Friday leftovers.

I’ve gotten a particular piece of wienie spam four times today. The first one said, “I don’t care why your woody is so small, but 81% of women do.”

The second one said, “I don’t care why your schlong is so small, but 74% of women do.”

The third one said, “I don’t care why your member is so small, but 85% of women do.”

The fourth one said, “I don’t care why your sausage is so small, but 70% of women do.”

Checking the junk file, I see I also got a version with a slightly different sentence construction, with the same tic — the euphemism changes, along with the percentage.

Oh, wait, another just arrived: “woody” and 80 percent.

Spammers. If only we could harness their powers for good.

It’s Friday, a sunny but cold Friday, which means today I’m a-gonna live large. Put in the contact lenses and wear my sunglasses, maybe hit an estate sale, work a bit and look forward to the weekend. On the strength of a hunch and a Free Press preview, I just bought tickets to the Moscow Cats Theater for tomorrow. Kate loves cats and needs to be exposed to more weirdness outside the boundaries of Grosse Pointe, so this seemed to fit the bill. I liked this detail:

When a stray cat jumps into the orchestra pit or refuses to move off the stage, Kuklachev will just move on to the next routine. “When they notice that all eyes are off of them, they will do something to win the attention back,” Gelfman says. “The show never plays the same way twice.”

Cats. If only we could harness their powers for good.

Well, the Rockettes aren’t bringing their Christmas show to the D this year, and it beats the drive-thru Nativity in Sterling Heights.

This feels like an end-of-the-week stew already, so let’s get to it:

I know I haven’t been keeping up with “On the Nightstand,” and yes, I’m about to change it, but before I put “The Woman at the Washington Zoo” back on the shelf, a plug for its wonderfulness. I’ve been reading compilations of journalists’ work for years, and not all of them are worth the paper they’re printed on, but this one — this one has legs. A bouquet of wonderful profiles, followed by personal essays of grace and style. It would make a fine book club selection, or beach reading, or whatever. And yes, it has a new website, full of supplemental materials. Enjoy.

I just read a rave of “Apocalypto” by one of my favorite critics, but you know what they say about opinions. Here’s another take, from Slate’s Dana Stevens:

Here is a partial list of the indignities to which the human body is subjected in Mel Gibson’s Mayan epic Apocalypto (Buena Vista): being impaled on a trap made of animal bones. Being forced to ingest tapir testicles. Being tricked into rubbing a caustic agent on one’s own genitals while the whole village watches and laughs. Seeing one’s father have his throat slit. Getting one’s heart cut out in a sacrificial ritual. Having one’s head subsequently chopped off and thrown down the stairs of a pyramid. Having one’s face chewed off by a panther. …Gibson’s fascination with the Mayans seems to spring entirely from the fact (or fantasy) that they were exotic badasses who knew how to whomp the hell out of one another, old-school.

Extra credit for a fresh use of that old analogy: “so (blank) it makes (blank) look like (blank).” Ahem: A chase scene at a roaring waterfall is so spectacular, it makes “Last of the Mohicans” look like an Esther Williams musical.

Mercy. I’ll wait for the cable debut. Although I still haven’t seen “The Passion of the Christ.” Doesn’t Mel believe in HBO?

Finally, I pride myself — not really; I just take note of it — on not having any accent. I’m from the middle of Ohio, where the natives have no regional accent whatsoever. My St. Louis-raised parents said “fark” and “harse” for fork and horse, but they moved me to the Buckeye state before I started kindergarten, and so — no accent. Evidently, experts agree:

What American accent do you have?

Your Result: The West
 

Your accent is the lowest common denominator of American speech. Unless you’re a SoCal surfer, no one thinks you have an accent. And really, you may not even be from the West at all, you could easily be from Florida or one of those big Southern cities like Dallas or Atlanta.

The Midland
 
Boston
 
North Central
 
The Inland North
 
Philadelphia
 
The South
 
The Northeast
 
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

Glad to clear that up. Now, on to “What mental disorder do you have?” Have a swell weekend.

Posted at 10:32 am in Movies, Same ol' same ol' |
 

30 responses to “Friday leftovers.”

  1. brian stouder said on December 8, 2006 at 10:38 am

    Hah! You forgot to close a tag! Off to voluntary suspension with you!

  2. nancy said on December 8, 2006 at 10:47 am

    And if I had to pick the one person who would have caught that in the approximately 30 seconds it was up, it would be you, Brian. Congratulations. You’ve now been entered to win a fabulous prize.

  3. brian stouder said on December 8, 2006 at 10:58 am

    Words to live by: “If it’s close to 10 in the morning, it’s time to check NN.c”

    And now, I am off to hange black bunting – just read that Jeane Kirkpatrick died. (and unlike Cheney, she won’t be arising from her coffin each night!)

    I always found her writing to be genuinely trenchant and insightful, and news of her passing made me say “oh” – very like when you hear of a teacher you once had passing away

  4. mary said on December 8, 2006 at 11:30 am

    The Woman at the Washington Zoo is wonderful, and it’s on my nightstand right now. The Barbara Bush profile is my favorite so far.

