Drink of the day

December 28, 2006

Hello, Readership. Herein follows my first posting to Yesterday’s Salad, courtesy of a generous invitation from Mr. Hammerskjold. As per his request, here is the first drink of the day, appropriate for holiday-time, the Smoking Bishop:

5 unpeeled oranges
1 unpeeled grapefruit
36 cloves
1/4 pound of sugar
2 bottles of red wine
1 bottle of port

Wash the fruit and oven bake until brownish. Turn once. Put fruit into a warmed earthenware bowl with six cloves stuck into each.

Add the sugar and pour in the wine – not the port.

Cover and leave in a warm place for a day.

Squeeze the fruit into the wine and strain.

Add the port and heat. DO NOT BOIL!

While this recipe can be found elsewhere on the internet, it is worthy of note that modern knowledge of the drink (which has long since fallen out of vogue) stems from Cedric Dickens’ excellent Drinking with Dickens, which contains recipes for all of the drinks mentioned in the books of his great-grandfather, Charles Dickens.

Having tried this last year in good New Years’ company, my personal recommendations for a good bowl of bishop are to heat the mixture to a *very* low temperature, and to serve immediately. Adding a small amount of higher-proof spirits, such as applejack, kirschwasser, or even rum (stay away from vodka, gin, tequila, etc.), gives the beverage an additional kick or can compensate for being slow with a ladle, as the alcohol in the beverage can boil away very quickly if you are not careful.

So when you are ready to indulge the holiday spirit in a decidedly non-Pumblechookian manner, pour yourself a mug of smoking bishop.

“A merry Christmas, Bob!” said Scrooge, with an earnestness that could not be mistaken, as he clapped him on the back. “A merrier Christmas, Bob, my good fellow, than I have given you, for many a year! I’ll raise your salary, and endeavour to assist your struggling family, and we will discuss your affairs this very afternoon, over a Christmas bowl of smoking bishop, Bob!”

words of the day

December 27, 2006

today’s words of the day come to us from an academic article on 16th century [zionism spawning religion redacted] historiography. they are: cupidity, and paroenetic. cupidity i’ve seen before, and apparently misunderstood. the other word is, i think, the subject of a thomas pynchon novel.

cupidity comes from the Latin cupidatem, meaning passionate desire. this is what i’ve always thought cupidity meant, given cupid’s role and all. cupidity as a term for general passionate desire or lust, however, is considered archaic. instead the current meaning of the word is “spec. Inordinate desire to appropriate wealth or possessions; greed of gain.”

i’ve been racking my brain trying to figure out how cupidity came to refer only to money. i can only assume that messers Graves and Faegles neglected to endow us with the fables of Cupid going broke and, needing money for blow, whoring out his arrow shooting.

more likely, there is a general trend in philology wherein words become specified over the centuries. as i’m not a philologist, i can only assume this rule exists. any philologists (or, more likely given my blog’s readership, Brandy Taylor enthusiasts) wishing to set me right should do so in the comments.

today’s second word, paroenetic, does not exist. it’s not in the OED. i can only assume that, given our author’s academic appointment, this is a standard word in Israeli English. unfortunately, it’s lost on us western worrywarts. context is of absolutely no help in figuring out the word’s meaning.

1988 Gutwirth. “especially those writing paroenetic treatises and collections of homilies,”

while i certainly don’t put it past anyone to neologize, usually the derivation is obvious. this time, not so much.  does it come from “paroecism,” the state of being paroecious? (probably not; paroecious means “having the male and female reproductive organs in close proximity but not mixed.” I can not figure out how to make that work in context. i mean, obviously it’s the right type of word for the sentence position, but come on.)

urbandictionary is likewise of no help, however it is offering me the ability to define it. i don’t have any good ideas, even for turning jokes.

so, i decided to ask google, and after turning up 3 unhelpful hits, google aksed me if i meant, “paraenetic.” i did. paraenetic means, “advisory or hortatory, now rare.” considering the rarity of the word, and the pre-internet publication date of the article, i understand why the mistake was left in. but did someone think of the word bloggers at all when they left this mistake in? how am i supposed to help society if society only hurts me?

not sure if this is in bad taste or not, but here goes: dana carvey announcing ford’s death. i can only hope the fact that gerald ford was not eaten by wolves brings someone comfort.

and watch as the phillies enter the future with a new ballpark. did any one else notice that none of the fans in CBP are wearing phillies gear? i didn’t realize the phillies had been that obvious about their desire to replace the 700 level phans with yuppies. still, i hope Harry Kalas does the voice over for my next apartment. (does that make sense? why does my apartment need a promotional video?)

continuing our tradition of blogging like canada—behind the times—today’s word clearly should have been yesterday’s: merry (adj). while i’d like to say that delaying my post on merry is some sort of Zionist plot to reclaim the word for our own perfidious purposes, my real reason for blogging it is the fact I accidentally wished someone a merry–then realized my mistake and said—holidays today, only to have her look at me like an idiot. of course i still looked like an idiot. to which holiday could i have referred? st. sylvester’s feast day is impossibly far away. i could only have been one of those weird bahai, with a weird, made-up holiday, no doubt.

