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Feb 4, 2024
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AWADmail Issue 1127

A Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Other Tidbits about Words and Language

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From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Interesting stories from the Net

When Language Fails Us and the Moment
The New York Times

A Language Dies Every Two Weeks. AI Can Help Save Them from Digital Extinction -- or Accelerate Their Demise

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: heightism

What has been your experience with heights, I asked this week. Here’s a selection from the responses.

For most of my adult life, my height was 5’2”. As the years take their toll, I am now 4’11”. Whenever I am in a store and need help reaching something on a high shelf, I thank the person with the offer: “If you need to reach anything low, just let me know.”
-Amy Metnick, Margaretville, New York (amy.metnick gmail.com)

Email of the Week brought to you buy The Official Old’s Cool Education IV -- Latin marches, Greek sings.

As the mother of two short young-adult sons, I can guarantee you that there is still a bias against height-challenged men. Once you are tuned in to it, you will see it everywhere. “Tall, dark, and handsome.” “6’2”, eyes of blue.” EVERY reference to someone’s height that you will come across equates being tall with being... better/more-handsome/more-appealing. It breaks my heart.
-Jennifer Gold, Bethesda, Maryland (jgoldielox gmail.com)

I am 4’9”. This makes me shorter than 99% of adults who do not live in a wheelchair. I have approached groups of friends and not been seen. I have had people ask me “how’s the weather down there?” (Not funny, by the way). I have had people say that they knew I was short, but not THAT short. There is no way around it. Being short means being treated as a child until well into one’s 30s. I was still being carded before being served alcoholic drinks at 32. (I am 75.)
I have no idea if people don’t believe what I say because I am so short, but I suspect I lack some credibility due to the lack of height. Formal presentations are not as much of a problem as informal ones because the podium, microphone, and media projector add credibility. I do consider myself to be slightly disabled because I never got tall enough to be average in height. I cannot reach most things that adults should reach (like the top shelf at a grocery store or a strap in a subway car). Being in a large crowd is confining and scary. When all you can see is everyone else’s chests, you have no idea where you are going or what is happening. I have a short (4 feet 11 inches) friend who attended a rally in DC and left because she got afraid of being run over.
I know that heightism exists. Even folks who don’t mean to be are guilty of it. I think it is like racism, though much less dangerous or serious.
-David Safianoff, Walnut Creek, California (davshar yahoo.com)

I was for a while the dean of a small liberal arts college, and I attended annual meetings for the presidents and deans of about 25 such schools. It was noticeable: the presidents (unless female) were usually tall, the deans shorter. Note that presidents are chosen by trustees, and deans by presidents. In selecting a president, trustees want someone who gives an impression of strength and competence, and being tall can contribute to that. In selecting a dean, a president is ideally less concerned with first impressions, and indeed the president may prefer that his dean not seem more impressive than he is.
-Paul H. Blaney, Professor Emeritus of Psychology, Emory & Henry College, Brookline, Massachusetts (pblaney ehc.edu)

My mother was petite. She used it well. I hung the wash, for instance. When she was stopped by police officers, her cuteness and a few tears had an officer stop traffic so she could make an illegal u-turn. I always liked candidate Dennis Kucinich: anti-war, pro-single-payer healthcare, etc. But I also knew that his height prevented others from taking him seriously.
-Mo Doyle, Boston, Massachusetts (momcdo gmail.com)

I never minded being on the short side. In grade school 60 years ago it meant being near the front of the line. The biggest annoyance is that items of clothing, especially dresses and pants, are way too long. Mom taught me to sew. I am good at hemming.
-Nancy Konopka, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania (nancy.konopka gmail.com)

Being a small woman -- once hit 5’, but have since shrunk -- I have been minimized, patronized, and diminished due to my height. People feel it is appropriate to say things like telling me how cute I am. Shopping for clothing is always a challenge and I will no longer hem pants to fit, as they never look right -- I feel like I’m wearing pants that are ending at the knee.
-Kathleen Freeman, Grand Rapids, Michigan (kmkfreeman gmail.com)

I grew to the height of 5’3½” and have now shrunk to 5’ even (so far). The worst disadvantage is that shoulder straps on seat belts catch my throat. I must actively hold them under my breαst to prevent that.
-Eleanor Elizabeth Forman, New York, New York (eefwww yahoo.com)