  5. Emma said on December 8, 2006 at 11:43 am

    My accent: The Midland. It says I have a good voice for radio. Funny, I’ve heard the same thing about my face! (drum fill)

  6. Connie said on December 8, 2006 at 12:08 pm

    You actually read your spam?

    And maybe HBO doesn’t believe in Mel.

  7. basset said on December 8, 2006 at 12:15 pm

    what a reserved and cultured group… six responses so far and nobody’s said anything about what the percentage REALLY is .

    and me, I’m a Southern accent. native Hoosier but I’ve been down here, let’s see, 23 years now.

  8. Sue said on December 8, 2006 at 12:21 pm

    Nancy,
    Born and raised in the U.P, I had to take the quiz. Since I’ve been away (Florida & S. Cal.) for the past 28 years I was curious to see the results. It pegged me as being mistaken as a Canadian. Ya, you betcha, it was correct.
    In my defense, I could never be confused with someone from Fargo.

  9. MarkH said on December 8, 2006 at 12:27 pm

    Never even been to New England, but now I’m from Boston (!!).

  10. mary said on December 8, 2006 at 12:35 pm

    I’m from the Inland North. I did have about an hour layover on a flight through Chicago once, but that’s about it for my inland north experience. New Jersey/New York/Philadelphia/Denver/the Netherlands/Los Angeles created my accent. Go figure.

  11. brian stouder said on December 8, 2006 at 12:50 pm

    Go figure

    But, Mary, what did you think of Mary, merry, and marry? (where’s Peter and Paul? – is my first reaction)

    I’m ‘midland’.

    I think another few decades of electronic mass-media, and we’ll ALL be ‘midland’ (and we’ll all do that business of speaking with one cadence at work, and another around ‘our people’ – as many southerners and black Americans do)

  12. mary said on December 8, 2006 at 1:16 pm

    Mary has the a sound like air, merry is a short e like pet, and marry is a short a like hat.

    They rhyme with fairy, cherry and Harry, if that helps.

  13. brian stouder said on December 8, 2006 at 1:29 pm

    See, I’d say ‘air’ with a longer ‘a’ than the ‘a’ in Mary (so that ‘air’ would sound more like ‘layer’) – but I would rhyme ‘Mary’ and ‘cherry’.

    But I agree with the a in ‘hat’ for ‘marry’ (like the way Carly Simon says ‘marry’ in “That’s the way I always heard it should be”)

  14. mary said on December 8, 2006 at 1:41 pm

    From my in-house Brit: “I don’t care that your pork-sword is small but…”

  15. Maryo said on December 8, 2006 at 2:30 pm

    After having met with both my fifth-grader’s and kindergartener’s math teachers this morning, I’m tempted to put all those “woody” percentages together and have them do a math equation for me.

    Regarding the Mel Gibson flick, did you hear Kenneth Turan’s review of it on NPR this morning? Harsh, harsh and — I’m a westerner who sometimes favors long vowels — Haaaaaaarrrrrsh!

  16. Dorothy said on December 8, 2006 at 3:27 pm

    No surprise here. Midland. Born and raised a Pittsburgher (PA, not Kansas)

  17. Sue said on December 8, 2006 at 3:35 pm

    Fairy, cherry, Harry, rhyme to each to me. I wonder if anyone understands me when I talk. They must….cuz I use my hands.

  18. Bob said on December 8, 2006 at 4:38 pm

    I remember a segment some time back on (I think) 60 Minutes where they managed to track down and confront a porn spammer. That proves that it’s possible, despite the popular conception that these folks are untraceable.

    There should be enough legitimate pharmaceutical makers, OEM software vendors, investment brokers, and annoyed internet users to fund a cadre of expert hacker-investigators to track down the handful of spammers probably responsible for most of the traffic, and a couple of enforcers to administer Mel Gibson-inspired justice and post video clips of the event online.

    While they’re at it, they could ferret out the suckers that encourage that crap by falling for the scams, and put them out of their misery.

    I’ll bet there would be a sharp drop in the amount of spam.

  19. ashley said on December 8, 2006 at 9:08 pm

    Brian: “we’ll all do that business of speaking with one cadence at work, and another around ‘our people’ – as many southerners and black Americans do”.

    Yepper. Evidently, that’s me, as I’m “midland”, however my yankee friends say that when I’m on the phone with my brethren, I regress.

  20. Susan said on December 8, 2006 at 10:26 pm

    Nancy,
    Took your quiz and am postively 100% Midland (Fort Wayner for the past 45 years). I wanted to tell you that I recently stumbled onto your website via Mitch Harper’s Fort Wayne Observed and blog links, and am delighted to see you in “print” again! I miss your Ft. Wayne columns; my mother and I used to discuss them back when… You’re on my favorites now and I’m calling Mom, for sure. Thanks, Nancy, for your great sense of humor and wit.

