Funny, Interesting, Unusual English Words -- Like Sardoodledom

Discussion in 'Humor' started by TezriLi, Jun 13, 2014.

  1. Uncle Jack (I only met him once and believe he was my great uncle - wish I'd have met him in later life as he was a bit of an engineer/inventor but he died when I was fairly young) who lived in Birstall would have it "Hell, Hull and Hallifax where the devil makes his tin tacks", so yes I believe there are different orderings and variations.

    Uncle Jack worked as a chauffeur and driver for one of the owners of (here's a word for you maybe") "shoddy mills". This was basically a recycling of the woollen fabrics.

    My mother's time (b 1935) is obviously later than the industrial revolution but she used to get sent from a very rural part of Shropshire to Yorkshire for part of her school summer holiday. She has commented how much dirtier the air and things to touch (eg. soot on a tree) were even then.
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  2. I've also noted that you ask about Barnsley. I believe it was a coal mining area.

    You sometimes ask about Wales (as I have said I lived there). Something I looked up in trying to look into some things from what you have said was mining. It's not very good but this wiki page gives a map on the right of 19th C coal mines in the UK.

    I was sort of top left of Wales but the right hand (East) side of North Wales did have a couple of coal mines. Possibly for dangers, even though it is 20th C, you might want to know of the explosion at the Gresford mine near Wrexham, North East Wales -

    There was a song written about that one.

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  3. Devon seems an unlikely place of birth (it's right down the bottom left of England) but given that Leeds is in Yorkshire and the article mentions his work with Yorkshire dialect, I would think so.
  4. Ah, sorry to go on like this but I think the furnaces were Sheffield?

    Sheffield was once considered the steel centre of the world. Little of it's industrial past remains but if you did want something from former skills of this city, I'd recommend (I've no affiliation or connection to the co) a pair of these scissors. We have a pair of these that were made using the old skills and they really feel they will last a lifetime.
  5. And yet one more comment. I think particularly perhaps with folk songs, it is very easy to sort of place the plough boy merrily rolling in the hay with the milk maid. We can romanticise things when probably there was a lot of hard work and dangers.

    I'm a complete amateur in all this and could in no way mark it but if there is any chance could you let me read what you come up with as an essay after it goes to your teacher? I'd be interested to read how you balance things like this.
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  6. I somehow got the idea that you are Welsh, but I remember now that is not true.

    The Gresford disaster killed more than 10% of the miners. An accident like that must have been front-page headlines for months. Coal mine accidents make breaking news or headline stories on web pages in the United States. Coal mine accidents in China killed more than 1000 miners in 2013. That never makes headlines here in the United States. I suspect that in China, news sources don´t carry it either.

    Here is an American Song, 16 Tons, about coal mining. And maybe some of the dark side of industrialization.

    About the stainless steel scissors, my mother’s kitchen has stainless steel sinks. I was really surprised to learn that they are made of iron. They just flat out don’t rust.
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  7. Just to clarify one thing then, I lived a number of years in Wales but I am English.

    I know the song but I'd have to search to find out more about it.

    Steel is an alloy of iron and carbon. I don't know the metallurgy and am not an engineer or anything else with cause to know much about it but other elements are added to the mix to give certain properties that make the steel better for certain purposes, eg, a lot of drill bits are high speed steel. The stainless group of steels use a high percentage of chromium.
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  8. #208 Ghid, Oct 14, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2014
    ap·pa·rat·chik -- member of a communist party apparat.

    apocryhal -- of doubtful authenticity, although widely circulated as being true. (cool word)

    grandfather’s father’s brother-in-laws -- men married to a great grandfather’s sisters or men married to a great grandfather’s brother’s sister-in-law (at least I think that is right, and somebody should coin a word)

    Well, I could write a first draft of a presentation. The teacher will likely not ask us to write essays. More likely she might assign presentations. That means the presenter stands in front of the class, and he or she uses a series of pictures to tell a story. I like your idea about comparing the Industrial Revolution’s positives with the negatives.

