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September 19, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Fighting words. Flea or flight

Heavy duty cart sutiable for all terrain baby stroller. NO permissions gratnted. ALL rights reserved. Copy righted

Perception is everything. Obviously one of those very expensive, heavy duty, all terrain baby buggies. Doubles as a stylish constructionist bassinet in any trendy loft. ©

Cloudy heading – with no logical thought to ground in context.

That’s freedom.

“It is what you want it to be.”

That’s risky.

Lil’ darlings once, words now hobbled. They huddle among their own kind in the back book rooms.

Confused with physical batterers.

Ever to be absolved of guilt? A committee might fine them, innocent.

They are bound to hope their banishment is only temporary. (Absence makes the human heart grow fonder, yes?)

elegantly woman from 1900-1918-ish Alber Sachs /Walter Scott-photographers. Bradford.Yorkshire. (USPD: pub-date/

Lady Language: all dressed up and nowhere to go. (USPD/

Words tried to adapt to the crippling of the their backbones. 

Dismissal of vocabulary study, root words, endings and prefix. (Sigh. A loss of their heritage)

Scorned for the rollicking games that independent letters are fond of : that mental hide an seek thrill with paronomasia, metaphors, those tricksters: the words often confused, tongue twisting alliterations, and oh, onomatopoeia!

Longing for the days of quick social cuts and social slams.

Language of intelligence.

When satire said you cared enough to slay the very best.

Persuasive discussions of grace and meaningful content.

No fun any more.

So much hyperbole around.

De-evolution to childish name calling without even a clever retort in response. (“I’m rubber and you’re glue. Whatever you say bounces off me and sticks to you” doesn’t even come close.)

woman dressed as bride.Peggy Fish.1920s. (USPD: pub-date/

Language never thought civilized society would wander away from her. Maybe she didn’t realize that netting could snag, or that many dislike dangling modifiers. (USPD/

Who rules the lines? Words wonder.

Relentless scarlet pens pricking.

Words tormented out of a reason.

Totally unnoticed by fans of the emoji, that new genie.

How funny if you consider: old fire soot and clay colors on cave walls may last longer than electronic squiggles on screen.

Can’t call words back, they say.

But have to wonder if words, the bricks and mortar of civilization, are sticking together, compounding, becoming plurals, and diagramming their return.

What will the last word be?

And who will have it.


Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Assorted wordy stuff:

Man and two women. 1920 lobby card "Home rule". Hart Productions/ (USPD (

“Come on, cutie. Drop the lettering. Don’t you know actions speak louder than words?” (USPD/




  1. Kate Crimmins / Sep 19 2016 7:14 am

    I used prissy just this week. I was describing my cat!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 19 2016 8:02 am

      RC informed me that “prissy” is a designated for cat usage only. They get so annoyed when humans mistakenly use it for people intead of the correct purpose.
      Wondering if cats fret needlessly – how many high school or college kids use the word. Could be going archaic…which emoji is the equivalent of “prissy”…probably one that looks like a cat…
      Thanks for fluffing up a comment to leave

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kate Crimmins / Sep 19 2016 8:33 am

        I used “fussy” once for a colleague meaning that she was fastidious. Yeow! She took major offence. Not sure what fussy mean in her house. Maybe spitting up colicky baby? Can we only use words with a corresponding emoji? Mostly I don’t get emojis at all. Never know exactly what they mean. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 19 2016 8:37 am

          That was correct usage – for us dinosaurs. We’re approaching the day when we’ll need universal premade approved emoji signs to make sure people understand the intent/meaning/attitude presented by our words…but there’s gonna be some battle to agree on what emoji indicates what…..maybe I’ll just go with the dogs and watch body language?

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Beth / Sep 19 2016 7:16 am

    Wow. Just wow to all of that. Words fail me and where they don’t fail me, I feel they might be banned.


    • Beth / Sep 19 2016 7:49 am

      I should add that I used “prissy” last week. I use it frequently to describe me or my Mom (it’s a genetic thing I inherited 🙂 )


      • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 19 2016 8:21 am

        Moms often use that prissy word…maybe because moms observed cats? Maybe it’s a virus? Sadly, the inflectious word is rampant here, too…despite the looks of no comprehension by many of those focused on tiny screens.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 19 2016 8:09 am

      Wait.Wait – I’m trying to find the emoji that fits. There are so many of them – what is wrong with developers? Why don’t they just design universal 4-5 emoji and tell everyone to limit all emotional outbursts into one of those. Humans need help dealing with mental clutter. Some schools have found duct tape over talkative mouths works as an instructive tool to re-train brains. Bet we’ll see fashionable duct taped mouths on trendsetting runways shortly. I’d better get up to speed with body language and emoji usage or thought of as an old dinosaur (which might make sensitive ones sad, so me bad.)
      Thanks for being caught wordless – and yet leaving a chatty comment

      Liked by 1 person

  3. easyweimaraner / Sep 19 2016 7:23 am

    dinosaur became a sad word for me… I sometimes feel like one… a dying species :O)


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 19 2016 8:12 am

      A concern for those who live larger than life or have big thoughts. There’s always bones to pick and back rooms for those in the dog house, Easy. Thanks for barking along in the dark