anyway, on to merry. since everyone knows the meaning of the word (or do they?), I thought i’d spend a little time on its etymology before discussing some of its now obs. variants. merry is a cognate of the middle dutch “mergelijc pleasant,” but also the Old High German, “murg short.” According to the OED, “The development of sense appears to have been ‘short; that shortens or whiles away time; entertaining, pleasant,'” which they compare to the word “pastime.” i can’t decide whether or not “merry” still has this temporal element to it, or whether that connotation has completely dropped. nonetheless, our words are right: happiness is fleeting.

the most interesting development in the meaning of “merry” is how specified its become. merry used to be used as just a general word meaning, “That causes pleasure” in many contexts i.e., if the sun was shining bright, it was merry (the moon too); if the winds were right for sailing, they were merry (SHAKESPEARE Com. Err. (1623) IV. i. 90 The merrie winde Blowes faire from land.) if your bitch was pleasant to look at, she was merry (1559 Passage Q. Eliz. Aij, [the ho] by holding vp her handes, and merie countenaunce to such as stode farre of,..did declare her selfe [etc.].) now, nothing is merry. Even using merry as a synonym for “happy” is obsolete.

what gives?

it seems that the temporal aspect is still at play. the primary definitions for merry today are “b. Of a season or festival: characterized by celebration and rejoicing. Freq. in Merry Christmas! and other seasonal greetings,” and “a. Expressive of merriment; characterized by cheerfulness or exuberant gaiety; festive, joyful, jolly,” frequently having to do with alcohol. see, definition 3 on urbandictionary, “The stage inbetween Tipsy and Bladdered. Im not pissed, im just merry!” and i have no clue why this paragraph is in italics, or why it wont let me turn them off.

merry is only defining short term phenomena. and, indeed, the 16th century slang word (why am I surprised there was slang in the 16th century?) “merry bout Obs., (a) a drinking session; (b) slang, an act of sexual intercourse”, makes this clear.

merry also has a (bonus word!) appositive meaning [appositive: Of, pertaining to, or standing in apposition]. the OED records the word, “merry-sorry” which does not mean happily sorry, but negates other senses of the word merry e.g. “these merry-sorry Lashes may Driue Time and Times Abuse,” and merry-sorry Seas to mean bad, rough waters. i’m sure we all can find ways to bring this definition back. please leave suggestions in the comments.

come to think of it, i’m also trying to find a way of generalizing defintion six on urbandictionary:

a goofball girl who going out wit dan and is a very emotinal drinker

man merrys crying yeah dude its cause he drunk.

suggestions on that one are welcome too.

word of the day: lacuna

December 25, 2006

although i’ve been scooped by dictionary.com, which made lacuna their word of the day on Feb. 19, 2001, I’ve decided to go ahead and name lacuna (pl. lacunae) today’s word. lacuna comes from the latin “lacuna” (wunderbar) meaning, a hole or a gap, and for a time was anglicized as “lacune,” however that form is now very rare (and thus, i encourage everyone to use it).

the english definition of lacuna also means a hole or gap. According to the OED, lacuna is “1. In a manuscript, an inscription, the text of an author: A hiatus, blank, missing portion. ” this definition is used frequently in literary criticism, although there it occasional gains the added nuance of something intentionally left out by the author. I’ve personally found lacuna to be one of those words that once you know you find it impossible to remember how you wrote papers without it. There’s also a scientific definition for “lacuna” which the OED has as the second definition.

The AHD gives the definition as “An empty space or a missing part; a gap” and though they give a literary quote thereafter, their definition is exceedingly broad and leaves way for misuse. For example “mind the lacuna between the rails.”

i’ll leave it up to you to infer why this is the word of the day.

once again i find that the google search that most often leads people to my site is “Brandy Taylor wikipedia.” this is to be expected: brandy taylor is far more attractive than cake-mix pancakes, and has much larger breasts than the word of the day. yet while those qualities make her an often searched for internet celebrity, and Yesterday’s Salad’s number one supplier of traffic, they have not been enough to keep Brandy on wikipedia. But why?

when i first mentioned bt and wikipedia, she had no page. then she received a page and all was fine and dandy in the world. and now it’s gone again. it appears that there has been a purge of porn related pages on wikipedia, and that the list of big bust models and performers is a shell of its former self. i don’t have any real reason for explaining this, but i have a few thoughts.

1) brandy’s page was poorly written, and didn’t offer any information about her. simply listing a filmography is not enough to keep you on wikipedia

2) brandy’s “girl next door” look and style de-exoticizes her, depressing the interest in her as a person. her porn celebrity exists because she fits an archetype.

3) brandy is overexposed. again, there is no mystery when you can see her every week on various gonzo sites

4) brandy has no unique porn niche. there are women with much larger breasts, larger bodies, smaller naturals, and so forth. she’s too young to be a milf, and too old to be barely legal. instead, she just is. while this certainly helps her get shoots (see reasons 2 &3), it makes her fan base less fanatical.

5) no-one knows anything about her. perhaps if there were more available information about her, it would be fashioned into a useful article. actually, this info may exist; i’ve just never tried looking for it. if people want to leave brandy facts in the comments, i  will be more than willing to write a brandy taylor wikipedia article. perhaps she needs to give more interviews with Score, Juggs, or Yesterday’s Salad.

now, the most interesting part of this brandy taylor saga, is that she has yet to be included on boobpedia. while the site is still nascent, one would imagine that someone would have made a place holder page for her. but again, no. is this a reflection of her lack of celebrity, or simply a condition of boobpedia’s slow growth? only time may tell.

until then I remain,

in trouble with my girlfriend for writing about porn