Monthly Archives: March 2014

10 Famous Quotations That Are Literary Misquotations

A fabulous post about misquotations 😉 enjoy…

Interesting Literature

As Hesketh Pearson put it, ‘Misquotations are the only quotations that are never misquoted.’ To see if he’s right, we’ve compiled a Top Ten list containing what we think are the commonest expressions in English which are misquotations of their original literary idioms. How many of these did you know started out as something different? And do you think that they are still ‘misquotations’, if the phrases go on to gain a new life of their own?

Oh, and have we left off any good examples of literary misquotation?

1. Me Tarzan, you Jane. This line doesn’t appear in any of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ original books, nor in the films; it probably arose as a compacting of the dialogue exchange between Tarzan and Jane in the 1932 film Tarzan the Ape Man.

2. Abandon hope, all ye who enter here. This translation from Dante’s Inferno – the words are inscribed…

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Friday Poem – Barbie Doll

A poem by the American poet Marge Piercy (1936- )Barbie

An extremely accurate description of how one seemingly innocent comment can have such an impact on a life. We are all beautiful in our own way, whether we are big, small, freckled, muscular, mis-shapen nosed, etc. We cannot, and should not be made to feel that we have to fit in to the mould of stick insect, sunken-cheeked, false everything fashion driven looks. We should be happy in our own skin. It matters not one iota if we are a size zero or a size 20.

You are beautiful by being true to yourself!

Barbie Doll

This girl child was born as usual
and presented dolls that did pee-pee
and miniature GE stoves and irons
and wee lipsticks the color of cherry candy.
Then in the magic of puberty, a classmate said:
You have a great big nose and fat legs.

She was healthy, tested intelligent,
possessed strong arms and back,
abundant sexual drive and manual dexterity.
She went to and fro apologizing.
Everyone saw a fat nose on thick legs.

She was advised to play coy,
exhorted to come on hearty,
exercise, diet, smile and wheedle.
Her good nature wore out
like a fan belt.
So she cut off her nose and her legs
and offered them up.

In the casket displayed on satin she lay
with the undertaker’s cosmetics painted on,
a turned-up putty nose,
dressed in a pink and white nightie.
Doesn’t she look pretty? everyone said.
Consummation at last.
To every woman a happy ending.

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Friday Poem – Art

A poem by the American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882).

A poem that celebrates man’s imagination and creativity, and that through art, in whatever form, man gives his life importance.

Art

Give to barrows, trays, and pans
Grace and glimmer of romance;
Bring the moonlight into noon
Hid in gleaming piles of stone;
On the city’s paved street
Plant gardens lined with lilacs sweet;
Let spouting fountains cool the air,
Singing in the sun-baked square;
Let statue, picture, park, and hall,
Ballad, flag, and festival,
The past restore, the day adorn,
And make to-morrow a new morn.
So shall the drudge in dusty frock
Spy behind the city clock
Retinues of airy kings,
Skirts of angels, starry wings,
His fathers shining in bright fables,
His children fed at heavenly tables.
‘T is the privilege of Art
Thus to play its cheerful part,
Man on earth to acclimate,
And bend the exile to his fate,
And, moulded of one element
With the days and firmament,
Teach him on these as stairs to climb,
And live on even terms with Time;
Whilst upper life the slender rill
Of human sense doth overfill.

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Out of the Mouthes of Babes – Robbers

I casually mentioned to SC earlier in the week that I had to go and sit in church for an hour.Thief

He asked why?

And I said that it was just in case anyone came in to the church and wanted information.

He then said, “You must take your mobile mummy, just in case robbers come in, and then you can phone the police. You know what robbers look like, don’t you?”

Quizzical look from yours truly…

“Well,” he continued, “they wear jumpers – ”

“- with stripes?” I interjected.

“Yes, and they wear black t-shirts with very long sleeves. So just remember if anyone comes into church like that, then they are a robber!”

How very stereotypical 😉

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Friday Poem – Bankers are just like everyone else, except richer

…ain’t that the truth 😉bankers

This is a poem I found, written by Ogden Nash (1902-1971).

A rant? Truth? Or maybe just a point hidden underneath all the ‘silliness’?

Bankers are just like everyone else, except richer!

This is a song to celebrate banks,
Because they are full of money and you go into them and all
you hear is clinks and clanks,
Or maybe a sound like the wind in the trees on the hills,
Which is the rustling of the thousand dollar bills.
Most bankers dwell in marble halls,
Which they get to dwell in because they encourage deposits
and discourage withdrawals,
And particularly because they all observe one rule which woe
betides the banker who fails to heed it,
Which is you must never lend any money to anybody unless
they don’t need it.
I know you, you cautious conservative banks!
If people are worried about their rent it is your duty to deny
them the loan of one nickel, yes, even one copper engraving
of the martyred son of the late Nancy Hanks;
Yes, if they request fifty dollars to pay for a baby you must
look at them like Tarzan looking at an uppity ape in the
jungle,
And tell them what do they think a bank is, anyhow, they had
better go get the money from their wife’s aunt or uncle.
But suppose people come in and they have a million and they
want another million to pile on top of it,
Why, you brim with the milk of human kindness and you
urge them to accept every drop of it,
And you lend them the million so then they have two million
and this gives them the idea that they would be better off
with four,
So they already have two million as security so you have no
hesitation in lending them two more,
And all the vice-presidents nod their heads in rhythm,
And the only question asked is do the borrowers want the
money sent or do they want to take it with them.
Because I think they deserve our appreciation and thanks,
the jackasses who go around saying that health and happi-
ness are everything and money isn’t essential,
Because as soon as they have to borrow some unimportant
money to maintain their health and happiness they starve
to death so they can’t go around any more sneering at good
old money, which is nothing short of providential.