At 5’2” for most of my life (now 5’0.5” -- every fraction counts!), I also enjoyed being at the head of a line, getting to sit in front in groups, and saving money by buying children’s sized shoes, shirts, and jackets. I also was carded late (into my 40s!), and was even challenged at age 68 for using the senior rate on our local transport system, probably because I bounded up the steep stair on the bus like a child whose height I was. “You could’ve fooled me,” growled the bus driver. Made me laugh.
-Lavinia Ycas, Boulder, Colorado (ycasl yahoo.com)

I stopped growing at 5’2” when I was 12 years old. Decades later, I was the first one the kids felt they had to pass in height on their way to adulthood. One of my good female friends was 5’8” and, one day out of the blue, she asked me if I’d rather be short or tall. I answered, “I have no way to compare; I’ve never been tall”. At 83 years old, I’m now under 5’ and, to be honest, I’ve always liked being short -- except at the supermarket.
-Patricia Posito, Titusville, Florida (dhrakos icloud.com)

My grandparents lived with the rest of the family and Grandmother Peggy was 5’. Once you reached her height she gave you five dollars. Both of my older brothers cashed in. Alas, I didn’t. I was a high school junior and 4’11-3/4” when Peggy passed away well into her 80s.
-Jerry Bradley, Springfield, Virginia (fxb3 verizon.net)

In 1971 I was a freshman at New College in Sarasota, Florida (now famous for being the target of a takeover by DeSantis). It was a yeasty fall: a sit-in of the president’s office by a group of women looking for improved services and treatment was joined by several other protests, including the posting of “Short People’s Demands” in the dining hall by one of our classmates. He had placed them at what was about thigh level for many of us. Those of us who usually enjoyed our greater height had to contort ourselves to read them. The demands, and their placement, were eye-opening for me at the time.
-Rachel Wissner, Baton Rouge, Louisiana (rachiru2 aol.com)

Being the shortest in my family, I was called natu or nati, Hindi for a short person. Now having been married to an almost 6’ man and getting to travel comfortably on airplanes, I would say that being short has its advantages too.
-Pallavi Bharadwaj, Brooklyn, New York (pallavibhar gmail.com)

There have been many disadvantages to being short (for example, I can’t see my reflection in mirrors that are placed too high), but my one advantage was as a geologist, being the only person who didn’t have to crouch down when touring a salt mine.
-Anne Lutz, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (alutz20 comcast.net)

My wife, who is a full foot shorter than I am, doesn’t bash her head on low-hanging obstacles nearly as often as I do.
-Don Fearn, Rochester, Minnesota (pooder charter.net)

As someone both left-handed and short, I have a long-held interest in ergonomics and I am made aware many times a day how the world is designed for people a good 7” taller than me. Effects range from everyday annoyances like having to keep a step-stool permanently in the kitchen to reach anything but the lowest cupboard, to embarrassment: hanging around at the supermarket until someone tall enough can reach what I want from the top shelf for me, to discomfort: “ergonomically” designed aeroplane seats which give me a very sore back, to danger: a hot-water boiler for making tea where the tap is positioned above my head.
And why do they always put the small sizes on the top shelf in clothes shops and the XL on the bottom? I have learned to laugh most of this off, but it is a sad fact that it’s still acceptable to be amused that a grown (!) woman has to resort to strategies like these to get by every day.
-Sarah Ingram, Hereford, UK (sarah.ingram wvt.nhs.uk)

There are severe consequences for being someone who never ages or grows tall. I am five feet high, weigh 185 and don’t look a day over 23. People younger than my 77 years call me “young man”. I am college educated and come from a lineage of highly intelligent forefathers. That means I get cordial respect from peers over the phone or through email. But in person, these peers often assume I’m bragging or bullshιtting because I don’t look my age and I speak language that’s above my perceived vocabulary level.
Discrimination is constant. Every time I hear, “I think that kid’s full of shιt,” or “These young people today think they’re so smart,” or “You’ve probably never heard of (Richard Nixon) or (Charles Manson), they came along before you were born,” or “Sorry, you have to be 21 to buy this,” I want to shout, “Sweetheart Face, I was there when the Rosenbergs were put to death for lesser crimes than Donald Trump gets away with.” But I always manage to err on the side of caution and suppress my annoyance. Just as women are paid less than men because of various biases, being short and youthful-looking has its social throwbacks, as well.
-Jason Houston, Apache Junction, Arizona (jhoust60 gmail.com)

