Saturday, December 31, 2022

Eve

I get tired really early!
I’m sleeping in bed; up above is “3… 2… 1…” then below that is “Happy New Year!” and underneath the picture “…I’ve been asleep for two hours.”

I’m such an old lady. I can’t remember the last time I was able to stay up until midnight.

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Most Mind Bending Etymology

It was hard to narrow it down to only these ones. Frankly, there’s a lot more that could have gone on this list.
 
1. Ass (donkey) and ass (butt) aren’t related.
Which is why the latter is “arse” outside of the United States. The donkey one is thought to be from the Latin asinus, while the other one came (through Proto Germanic, so not Latin) from the Proto Indo European ors-, backside.
 
2. We use the Italian spelling for colonel and the French pronunciation.
Seriously, it showed up in the sixteenth century as coronel, from the French coronel. The Italian word for it is colonella, the commander of a column of soldiers (column being where the word comes from). And for some reason, English started spelling it the Italian way, and while sometimes they also pronounced it that way, it was the French pronunciation that ultimately stuck.
 
3. Onion comes from the word union.
It’s just… not what you’d expect. Onion is literally from union, because onions were “unified” in successive layers. It makes sense when you think about it, but what a stupid reason for naming something.
 
4. Platinum, AKA lesser silver.
Speaking of stupid reasons to name something, the Spanish word for silver is plata. When Spanish colonies in Mexico found this silver ore, it was called platina, as it was a lesser silver. English copied their word for it and through the standard ending for periodic elements on it, and now we have platinum.
 
5. Sweet is related to persuasion.
Talk about WTF connections. But yes, sweet is related to persuasion. Both are from the Proto Indo European root swad-, which means sweet or pleasant, meaning persuasion (and dissuasion, for that matter) is the aberration. For some reason swad- evolved into suadere in Latin, to urge or persuade. And that’s why we have persuade.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Reflections, 2022

This is it, the last Tuesday of 2022. Somehow. I’m not sure when this happened, but the year is almost over. And I’m sure I’ve done absolutely nothing that I intended to do.
 
Resolutions
1. Write another book. Like I haven’t been doing that enough. Oh well, at least it’s an easy resolution to keep.
Well, this is a success. It would have been a tougher resolution if I told myself to STOP writing.
 
2. Finish editing the book I wrote over a year ago. You know, and stop getting distracted by Shiny New Ideas.
Eh, I guess it’s finished. It’s not like there was ever any interest in it anyway.
 
3. Edit the book I just finished writing. Because I make poor decisions.
Hey, I did this. Good on me for keeping it easy.
 
4. Keep looking for ways to advance my writing. I know this one is kind of vague, but it’s basically me wanting to get better at it.
I guess I did this too? I’ve been working on different things, just not successfully.
 
5. Lose some weight. Of all the resolutions I’ve ever had, this is the hardest. It’s not fair. I like food…
I always seem to yo-yo within the same range…
 
6. Continue to avoid getting sick. I made it almost two years without getting COVID, and I intend to keep it that way.
Wow, I actually failed this one! Though I didn’t get COVID at least, just a rhinovirus. That didn’t actually congest my nose. But gave me one hell of a sore throat. Look, it was a weird couple of weeks.
 
7. Maybe actually be on social media more. I know, this didn’t work out so well last year.
Weirdly, I did this. Again, not really successfully. I wish there was an instruction manual with very specific instructions for how to do social media. Though now things are blowing up anyway because of the manbaby who took over Twitter and is running it into the ground because people are mean to him on there.
 
A weirdly successful year. For me anyway. I’d feel better about it if the world still wasn’t so apocalyptic. It just kind of sucks that the pandemic that has killed millions and harmed millions more is less of a threat than rich people who want the government to give all the money to their billion dollar corporations instead of the people working forty hours a week who don’t get paid enough money to buy food.
 
You know. Things.

Saturday, December 24, 2022

Spam Highlights, 3

Yes, still doing this. Tomorrow’s Christmas! What do you expect?

series of messages from Facebook, but with spaces between the letters, telling me someone named Anamul tried to log into the account I don’t have
I remember this day. Someone hacked into the Facebook account I don’t have. I don’t have Facebook so I don’t know, but if someone tries to log in to your account, how is it possible that they have the name of this person? Aren’t they pretending to be me?
 
message from Medium Angela telling me nine secrets are revealed in my reading of the angel
Large Angela is far more accurate in her Angel readings. Because she’s larger.

message saying my email ID has been selected online to received ten million dollars from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Sigh… can you imagine if stuff like this really happened? My life would be so much better. No more fear of losing my health insurance or not having enough to buy things… Sigh…

message from Security, Mary 2, warning me of a suspicious connection and a login attempt was blocked
Apparently Security comma Mary really wants to get in touch with me about my account. There has been a Suspicious Connection.

twitter follower that’s a beautiful woman constantly appearing stiff and looking down away from the camera in all her photos
I have to finish up with what was my most memorable fake follower, the woman constantly looks posed whose eyes you never see in any of the photos she’s posted. I am still one hundred percent confident she is not a real person. And I don’t mean that she’s photos stolen from the internet, I really think someone is just posing a realistic doll.

