Newsletter: 11 March 2011

Eleven is one of my numbers and I can’t even tell you why. I don’t know if I was born with it and only realized it later in life or whether I adopted it because it just kept showing up the way a stray cat seems to wander close by until you finally give in and feed it …  Is it because it’s two ones put together? Because it’s neither the round ten nor the dozen of twelve? It is a recurrent number. Over and over again, I look at my watch, glance at a clock on the wall or my eyes happen to fall on the clock on the dashboad while I’m driving or I just “happen” to cast a glance at my phone …  and what do I see? This: 11:11. It’s happened so many times that I actually began writing down what was happening at that moment. Funny coincidences like getting an unexpected email message precisely at 11:11. Or the phone rings and the number 11 11 shows up. Other events. Open the mail. It’s the balance on my bank account. 1111 or even -1111.

Numbers are like that: They’re prices, they’re times, they’re serial numbers, they’re addresses, they’re page numbers too though I don’t think I’ve ever never gotten that far. The fact that this year is 2011 must be coincidence, I’m sure. Like all the others. Am I superstitious? Of course not!  You book a flight? What?!! 11 11 – Come on, you’ve got to be kidding! Check into a hotel … Room 11. Let’s go for a hike! How far? … 11 km. I give up! It’s too much. Why look for meaning where there is none?

Born in which month? November … ? Oh no! What’s this? 11 points in Scrabble???

This nonsense being said, there are a few things posted on the The Paris Savannah Connection right now which might strike your fancy.

The most recent is a geography quiz about the Middle East which came my way via Freda R.’s newsletter out of Tybee. Thank you, Freda! This is greatl! By the way, if you happen to be in India or China and say the “Middle East,” no one will know what you’re talking about … Over there, our trans-Atlantic view of the “Middle East”  is their … “Western Asia.”

There’s a link to a wonderful de-complexing article on varieties of American English by Jan Freeman; a few words about the word “coup” with a link to the Visual Thesaurus; A.O. Scotts’s look at the 1940 film classic  “The Shop Around the Corner”  as well as a beautifully written answer to this question: Can most people really say whatever they want, whenever they want, without even thinking about it

And more … like the reposting of say … tell… speak … and talk. And there’s a lot to be said about that!

Have a wonderful March weekend,

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Author: Mark