straight away.

And thus this prompt has the honour of being the one to be taken up the most promptly of them all. Because I didnt have to. :)