Friday, November 29, 2013

The New Miss Malaprop III

It is never too soon for another New Miss Malaprop post (previous ones, definitely worth reading, posted on 4/26/07 and 6/1/12). These are the golden words of my immortal beloved, who frequently dazzles me with gem after gem. I do my best to copy them down as close as I can to the original words we both said. That isn't always easy, and might not be 100% accurate, but it is close enough.

I do realize that telling these may make me seem mean to some, or perhaps a pompous old geezer, but her tendency to malapropisms is really my favorite thing about her. We do have our tussles, but not about things like this. Of course, she thinks it's hysterical when I can't do a simple mechanical thing. Of course, she doesn't think it's funny when I forget . . . almost everything or can't fix anything (although I'm good at breaking most anything). Anyway, she only reads my blog in the hopes I mention her, so . . .

die mirabilis

Einstein had his annus mirabilis - year of miracles, when he wrote and published four ground breaking papers, including the most famous one on relativity (ironically, not the one for which he later won the Nobel Prize). The New Miss Malaprop recently had a die mirabilis - day of miracles, when we were visiting NYC and she spontaneously came out with these beauts.

We are in the car driving to New York City and she feels she has scored a point:

M[alaprop] : Really blew you out of the window that time.
D[avid]: Water.
M: What water?
D: The expression is "blew you out of the water," not "window."
M: Paper can blow out a window.
D: Uuuuh. . . yeah. That's still not the expression.

For some reason, she rarely seems to get that I am kidding around no matter how ridiculous the things that I say are. We've been doing it for 23 years. Sometimes, she concludes that I'm just an idiot to believe what I say. Next, we are still in the car and that commercial for 1-800 Cars for Kids with its unmistakable and catchy theme song comes on the radio. I can't help myself:

D: I don't understand this song.
M: It's about selling your car and donating it to kids.
D: Those aren't good lyrics. Who is it by?
M: You know, at some things you are very smart, but about things like this you are really stupid. It's a commercial.
D: Really? That can't be right.

Vocabulary is not her strong point. A little later, we wind up behind a vehicle with consular plates:

M: That must be a conciet?
D: What's a conciet?
M: Like in a hotel. The person who gets you things.
D: Oy.

We park the car and are walking near the Henry Hudson Parkway. Seeing a sign for it she says:

M: That's the Henry Hudson Parkway.
D: Do you know who he was?
M: Probably some guy from the Civil War.
D: Yes, that's exactly who he was. [obviously smirking]
M: Then he's probably some guy who died on that road and they named it after him.
D: Right. And then they named the river after the street, I guess.
M: Oh, right, the Hudson River. I guess I don't know who he was.
D: Do you want to know?
M: No, I really don't care.
D: Imagine my surprise.
A little while later we were taking a walk in Riverside Park. A couple passes going the other way speaking a foreign language:
M: Did you hear that? They are non-speaking English people.
D: I think you mean non-English speaking people.
M: Yes, non-Speaking English people.
D: No.  Non-English speaking people.
M: I know. That's what you just said.

After lunch, we are taking a leisurely walk back towards the car. We are at 101st St. heading towards 88th St.

D: Hmmm. I wonder how many blocks we have to go?
M: Probably about 20.
D: How do you manage?
M: Well, we are at 101st and we are going to 88th, so about 27.
D: You really can't do math, can you?
M: Not under pressure.
D: Oh, you are definitely under a lot of pressure.

At other times when I'm kidding, she realizes it, but it just makes her mad. I understand that even less than her not knowing I'm kidding. Nevertheless, at the end of the day, driving home while still in Manhattan, we pass a guy hailing a cab:

D: See, I told you people are signaling me.  That guy on the corner just waved at me.
M: What guy?
D: That guy on the corner there. See him waving his arm and looking down the road.
M: [Sneering] Please. He's not waving at you.

[A little later]

D: See, now that guy is signaling me?
M: Who?
D: That guy. He's standing by the curb holding his finger up. The one the cab just pulled up to.
M: [Angrily] I think you know perfectly well what that is. You just like to pretend.
D: [Sheepishly] No I don't.

The best of the rest

That was quite a day. The rest of these were made at other times. But, still funny. Like Gomez Addams, I love it when she speaks French.

M: Oh, well. C'est la vie.
D: Do you know what "c'est la vie" means?
M: [Cockily] Au revoir. Good bye.
D: Uh huh.

This next one is now one of my all time favorites. I was watching a football game on tv soon after the World Series ended, when: 

M: So, Boston lost?
D: No, Boston won.
M: So, why are you watching this?
D: What?
M: If there aren't any more games until the World Series?
D: What are you talking about? The series is over. Boston won.
M: You know, at the end of the year when they play the World Series and everyone watches it together.
D: Oh my God. How is it possible you know less about sports than anyone in the world? This is football. The Super Bowl is the last game of the season. It has nothing to do with the World Series. That's baseball. They're entirely different sports.
M: [Silence]
D: You're really embarrassed, aren't you?
M: Yeah.

In this next one she may have actually invented something when she saw my hair standing on end from static electricity:
M: You get all peacocked out.

Speaking of birds, one day while we were walking some geese were flying overhead, honking:

M: Listen - they're flying east.
D: (smiling at her)
M: West?
D: (Still smiling)
M: South?
And, last, showing off her knowledge of automobiles:
It was her Cadillac converter.

Of geography:

I love Baltimore. It’s a great state.
Where was it? London? England? One of those two places.

Of politics:

I'm voting for McRomney.

Of restaurant criticism:

They are really bobulated. (If you are having trouble there, she meant discom. . .)

Of philosophy - Don't ask me how this one came up. It's a long story]

A gym locker is the same as a house because they both have keys.

D: Sometimes your ethics amaze me.
M: I don't like all your ethnics either.

Of astronomy:

The moon just stands there but the sun goes round and round.

Of relationships - discussing a friend whose girlfriend thinks he is wonderful:

D: You never really thought that I was wonderful the way some women feel about their men.
M:  I don't think you are horrible.
D: Really? Can you put that on my tombstone? "He wasn't horrible."

Of popular sayings:

Don't pull my wool.

And lest you think these are dated in any way, let me just add one from last night. It is appropriate it happened on Thanksgiving, as I give thanks for these brilliant little malapropisms all the time.

It was further and morther.



  1. She is a treasure trove!!

  2. Yes, she is that. Priceless.


Your comments are welcome.

About Me

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I started this blog in September, 2006. Mostly, it is where I can talk about things that interest me, which I otherwise don't get to do all that much, about some remarkable people who should not be forgotten, philosophy and theories (like Don Foster's on who wrote A Visit From St. Nicholas and my own on whether Santa is mostly derived from a Norse god) and analysis of issues that concern me. Often it is about books. I try to quote accurately and to say when I am paraphrasing (more and more). Sometimes I blow the first name of even very famous people, often entertainers. I'm much better at history, but once in a while I see I have written something I later learned was not true. Sometimes I fix them, sometimes not. My worst mistake was writing that Beethoven went blind, when he actually went deaf. Feel free to point out an error. I either leave in the mistake, or, if I clean it up, the comment pointing it out. From time to time I do clean up grammar in old posts as, over time I have become more conventional in my grammar, and I very often write these when I am falling asleep and just make dumb mistakes. It be nice to have an editor, but . . . .