Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Irregardless of the silliness of it all. . .

Irregardless of my love of apostrophes, today I want to talk about non-words, such as irregardless. (Ah, if only I were at school teaching right this second. Gosh, the fun we would have.)

I have just had a ‘script filled for antibiotics because it is school holidays and as per standard operating procedures during school  holidays I have gone and fallen prey to a lurgy (surely that’s a non-word too?) and cosseted it along until it has turned into a lung infection. Yay me.

Anyway (or should I say irregardless?) the pharmacist’s directions state:
"Irregardless of food intake take one capsule. . ."

Oh wait, just checked the actual pack, it says “irrespective” - darn, that sheds a different light on things. Huh, why let the truth get in the way of a ‘good’ story.

Irregardless of the actual instructions I have forged ahead and investigated the use of this word. According to that well known, authoritative source Wikipedia  irregardless was first known to have appeared in print as early as 1795.


And most dictionaries treat it as a nonstandard or incorrect. Phew, that’s what I thought too. It is of course a blend of regardless and irrespective. Furthermore it is in the lucky position of being a portmanteau word. What fun!

If one follows up on the cited references and checks the New International Webster Dictionary, or at least its on-line version, they lay the blame squarely on America: “Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the early 20th century.” 

So it’s kind of fitting that if you click on the speaker and listen to the pronunciation it has a definite American flavour to it as well.

The irony, of course - should anyone still be reading - is that despite its official status as a non-word, it still has an entry in the dictionary.

Score one for irregardless.

And then an Australian linguist, Pam Peters (I mean come on really, with alliteration like that she had to become a linguist) points out “ that irregardless has become fetishized because natural examples of this word in corpora of written and spoken English are greatly outnumbered by examples where it is in fact only cited as an incorrect term.”  (Is it me, or are there simpler ways to say that?)
To sum up:
a/ It’s school holidays and I am sick.
b/ Irregardless is a non-word that still appears in the dictionary.
c/ Irregardless is described as a portmanteau word that has been fetishized.
d/ I have a blog and therefore don’t have to bore my friends silly with these things.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Waiting for the Upswing

After two months of putting up with a RSI’d elbow scotching any chance of rowing or yoga I was starting to feel pudgy.

This feeling was met with NO SMPATHY from my workmates coz my pudginess simply wasn’t recognized.

Ok. So suck it up, Stella. (See even that bit of alliteration makes me feel better.)

Things had started to improve:
  • More work. Yay. I don’t feel so impoverished.
  • Best buddies are  back in town. Yay, friends to dance with. Who love me, pudgy or not.
  • Manage to row once a week. Forking out to go to the osteo helps.

 BUT- a migraine (apparently it’s a hormonal thing) had me feeling blue.

When said migraine re-appeared two weeks later, I cried “Cruel and unjust treatment.”

But figured it’d be gone in two days.

Coz it always is.

Instead: it was gone in one day. Yeehaa.

Some would say.

Instead I came down with a snotty, wheezy, cold-type situation in lieu of said migraine.

“Oh crappity crap crap!” and “Give me freakin” a break!”

On the plus side the migraine’s gone I had to cancel rowing tomorrow coz you need working lungs for that.

Instead I am ensconced on the couch watching TV. (Not pay TV, but TV nevertheless.)

OK, a little confession: I had been reading A Wise Heart by Jack Kornfield all about Buddhism and the beginning it talks about being compassionate to yourself and others. . and well. . . it may have reminded me of the last time I read it, when my husband was ill, and I was feeling all sad and lonely anyway. . . and it’s possible there may have been tears. . .

But don’t let that put you of, it’s really ONE of the BEST books I’ve ever read.

Anyway, I turned to the TV. Coz that’s what modern day America/Australia/Britain etc does.

Besides my eyes were puffy and hurt so reading was out. 

So I’m “torn” (using that word with all the sarcasm you can muster) between watching Mean Girls and Salt

Neither of which I can relate to.

I am not an American/possibly Russian spy. Nor am I as skinny as Angelina- we just had that pudgy discussion, remember? And no one's ever going to say:"Do you have any idea who this woman is? What she's done for this country?"

And I am not - no matter how much I lie about my age - a high school student befriended by the “cool” girls.

Although I do work in a school.



But still, little redemption here:

Clearly tonight cries out for more Drambuie.

And, yeah, I am feeling better now. 

Stella-the-drunk xx