Being a writer, I constantly overuse “…” in my drafts in order to get across a point about the dialogue of a scene. This, of course, extends into my emailing, texting and social posts. It wasn’t until one of my daughters responded to an ellipsis and asked if I was mad at her did I realize that she had a completely different meaning for the punctuation mark.
To younger generations, “…” means that you are…
… MAD! Not crazy mad, but angry, Angry Bird angry, pissed off or just plain upset. Never in a million years would this have crossed my mind but, hey, I’m getting old. What’s worse is that I’ve also found out that the symbol has been in use for over ten years now. Now all the “…” in Donald Trump’s tweets make sense. Even he knew!
My first instinct was to refrain from using the symbol at all, but now I’m considering a more productive alternative. I could throw them into every email to my boss because he won’t know what they mean, yet anyone else copied on the email that’s under 30 would get the joke. You know, a nice subversive way of sticking it to the “The Man”. Or I could start writing an angry political column focused on younger adults and use an ellipsis in every sentence. Who knows, maybe it will start a whole new movement, or maybe even…
There I go again. Oh well, I think I’ll just keep using them everywhere in order to keep the younger generation on their… toes.
Of course, it’s not. This phrase is the most overused remark in the English language, just under, “I know, right?”
Most of the time, they are really stupid questions but people still use this phrase. I’m guessing it was first introduced in some kind of communications seminar in a dingy Holiday Inn hotel or maybe one of those Kumbaya self-help seminars where everyone sits in a circle and holds hands. Wherever it came from, it needs to crawl back into its rabbit hole and disappear.
So, what are we to do the next time we hear it and cringe? You could just walk away and scream. That would work, but what if you had a really good come back line to throw in the speaker’s face and make them lose concentration. Now that would be golden. Maybe something like “How is that an excellent question?” or “Is it also a good question?” or “Do you say that to all the people you sleep with?” or “Is your butt jealous of all the shit that comes out of your mouth?”
I’m sure you can come up with a few of your own, but whatever you do, the next time you even remotely think about saying those four dreadful words, DON’T.
Today, you have the right wing blaming the Democrats for the government shutdown and the left wing blaming the President. We are a nation dangerously divided along party lines, within families, and amongst friends to the point where it’s easier to just “unfriend” someone as oppose to read another one of their annoying posts.
So, how did this come about? It wasn’t like this in the 50s, 60s and 70s. Yes, there were disagreements, but nothing at the levels we see now. The advent of the Internet did play an important role, but the real answer lies in the Fairness Act of 1949.Continue reading →
I’ve been missing in action this past month but there is a good reason for it. First, I spent two weeks hiking in the Andes Mountains in Peru, visiting ancient sites and swatting bugs in the Amazon Rainforest…with very little Internet access.
Then I had to bury one of my best friends the next week. Yes, he was the inspiration for one of the characters in my latest novel.
Needless to say, I haven’t felt like writing for a few weeks. That will change soon. On a good note, I just received a wonderful review of “The Art of Raising Hell” from Readers’ Favorites. If you’re not familiar with them, please check it out.
The other night, I watched the movie “The Rocker” starring Rainn Wilson for the very first time. I don’t know how this film escaped my radar screen all of these years, but somehow it did. I must say that it almost equaled, and dare I say these words without worrying about being struck down by lightning, the level of the best rock n’ roll movie of all time, “Spinal Tap”…but not quite.
“The Rocker” accomplished something that sets it apart from any other movie in that it defined what it means to be a hell raising rock n’ roll drummer. From Keith Moon to John Bonham to Animal from The Muppets, drummers have been the driving force behind any trashed out hotel room or 911 call over the past few decades. And if your band doesn’t have one who is fearless and half crazy, then you’re probably playing in the lounge at the Holiday Inn instead of on stage at Coachella.
Before I get too far along with posts on this subject, I thought it best to post a blog that talks about the basics of raising hell. I decided to go back and analyze Lonny Nack, the main hell raisers in my book “The Art of Raising Hell”, and compile a list of what worked for him and what didn’t. There’s a good chance that I’ll update this list from time to time as other ideas come to mind. I’ve even left one number blank for you to fill in so please feel free to make suggestions.
Hopefully, these tips will help you along on your journey and maybe add a few years to your life. Not all of them may fit with your situation and that’s fine. But if you choose to ignore them all, well, all I can say is don’t let the door to heaven hit you in the ass as St. Peter kicks you down the stairs to hell. Continue reading →
The biggest misconception about hell raising is that you have to be loud and obnoxious…and a man. I totally disagree. Although women usually don’t howl at the moon, get into car wrecks, or start bar fights, they have been known to let their hair down, wink at a few too many guys, and flatten the tires on an ex-boyfriend’s truck. In other words, they raise hell in their own way. Continue reading →
The middle finger is a very provocative weapon and should be in every hell raiser’s toolbox. Whether it’s subtly replying to a girlfriend who’s just told you that you’re getting fat or letting the guy across the field know what you really think about his football team, I can guarantee that this gesture will get your message across. Heck, in New York City, it’s a perfectly acceptable way to say hello! No matter how you use it, you’re bound to arouse attention. And, isn’t that what hell raising is all about? Continue reading →
When I turned eleven years old, my dad left a cozy job selling life insurance and bought a tavern. He ran it for fifteen years, but after his second heart attack decided to turn it over to my brother-in-law. The crowd soon transformed from old factory workers into young Harley motorcycle riders. Every one of them looked like they’d jumped out of a ZZ Top album cover. They were the quintessential beer drinkers and hell raisers. Continue reading →