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Spam Highlights, 2

More of this. It’s just so easy.

message from Free Knife saying knock knock, who’s there, a free knife
A free knife who? Don’t leave me hanging!

two messages from Samsung TV saying my order has arrived, why wait, and I have been chosen
They really couldn’t make up their mind. Not only is it two messages with two different “order numbers”, it’s also my order—except I’ve been chosen. And it’s saying Why wait! Not even a question there. Also one says Capital One in the message instead of Samsung TV. I mean, the other message was right there. It shouldn’t have been that hard for them to copy and paste.

Message written in an incredibly fancy font that I can barely read, from “congratul”, saying to check my accounts, the slots of a Vegas Casino
Okay, I can barely read this. That word has to be Vegas, but it looks like it begins with B—is that seriously supposed to be a V??? I mean, that other word has to be Verification. Plus there’s the fact that the P in Payout looks like a B as well. Did they seriously think people would click on this just because it has a very fancy font?

Comment on a blog post that’s like twelve years old talking about how I’ve shone a light on conceptual, reactive, and deceptive thought practices, though it was on an etymology post
This was a recent comment on an etymology post. Twelve years ago.
 
I’ve been followed by General Carter Ham on twitter, whose bio says Discipline comes with commad and Loyalty, yes that’s how it’s spelled
I seem to remember this being the name of an actual, real human being, who probably was not too happy to hear he was being imitated on twitter.

Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Spam Highlights, 1

As we’re approaching another holiday, I’m taking it easy. How easy? It’s not only a spam post, it’s a spam post of spam I’ve already posted this year. Think of it as the best of the worst.
 message from “Get Hard To”, lauding an incredible erection superfood (with superfood in quotes), and lots of zeros in place of Os for some reason
One of the first spam messages I posted this year! It kind of set the tone for the rest of the year.

message from a woman who, after fasting and prayer, was given my name by god. She’s a widow with cancer and a farmer slash gold and diamond dealer, and she throws “The Lord” into the message about five times
It wouldn’t be spam without a cancer widow. She really shouldn’t have been fasting when she, you know, has cancer. How many more times can she throw “The Lord” in there?

message from “Helga newsletter” with a website that is a bunch of random numbers and letters, then “fly rescue dot club”, and she’s acting like we know each other and she wants me to come visit her in her new flat
Because I know just so many people named Helga. And how about that email address? What the hell is fly-rescue-dot-club? You know, besides a spam email account.
 Message from John Abajian, protocol manager, urgently seeking my service to represent his corporation in my region, but I’m only to respond if I consider myself capable for details
Hmmm. Nope. I definitely don’t consider myself capable for details. Sorry, John Abajian, Protocol Manager.

message from Matt Brown, Marketing Consultant, asking how it is possible my website is having so many errors, talking about all the problems I supposedly have while being as unspecific as possible
I don’t think I’ll be hiring anyone for marketing when they have that many grammatical errors in their solicitation email.

Saturday, December 17, 2022

A Solution

Just one more week until Christmas Eve. Expect Spam posts next week. But as for now…

Panel 1, me sitting in front of my laptop saying, “Ugh, I’m tired, but I still have one more comic to write before Christmas break.” Panel 2, me saying, “I wonder if there’s some lazy way for me to post a comic without putting any effort into it.” Panel 3, I’m thinking, Panel 4, I’m still thinking and now my eyes are squinting.
Turns out, yes. Yes there is.

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Language Of Confusion: Trees, Again

It’s the last real etymology post of the year and I’m out of ideas. So we’re looking at more trees.
 
Sycamore
Sycamore showed up in the mid fourteenth century as sicamour, coming from the Old French sicamor/sagremore. That’s from the classical Latin word for the tree, and they of course stole it from the Greek sykomoros. It’s actually a mix of sykon, fig, and moron, which, first of all, that’s hilarious, but it actually means mulberry and refers to the genus of the mulberry tree. Which, you know, is not a sycamore. A sycamore is a “fig mulberry”. Despite being neither of those things. Okay, this one was just stupid.
 
