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09/13/2005: "All quiet on the western front (except for the voices in my head)"

Not much going on, countdown to tenure file due date (Thursday) lots of procrastination, reading of blogs, munching of cheesy poofs, and the laying on of the couch...earlier tonight I wrote about fashion wigs and worry over gobs of my hair falling out but then I thought...(though I didn't actually "voice" these words out loud to anyone) "just shut the hell up if you don't have anything meaningful to say"...but then I thought, "shit, if I followed that advice I'd have to quit blogging full stop." but then after that I thought "if you think to yourself in double quotes is that as bad as talking to yourself?"

Speaking of which, is it just me or does anyone else ever accidentally refer to themselves in the plural? (And if you're in an annoying coupleage that doesn't count!)

For example:

Friend 1: I don't like it when Karen ambushes me in the break room.
Me: Yah, we hate that too.
Friend 1: We?
Me: Uh, yah...erm..Eileen and I were just talking about that...Eileen, you know, from accounting.


Friend 2: It really annoys me when DJs talk over the endings of songs on the radio.
Me: That doesn't annoy us as much as most of the music they play.
Friend 2: Us?
Me: Uh, yah...erm..Eileen and I were just talking about that...Eileen, you know, from accounting.

I don't know why I do that sometimes. I don't actually think of myself in the "Queen's We" or the "We are Legion" sense, it just comes out every once in awhile and then I panic and overcompensate. So many scenarios end with me panicking and this post for example.

I should have listened to that first voice.

Replies: 33 Comments

on Tuesday, September 13th, mick said

Just wondering - Is it rude to partake in someone elses blog when you dont have one of your own ? -it seems a bit like reading someones diary they have left open on a desk...

If so then I must confess to have enjoyed the photos of Juneau and to have also paid brief visits to Holly and Anns pages. we think you are all a bit crazy but fairly harmless :hehe:

Mad Mick on the Moor

on Tuesday, September 13th, Kasia said

Hey, don't worry. It harmless. I sometimes refer to myself as a little girl. And I talk to my dog like he is my son! In public! It's so funny how people stare!!!:)

on Tuesday, September 13th, greg said

Elise - well at least you dont yet refer to yourself in the 3rd person: "Elise thinks that ...", "Elise doesn't agree, and Elise is getting angry!", etc. :D
yes, still fairly harmless!

Good point Mick. I've wondered the same, but if someone leaves their diary out & open, you know they are just dying for someone to read it! :P

on Tuesday, September 13th, Elise said

Your dog is much cuter than most people's kids Kasia so people are probably staring because you're both so adorable!

and, Elise's question for Greg and Mad Mick on the Moor is...why don't you both have blogs? They're free and only take a second to sign up for and obviously having something to say isn't a requirement.

But having a blog is absolutely not a requirement for reading them! Greg's right in that if Elise put something out on the web she wants people to read it and comment on it, it would have been easy enough for Elise to make her blog "private" only for people she knows or to make it so people couldn't leave comments, but Elise thinks that would take all the fun out of it.

BTW, Elise has decided to just keep saying "Is it normal to..." and then write progressively weirder and weirder things just to see at what point people will not comment any more or will say "I think Elise needs to seek professional help".

on Tuesday, September 13th, mick said

I see that we are now referring to ourselves in the third person again again. Is this a sign of a spilt personality ??

I have signed up for a blog of my own and will share it when it has something on it.

BTW I have now concluded that I am comparatively sane.

on Tuesday, September 13th, Kasia said

One of the most important reasons why I love your blog is that it's sooooo funny. You write about serious stuff, too but everything is "filtered" through your exremely intelligent and wise "self".
You can write and say whatever you want - I am still going to read everything!!! Think of a book!Like a novel or some short stories!(and illustrate it with your incredible pictures) ;)

on Tuesday, September 13th, Elise said

You realize Mick that the third person bit was in reference to what Greg wrote...right? Right?

Anyway, if my only purpose in life is to make others feel more secure in their own mental health then I have been useful for something.

BTW Kasia, thanks for all the kind words. I think that blogs are so great because we humans are all scattered about the globe and yet we can peek into each others private lives and maybe realize that we are not all that different from each other?

Or, maybe we recognize the differences but like each other anyway?

on Tuesday, September 13th, mick said

I was only teasing - OK?? But I must agree that the concept of chatting with people in different parts of the World is just so fantastic.

Prejudice is so often born out of not knowing people from different countries or cultures and I would like to think that the internet has made it so much easier to communicate with people you would never meet otherwise.

When I get my blog up and running I will happily share not just my life but also the culture of this quirky little corner of the UK.

A great big thankyou to you and all your friends for sharing your World with me.

on Tuesday, September 13th, holly said

Not tenure! It burns us, Precious! We don't want nasty tenure!