      Liked by 1 person

  4. The Good Greatsby / Sep 19 2016 12:11 pm

    Words and concepts are confusing. Context is no longer a defense. We’re getting our news and social communication through Google and Facebook algorithms that are programmed to take things out of context and reward the new over old. We endlessly debate the news but the way we’re getting the news should be the debate.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 19 2016 2:28 pm

      Wait! Wait! I’m looking for an extreme smile face.
      Of course locating authoritative, neutral, fact oriented sources is getting much more difficult. As you say, far too many are getting selectedly shallow versions (usually using a large number of emotionally charged words). The really disturbing part is the readers aren’t even aware their “news” soures are carefully managed by those who want a certain narrative.
      “Debate” – now that’s a tortured word now. It would be refreshing and useful if school mandated all students in secondary school take at least 2 structured classes in debate so they would learn what an actual debate is, and participate learning how to prepare and succeed in a debate. Talk about working those high learning skills, logic and reasoning. (Name calling and demonizing opponents in politics might then be shown for what it is: products of a weak mind who has no real persuasive argument to counter with)
      But they stopped mandating research papers (here) in Language arts, history, and science classes. (There goes the lessons on using primary sources and solid evidence to support ideas). Add that to overuse of multiple choice tests (SO easy to grade – and the textbook company gives them to teachers for free!) and teacher who only use/parrot scripted lessons and lead students in repetative chants (no thinking encouraged there) – and look how the general population ends up.

      She had been a teacher, but decided to go for her PhD and was hired as a part time research assistant. She handed me what was supposed to be researched, authoritative, scholarly information for the current project on brain development/neurology…it was copied straight from Wikipedia….I handed it back and asked “What is this? A joke, right?” Puzzled she looked offended and said “Everyone knows Wikipedia is OK to use for research.”
      I can still remember the headache.
      Thanks for the seriously researched comment

      Liked by 2 people

      • The Good Greatsby / Sep 19 2016 4:25 pm

        The evidence is overwhelming that the Internet is changing the way we think and that so many technologies make their money from clicks and distraction. Google and Facebook literally lose money when you choose to read one long article instead of clicking on headlines from multiple sources. They also reward new information over the old to entice you to keep constantly connected. Always focusing on the present and never considering long-form arguments are the enemy of context and context is an essential component of critical thinking. If you want to know why Trump can get away with saying something yesterday and completely contradicting himself today, it’s because our brains are being trained not to understand context and the history of an issue. The present will always be more important. Trump could say something outrageous 100 days in a row, but change his mind on the 101st day while Hillary says something outrageous once, and today’s emotional breaking news will overwhelm the context of the past.


      • roughseasinthemed / Sep 21 2016 1:10 pm

        Too funny. A Ph D uses wiki. Sure I use it as a starter, or a general pointer, but I normally use a lot of other sources. For a serious piece I’ll go into other languages and quite esoteric sites. I’m still following a czech airforce site after writing about the Polish prime minister conspiracy in Gib.
        I seriously worry about education.
        Wiki has improved but …


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2016 1:28 pm

          It’s worse. This was a research group boasting of international PI’s. (she did her undergraduate in Madrid.) We hired her as a favor. Husband is a really smart bio-med/neurology scientist in our sister group. Amusingly she would angrily argue with us about editing her writing for proper syntax and word usage saying “I always got A’s and excellence in English in school”…you know how language nuances can unintentionally trip people up, not to mention standard research writing forms. She finally quit to be a stay at home mom after having 2 US born kids…we rapidly tired of her complaining all the time about how bad the US is (she was right about the poor maternity leave, but she was only part-time), while saying they were here “because there were no jobs in Spain.”
          So much the blind leading the blind these days. Mandatory to read widely – multiple views and sources.


          • roughseasinthemed / Sep 21 2016 1:38 pm

            Too weird for words. University? Full research cite sources. Masters? Same. Journalism? Same again. At university for Ancient and Medieaval History and Archaeology that included researching in multiple languages. I’m not multilingual but I can understand enough of a few lingos. Enough to provide more than a wiki extract! Ha! My multilingual boy and girl dicen Hola Mollie:)


          • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2016 1:52 pm

            I’m sure her Master’s thesis in Spanish for university there was fine with her very narrow topic, but in English for a world readership of experts? Oy vey.
            (must now go bark at squirrels…furry ones…much more amusing than two legged kind)


          • roughseasinthemed / Sep 21 2016 1:57 pm

            Mazel tov to her. For what it was worth. No squirries. Getting better with doggies. Socialisation is good 🙂


  5. Jay E. / Sep 24 2016 12:32 pm

    I think tests should purposefully use words that challenge us and our emotions.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 24 2016 7:09 pm

      You are so right. One of the reasons for teaching vocabulary/root words/prefixes/suffixes was to make the language of standardized tests questions/answers more easy to interpret. Part of the game.
      Like one of the experts said in that article, using words on subjects that are of interest to the kids actaully helps hold their interest and keeps them focused and reading more carefully. Once again, people who don’t understand mandating things that make a mess.
      Thanks for adding a testy remark!

      Liked by 1 person

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