This blog is not for the light-hearted or easily offended. If either one of those descriptions applies to you, i would suggest you start drinking before you read this blog. A sense of humor is suggested. If you don't have one that sucks for you … find one and get a life!

In which i discuss malapropisms

I’m having such a difficult time writing right now.  Not just right this minute, but in general.  I know part of it is because I’m descending into the melancholy period of my life but I just can’t seem to get my thoughts straight.  It’s ironic that if I wake up at four in the morning, my ideas seem to flow like water but, if I actually get out of bed to type, I’m so sleepy and incoherent that I can’t get the stuff out.  So I have these thoughts which are somewhere in the vacuum that is my brain, and they’re stuck there.
 
This morning alone I decided to write about my mom, my dad and self-esteem.  Not all together mind you.  No, these were three separate and distinct topics.  I had them all laid out: what I wanted to say, how I wanted to say it, where I was going, what was the point.  And now?  GONE.  Seriously, they’re gone.  The flow, the point, the whole fucking thing.  At the best of times, my short term memory is horrendous but when I’m in these moods, it’s far worse.  One of my biggest worries is that I will get dementia and nobody will notice.  I know you think I’m kidding, but I’m not.  For as long as I can remember (hahaha, that’s an ironic start to this sentence), I have forgotten things.  Even when I was little my nickname was Miss Malaprop because I could never get a sentence or an expression right.  I knew my facts but I mangled them.  Still do!  I suppose I could write this post on all my malapropisms. I was going to write it on my descent into dementia.  See what I mean about being scatterbrained?
 
I’ve decided to go the humorous malapropism route rather than the “oh no, Lynn’s descending into dementia” route.  As I said earlier, there wasn’t a single thing about the English language I couldn’t mangle, both written and spoken.  As you can imagine, with my mom being an English teacher and all, I was the bane of her existence.  Most of what I remember growing up was being corrected.  “No Lynn, it’s not moNonNoment, it’s MonUment!  It’s not MeNorial, it’s MeMorial!”  Things like that.  But since I’ve become older, what’s really gone south is my ability to use common expressions or idioms.  The first time this occurred with Kevin, we were still dating and we had gone to see Don Henley (remember him from The Eagles?)  Kevin was living in New Jersey and I was still living in New York City, but we went to The Garden State Art Center to see the concert.  A song came on and I said, “Oh my god, I love this song, El Derado!”.  Kevin turned towards me and said “You mean Desperado.”  “Yeah, that’s what I meant,” I said (I’m always close).  Among the many things that could be written on my tombstone would be those five words “Yeah, that’s what I meant.”  After 25 years, it has become something of a joke in my family.  In fact, this year’s Christmas letter has a character that does it all the time.  Everybody in my family makes fun of me.  
 
Just a few weeks ago, I said to Daniel when we were talking about some subject, “so, are we on the same pagelength?”  Once again, I got “the look” along with “I guess you mean the same PAGE or the same WAVELENGTH, huh mom?”  WHY do they always have to correct me?  They know what I meant.
 
Last year I said to Kevin, “hey, don’t get mad at the person who tells you stuff.”  Kevin says his favorite part is the process of realization that comes to me right after the words tumble out of my mouth.  I KNOW the expression isn’t quite right but I can never figure out exactly which part is wrong.  Kevin has gotten his timing down to a science at this point and in that situation he said dryly (it’s ALWAYS dryly, it’s just better that way I guess), “did you mean ‘don’t shoot the messenger,’ Lynn?”  He knows damn well that’s what I mean but in this house, picking on Lynn is a bloodsport.
 
But the all time favorite, the one that has gone down in MacDonald family folklore is the following:  Kevin and I were in New York City to attend a memorial (see, I typed it right there folks) for my uncle at the United Nations.  We went up there, saw a musical, stayed in Soho, went to the memorial and had a great, great weekend.  On the flight on the way home, we were discussing something or other and Kevin said something to which I responded, “Yeah, it’s like an oxen in a glass shop.”  Seriously, “AN OXEN IN A GLASS SHOP” came out of my mouth.  I knew the minute I say it that it was going to be a little off so I snuck a look at Kevin who was just looking at me.  I could see where this was going.  First?  THE PAUSE.  Then … wait for it … wait for it … “You mean a BULL in a CHINA SHOP, Lynn?”
 
Hahaha. Yeah!!  Of course that’s what I meant!!  This one took the cake (is that the right expression?)  Seriously, I nearly pee’d myself because we were laughing so hard on the plane.  I’ve never lived that one down and I suppose, as malapropisms go, that is my Mecca.  I really don’t see how I could ever top that.  So, you see … it will be difficult to tell if I’m getting dementia since my normal state of being is completely screwed up.  But let’s not beat around the SHRUBBERY, let’s just get this show on the STREET and get going.  I mean, Miss Malaprop (I suppose it’s Mrs. Malaprop now) isn’t going anywhere. Are you?

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9 Comments

  1. Karla Telega
    December 17, 2010

    Never stop speaking your mind. Your mind will stop speaking soon enough on its own. My friend and I finish sentences for each other. She’ll get a look on her face mid-sentence and I know it’s time for me to “insert word here.” It works both ways. You and I are lucky to have family and friends who can serve as translators.

    • Lynn
      December 17, 2010

      Hahaha…i can’t even help it anyways. This stuff just falls out of my mouth. Sometimes it’s frustrating and i wonder if i’m losing my mind but, then i remember that I LOST IT A LONG TIME AGO! HAHAHA… thanks for commenting!

  2. Lisa M.
    December 17, 2010

    oh my gosh, this is totally me! It started in junior high when I tried to use the word epitome in a sentence, but I had never heard the word, only read it, so I pronounced it “Epp-it-to-mee”. It’s been 20+ years and I still hear my dad laughing at me. (Yes, I have issues). I forget things the second they pop into my head. “Don’t you remember???” is the most common phrase in my house.

    • Lynn
      December 17, 2010

      Hee hee hee…I totally know what you’re saying. I mispronounce EVERYTHING!!! On the other hand, a LOT of laughs come out of being like this. Thanks for the comment…I now embrace this ridiculous characteristic!

  3. Jamie Iomo
    December 17, 2010

    Good evening

    This post was interesting, how long did it take you to write?

    • Lynn
      December 18, 2010

      None of these take me long to write. They just fall out.

  4. Tim@sogeshirts
    December 18, 2010

    Happens to everyone. I malaprop all the time. My girlfriend her whole life till a few months ago pronounced library as liberry cause no one told her when she was little that she was saying it wrong.

    • Lynn
      December 18, 2010

      Yeah…but I’m a master at it!!! I mean, an oxen in a glass shop?

  5. Anonymous
    April 19, 2011

    I love your wordpress layout, where did you get a hold of it?

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