Spruce
More seasonally appropriate, the name spruce showed up in the mid seventeenth century, though before that it was spelled spruse, and apparently it was a word for things brought over from Prussia. Yeah, originally it was Pruce, short for Prussia, and referred to lots of different things imported from Prussia, like beer, leather, and wood. The tree was thought to be unique to Prussia, and the name for the tree stuck. There’s also to spruce, as is to spruce something up, and that shockingly is related. Kind of. Like I said, spruce referred to a lot of different things, including leather, and that spruce leather was used to make a type of jacket that was considered fashionable in the fifteenth century, so by the sixteenth century, prior to the word for the tree, sprucing something up was in the English lexicon.
 
Ash
You’d think this tree would be related to burning things—I mean, wood burns!—but you’d be wrong. Ash as in tree comes from the Old English aesc, which is similar to but distinct from aesce, their word for burned ashes. Both are from Proto Germanic, but the tree is askaz/askiz, from the Proto Indo European root os-, which means ash tree, while the other one is from the Proto Germanic askon, from the PIE root as-, to burn or glow. So yeah. Another word pair of homonyms that have nothing to do with each other, and have sounded similar all through their existences.
 
Aspen
Aspen showed up in the late fourteenth century from the Old English aespe, aspen. It’s from the Proto Germanic aspo, from the Proto Indo European aps-, which also meant the tree. After the last bunch, this one is disappointingly mundane.

Birch
Well, hopefully this one is more interesting. Birch comes from the Old English berc/beorc, from the Proto Germanic berkjon. That’s from the Proto Indo European bhergo, from the root bhereg-, to shine, bright, or white, and the birch is named that because of its white bark. Not really more interesting, I’m afraid.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

From The Spamfiles

Last spamfiles post of the year! Kind of. You’ll see.

message from “isabella” saying Hello dear how are you doing
Often I look at spam and have to wonder who the hell this could possibly work on. I mean, Hello dear? How are you doing? Who writes messages like that? Is there really someone out there going “Oh! Isabella is contacting me! Boy, she sure sounds normal!”

message from FB (Facebook, I assume) saying “spam02 FB, Someone tried to log into your account
I do love it when the spam calls itself spam in the message and still expects you to believe it.

Message from Mehmet Yildiz, saying they’re a registered Lawyer from Europe, specifically Turkey, and they want to share some ideas
Wait, is Turkey part of Europe? Hold on, I have to google something. Okay, technically a small part of it is in Europe, but the vast majority of the country is in Asia, and they themselves have mixed reactions at being called European, with it leaning towards no. You’d think a lawyer from there would know that.

message from Michael Alezandro, saying hi, good day, I’m establishing direct communication with you soliciting for your assistance
For someone trying to establish direct communication, they sure are wordy and unclear.

blog comment from Ximena, saying they’re using this medium to inform the world how they got cured from herpes, all thanks to someone called Dr. Itua
Wow, he can cure all those? You think he’d be more famous. Also I’m thinking he’s not a doctor, he probably just changed his first name to “Dr”. It would explain the lack of period in the abbreviation.

Saturday, December 10, 2022

Gifting

My mom really needs someone else to help her with heavy things.
Panel 1, my mom is pointing at a large box and saying “this package is too heavy. I need you to carry it in for me.” And I say “Okay.”, panel 2, I say, “Huh, did you get me an ottoman for Christmas?” She says, “What the… How could you possibly know that?” panel 3, I say “Well, you did comment that my old one was looking ratty several months ago. Plus it’s about the size of an ottoman.” Panel 4, I say “Also it says it’s an ottoman on the side of the box.” Panel 5, close up of the box, which says Ottoman, and also light brown with light spelled wrong, panel 6, my mom, looking mad, says “son of a—forget you saw that!”

Also, that spelling isn’t a mistake on my part. That’s actually what the package said.

Thursday, December 8, 2022

Language Of Confusion: Weird Numbers

I’ve done all the numbers one to ten, and some of the major ones, but how about all those weird ones?
 
Like eleven. Why is it not one-teen? It showed up in the thirteenth century spelled elleovene, from the Old English endleofan which I’m glad we don’t have to spell any time we write eleven. It’s from the Proto Germanic ainlif-, where ain- means one and the rest is from the Proto Indo European leikw-, to leave. Eleven is, somehow, one plus to leave. Apparently it’s because Anglo-Saxon would use leave (spelled laf) in reference to leavings. Eleven is basically saying “one left over”, i.e. from ten.
 
Twelve is basically the same. It’s from the Old English twelf, from the Proto Germanic twa-lif-, where twa- is from the Proto Indo European dwo-, two. Twelve is two left over! Then there’s dozen, which showed up in the fourteenth century as doseine. It’s from the Old French dozaine and classical Latin duodecim, twelve—duo, two, plus decim, ten. So those two words were shoved together and the middle morphed into the Z sound.
 
