October 17, 2007
So last night walking the dogs after birthday dinner (under a surprisingly rich starlit, moonless sky) Evil B and I got to talking about rotes, (is that the usual term?) those little turns of phrase we tend to fall back on. He was amused to be able to pick out three of mine that I had just used in quick succession: "Dude," a typical prelude, "well, here's the thing," a way of couching what I think is the critical point, and "Maybe I haven't been paying close enough attention to..." which is a way of excusing my difference of opinion I'm talking with, and conceding their possible superior knowledge.
I'm pretty careful when I argue, and tend to leave myself rhetorical escape hatches. Also, my tangential manner of thinking sometimes leaves me verbally setting off down three or four thought paths in rapid succession... this can be frustrating to my listeners, so I try to curb it a bit (which is probably when I start using those "rotes" a bit more.)
The other thing that's been bugging me lately is how a specific word or phrase, once used, has a likelier than average chance to show up again, like how I used the word "succession" in both of the previous paragraphs.
Moral Guidance of the Moment
Look at the moral guidance I offer. On faith: "After Jesus was born, the Old Testament basically became a way for Bible publishers to keep their word count up." On gender: "The sooner we accept the basic differences between men and women, the sooner we can stop arguing about it and start having sex." On race: "While skin and race are often synonymous, skin cleansing is good, race cleansing is bad." On the elderly: "They look like lizards."
--Stephen Colbert writing Maureen Dowd's column for her, just to prove an NY Times OpEd ain't such a big deal. (via Bill the Splut--I've been cribbing from him an awful lot as of late.)
Utility of the Moment
PDFCalendar.com offers a nice interface for no-frill calendar printouts, with a decent ("decent" -- there's another overused descriptor of mine) selection of options. I was looking to start a completed task log for work in that kind of format, and finding this site was a boon.