    Susan

  21. alex said on December 9, 2006 at 1:59 am

    I was astounded to learn I was Philadelphian. I went back a second time and decided to pronounce marry the same as Mary/merry and came up Midland.

    There need to be more criteria than these to perform a truly accurate test. The Philadelphian description also lumped in places like Baltimore, which to my ear is distinctly different than Philadelphia/New Jersey, which is distinctly different from Midland. I had a friend from Baltimore and Baltimorese has its own distinctive inflections and pronunciations. I knew him in Chicago, where there’s a strong undertone of shanty Irish, and so he really stood out. We had a book one time with a linguistic map and what they speak in Baltimore is known as the “Norfolk twang.” Wonder if that’s pronounced “Norfuck” as it is in Virginia.

  22. Caleb Cook said on December 9, 2006 at 9:08 am

    I took the quiz, hit Submit Answers … and found that I was “10% perfect as a girlfriend.”

    Maybe it’s my accent or something.

  23. Danny said on December 9, 2006 at 9:31 am

    Alex, being a native Baltimoron, I do agree we have a weird, subtle accent. I think I mostly speak without it nowadays, but I sometimes lapse back into it for an odd word or two. My mother still “warshes” clothes and drinks “warder.” But then I do get the southern accent back if I spend a long spell with my other kin. Raised in Bawlmer by a bunch of hillbillies. Geesh. It’s a wonder I can talk at all.

    From Wikipedia: Baltimore’s accent exemplifies a dialectal continuum between Tidewater American English and Delaware Valley American English, loosely possessing the vowel shifts of the former and general pronunciation of the latter. For instance, “Baltimore” is pronounced “Bawlamer” or even “Balmer,” and “Maryland” becomes “Murland” or “Murlan.” Other common pronunciations include “ool,” “amblance,” “wooder,” “warsh,” “sharr, or shaow” “dug,” “tew” (oil, ambulance, water, wash, shower, dog, and two, respectively).

  24. Danny said on December 9, 2006 at 9:43 am

    You know another odd thing I just remembered about Baltimore is that they have these roadside stands where you can get open pit beef sandwiches. How strange is that? Growing up there, I never questioned it, but I’ve never seen it elsewhere and I’ve wondered how they came to be. I mean, were there enough people that said to themselves, “Man, sometimes I’m drivin’ down the road and can barely think straight for want of an open pit beef sandwich. We must have one of these little stands every so often as we drive, lest we perish.”

    Whatever.

    I guess it is kinda like the boiled peanuts they have in South Carolina. Dorothy knows about them.

    Hey Dorothy, we’ll be out there next Friday. My sister-in-law turns 40 on Saturday. She wants to go eat in Greenville at the Bankok Thai Cuisine restaurant. But who knows, someone may have prepared a surprise for her.

  25. nancy said on December 9, 2006 at 9:54 am

    Danny (and all the rest of you), if you haven’t discovered the novels of Laura Lippman you’re really missing something. All are set in Baltimore (one goes to Texas, but begins and ends in Charm City), and there are extensive discussions of Bawlmer pronunciations.

    Apparently “hon” is a big word there. I was thrilled to hear Marcia Donnelly/Tootsie Duvall call someone “hon” on an episode of “The Wire” this season.

  26. Danny said on December 9, 2006 at 10:29 am

    Nancy, thanks. I’ll check her out over the holidays which I can hardly wait for to come. Lately, my free time has been scarce because it is crunch time. I’m designing a gearbox that is going to weigh 18,000 lbs and transmit 44,000 horsepower. Sure hope it works because that would be an embarrassingly big paperweight! I’ll know in March 2008. 😉

  27. wade said on December 9, 2006 at 11:16 am

    I took the accent test – I’m 2% of a good girlfriend.

    Maybe the site couldn’t understand which quiz I was taking…

  28. Dorothy said on December 9, 2006 at 4:23 pm

    Danny I wish we could arrange an accidentally on purpose bump into each other, but my kids are coming to town on Wednesday and Thursday this week, and we are having early Christmas on Friday. I”m taking the day off, as is my husband, and we’re exchanging gifts and making a big ham dinner. Let me know next time you’re here, though!

    Is that Thai restaurant on Pelham Road by any chance? I think there are two of them up in that vicinity. I’ve eaten at both.

  29. Danny said on December 10, 2006 at 10:35 am

    No problem, Dorothy, the holidays are going to be busy for us family-wise too. We’ll be out for several weeks, but most of the time we are going to be in North Carolina.

    Yeah, I am pretty sure it is the one on Pelham road. Speaking of accents, it always makes me smile when the young Thai girl at the restaurant greets us with the thickest, most southern version of “Heeaayyy! How y’all doin’?” I guess southern accents are like kudzu, They grow on you whether you like it or not.

  30. Bob G. said on December 12, 2006 at 4:07 pm

    Simply AMAZING….!!!

    Says I have a 100% PHILADELPHIA accent…and I come from Philly…who’da thunk, eh?

    Now…if ONLY these “Hoosiers” could learn to make a GOOD Philly cheesesteak…!

    😉