I am a tall woman. This is a disadvantage if you want to find a taller male partner.
-Helen Ross, Stirling, Scotland (h.e.ross stir.ac.uk)

Heightism is a real thing especially if you are a man. On the other hand, if you are a woman, it’s good to be short because that way almost every man is a possible mate. At 5 ft 0, I have definitely experienced heightism especially when I used to go to McDonald’s as a kid. The employees behind the counter wouldn’t even see us (me and my siblings) because we were so short.
-Ivy Kaminsky, Pasadena, Texas (ivykaminsky yahoo.com)

As a 6’ woman, I can tell you that heightism cuts both ways. Boys look askance at tall girls! In my mid-twenties I finally met men with enough self-confidence to enjoy my extra height. My dear hubby is shorter than I am, but he would be delighted if I wore 4” heels!
-Gretchen L.T. Patti, Naperville, Illinois (GLTPatti gmail.com)

As one who has always been pointed out (bullied) because of my height, I would add to your definition of those being discriminated against being short “or tall”. Height in women is considerably more acceptable in the 21st century than it has been, probably thanks to professional female basketball players in North America.
-Fran Darlington, Guelph, Canada (fjdkn196 gmail.com)

Personally I find things the other way around. Being 6’4” now because of age losses, originally 6’6”, I find that short people rule the world. Why else is everything I like at the stores at floor level? Doorways are typically low. Some hotels are designed for no one over 6’ -- some fire doors have little metal tabs jutting down well below 6’6” that if not spotted can rip your skull. Hospital beds result in cold feet if you’re over 6’. Water fountains are designed for children or those in wheelchairs. Payphones (in the olden days) were designed for people under 5’6”. And don’t get me started on whoever places stoplights 20’ in the air so that at intersections you have to lie down on the steering wheel to see them. Cars are designed for drivers 5’6” or under.
-James Divine, West Richland, Washington (divine chemmet.com)

I vividly remember a Social Psychology class 55 years ago. In an American case study a man was introduced to two groups of students, his height was mentioned and they were asked to guess what he did for a living. One group of students, being told that the man was 5 foot 7, thought him a plumber. For the other group he miraculously grew an additional 7 inches, which turned him into a professor.
-Margot Riedstra, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (margot.riedstra gmail.com)

I once stole a line from a friend (also named Janice and just about identical in height to me) and it’s worked for me for years: “Short -- what short? My feet touch the ground!” Gets a laugh every time.
-Janice Ife, Merrickville, Canada (ife magma.ca)

Our son at 6’8” never played basketball in high school, was instead a baseball pitcher, and got sick of being asked “Do you play basketball?” for the thousandth time. He finally fired back, “No, do you play miniature golf?”
-Randy Young, Tega Cay, South Carolina (randyyoung2k yahoo.com)

Short People” was a popular song by Randy Newman in 1977. It appears at first glance to be an example of heightism, but it is actually a satire on all forms of prejudice.
-Lawrence Crumb, Eugene, Oregon (lcrumb uoregon.edu)

From: Keith Schwarz (zrawhcs.htiek gmail.com)
Subject: Theophoric

There is a surprising number of theophoric names, including some that are no longer extant. For example:

Dimitri: follower of Demeter, one of the Ancient Greek gods.

Hannibal: Ba’al is gracious. Ba’al being a general term meaning master but usually referring to the Canaanite god Hadad. (The name Hannah comes from the same root.)

Nebuchadnezzar: Nabo guard my heir. Nabo being a Babylonian god.

Hormazd: derived from the Zoroastrian name for god (Ahura Mazda). The name is still used in the Zoroastrian community.

Most biblical names ending in -iel are theophoric as well, with el meaning god. Hence Daniel (god judges), Nathaniel (god has given), Ezekiel (god strengthens), Gabriel (power of god), etc.

Keith Schwarz, Cupertino, California

From: Cindy Watter (hedgehogccw gmail.com)
Subject: ekphrasis

WH Auden (“Musée des Beaux Arts”) and William Carlos Williams (“Landscape With the Fall of Icarus”) both wrote poems that are examples of ekphrasis. Their subject was the Breughel painting, which features a bucolic setting overlooking the ocean, from which one can see a pair of legs ignominiously poking.

