Pidgin English

Pidgin English

There are many twists and even more turns in our native language.

Are you confused by all the acronyms that many businesses and the military use? Well, you are not alone and there are new ones added every day. But it is no wonder. Let’s face it, English is an unusual language.

There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple or pine in pineapple. English muffins weren’t invented in England nor French fries in France. Sweet-meats are candies while sweet­breads, which aren’t sweet, by the way, are meat.

In considering some recent comments from an acquaintance of mine, I find we take English for granted. If we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. Don’t even ask about a butterfly!

And … why is it that writers write but fingers don’t fing, grocers don’t groce and hammers don’t ham? Generators may generate, and alternators may alternate, but pistons don’t … well, they just don’t.

If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth beeth? One goose, two geese. So why not two meece? One house but two mice? One goof, two goofs, but one hoof and two hooves? One index, and two in­dices? One dear and two dears, but one deer and two deer! Doesn’t it seem strange that you can make amends but not one amend, that you comb through annals of his­tory but not a single annal?

If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it? And since we can’t see it, how do we know time flies? If teachers taught, why don’t preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? If you wrote a letter, perhaps you might bote your tongue?

Sometimes I think all the Eng­lish speakers should be committed to an asylum for the verbally in­sane. In what language do you recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that smell? Park on driveways and drive on parkways? Have paper­clips that aren’t paper at all? Have bookkeepers to do accounting, and librarians to keep books?

Have hot water heaters instead of cold water heaters? Have nightfalls but daybreaks? How can a slim chance and a fat chance mean the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites? And what’s with flammable and in­flammable? How can overlook and oversee be so different, while quite a lot and quite a few are so much alike? How can the weather be hot as hell one day and cold as hell another? And why do people use “irregardless” when it isn’t even a word at all?

Have you ever noticed that we talk about certain things only when they are absent? Have you ever seen a horsefull carriage or a strapfull gown? Met a sung hero or experienced requited love?

Have you ever run into someone who was combobulated, gruntled, ruly or peccable? And where are all those people who are spring chickens, or who actually would hurt a fly?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which our house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill out a form by filling it in, and in which an alarm clock goes off by going on.

English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race (which, of course is not a race at all). That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are in­visible. And why, when I wind up my watch, I start it, but when I wind up this article, I end it.

Math Trick

Math Trick


1. Grab a calculator (you can’t do this in your head!)

2. Key in the first three digits of your phone number (NOT area code)

3. Multiple by 80

4. Add 1

5. Multiply by 250

6. Add the last four digits of your phone number

7. Add the last four digits of your phone number again

8. Subtract _250

_ 9. Divide by 2

_Now_ do you recognize the number…???





Life is not Fair

Life is not Fair

Bill Gates recently gave a speech at a High School about 11 things
they did not and will not learn in school. He talks about how feel-good,
politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no
concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the
real world.

TO: Mt. Whitney High School    Visalia, California

Rule 1: Life is not fair – get used to it!

Rule 2: The world won’t care about your self-esteem. The world will
expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3: You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You
won’t be a vice-be president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents
had a different word for burger flipping – they called it opportunity.

Rule 6: If you mess up, it’s not your parents’ fault, so don’t whine
about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7: Before you were born, your parents weren’t as boring as they are
now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and
listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you
save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent’s generation, try
delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life
HAS NOT. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they’ll
give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t
bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9: Life is not divided into semesters. You don’t get summers off
and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do
that on your own time.

Rule 10: Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have
to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you’ll end up working for one.


Geometry Quiz

Geometry Quiz
Match the Geometrical terms at the right with their crazy definitions below.
1. A broken angle
2. Place where people are sent for committing crimes
3. When you have more than one L
4. The opposite of telling the truth
5. A pretty vertex
6. What the engineer telegraphed ahead
7. An angle that is never wrong
8. Used to tie up packages
9. That man does not talk plainly
10. What girls want to find at the beach
11. They voted yes on farm machinery
12. Mathematician’s dessert
13. A sharp weapon
14. What little acorns say when they grow up
15. The one in charge
16. What the professor did with the letter he carried for a week before mailing
17. What the man did when his mother-in-law wanted to go home
18. What a person should do when it rains
19. The way the poet wrote her love letters
20. A missing parrot
A. Parallel
B. Polygon
C. Triangle
D. Prism
E. Postulate
F. Sphere
G. Geometry
H. Protractor
I. Tangent
J. Chord
K. Center
L. Coincide
M. Acute angle
N. Midpoint
O. Ellipse
P. Inverse
Q. Rectangle
R. Right angle
S. Line
T. Ruler
U. Translate
V. Square
W. Pi
X. Hexagon

