It’s tempting, given the prompt for today, to just build a playlist of songs whose names start with contractions.
Yeah, why not? A short one, okay?
- Isn’t It A Pity – George Harrison
- It’s A Shame – The Spinners
- Ain’t She Sweet – The Beatles
- Don’t Bring Me Down – ELO (The Electric Light Orchestra)
- They’re Coming To Take Me Away, Ha-Haaaaa! – Napoleon XIV
My favorite magazine as a teenager was MAD. They were well-known for their movie and TV parodies, as well as “Dave Berg Looks At…”, “Spy Vs. Spy,” “Marginal Humor” by Sergio Aragones (the cartoons were drawn in the margins throughout the magazine), Don Martin and his wacky cartoons, and other stuff. They did a parody of “True Grit” in the early Seventies (the original with John Wayne, Kim Darby, and Glen Campbell, not that mess they made a couple of years ago), and part of the joke was that Mattie (Darby’s character, probably “Muttie” in the parody) didn’t use contractions. At least not until something upset her so badly that she started, and remarked, “Now look what you’ve done! I’m so upset, I’m using contractions!”
Contractions come in handy, because otherwise you’re saying a ton of extra words. I like the compound contractions, like “wouldn’t’ve” and “shouldn’t’ve,” except for people thinking that “shouldn’t’ve” is short for “shouldn’t of.” Aggh! That makes me crazy.
Another cool literary device is the portmanteau, two words shoved together to make a third. Like “bagpipes,” a combination of “bag” and “pipes.” Or “briefcase,” a combination of “brief” and “case.” There are like a bazillion examples of portmanteaus. But that’s the subject for another day. Probably next Saturday…
Linda Hill runs Stream of Consciousness Saturday from her penthouse high over the Internet. She has all the rules and pingbacks from all the other participants there.