An MIT linguistics professor was lecturing his class the other day. “In English,” he said, “a double negative forms a positive. However, in some languages, such as Russian, a double negative remains a negative. But there isn’t a single language, not one, in which a double positive can express a negative.”
A voice from the back of the room piped up, “Yeah, right.”
Interesting test in frugality and how observant humans are(‘nt).
During her experiment — something called a “shopping diet,” actually — which ended on Wednesday, Ms. Brennan made do with the following: a black blazer and pants from H & M; two button-down shirts, one black and one pink; a pair of Old Navy jeans; and one well-worn pink T-shirt.
How she settled on those items was complicated by the fact that she has two young children, a golden retriever and three cats, and that she was starting a new job last month with an hourlong commute. She said she needed “six items that are animal-hair-, kid-, food- and wrinkle-resistant. I need these items to be professional, but also work for playing football with my son and tea parties.”
She agonized the longest over the T-shirt — the button-down shirts and suit separates were for work, but the right T-shirt could be worn casually with jeans or dressed up with the blazer. Her revelation at the end of 31 days, after her husband still had not noticed, even when she wore her floral-printed pajamas to do yard work: “Obviously, I didn’t need all of these clothes.”
“Why do parents who are making such efforts to move ahead of the crowd end up simply jumping off a groovier bridge?
Maybe it’s because the only thing a hipster hates more than being seen as a hipster is not being seen as a hipster.”—10 Ways to Avoid Hipster Baby Names - The Daily Beast
“PK: According to Nielsen, the Colbert Report audience is only 5 percent African American.
SC: Five percent?! Are you sure? I just had on Vampire Weekend. And Devo!
PK: What can I say? We’re a fickle people.”—The Colbert Report, 8/5/2010
I can’t decide if I’m more disappointed when I see pretty people in ugly clothes, or ugly people in pretty clothes. Credit to the latter for their efforts, but there’s something snarky about the can’t-be-bothered attitude of the former?
I guess what I should really be bothered by is my obsession with the superficial.
“What an unreliable thing is time—when I want it to fly, the hours stick to me like glue. And what a changeable thing, too. Time is the twine to tie our lives into parcels of years and months. Or a rubber band stretched to suit our fancy. Time can be the pretty ribbon in a little girl’s hair. Or the lines in your face, stealing your youthful colour and your hair. …. But in the end, time is a noose around the neck, strangling slowly.”—A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry (via fuckyeahliteraryquotes)
“Angels May Replace Vampires as New Trend in Teen Lit.” —Headline, The Huffington Post, April 5th.
Weirdest dream. Must get this down.
Angel floating over my bed. Very buff, but also vulnerable somehow. Long flowing locks, but his face and body hairless. Smells like chocolate.
Angel says unto me, “I am love but cannot love.”
I say back, “What?”
Angel says, “I have so much love to give some lost young woman, but alas, I cannot indulge in the carnal.”
I say, “O.K.”
He says, “You can use that.”
Rereading this in the morning. What was he trying to tell me? Of course: it’s a book!
Notes: Hot sexy angel wants to make sweet celestial love to you but cannot. This is big!
Reading Bible for ideas. No angels so far. In two thousand years, they couldn’t compile an index?
Possible titles: “Angels and Dames.” “Fallen Love.” Keep thinking on this.
Finally: “Genesis 19:1: And there came two angels to Sodom at even.” Man, God is mean.
Why can’t angels have sex with teen-age girls? Need strong, dramatic, yet plausible reason. Sex makes them mortal? It turns the girls into demons, or swans? No genitalia?
Because God said so!
Hot sexy angel who wants to make sweet celestial love to you but it is forbidden. Yes!
“Exodus 3:2: And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush.” That is sexy. Been used?
“2 Kings 19:35: And it came to pass that night, that the angel of the Lord went out, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses.” Digging a dry hole here. Need better source material.
“A Coming of Angels.” But will people get it? Might keep me out of libraries, and Texas. “A Kissing of Angels.”
Went to B. & N. and asked if they had any books on angels. A whole floor! I’m on to something here. Seraphim? Cherubim? Ophanim? Malakhim? How am I supposed to keep all those straight? Clerk says if I tear pages out of a book I have to buy it. She suggested I try Google.
Jesus Christ! Ninety-two million hits! If only half buy my book at twenty-five dollars, I’m a billionaire!
Shouldn’t get bogged down in research. That’s not what puts it on the iPad. If God can create the heavens and the earth in six days—fun fact—I can create a hot and sexy teen-angel romance before the electricity gets cut off.
Opening image: A glorious well-oiled angel riding on a winged unicorn. Sure, it’s sexy. But too sexy?
Divine inspiration: “Mangel.” “Raging Mangel.” “My Mangel.” “Heaven Sent Me a Mangel.” “The Mangel Chronicles.” I smell franchise!
Damn. “Mangel” already trademarked for another purpose. But the work’s the thing. Build it and the title will come.
Need a villain. Satan too obvious. Werewolves maybe not formidable enough. The Catholic Church? Could work.
Big Business! Evil developer wants to build over an ancient Christian burial site. Forest Lawn! Sexy angels sitting on the Hollywood sign! All coming together.
Hmm. Sounds vaguely familiar. Of course. Change Forest Lawn to the Greenwich Village crypt of Dracula’s sexy undead son, Liam, and the Hollywood sign to the Washington Square Arch, and it’s my woefully misunderstood urban young-adult bodice-and-neck-ripper, “Hot Wings.”
“There are good cities — the ones that welcome you, that seem to care about you, that seem pleased you’re in them. There are indifferent cities — the ones that honestly don’t care if you’re there or not; cities with their own agendas, the ones that ignore people. There are cities gone bad, and there are places in otherwise healthy cities as rotten and maggoty as windfall apples. There are even cities that seem lost — some, lacking a centre, feel like they would be happier being elsewhere, somewhere smaller, somewhere easier to understand.”—Neil Gaiman (for SIMCITY) (via threeneilsaday) (via neilgaiman) (via atomsandspace)