In which words flow, but not where I need them

The place: The Facebook website thingie.

The time: A moment of weakness (escaping from my manuscript).

The assignment: “Exercise!!! 250-500-100 words (some kind of narrative). No “to be” verbs!”

The inspiration: This great photo….


My jotted whatnot:

Without Sole

Has anyone seen my sneakers? They walked off with my soul, and now I wander the earth, barefoot and in mourning, experiencing a life bereft of meaning.

Who knew shoes could take so much merely through their absence? Those soul-stealing soles completed me. Betrayers!

Tomorrow I have a date with a pair of sandals. In my younger days, I feared them. I thought they would tie me down. Those doubts plague me still.

Enough! No more whining! I shall pick myself up by my bootstraps—

Now where did THEY run off to?

—LLS, June 2014

Placed here for posterity. Now back to real stuff.

I is for Iambic Pentameter

ITo what domain should I devote my pen?
To verse where I betray my ignorance?
For I to put these words on blogging, sense
Is strained by hackneyed turns of phrase — what then?
Oh Muse! Betray me not! This dalliance
Is but a metered post occasioned when
The A to Z endeavor strikes again
A block on all my words. And so I hence
I am giving up writing iambic pentameter.
Trochee troubles set up by dactyl frustrations.
And lines get tangled up in dull calculations
So my all my metrical feet can all, in the end, fit inside there.

H is for Ho Ho Ho Hee Hee Hee Ha Ha Ha

HIt’s one thing to know formal English, but this is not all that’s required for the subtleties of communication. Consider these monosyllabic grunts—and their variants—that begin with H:

  • Ha! (That’s funny!)
  • Ha! (I don’t believe you.)
  • Ha! (Go away, critter!)
  • Aha! (I see!)
  • Ha–ha! (That’s very funny!)
  • Ha–ha! (That is not funny.)
  • He… (Who?)
  • He (Helium)
  • HECKa–BBBBBB! (I’m making a hip TV reference you probably don’t get.)
  • Hee! (Made me giggle.)
  • Hee–hee! (That’s funny.)
  • Heeeeyahhh! (I didn’t really want to be President)
  • Tee–hee! (I want you to think that I think that’s funny.)
  • Hee Haw(How old are you?)
  • Hey–hey! (I have arrived, and I have a tattoo.)
  • Hi! (Hi.)
  • High. (Probably best not to drive.)
  • Hi ho! (Don’t say more or you’ll get a DMCA notice.)
  • Hmmm…. (I’m not sure about that.)
  • Ho! (“Whoah,” but more indignant.)
  • Ho Ho’s (Yum!)
  • Ho Ho Ho! (Fat man in red suit coming.)
  • Ho–ho–ho! (Did you eat your peas?)
  • Ho-ho-ho! Hee-hee-hee! Ha-ha-ha! (I am the walrus.)
  • Hoo! (Small mammals, watch out!)
  • Hoo–hooo! (Small mammals, seriously, pay attention here.)
  • Hooray! (I am now cheering for you.)
  • Huh! (I see.)
  • Huh? (WTF?)
  • Huh uh (My answer is “no,” but I don’t want to say the word.)
  • Huh huh huh! (That’s funny!)
  • Huzzah! (Hooray [in some retro-ironic kind of way]!)
  • Hwahhh! (I know kung fu!)
  • Hyeeahh!! (I like pretending to know kung fu!)
  • Hyohhh–oh! Yo–ee–oh! (Stay away, airborne monkeys!)

Did I miss any?

C is for Cromulent

CSo often our language can become so bland it feels like it’s been diluted with chicken milk. Or expelled from one’s dupa. It’s enough to make you schmerf.

Supposably, with a blurp of inspiration, language can be epicaltastic and embiggen one’s imagination. “Fantabulous!” people will cry as they bow to your prose.

Irregardless, one must be careful, or risk embodying obnoxity, which may result in ginormous embarrassment and leave friends flustrated. Stresscalation is not a civil option. Orientate oneself to conversate conservatively with other participators.

The best strategery is reluctitude to stretch your vocabulation. Don’t misunderestimate the risks of malspeaking.

And never skonk.

B is for Blocked

BWhat do you do when you’re blocked? I freewrite. That’s what I am doing here. I just keep my fingers going, typing on the keyboard, spitting out words, not stopping for anything. I don’t kow what my next sentence is so I keep typing. Why am I blocked? Why? There are a lot of B topics I could blog about. I could blog about blogging. I could blog about beauty. Or bitchiness. Or bits. Or brandy. Or bugger. Or bollocks—

Don’t the Brits have great swear words? So arcane, so bizarre, so regional. So rude. And yet with their accents they come off as being polite even when they’re describing animal testicles.

It was Writing With Power, by Peter Elbow, where I learned about freewriting and the act of separating the Creator within from the Editor within. You see, if your inner editor is too powerful, too ascendent, then nothing you write will be any good and your editor will have you deleting what you write long before any blue pencil could be brought into action. It’s the separation of the processes that is the key. Writing. Then Editing. Not both at the same time. Otherwise it’s like driving with your foot on the gas and the brake at the same time. Or trying to–never mind, I was going into some bathroom analogy that would be inappropriate for this venue.

Anyway, where was I? I was wondering what to write next. I have no idea so I’ll just keep going if you don’t mind. After all, if you get bored you can just click away. Amazingly foolish, that last sentence, actually asking you to click away. Not very wise of me, is it? But hey. What can I say? I’m freewriting. This is the uncensored truth. Or at least the unedited truth. Or at least the unedited blathering on of someone who was feeling blocked on this letter of the A to Z Challenge.

I mean, when you think about it, I’m in trouble if I have to resort to freewriting on only the second letter of the alphabet. I mean, how hard is B, anyway? It’s not like it’s X or something.

X. That will be a hard one. Most of the X words that come to mind actually use X as a word in some silly, colloquial way, like “X marks the spot” or “X Men,” where X means just a mark on a map indicating a point at the vertex of the two lines, or extraordinary, respectively.

So back to the freewriting. If I get stuck on F I’m not going to be able to go here again. That would be rather redundant, wouldn’t it?

Lest I bore, I’m going to stop bitching about Brits and bits and buggers and go have a glass of brandy, so that I can sit in the comfort of my home and think about all the things I could’ve blogged instead of this.


A is for A


A is a word, too.

Pity a.

A gets no respect. A gets taken for granted. A gets trotted out and used—and often misused—by writers every day, without any thought or consideration.

Can you search for a on most websites? No. A, for all its graceful brevity, is deemed unworthy—too short to index.

A does not even seem to merit clarity on preferred pronunciation; and when you consider that one way is to pronounce it as “uh,” you begin to realize the cavalier disrespect society has for this first among all words.

And you, dear reader, I now ask you to reflect upon your own misuse of a. Odds are if you ever mention a in noun form, you qualify it by saying, “The letter A.” Do you ever say, “The word A”?

I didn’t think so.

Proud a, which leads our dictionaries; distinguished a, which is our top grade; humble a, which claims no exclusivity (unlike the selfish the)—our friend, our helper, our workhorse that serves both as word and as letter—a deserves better from us.

On this day, the first day of the month whose name starts with the letter A, be not the one who tosses a around with casual neglect. Don’t be that writer.

Rather, be aware of a and embrace it with love. Because love makes a world go around.