Cindy Watter, Napa, California

From: Bruce Floyd (brucefloyd bellsouth.net)
Subject: Thought of the day

To bear up under loss, to fight the bitterness of defeat and the weakness of grief, to be victor over anger, to smile when tears are close, to resist evil men and base instincts, to hate hate and to love love, to go on when it would seem good to die, to seek ever after the glory and the dream, to look up with unquenchable faith in something evermore about to be, that is what any man can do, and so be great. -Zane Grey, author (31 Jan 1872-1939)

I’ve never had much use for moral dicta like the above, aphoristic cleverness that is somehow supposed to be a guide on how we should lead our lives. Oh, much of what is said is surely sound, and easily said, but, contrariwise, I find some of the advice to be spurious, even insidious. Why should we smile when circumstances call for tears? Are tears not as big a part of life as smiles? A horrible incident happens in your life and someone says, “Don’t cry. Smile.” Would you be grateful for the censure?

(Perhaps it’s feckless to examine grief. Perhaps it eludes meaning for one thus affected: “Everyone can master a grief but he that has it.” Much Ado About Nothing: Act 3, Scene 2.)

And I’d be grateful if someone would tell me exactly what “the glory and the dream” are. It seems to me that what is glorious is too often defined by one’s culture. For example, my generation was raised to think that glory could be found in war--till some of us (thanks to a corrupt draft: my basic training company had only one man with a college degree -- me -- while middle- and upper-class white boys were unscrupulously crafty in avoiding service) got sent to Vietnam. There we were given patriotic speeches and rifles, and there in the scalding, malarial, rain-soaked, and fetid jungle, the silence shattered with gunfire, pandemonium unshackled. Among the screams of wounded and dying men, we’d find out that little about war is glorious. In fact, it is ugly and nasty and nightmarish, a bloodbath directed by venal men in Washington. (Anyone out there ever hear of Robert McNamara’s mοrons? Looking for cannon fodder, McNamara lowered the minimum score on the intelligence test for men to be drafted, and then when these men went into the Army, he saw to it they went to combat outfits.)

I’m almost sure that not a name on that wall, not one of the 58,318, if it could muster speech, make a granite tongue articulate, would tell you they died young and it was glorious. They give the lie to “Dulce Et Decorum Est.” Should we not mourn the deaths of those names graven into that wall? Are we weak when we do so? This grief does not incapacitate us, or inject ruination into our lives. We go on as we always do, though now we go with the sad realization of what a waste of young lives that war was -- and we declare that we should not let it happen again, this futile waste of young lives. Tell me: Did we learn this lesson?

I’d say Zane Grey’s comment about “the weakness of grief” is fatuous and inane to the point of pure stupidity. Grief is weakness? Really? Euripides says, “In childbirth grief begins.” Aeschylus says, “Only the young think that the tower in which [they] live is free from sorrow.” And the third of the great triumvirate of classical drama, Sophocles, calls, as some of us do, for “Sleep, ignorant of pain, ignorant of grief, may you come to us blowing softly, kindly.” But we, perforce, must rise as surely as does the sun and face the world as it is.

I’m an old man, typing these few words at eventide on the first of February, a cup of coffee to comfort me, and I confess that from my coign of vantage the world as it is today is catastrophic: ruthless warfare, children, as always, suffering most, famine, thousands wandering the Earth in bewildering exile. We with our smartphones, our AI, our spectacular technical achievements, no matter how we exult at such scientific progress, have -- is it not obvious -- not made the planet a paradise for its creatures. What fools brag of the magic of technology while we persist in turning Earth into a cesspool. Our ancestors in their ignorance burnt witches, gruesome enough, but we in our ignorance are destroying Earth.

The optimists hate to hear it, but David Benatar states what most of us agree with: “A charmed life is so rare that for every one such life there are millions of wretched lives. Some know that their baby will be among the unfortunate. Nobody knows, however, that their baby will be one of the allegedly lucky few. Great suffering could await any person that is brought into existence. “ Is it a sign of weakness or callous indifference that we should not feel grief at the millions, if not billions, of wretched lives in the world? Obviously if you are reading this you are, to some degree compared with the misery-laden humans in the world, leading a charmed life, though I doubt you call your existence a charmed one; but you’d agree that you have had advantages the vast majority of people have not had.