(Yes we do. GOOD LUCK!!! Fingers crossed for you!)

on Tuesday, September 13th, Joan said

years ago, brother Ron, used to refer to "us." when asked who us was, he went with, "me and my feet." that has been a family or at least sibling joke for a long time. BTW - I still use it. I hereby bequoth the claim to you, Elise....if it helps at all.

on Tuesday, September 13th, Elise said


Yes Holly, I wish I didn't need the Precious...but without it I'll be cast unceremoniously out of the halls of academia and into the burning fires of Mount Doom. (you were making a LOTR ref there right? or am I a total dweeb?)

And Joan, you are refering to your actual brother Ron, am I right? I was trying for the longest time to remember a "Brother Ron" at St. Mary's.
How is brother Ron and his feet these days BTW?

on Tuesday, September 13th, holly said

We not only made an LOTR reference, but we made one in the singular plural!

on Tuesday, September 13th, Elise said

Ah, quite right, Bravo!
youes guys are quite clever (why isn't their a plural for "you"?)

on Tuesday, September 13th, ann said

If you grew up in the South (as I did), you'd know that the plural of you is "ya'll".... and the plural of ya'll is "all ya'll."

Ya'll have a great day :)

on Tuesday, September 13th, ann said

If you grew up in the South (as I did), you'd know that the plural of you is "ya'll".... and the plural of ya'll is "all ya'll."

Ya'll have a great day :)

on Wednesday, September 14th, holly said

In Redneckville, USA (like the South, but without manners or culture), whence I hail, it's "y'uns". I prefer the Chicagoese toughster version "youse" (or is that "yooz"?).

on Wednesday, September 14th, Elise said

"youse" is what I was trying to spell with "youes" I'm a bad speller, even of hybrid English...and I thought it was used by toughsters in NYC and New Jersey (outside Manhattan)...

Anyway, I found this cool dialect map of american English:

Though they mention Alaska and Hawaii, they aren't shown on the map (as usual)...I've lived in both states so this has been bothering me a long time.

I started a group once called "Alaskan for National Weather Map Recognition" or NAMBLA.

on Wednesday, September 14th, holly said

LOL! Are you sure you've got your acronym right?!?! I've always thought NAMBLA was something else entirely!!!! (Not even gonna link to it. No way).

I took some linguistics courses as an undergrad-- really enjoy the course on regional linguistics. But it's strange how so many of the studies of dialect throw out terms as "common for this region" that natives have never heard. The link you provide offers the alternate form of "doughnut" in my region as "friedcake". I'm sorry. WTF is a friedcake? I think that even predates my granny! Somebody lied to these people! Similarly, when I was growing up, we had teeter-totters, not see-saws, but evidently teeter-totter is a Hudson Valleyism that made its way over here.

Sorry, I get all geeked out over linguistics. Oh, and I had a friend in high school whose family had come to Indiana from Chicago-- granny dated Al Capone in the '20s and hung with the underground crowd. The whole lot of 'em said "youse", no kidding. "Youse girls are gonna have trouble wearing dem short skirts! Youse mark my words!" I always thing of Chicago gangster speak-- of course it an east coast thing, too.

And have you ever met a true Southerner who puts groceries in a poke? I've always thought that was some kind of linguistic urban legend.

OK. I'll go get my own blog now...

on Wednesday, September 14th, Elise said

Obviously you aren't a fan of Jon Stewart's fake news program "The Daily Show" (best thing on TV) Any time they mention an organization, they say "or NAMBLA...

For example:
In a statment made today by "People for the American Way of Life" or "NAMBLA" gays are destroying the fabric of our nation.

"Concerned Women for America", or NAMBLA recently denounced all working women as destroying the fabric of our nation.

you get the idea. I *do* know what NAMBLA stands for...ew!

And I'm equally geeky when it comes to linguistics. I'm a big fan of Noam Chomsky's work in that area...I also thought WTF when I read what my region where I was born (11) supposedly calls doughnuts: belly sinkers, doorknobs, dunkers, and fatcakes.

Exqueese me? We call them, get this....DOUGHNUTS!

on Wednesday, September 14th, mick said

Hi Folks - just finished work and popped in for a quick browse - its been a real frick getting onto the computer tonight cuz its gone squat.

I thought I would just share our local village website for your amusement. It is www. I really hope you can find it !!!
As linguistics fans you may be interested to know that Cornwall or Kernow has its own celtic language.

Will catch up with u dreckly Proper Job


on Wednesday, September 14th,">Jackie said

E: I've been enjoying your discussion about colloquialisms. I am also a language 'geek' - tho I don't usually use that term. Alaskans have plenty of their own words for stuff. We call it 'pop', Easterners call it 'soda'. Hmmm...well, that's all I can think of.

Mick - I believe that your region has its own language. I have to look up every other word in the dictionary that you write in your comments. Not really - I've watched a lot of British movies and 'telly' shows. Anyone else watch "Sexy Beast"? Could you understand half of what happened in that movie? It wasn't so much the language barrier - just hard to figure.
anyway - enough of my ramblings. I'll just go back to talking to my Precious!

on Wednesday, September 14th, Elise Tomlinson said

Fun website Mick, I want to warn people though, if you are wearing headphones and have the volumn turned *way* up (I'm monitoring a virtual reference service, people come in with reference questions from all over the world, someone just wanted me to help them with their math homework!)

