In Which We Hear More Bad Words

3 May 2003

Happy my Mom's birthday, everybody! Happy birthday, Mom!

Yesterday I got the sanest and most sensible librarian in Alameda County (or at least in the Alameda County Library system), and she immediately believed me that I had turned the book in, or at least believed me enough that she's having them do a search for it, with the first assumption being that they screwed up, not me. So hooray for her. I still might have to pay for a book I didn't lose, but it's a better start than I expected. I checked out three books (my hold and two new arrivals) and will see how it goes from there.

I went on to Trader Joe's, where I told the staff person why I was shopping for a care package and asked for suggestions. He immediately froze up, but a nice middle-aged woman in a tracksuit helped me out and was really nice about it, matter-of-fact and non-gushing. Whew. Off to Hallmark and its included post orifice, then home to read and work. I really liked John Crowley's The Translator -- the foreignness of the early 1960s fascinated me. The heroine (and this is revealed in the first chapter, so I'm not spoiling anything) gets pregnant at the end of high school, and it once again hit me how different things were. My parents would have been shocked and devastated if I'd gotten pregnant in high school, but the options would have been totally, totally different. I think my mom isn't entirely okay with the idea of me being pregnant in a city away from her even now that I'm a married adult. I think she'd be happier if she could just Be There. (Of course, you could probably say the same for a non-pregnant state. But anyway.)

And that reminds me: I think it's time for some more bad words! This latest wave came to my notice when some people I love used the first one: "preggers!" You're allowed to be preggers if you want to, and if you're physically able. Go right on ahead. Me, I will eventually, some day, be pregnant. Not preggers. "Preggers" is a "woodgy-woodgy" word, and while you are allowed to make woodgy-woodgy noises at the end result of my future pregnancy, I will not be a cutesy-wootsy woodgy-woodgy pregnant woman. At all. Ever.

(Incidentally, why are all the aunt cards for Mother's Day about how sweet and gentle one's aunt is? None of the pack of aunties is sweet and gentle. Nary a one. Some of them are good people, but this is not at all the same thing. How come they don't have any "Auntie, you kick ass" cards, or "For an Aunt who Doesn't Take Crap" cards? Those are the cards I'd buy. Instead, I search vainly for cards that don't refer to gentle softness or how an aunt is halfway like a mother and halfway like a sister, because a great-aunt is pretty much nothing like a mother or a sister, and that's what I've got. Well, I've got two aunts and an aunt-in-law, but they are utterly unlike mothers and sisters as well, and I don't tend to send them cards for Mother's Day.)

So, right. Preggers. Anybody using that word on a future condition of mine will have it repeated back to them in the Gollum voice. It's actually a pretty good Gollum-word. I wonder how many of my least favorite words make good Gollum words. I guess "nihility" just ruined that theory: it's not even good in a Gollum voice. Just an overall sucky word. (But it makes the C.J. laugh at me, so I suppose it could be worse.)

I don't like a lot of phrases related to pregnancy, really: "a bun in the oven." I assure you if I have a bun in the oven, it will contain rosemary, raisins, cinnamon, or some pleasant spice, and will involve the actual oven. "The oven" is not an anatomical part of mine. "In the family way." There are lots of family ways. Communicating entirely in punch-lines is a family way. Being ready to make the bibble-bibble-bibble lip noise over the antics of a pack of aunties is a family way. Not specific enough. And, oh, I will never, ever, "pop out a kid." It is not a watermelon seed. It is unlikely to just suddenly go flying across the room, pop! Oh, there it goes! Heehee, just popped out a kid, guess I'll go do a triathlon now! Pop! Just no.

And in related terminology, I really, really hate the phrase "get it on." I'm sure there are phrases less likely to make me want to get it on than "get it on," but it's pretty far up there on my "no" list. Just, no.

I also still hate the esses. Authoress and poetess, still. And for heaven's sake, Jewess. That's the worst of the esses, I think. Nobody has to be a Christianess or a Muslimess or a Hindess. (Hinduess? Sounds like a forced Hindu, but that would be Hinduress.) Yuck. Also chanteuse. And fashionista. Chanteuse and fashionista alert me that I will be annoyed, either by the person under discussion or by the person discussing them in the first place. Also foodie. Too close to footie, as in footie pajamas. I'd imagine foodie pajamas would be somewhat loose and easy to get stains out of, but that's not really the point.

Also uxorious. I just don't like that one. Actually, the "ux" sound is no good for me. Luxurious isn't on my hated list, but it still sounds smarmy to me. Even ducks. If I liked ducks, I'd be bothered by the ux in them.

I think that's enough bad words for now, though. For good words, I've been enjoying a bit of Edna St. Vincent Millay here and here, inspired by a reference in The Translator. I'd like to have a "complete works" or even a smaller volume or two. (I'd also like to have more bookshelves so that our poetry section can go on a shelf instead of in high stacks on the top of one of the shelves. Soon.) I've also started reading Simon Garfield's Mauve, about 19th century industrial chemistry. Decent stuff so far. I woke up thinking my sore throat had gone, but that was an overestimate. Still, it's better.

I'm going to work on an essay and on the Not The Moose, and then in the mid-afternoon we'll pick up Amber and go to meet Mark's co-worker Michael and his girlfriend to see the new X-Men movie. Then Zachary's pizza. Then Amber has been hinting she knows we enjoy Mondo Gelato, and as long as we're up there...well. We'll see. In the meantime, the list has not gotten much shorter lately, so I should try to catch up with some of it. Have a good Saturday.

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