    Today we had a worksheet about the Industrial Revolution’s positives and negatives. One of the open-ended questions asked us to name three good things about the Industrial Revolution, so I said: Electricity gave us cell phones, computers gave us video games, and reciprocating engines gave us automobiles.

    The increasing productivity, beginning with the seed drill, made life increasingly difficult for farmers because although increasing population increased demand, the supply increased and prices decreased. If I could find data about those things, maybe I could make graphs. That would be cool.

    I might tell two family stories. Both my gandfather’s grandfather and his father invested in hogs because they expected the demand to increase before World War One and Two, but the supply increased faster than the demand, so they both lost money.

    The textbook says that the steady stream of of worker flowing to cities gave factory owners an inexpensive labor pool, but I wonder if people may have been attracted by the cities by the wages. Two of my grandfather’s father’s brother-in-laws worked in automobile factories. Other’s left the farms to work in retail sales like Woolworths or Sears and Robuck. Some went to college, and after World War Two they built spy satellites, airplane guidance systems, and oil well performance systems. Other’s stayed on the farms.

    I recently read a book, Why the West Rules -- For Now, by Ian Morris, which is about human productivity over the last 10,000 years. It said two things that I thought were very clever. It said that somebody invented the umbrella so Englishmen could know that they are Englsih, and it used fictional stories to put a face on facts and theories.

    A novel, The Jungle by Upton Sinclair, has some interesting information about this. The workers in the novel stand in line to find work in the meat-packing factories. The novel infers that the worker are desperate for work, but the novel has information about how the meat packing factories had higher than average wages. That suggests that the workers might have been attracted to the cities by the higher wages.

    Our textbooks say that at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, workers had a difficult time, but later they benefited. It does not offer a timeline for that.

    Like your mother said about air pollution. I could start with that. A painting painted in the early nineteenth century by Philip James de Loutherbourg represents the source of air pollution. It should be titled Hell, Hull, and Halifax.

    Maybe I could use Dicken’s A Christmas Carol. “the shortest streets were choked up with a dingy mist, … whose heavier particles descended in a shower of sooty atoms.”

    My great grandmother had a letter from a relative who went to Saint Louis, Missouri sometime after the American Civil War. As the boat steamed up the Mississippi River toward Saint Louis the air turned from clear to gray. My great grandmother, like your mother, did not like to go to Saint Louis because the air turned her underwear gray. Maybe I could look through her papers to see if we still have the letter.

    None of the students in my class are old enough to remember the air pollution caused by the Kaiser Steel Mill here in Southern California. Our grandparents can testify that the air pollution was so bad, likely also from automobile emissions, that they often could not see the mountains. They might also say that on really smoggy days the smog made their chests ache.

    Gramps told me that when he was my age, the air pollution in London was so bad that people actually died on the streets. At least it made headlines here in the United States. This could be a BBC Article about it.

    I could also compare mortality rates.

    Adam Smith in the Wealth of Nations say, “one half the children born, … die before the age of manhood.” Then I would say something like, “Does anyone here live in a family in which half of their siblings have died?” That is a touchy question. Maybe I should not ask without knowing the anwser first.

    I could compare industrial counties with third world countries.

    “In the early 21st century life expectancy averaged about 78 years in most industrialized countries. In countries with a high rate of HIV infection, however, the average life expectancy was as low as 33 years.”

    Our textbook compares mortality of factory workers with mortality of factory owners. The more proper comparison might be factory workers with their life as farmers. A line somewhere in Adam Smith says something about Highland Scottish families losing 19 out of 20 children. Surely that is not typical. A poem by Wordsworth could be more on the truth. The narrator counts four siblings, but the girl, who has two dead siblings insists that she has six siblings.

    But they are dead; those two are dead!
    Their spirits are in heaven!”
    ’Twas throwing words away; for still
    The little Maid would have her will,
    And said, “Nay, we are seven!