Genius Test

Genius Test


1. If you went to bed at 8:00 at night and set the alarm for 9:00 in the morning, how many hours would you sleep?
2. Do they have a fourth of July in England?
3. Why can’t a man living in Winston Salem, N.C., be buried west of the Mississippi River?
4. How many birthdays does an average man have? Woman?
5. If you had one match and entered a room in which there was a kerosene lamp, an oil burner, and a wood burning stove, which would you light first?
6. Some months have 30 days, some have 31 days, how many have 28 days?
7. If a doctor gave you three pills and told you to take one every half hour, how long would they last?
8. A man builds a house with four sides to it, and it is rectangular in shape. Each side had a southern exposure. What color is the bear that comes wandering by?
9. How far can a dog run into the woods?
10. What is the minimum number of active players on a baseball field during any part of an inning?
11. What four words appear on every denomination of the U.S. coin?
12. I have in my hand 2 U.S. coins which have a total value of 55 cents. One of these coins is not a nickel. Please bear this in mind. What are the coins?
13. A farmer had 17 sheep. All but nine died. How many did he have left?
14. Divide 30 by 1/2 and add 10. What is the answer?
15. Two men were playing checkers. They played 5 complete games and each one won the same number of games. How can you explain this?
16. You take two apples from three apples.  What do you have?
17. An archeologist claims that he found some gold coins dated 46 B.C. Do you think he did? Why?
18. A woman gives a beggar 50 cents. The woman is the beggar’s sister, but the beggar is not the woman’s brother. How come?
19. How many animals of each species did Moses take aboard the Ark with him?
20. Is it legal in New Mexico for a man to marry his widow’s sister?
Answers to Genius Test:
1. ONE HOUR – A clock without AM/PM indicators would ring the alarm in 1 hour
2. Fourth – lower case, f = date, not holiday.
3. The man is living, not dead.
4. 1, 1, birthdate.
5. The match.
6. All months.
7. ONE HOUR – 1:00, 1:30, 2:00
8. White – A polar bear – North Pole
9. 1/2 way, then he’s running out.
10. 10 – 6
11. In God We Trust or United States of America
12. 50 cents, 5 cents. The 50 cents is not a nickel.
13. 9
14. 70
15. They were not playing each other
16. 2 apples = You took 2
17. No. How could it be dated? They would not know.
18. The beggar is the woman’s sister.
19. None – Noah
20. No, he’s dead.



1)   The bandage was wound around the wound.

2)   The farm was used to produce produce.

3)   The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.

4)   We must polish the Polish furniture.

5)   He could lead if he would get the lead out.

6)   The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.

7)   Since there is no time live like present, he thought it was time to present the present.

8)   A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.

9)   When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.

10)   I did not object to the object.

11)   The insurance was invalid for the invalid.

12)   There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.

13)   They were too close to the door to close  it.

14)   The buck does funny things when the does are present.

15)   Seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.

16)   To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.

17)   The wind was too strong to wind the sail.

18)   After a number of injections my jaw got number.

19)   Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.

20)   I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

21)   How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?



Scott Adams: The Consultant of the future?

This is a true story. Recently, Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame) pulled off a hoax by successfully posing as an organization consultant to a team of senior leaders at Logitech. He was brought in by Logitech’s vice chairman (a confederate) ostensibly to help the leadership team define a new mission statement for their New Ventures Group. Calling himself “Ray Mebert” and disguised in a wig and fake mustache, Adams told the group that his consulting experience included working on Procter and Gamble’s “Taste Bright Project” a hush-hush effort to increase the company’s sales by improving the taste of soap.

Prior to contact with Adams, the original mission statement of the group was “to provide Logitech with profitable growth and related new business areas.” Adams eschewed this statement and worked with the leaders to develop the following mission statement: “The New Venture Mission is to scout profitable growth opportunities in relationships, both internally and externally, in emerging, mission inclusive markets, and explore new paradigms and then filter and communicate and evangelize the findings.” At the end of the session Adams revealed his true identity as the Dilbert cartoonist (, 1997).

So there you have it—Dilbert, Dogbert, Catbert, Ratbert and now Mebert. Seriously, I myself was outraged by the hoax. Sure, on the surface it seems funny, but when you stop to think about it it’s a pretty scathing indictment of the perceived utility of most consultants. It reminds me of the Hans Christian Andersen story about the emperor with no clothes.

Who is my grandfather?

I met a widow, who lived with her step-daughter. I married her. My father fell in love with the step daughter of my wife, and married her. My wife became the mother-in-law of my own father: my wife’s step-daughter is my step-mother. My step-mother, who is the step-daughter of my wife, has a boy: he is my step-brother because he is the son of my father and of my step-mother; but as he is the son of my wife’s step-daughter, so is my wife the grandmother of the boy, and I am the grandfather of my step-brother. My wife also has a boy, my step-mother is consequently his step-sister and is also his grand-mother because he is the child of her step-son; and my father is the brother-in-law of my son. My son is the grandson of my father.
Who is my grandfather?


Start with a cage containing five monkeys. Inside the cage,  hang a
banana on a string and place a set of stairs under it. Before long, a  monkey
will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana. As  soon as he
touches the stairs, spray all of the other monkeys with cold  water.

After a while, another monkey makes an attempt with the same  result all the
other monkeys are sprayed with cold water. Pretty soon, when  another monkey
tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent  it.

Now, put away the cold water. Remove one monkey from the cage and replace
it with a new one. The new monkey sees the banana and wants to climb the

To his surprise and horror, all of the other monkeys attack him.  After
another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs,
he will be assaulted.

Next, remove another of the original five monkeys  and replace it with
a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked.  The previous
newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm! Likewise, replace
a third original monkey with a new one, then a fourth, then the fifth.
Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs, he is attacked.

Most of  the monkeys that are beating him have no idea why they were not
permitted to climb the stairs or why they are participating in the beating of
the newest monkey.

After replacing all the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys
have ever been sprayed with cold water. Nevertheless, no monkey ever  again
approaches the stairs to try for the banana. Why not? Because as far as  they
know that’s the way it’s always been done around here.

And that, my  friends, is how a company policy begins.