Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Cruisin' for a Bruisin'

            I am opposed to misspelled products.  Every day I go into the kitchen and see a refrigerator that says SAMSUNG when it should say SAM SANG. 
I’m toying with the idea of pasting a little A over the U.  I don’t care that this is a surname in Korea.  Where I live it looks like a grammatical mistake.  (Although I like the idea of the little character named Sam, singing.)
            But now my husband has done the unthinkable.  He has bought a misspelled car.  Made by Chevrolet, a part of GM, which has more than 200,000 employees who should know better.  It saddens me to report this, but they have spelled it Cruze.

            Now.  Any schoolchild can tell you this is not how you spell cruise.  (And, I just noticed, any spell check program will jump all over it as well).  It isn’t even how to spell Cruz in Spanish, because of that little E on the end.
            Furthermore, there is already a car out there called the PT Cruiser, so “cruise” is taken, right?  Is this why they misspelled it—to distinguish it from the other car with cruise in its name?  Why aren’t they being sued?  Hey, if you came up with a soft drink called Coak, do you really think Coke’s attorneys wouldn’t be all over it?  Remember when there was a store called Sacks?  Even worse, it was a consignment shop called Sacks Thrift Avenue.  You can imagine the gasps of horror at Saks Fifth Avenue, and of course they sued.  And rightly so.  You can’t use a name that similar in the same kind of business.
            Bob thinks the whole thing is hilarious, and called each of our children to see if they could guess “why Mom doesn’t like the new car.”  Every one of them said, “Because it’s misspelled?” 
            He says it’s going to sit in the garage for a few weeks, then go on a talk show, and jump on the sofa about how much it loves my Altima.  It certainly won’t be because it loves the spelling of its name, I can tell you that.
            And this entire travesty wouldn’t have happened if Bob’s Chrysler 300 hadn’t had a weird vapor lock problem with the gas cap, which made it die every time it stopped.  Talk about your out-to-lunch car manufacturers who haven’t even had a re-call on that one.

            Frankly, I think the real reason he bought it is to keep me from driving it.  And because he has a pattern of buying misspelled items.  Before the Chrysler, guess what he drove?  An Infiniti.
Motor on over to the little box on your right, where you can sign up to receive these glimpses into my ridiculous life on a regular basis.  And if you see me in the Cruze, please look the other way.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Marbles? I Had Marbles?

           Wait a second, here.  To an outsider it may appear that I am losing my marbles.  However, I know of at least two marbles rattling around upstairs.  Okay, they could be ping-pong balls, it’s hard to tell without an x-ray.  But sometimes, I will admit, they seem eerily silent.
            And I really think it’s stress, don’t you?  I mean, that’s what we blame it on, right?  Our gray matter gets so overloaded that part of it—sometimes all of it—decides to sit down and take a little nap. 
            Lately I’ve been calling to Bob, starting a sentence, and then getting completely distracted by another concern.  Let’s say I’m sitting at the computer and I want to ask him what he wants for dinner this weekend.  I say, “So what would you--”and then I see something startling on screen.  Perhaps it’s an email, a Facebook post, and I stop talking.
            He is standing there, waiting for me to finish my sentence, but this doesn’t happen because I can’t even finish my thought, much less a sentence.  Finally he uses his TV announcer voice and says, “Welcome to The Half-a-Sentence Show starring Joni Hilton!  And now, heeeeeeere’s—“And he stops, not saying my name.  Just stops.  To be funny.

            Even worse are the times when I am fully engaged, trying to have a conversation, just at the wrong moment.  The other day I am on the phone, listening to Bob.  He is telling me about a business meeting. It’s quite interesting, actually, and soon I say, “Oh, absolutely.  That’s exactly what I was thinking--”

            Except that he isn’t listening to me.  He interrupts and just keeps going on about the meeting.  I think that perhaps he didn’t hear me.  So I wait for him to pause a bit and I jump in again.  “Another idea I had,” I say, “is if you guys--”
            And it happens again!  He talks right over the top of me, not listening to a word I say.  Well, now it’s downright rude, right?  So I take a breath and decide to wait him out.  And the next thing I know, he’s telling me goodbye and hanging up!  And only now do I remember that I came home, saw a blinking light on the phone, and was retrieving messages.  I have been talking to a recording.
            Maybe I do need my own reality show.  The logo can be an empty bag of marbles.