Anyway, I have to wear headphones with the volumn cranked up so I can here the tone signaling a patron is online, and when I went to your villiage's website, they have this VERY HIGH PITCHED audio of birds singing. Suffice it to say my ear drums are currently bleeding.

But other than that, the site was really cool. It looks like you live in a really beautiful part of England. Doesn't Cornwall have a reputation for scavaging from ship wrecks?

on Wednesday, September 14th, Elise said

Sorry Mick, I meant to say *didn't* (past tense) they have the reputation for that? My co-worker had wanted to do a walking tour there and knows all kinds of info about the area. I also think it's very cool it has its own Celtic language. Do you speak it?

And Jackie, you must have posted while I was writing that last one, but I wanted to ask about your Precious.

on Wednesday, September 14th, holly said

Ha! I am not a TV watcher. Have never seen the Daily Show (but *do* know who John Stewart is. Vaguely). I'm glad we got that sorted out-- I was *really* concerned for a minute.

And why do I not have a Precious? I want my own Precious!

Everytime I think of Cornwall, I think of the Monty Python episode with Mr. Pither on his bicycling tour of Cornwall and he keeps getting his pump caught on his trouser leg. I'm sure this is not a pervasive problem with people in Cornwall.

(This thread keeps getting stranger and stranger).

on Wednesday, September 14th, Joan said

to add to the confusion or this link, brother Ron is doing well in Denver. He's been there for a bit over a year now. He spent quite a bit of time in Saudi Arabia before that. No one in the family knows exactly what he does, but I do know it has to do with environment, planning, and GPS. His feet continue to do the counter plug of running to obliterate the nicotine. That is such a funny practice - of which I partake. I once had a roommate who would tell herself, "Run one more mile then you can have a cigarette." See how I could tie this all together? Again we revisit the "talking to ourselves." And that wasn't even intentional.

on Wednesday, September 14th, ann said

We grew up in Texas, with its own special language:

on Wednesday, September 14th, ann said

We grew up in Texas, with its own special language:

We... as in, me and Eileen... from accounting...

on Wednesday, September 14th, Elise said

Well Holly, I'm jus guessing but I'd say your Precious would be "THE DISSERTATION" It also burns us. (and by "us" I mean "youse", because "we" (as in me and Eileen from Accounting) don't have one yet).

Joan - I had a roommate who was a mountain climber, did actual expedition climbs, and she smoked close to a pack a day...go figure! But I'm glad that Ron is doing well, I always thought he was so cute!

And Ann... LOL!

I love that website. You know, my sister Kelly lives in McKinney TX, a sub of Dallas, and though she doesn't have an accent yet, there are times when a bit of weirdness slips out. I find it incredibly charming. I think guys do too.

on Wednesday, September 14th, Elise said

You know, I was thinking that I could just never make a new post and we could keep this thread going on and on, back and forth, forever!

) )<>( (

on Thursday, September 15th, mick said

On the subject of dialects - I was brought up to speak "BBC English" and actually have a taperecording dating back to 1970 of a conversation with a flatmate. I shudder at the sound of it becuse I sound like a right snob.

Thankfully I spent a lot of time working with people with strong local dialects and now just sound a little bit posh.

The BBC recently carried out a project in Cornwall to identify typical dialects within different parts of the County - it was fascinating to listen to.

Yes the Cornish have a long standing reputation for smuggling and wrecking - all the more interesting to me as I worked for HM Customs and Excise for 30 years :D

on Friday, September 16th, Markus Barca said

I know what you mean by the procrastination. I have a dump truck load of homework to do, but I'm commenting on others' blogs instead (read the comments here for an odd admission by me :laugh:).

On the linquistics thing, I grew up in the South and Southwest, but I have no accent. Despite speaking without one, a few Texan colloquialisms will slip out every now and then. Have you ever heard someone say "yall" without an accent?

on Friday, September 16th, Markus Barca said

In case you're interested, here is some information on Southern American English. I sometimes catch myself using the multiple modal verbs that express possibility (might, could) in a verb phrase. Again, it sounds odd unaccented.

on Saturday, September 17th, Elise said

You know Mick, I just love the posh English accent, I find it interesting how some Brits looking for street cred will try to lose that accent. Of course there are many many more dialects in GB than I could ever ever pick up on...I remember meeting a woman from Scottland who said my accent was "brilliant" and she sounded so cool and I thought, wow, *I* don't have an accent, *you* do!

hee hee

And I'll check out your admission (or ommision?) tomorrow Markus when me no drunky.

BTW, I traveled through the south when I was in high school and I remember at one point finding myself talking with a really bad fake southern accent and thinking, holy shit, where'd that come from!