Saturday, July 26, 2008

Five-syllable words

Do you mind if I call you Steven? I think it would just help me to write if I had a name to attach to your face. I'll work on the face later, but you have to start somewhere, right? The other options I pondered were Diane (because I am a Twin Peaks fan), and Mrs. Crazypants. In the end, I thought Steven was nice. I do reserve the right to change your name (and perhaps, your face) later if I so choose.

Last night, Steven, as I was falling asleep, I started going over five-syllable words in my head. Think of your favorite five-syllable word. Let me guess: the emphasis is on the third syllable, right? Of course, there are five-syllable words that have the emphasis elsewhere -- say, the fourth syllable -- but those are generally not as popular as the emphasis-on-the-third-syllable five-syllable words.

If you still haven't chosen your favorite, allow me to list some popular suggestions:


Below are some of the less-commonly-claimed five-syllable words of choice. I'm not saying these are necessarily worse than the ones listed above. However, don't you think there's probably a reason that some words are less popular than others, Steven? Ponder that, and read these:


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Friday, July 25, 2008

People don't get me

Last year I left my former place of employment. I saw the hollow faces of the lifers, their pallid eyes, and their messages scrawled in blood on the cafeteria walls. It all said, "Get out while you still can!" So, I did. (Actually, there were a few other messages, but this one seemed the most urgent.)

There has been a lot of turnovers turn-over this past year at that airline which shall not be named, at least not in this entry. This past week, something like 80 people fell victim to staff cuts. The lucky ones were given pink slips and sent on their way. The rest were fed to the coyotes that roam the brush just outside the fence marking off the airfield.

I've been working at a software engineering company for the past 15 months or so, and the culture here is much different. People seem much more relaxed, and there's a greater feeling of trust. However, it's not just the company culture that's different. My morning commute takes me to Stepford County, which while prosperous, is also a bit sterile. I've been trying to figure out how I can fit in better, or at least feel more at home. People here are really nice, but they don't seem to get me, you know?

But this week, I think I've hit upon a realization, and possibly, a solution.

People don't get me because, for some reason, they don't realize that I'm a folk hero. Somehow, my legendary status hasn't reached these people. So, I've decided that I need to employ the services of a scribe and a minstrel to record and sing about my deeds. A scribe should be easy enough to find. And even if I don't find one, it's no big deal, because I keep being told (along with the other tech writers here) that no one reads the documentation, anyway. However, I don't know where I could find a good minstrel. Actually, there is one employee here where I work who claims to be a minstrel on the side. I'm not sure if I believe him, though. He is a mole-man who can be seen working in the mail room during daylight hours, but at night, he retreats to the underground lair beneath the building, where he makes his home. It's not just because he's a mole-man that I'm not sure I can believe him. After all, mole-people are mostly benign, misunderstood creatures with no more bent to fancy than you or me. However, this particular mole-man has a history of making incredible claims. Last week he claimed to have successfully raised 11 generations of homing cheeseburgers on the roof. Eleven generations? That seems like a bit of an exaggeration to me.

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