I know it’s easy to pontificate about the state of the world, to roll out a list of complaints. One might ask, “What have you done to make the world a better place, you sanctimonious old fool?” Like most of you, I do what I can. All I have is my voice, and I am using it. I don’t think the manifestation of grief is weak. It’s real, as much a part of the human condition as any other emotion. Am I too pessimistic? I could be, but when I look at the existential human predicament, both from a philosophical and a practical point of view, I see little to be optimistic about. But this lack of optimism can lead to a healthy grief, no more than an honest look at the world.

I agree with Earl Grollman: “Grief is not a disorder, a disease or a sign of weakness. It is an emotional, physical and spiritual necessity, the price you pay for love. The only cure for grief is to grieve.”

Bruce Floyd, Florence, South Carolina

From: Paul Flecca (paulflecca gmail.com)
Subject: Yesterweek

This word reminds me of the song by Stevie Wonder called Yesterme Yesteryou Yesterday (3 min., lyrics). Apparently one can “yester” anything to mean a previous period. I love that flexibility of language.

Paul Flecca, Yarmouth, Massachusetts

From: Brenda J. Gannam (gannamconsulting earthlink.net)
Subject: yesterweek

Coming soon to a dictionary near you ... Yestermonth, yesterdecade, yestercentury, yestermillenium.

Brenda J. Gannam, Brooklyn, New York

Apolo Anton Ohno
From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: theophoric and ekphrasis

I recently discovered that long-retired US champion short track speed skater Apolo Anton Ohno’s seemingly godly first name has no relation to the Mt. Olympus Greek deity, Apollo. In fact, his dad Yuki gave him the name “Apolo”, a composite of the Greek root “apo”, meaning to steer away from, and “lo”, loose translation: “Look out... here he comes.” But in my view, the winningest short track speed skater of his generation rose to Apollonian heights, having won two gold, two silver, and four bronze Winter Olympic medals.

Going to the Dogs
American artist Jeff Koons is one of the most polarizing and controversial figures on the global art market. His works routinely sell in the tens of millions. His critics note that the majority of his sculptures and paintings are crafted by other artisans. Koons does openly concede that he rarely participates, hands-on, in the making of his art. He touts himself as more of an idea/concept man. Here, I’ve pictured Koons giving an ekphrasis on one of his famed “balloon dogs”. He explains that its highly reflective, colorful surface is symbolic of both optimism and celebration. He adds that the act of inhaling is symbolic of life and exhaling represents death. Koons rarely lets his artworks speak for themselves. He’s constantly philosophizing about and explaining the meaning of his pieces.

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California


This week’s theme: There’s a word for it
1. Heightism
2. Theophoric
3. Ekphrasis
4. Diegetic
5. Yesterweek
= 1. The high criticise the wee, oh shh
2. God theme perk
3. Itemise artworks
4. Re-edifies story
5. Week past
= 1. Skirt ‘em shorties
2. These deific epithets
3. Portray geek high art
4. Show mid techie-show
5. Week ere
-Julian Lofts, Auckland, New Zealand (jalofts xtra.co.nz) -Shyamal Mukherji, Mumbai, India (mukherjis hotmail.com)
= 1. “Eek, he’s short!”
2. A Greek god
3. “Here’s his masterpiece”
4. It fits with the story
5. Time period (which week?)
= 1. OK if high, otherwise he’s screwed
2. Theist part here
3. Thesis cited work
4. The key premise
5. Time ago
-Dharam Khalsa, Burlington, North Carolina (dharamkk2 gmail.com) -Josiah Winslow, Franklin, Wisconsin (winslowjosiah gmail.com)

Make your own anagrams and animations.



To the vertic’lly challenged, the tall
May appear to be blessed with it all.
Blatant heightism! We
Are the ones, tragic’lly,
Who are put upon most -- by the small!
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

Lilliputians were given short shrift
In the novel by Jonathan Swift.
By that Gulliver seen
As deceitful and mean.
‘Twas his heightism that got them miffed.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

“Why is it that footwear I choose
Is mocked just as much as my views?”
Says Ron with a sigh,
“Our heightism’s why
I look for some lift in my shoes.”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“See that tall guy? So filled with heightism!
Tie him down, and that way we we can quiz him,”
Said the Lilliput folks.
“If he tells us good jokes,
Though, we may not have too bad a schism.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Theophoric, my name would suggest
That I’m destined to run with the blest.
But -- sigh -- sadly, this Herc’
Is a bum and a jεrk,
Always one step away from arrest.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