Fill your bag with blog posts, if not marbles.  Subscribe in the little box to the right—quick!  Before you forget!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Where's Your Grammar At?

                We all have pet peeves.  And the older we get, the more of them we have.   My four kids can tell you that my absolute, Number One, top pet peeve (and I’m hoping yours is not redundancy) is when people end their sentences with the word “at.”   Whenever someone commits this grammar crime, my kids’ heads whip around to see if I am visibly wincing or able to conceal my pain.  It’s usually a combination of both.
                We’ve all heard it.  Let me see where he’s at.  Where’s your car at?  What time will you be there at?  Where is your mom at? 

                And if ever they cart me away to the funny farm, and people ask why, you can tell them I was pushed over the brink by a mountain of ats, piling up and pushing me to the edge, until finally I fell down the cliff into the Sea of Insanity. That’s where I will be at.

                This isn’t a picky rule, like not ending your sentences with a preposition and causing generations of pedantic people to say, “up with which we cannot put.”  It’s a rule that makes sense.  When you say “where IS” then you don’t also need AT.   When a clerk says, “Where is it at?” it takes Herculean restraint for me not to say, “You mean ‘where is it’.”  But kindness trumps rudeness, so I politely refrain from correcting people I did not give birth to.  Or, for those of you even more afflicted than I am, people to whom I did not give birth.
                The other pet peeve I shall share today is one most people have never thought about, and, possibly, might ruin the driving experience for you forevermore.  So stop reading now if this worries you.  No?  Okay, then I’ll tell you.  It’s  license plate frames that say “Alumni of” some university.

                Now, what’s wrong with pride in your alma mater?  Nothing.  The problem is that you are an alumnus, if male, or an alumna, if female.  No matter how many split personalities you may have, sadly, you are not an alumni, which is plural.  I suppose if you and your spouse both attended the school, and you’re both in the car together, then the sign would be correct.  But how often is this the case?  To sport this grossly incorrect sign discredits your school, no?  It would be like displaying a bumper sticker that says, “I’m a atterney.”  Or a librarian saying she works in the lye-berry.
                Sign manufacturers would do well to come up with a frame that simply says “alum,” which would be singular, and would cover both men and women.   Until then, I am keeping my thoughts to myself.  Well, except for blogging about them.  But we’re civilized folks, most of us, and it’s ill-mannered to correct people with poor grammar in any regard.  So if someone asks me where my husband is at, I'll just answer them.  And maybe I'll add that he's an alumnus of LSU.  Or not.
Grammar fanatics, I feel your pain.  You need to read my book, Sisters in the Mix, available on Kindle and in paperback at Createspace.com.  I think you'll like the main character.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Do Not Break This Chain!

           This is a chain letter. 
Come on, don’t spoil the fun; be a sport and participate.  Chain letters are a blast!  Here’s how it works.   All you need to do is follow these simple instructions.  Just send a car (new, if possible, sleek and sporty if even more possible) to the first person on the list below.  Then copy this letter with the first name omitted, and your name in the last place.  Now send it out to six family members or friends who you think will enjoy playing this game.  Within just a matter of weeks, you should receive 36 cars. It will be so fun to see where they all came from!

            If you email this letter you don’t even have to buy postage stamps!  Think of all the new friends you will make.  You can send it out to even more people for a lot of extra fun. And who couldn’t use a few new cars, right?  For every time you click “forward,” a lucky (and hilarious) leprechaun will appear on your screen, tell you a joke, and then he will deposit money in your bank account.
            I’m so excited!  Remember, DO NOT BREAK THIS CHAIN
or you could bring terrible luck upon yourself.  One guy broke the chain in Greece and look what happened to their economy!  Another guy, in Wyoming I think, broke the chain and a Wolverine got him.  I’m fairly sure that’s what happened.  It might have been a Grizzly.  Anyway, keep the fun going and watch your driveway for fun, new surprises every day!  

            Joni Hilton
            Abner Gomez
            Jill Whattingcomb
            Avery Cline
            Betsy Everett
            Toby Kitt
For an even brighter future, be sure to subscribe to Joniopolis in the little box on the right.  Hilarity will appear in your inbox on a regular basis.  And this promise is actually true.