The fight gets dirty
THE CAMPAIGN for the Republican Party candidacy to take on Barack Obama in this year's presidential election is turning nasty. A barrage of attack ads on TV is but a foretaste of the real campaign when it's Republican versus incumbent Democrat.
A campaign supporting front-runner Mitt Romney spent $12 million just in Iowa, targeting former Speaker of the House of Representatives Newt Gingrich.
And a pro-Gingrich campaign has now turned on Romney. An attack ad derides him for speaking French. Another shows him driving to Canada with the family dog in a kennel strapped to the roof of his car. Yet another quotes him saying he hunts, rabbits, rodents and "small varmints."
This is devastating stuff, really nasty! What won't they say about Obama?
As she is spoke
THEY say that if you can correctly pronounce every word in this poem by Hollander Gerard Nolst Trenite, you will be speaking English better than 90 percent of the world's native English-speakers.
After trying the verses, a Frenchman said he'd prefer six months of hard labour to reading six lines aloud.
It's rather a long poem but here goes with a section:
Dearest creature in creation,
Study English pronunciation.
I will teach you in my verse
Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse.
I will keep you, Suzy, busy,
Make your head with heat grow dizzy.
Tear in eye, your dress will tear.
So shall I! Oh hear my prayer.
Just compare heart, beard, and heard,
Dies and diet, lord and word,
Sword and sward, retain and Britain.
(Mind the latter, how it's written.)
Now I surely will not plague you
With such words as plaque and ague.
But be careful how you speak:
Say break and steak, but bleak and streak;
Cloven, oven, how and low,
Script, receipt, show, poem, and toe.
Hear me say, devoid of trickery,
Daughter, laughter, and Terpsichore,
Typhoid, measles, topsails, aisles,
Exiles, similes, and reviles;
Scholar, vicar, and cigar,
Solar, mica, war and far;
One, anemone, Balmoral,
Kitchen, lichen, laundry, laurel;
Gertrude, German, wind and mind,
Scene, Melpomene, mankind.
Billet does not rhyme with ballet,
Bouquet, wallet, mallet, chalet.
Blood and flood are not like food,
Nor is mould like should and would.
Viscous, viscount, load and broad,
Toward, to forward, to reward ...
It carries on and on. That's what you get when you speak a combination of Saxon, Scandinavian and French. But at least one Hollander got on top of it.
A WOMAN on the Isle of Lewis part of the Outer Hebrides group, off Scotland has scandalised her neighbours by setting up a stall for her horse in the living room of her home.
Irish-born Stephanie Noble says nobody in the neighbourhood would provide a barn or other accommodation for her three-year-old pony, Grey Lady Too, so she had to take her into the house.
She's nailed planks into place to make a pen, put in ceiling braces and used dining room chairs as a railing. She's also put down rubber mats, straw and cat litter, and mucks out every day with disinfectant.
Being from Ireland, where pigs and lambs often live in the kitchen, Stephanie is comfortable with the arrangement. But her neighbours are aghast and have complained to the Western Isles Council.
Not everyone is comfortable with close proximity to animals. There was once a farmer outside Pietermaritzburg who slept on an enormous bed specially made for himself, his 14 large dogs and his current wife.
Current wife because the ladies tended to move on with regularity. Romance is one thing but sharing it with the Quorn Hunt quite another.
AN EXTRACT from a dialogue at sea by aldis lamp between the Canadians and the Americans:
Canadians: "Divert course 15 degrees south to avoid collision."
Americans: "Recommend you divert course 15 degrees north to avoid collision."
Canadians: "Negative. You divert course 15 degrees south to avoid collision."
Americans: "This is the captain of a US Navy ship. I say again divert your course."
Canadians: "Divert your course."
Americans: "This is the aircraft carrier USS Lincoln, the second largest ship in the United States Atlantic fleet. I demand you change your course 15 degrees north or counter-measures will be taken to ensure the safety of this ship."
Canadians: "This is a lighthouse. Your call."
Criminal: A person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation.