Quote of the Day, Love: Oscar Wilde

To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.

Go ahead and search it up

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Verbal Gaffes 101

Yesterday I was on my way to class and as I drove down Broadway in Everett I noticed a new coffee stand. 
This is very similar to what the sign looked like:

It's name? Tsunami, complete with a tall wave painted on the sign.
I noted that it was closed. I think I know why. Maybe the creators genuinely don't understand that a tsunami is not just a gnarly wave to surf, I don't know. It was an ultimate case of  the collision of  bad timing and bad taste.

My favorite part, the jokerman font. I think it would interesting to maybe publish things like obituaries or other bad news in jokerman. It is so goofy that something like:
 I regret to inform you that you are being sued for $4 million.
or something more classic:

Your herpes test is positive

In the same vein: My sister took a class in  high school where the students were assigned to create an advertisement. As presentations usually proceed, students get bored. And though students had some pretty good ideas, the warmth of the room and my general lack of sleep contributed to heads nodding off and then jerking back awake in surprise. The last group was made up of two quiet guys who were in the skater crowd. They had dressed up for the presentation in shirts and ties, a big difference from their usual board shorts with a chain for the wallet and a t-shirt with a band logo. They were serious and they were prepared. Their commercial was of professional level; it had music, graphics,and a voice over, all in the age before photo shop and computer editing for the masses.Everyone was impressed and the room woke up. As the commercial ended, a graphic spun up to the screen and voice with a dramatic stage whisper said, "Genossssiiiide."
The graphic looked a little like this:
picture, me through publisher

The class clapped non-plused. My sister blinked a few times to make sure she had just seen and heard what she thought she had seen. She looked  over to the teacher, Mr. Saad, a millionaire at forty, he had taken up teaching and had a wickedly dry wit and was one of those people who spoke quickly because his brain worked even faster. It was clear that he wanted to laugh and like me, my sister finds it difficult not to laugh when something strikes her the right way.

The teacher, a true pro, didn't laugh and instead asked,"So guys, where did you come up with the name for this product.?"
One of the boys answered, "We flipped through the dictionary and I don't know, genocide just sounded cool."
"Did you look up the definition?"
"No, why?"
And as the teacher explained the boys began to understand the one flaw with their otherwise truly great assignment. To this day, my sister can make my chortle simply by saying in that same dramatic stage whisper, "genooociiide." It has earned us a few odd looks so we no longer use the joke in public. 
I only hope that when/if I get my own classroom that I can keep my cool as well as Mr. Saad. And I hope that I never make a gaffe like that in vocabulary use. Thank goodness for wiktionary.


Anonymous said...

all those jokerman signs need is a happy face or hearts over the i's and j's

Anonymous said...

you make me laugh Katie! Keep up the good work and can't wait to read the new blog. Love the types of men too!

Anonymous said...

I like your irrevrent sense of humor though ther eis no malice in it which makes it refreshing. Keep it up Katie.

Anonymous said...

I still think a credit card bill or studen tloan payment would look bad even in jokerman.

Katie said...

The format document that my school uses is in Comic Sans serif. That seems kind of goofy to me, but they are the pros so i guess they know.