Monthly Archives: May 2006

Never a word of English

    Puppy love, which can lead to a dog’s life, struck me in my early 20s when I became enchanted by a midwestern woman with whom I had much in common: we both thought she was great (but I suspect she loved herself more — than I loved her.)
    Though the courtship ended, on mutual terms, with no yelping or growling, spending time with a big-city girl was educational, and it created a host of experiences which I likely would never have pursued on my own.
    It was in 1962, when a weekly paycheck of $90 was enough to raise a family. Credit cards were unheard of, except for specific department stores such as Sears and Wards.

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Courtroom drama is addictive

    Growing up in the early days of television, when “Perry Mason” was king, I became addicted to courtroom activity.
    For those under 50, let me explain that Perry Mason, played by Raymond Burr, was a weekly hour-long television serial in which Mason, a defense attorney, never lost a case. So convincing, so theatrical were his closing arguments that often someone in the audience would shout, “I can’t take it anymore. I did it. I killed him and his body’s decomposing in my locker.”

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Light lighthouse keeper needed

    One thing that was common, though unpleasant, in elementary school was being thought of as a wise-guy. But for a while, I had that reputation at Immaculate Conception School when Sister Aggravnia prepped us second-graders on words and their opposites.
    When it was my turn, and the nun asked for the opposite of “light,” I answered “heavy,” only to be razzed by my classmates for not having said “dark.” But why wasn’t my answer just as germane as the others?

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Let’s take a stab at it

    “Never do I ever want to hear another word. (There isn’t one I haven’t heard.”)
    Eliza Doolittle, the heroine of Lerner and Loewe’s “My Fair Lady,” which came from “Pygmalion,” by George Bernard Shaw, said/sang that pronouncement when being courted by Freddie Eynsford-Hill, at a time when Eliza wanted action, not words.
    To boast, honestly, that you’ve already heard all the English words would be quite a feat, even a hundred years ago, when “Pygmalion” was written.

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