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Friday Poem – Five Eyes

This poem by Walter de la Mere (1873-1958) is one of my favourites from when I was a little girl.W_3-black-cats

Five Eyes

In Hans’ old Mill his three black cats
Watch the bins for the thieving rats.
Whisker and claw, they crouch in the night,
Their five eyes smouldering green and bright:
Squeaks from the flour sacks, squeaks from where
The cold wind stirs on the empty stair,
Squeaking and scampering, everywhere.
Then down they pounce, now in, now out,
At whisking tail, and sniffing snout;
While lean old Hans he snores away
Till peep of light at break of day;
Then up he climbs to his creaking mill,
Out come his cats all grey with meal–
Jekkel, and Jessup, and one-eyed Jill.

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Going Under the Knife (Part 2)

…so, last Friday was the day.

Picked SC up from school and then he (along with my dad) dropped me at the hospital. I gave him a big hug and good night kiss (SC, not my dad), and assured him I would be home before he woke up in the morning.

Oh, how wrong could I have been?

I assumed, my surgery would be around 6pm, wake up about 8pm, recover from the anaesthetic and be up and out of the hospital by 11pm at the latest.

What I didn’t bargain on was the doctor before running late or indeed the effect of the general anaesthetic combined with morphine on me!

Thankfully, whilst I waited in my warm room, I had the television for company – otherwise I would have gone stir crazy. Nothing to do, no one to talk to, just 4 walls.

I met the anaesthetist, who told me what they would do, I kind of glossed over him mentioning the use of morphine, as I was more concerned with telling him to make sure I woke up! And then I met my gynaecological consultant who confirmed what she would be doing.

I was amazed at the number of times I was asked when I last ate, if I had any loose teeth, fillings, metal plates, etc. I know it’s just ensuring everything is dotted and crossed as it should be.

Anyway, I eventually walked down to theatre (not the kind I’m used to entering, even though I was sporting a rather, highly amusing pair of surgical knickers – they were fairly frilly) at 8:25pm.

I lay on the trolley and they inserted a drip in my arm. Now I’ve had general anaesthetic 3 times in the past (tonsils, wisdom teeth and chest surgery), and each time I have felt the cold knock-out drug make it’s way up my left arm and have never got beyond 6 when counting back from 10. This time was the first, and I swear to God the last, time I have had a mask put over my face. It was oxygen and then the knock-out drops got mixed up in there and the last thing I remember was the anaesthetist saying “take a deep breath. Good night!”

Now, I can’t bear anything being put over my face or around my neck (I reckon I must have met a grisly end in a previous life), so being knocked out with a mask freaked me somewhat.

Still, next thing I knew, I was coming round in my room, with a nurse and the consultant at the bedside. I was drifting in and out of consciousness as the consultant was trying to tell me what she’d done – pretty much everything that had been on the list – 2 cameras shoved in at various points, destined to meet in the middle, removal of an ovarian cyst (which was nice and clear, so nothing to worry about), and removal of many polyps, then finally the endometrium removal. Joyous! I vaguely remember her trying to show me the photos as well.

At this point I was more concerned about getting back to SC, but the nurse phoned my mum who said at 11pm at night I might as well stay in the hospital.

I had some very jazzy leg pumps on – they are designed to keep blood pumping around your legs to stop you developing DVT – and they are hilarious. You feel tight squeezes up one leg, and then it releases, before it repeats the squeezing on the other leg. If you can’t get to sleep, the rhythmic quality of it would definitely help.

I was in and out of consciousness for ages, and the blood pressure was being monitored at regular intervals. At one point it must have dipped really low, as the nurse said I needed oxygen. I was alert enough to say not to put it over my face, so the oxygen mask was left to rest on my chest, until the blood pressure reached it normal fairly low level.

It was about 1am when the sickness started. I felt it, pressed the buzzer for the nurse who got to the door and I just said “sick!” and she dived for a ‘friend bowl’ which I pretty much kept hold of all night after that, and most of the next morning.

By about 3am I drifted right off to sleep and woke up, totally alert, about 6am.

Then the Kylie episode started!

I had to go to the bathroom, so the nurse helped me sit up. Oh boy! Was I spinning around? The room didn’t stop – then of course I started being ill again.

It pretty much took me 5 hours to sit upright, never mind getting up and walking.

And because they wouldn’t let me go home until I had managed to eat, and keep down, at least a slice of toast, I had to have an anti-sickness injection.

I eventually left around 2pm and spent the rest of weekend doing very little.

Still, it’s done. Hopefully, I won’t have to have anything else done and my hormones will get back to some kind of normality. I shall await the outcome at my follow-up appointment next week.

Maybe I should go and sit on a mountain-top for 6 months?

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