Plus there’s also ordinal numbers, which from four on are just the number plus -th, but the first three are kept weird. First is especially bizarre, since it seems to have nothing to do with one. It showed up sometime before the sixteenth century, coming from the Old English fyrst. It’s actually the superlative of the word fore, as in first is to fore what worst is to worse, and it can be traced to the Proto Germanic furista- and Proto Indo European pre-isto-, which is actually related to per-, the suffix meaning forward. So first is first because it’s first.
 
Then there’s second, which, again, nothing in common with two. It showed up in the fourteenth century from the Old French second and classical Latin secundus, which means, well, second, the thing that follows. It can be traced back to the Proto Indo European sekw-ondo-, from sekw-, to follow. Second is second because it follows first.
 
Third at least has letters in common. It comes from a mix of the Old English รพridda, third, and the Proto Germanic thridja-, they just switched the R and the I. It’s from the Proto Indo European tri-tyo-, which is from trei- the origin of three. It seems like there’s no real reason it’s weird other than it just stuck around and people reversed the letters.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English
Old English-English Dictionary

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

December Goals

There’s less than a month left in 2022? When did that happen????
 
November Goals
1. Figure out something to work on next.
I did start screwing around with something new, this one something post apocalyptic. Something about this time of year always makes me want to work on depressing stuff.
 
2. Work on making more blogging connections.
As if. I’m so terrible at this. I really wish there was a step by step list of instructions.
 
3. Thanksgiving. At least this one is easy. Well, it’s its own brand of hell, but it’s going to happen regardless of what I do.
It’s over with! Yay!
 
And that was last month. Now for this month…
 
December Goals
1. Keep plugging away at my new WIP.
 
2. Do all the end of the year stuff I have to do.
 
3. Now it’s Christmas, ugh.
 
A fairly easy month, really. Of course, I thought November was going to be easy, and then I got sick. UGH.

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Speechless

This is what you get for helping people by giving them medicine when they’re sick.
Panel 1, I’m with a friend and they say, “Hey, sorry about giving you that cold. Is your sore throat better?” panel 2, I try to respond but nothing comes out, panel 3, I look confused, panel 4, I keep trying to talk and still nothing, panel 5, I have my hands over my mouth, panel 6, my friend says, “Oh my god. You have laryngitis. This is hilarious.” And I flip them off
Not a great week, really.

Thursday, December 1, 2022

Language Of Confusion: Nau-

Nau is the root of nausea that I mentioned a few weeks ago. I decided to look at it since it has some interesting offshoots, and am too lazy to come up with something else. You know, the usual.
 
Nau- is the Proto Indo European root word for boat, so it’s no surprise it’s where nautical comes from. It showed up in the mid sixteenth century, coming from the French nautique, from the classical Latin nauticus, which means sailor and anything relating to sailors. That’s from the Greek nautikos, naval, from naus, ship, which is from nau-.
 
The naut part shows up in a lot of places. First there’s nautilus—a sea snail—which showed up in the seventeenth century and is taken directly from the Latin nautilus, and means the same thing, and is from the same Greek words as nautical. Then there’s astronaut, which showed up in 1929 in sci-fi books (though in 1888, an English writer named Percy Greg used Astronaut as the name of a spaceship) and was then picked up by the US space program in 1961. The -naut was taken straight from the Greek nautes, sailor, and from there, nau-.
 
Next is navigate, which makes sense when you think about it. It showed up in the late sixteenth century from the classical Latin navigatus and its verb form navigare, to sail. For most of its existence, it referred to sailing, then in 1784 it also referred to balloons (XD) and then in 1901 aircraft.
 
Navy is one of the oldest words we’re looking at, having showed up in the mid fourteenth century from the Old French navie. It’s from the classical Latin navigia, which literally means boats and is from navis, ship, and nau-. It’s no surprise that naval is related (though navel like a bellybutton absolutely is not), but what is kind of a surprise is that nave—like part of a church—is also. Nave showed up in the late seventeenth century from the Medieval Latin navem, which means a church nave, and is somehow from navis, apparently because some people kind of thought a nave looks like a ship.
 
You probably wouldn’t think nacelle is related, but it makes sense when you hear the history. It showed up in the late fifteenth century from the Vulgar Latin naucella, from the Late Latin navicella, which is from navis and means little ship. And that is what nacelle originally meant in English, it was just quickly abandoned, then in 1901 people started using it to mean the “gondola of an airship”, and in 1914 it was the “cockpit of an aircraft”, and then any structure/housing on a ship. Unlike some obsolete words, this one lives on!
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
Dictionary of Medieval Latin
Encyclopaedia Britannica
Orbis Latinus