Mozart’s name was in part theophoric,
And his output of music historic.
Amadeus loved God
With more than a nod
And made music that makes us euphoric.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

Goddess was the name that they chose.
The newborn just chewed on her toes.
Her parents, euphoric,
Loved her name theophoric.
What will happen in high school, who knows.
-Sara Hutchinson, New Castle, Delaware (sarahutch2003 yahoo.com)

“There be plenty of names theophoric,”
Said the boy, “here in times prehistoric.
No believe in one God;
Us give many the nod.
So why ‘Oog’, Mom? Me not too euphoric.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


In my ekphrasis, I have addressed
What your painting, to me, most expressed.
I observed that dark blue
Is your favourite hue.
This informed me you’re deeply depressed.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

There’s an ekphrasis I truly seek
For a painting that I saw last week.
It’s hard to explain.
Jackson Pollock’s a pain.
All his work is to me just like Greek.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

This artwork I find a delight;
An ekphrasis I’m moved to write.
Just like Keats with his urn,
I’ll describe it in turn
And you can imagine the sight.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

A museum will offer, most do,
How to learn about art works you view.
A headset so you hear
Ekphrasis in your ear,
Like an art expert’s right next to you.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“We see Moses here leading the Exodus,”
Said the docent by way of an ekphrasis.
“Is there one of my mom?
‘Cause she’s really the bomb,”
From the back of the group asked young Oedipus.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Casablanca -- we all know the scene --
Has Rick bitter and moody and mean,
Cuz his gal done him wrong.
Diegetic, Sam’s song
Was their bone of contention, on screen.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

The review said the film was pathetic
And critiqued all the songs diegetic.
“That discotheque scene,”
Said Roger and Gene,
“Was awful and most unaesthetic!”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

Said Hamlet, “This play is pathetic;
What it needs is a scene diegetic.
My mind’s a farrago;
Let’s see if Gonzago
Hits Claudius as an emetic.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


I’m regretting, Your Honour, that I
Can’t oblige you with my alibi.
For the details you seek
Span four days yesterweek --
I was soused the whole time, that is why.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

I’m so glad that my son did just say,
That a fireman he’ll be one day.
Yesterweek he told me,
That he wanted to be
The Nutcracker Prince in ballet.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

Just yesterweek after the trial,
Ms. Carroll left court with a smile.
Her mood was so sunny
‘Cause Trump owes her money,
(Though she won’t collect for a while.)
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“I’ve not laughed since before yesterweek;
Go forth, and my court jester seek,”
Said the king. “And a maiden
Whose looks aren’t fadin’;
Make certain that you’ve dressed her sleek.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


“Heightism-y greatest asset. I also laugh like Santa Claus and I’m proudly a person of color,” said the Jolly Green Giant on his job application.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“I have a nice young man named Theophoric,” the LGBTQ matchmaker told the eager parents.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

These days I can barely stand to hear what’s going on in the world. My favorite high t-ekphrasis “No internet connection.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“Not insulin, Dramamine. I’m diegetic,” the sick passenger explained to the flight attendant.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Fred said yesterweek-ly lunches with his mother, but then instantly regretted his decision.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“Father O’Malley, can I be an altar boy?” “Aye, laddie, if you’ll say yesterweek-ly meetin’s in me private study.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: Sellout & Down but not out

The sole African-American GOP senator, Tim Scott of South Carolina, recently suspended his campaign in seeking the Republican presidential nomination. He almost immediately struck a Faustian pact with current front runner Trump. While dissing Pres. Biden, Scott has endorsed Trump’s draconian doctrines, being careful not to step on his tiny toes. Like other candidates who have dropped out and are now hoping to be picked as Trump’s running mate, such as Ron DeSantis and Vivek Ramaswamy, Scott is falling in step as a fawning sycophant. Trump’s dismissive language confirms his racist core.

Down, But Not Out
Trump and his minions are urging Nikki Haley, his sole remaining opponent in the GOP primary race, to drop out, after his wins in Iowa and New Hampshire. But Haley’s chutzpah and her firm belief that she can still defeat Trump are spurring her onwards to South Carolina. Rather than her campaign funding tailing off, several high-rollers of finance and industry are still supporting Haley with their big bucks. Her staying in the race is driving Trump apoplectic.
Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California

Poor is the power of the lead that becomes bullets compared to the power of the hot metal that becomes type. -Georg Brandes, critic and scholar (4 Feb 1842-1927)

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