    I would need to find pictures to represent the infomration. I likely would present the information in chronological order. The big complaint that people make about Industrial Society is that some benefit more than others. I have never understood that because I think that is always true. For example, Soviet apparatchiks lived better than Soviet workers.

    That is all sort of convoluted, but I could work it into a reasonable presentation.

    And here is a song about Life on an American farm before World War Two.
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  9. Yes, I think you said that. I should have remembered. I forgot to look for your umbrella.;)
  10. I've borrowed one and been under the shelter of one but not sure that I've actually owned one.

    I'll have to leave most of your long post till tomorrow or maybe a day or so - so much to digest.

    One comment before bed though: I hate picking up on spelling and mine is lousy... but it is apocryphal.

    Anyway, before bed and I'm getting tired but I will better umbrella. How's about a "Brumbrella"?
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  11. verbose -- using or expressed in more words than are needed.

    bleary -- unfocused or filmy from sleep or tiredness.

    Well, I did get a bit carried away, even for verbose little me. By the time I typed the words at the beginning of page, I must have been a little bleary eyed. :)
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  12. #212 boltardy, Oct 14, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2014
    OK Ghid, I'm no historian but I think one thing you might want to look up is "enclosure".

    I don't know about the Scottish Highlands mortality rates, but I'd guess life would have been hard there. Their biggest population issue I've heard of though was the "Highland Clearances" ...

    Here's a song:

    I'm unsure of your Wordsworth reference. I thought he was more centred around the Lake District in England?
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  13. We likely will study enclosures. And thanks for the information.

    Here's the Wordworth. I won't officially study it for two more years. My brother's went before me, so I know about it.

    We Are Seven


    ———A simple Child,
    That lightly draws its breath,
    And feels its life in every limb,
    What should it know of death?

    I met a little cottage Girl:
    She was eight years old, she said;
    Her hair was thick with many a curl
    That clustered round her head.

    She had a rustic, woodland air,
    And she was wildly clad:
    Her eyes were fair, and very fair;
    —Her beauty made me glad.

    “Sisters and brothers, little Maid,
    How many may you be?”
    “How many? Seven in all,” she said,
    And wondering looked at me.

    “And where are they? I pray you tell.”
    She answered, “Seven are we;
    And two of us at Conway dwell,
    And two are gone to sea.

    “Two of us in the church-yard lie,
    My sister and my brother;
    And, in the church-yard cottage, I
    Dwell near them with my mother.”

    “You say that two at Conway dwell,
    And two are gone to sea,
    Yet ye are seven! I pray you tell,
    Sweet Maid, how this may be.”

    Then did the little Maid reply,
    “Seven boys and girls are we;
    Two of us in the church-yard lie,
    Beneath the church-yard tree.”

    “You run about, my little Maid,
    Your limbs they are alive;
    If two are in the church-yard laid,
    Then ye are only five.”

    “Their graves are green, they may be seen,”
    The little Maid replied,
    “Twelve steps or more from my mother’s door,
    And they are side by side.

    “My stockings there I often knit,
    My kerchief there I hem;
    And there upon the ground I sit,
    And sing a song to them.

    “And often after sun-set, Sir,
    When it is light and fair,
    I take my little porringer,
    And eat my supper there.

    “The first that dies was sister Jane;
    In bed she moaning lay,
    Till God released her of her pain;
    And then she went away.

    “So in the church-yard she was laid;
    And, when the grass was dry,
    Together round her grave we played,
    My brother John and I.

    “And when the ground was white with snow,
    And I could run and slide,
    My brother John was forced to go,
    And he lies by her side.”

    “How many are you, then,” said I,
    “If they two are in heaven?”
    Quick was the little Maid’s reply,
    “O Master! we are seven.”

    “But they are dead; those two are dead!
    Their spirits are in heaven!”
    ’Twas throwing words away; for still
    The little Maid would have her will,
    And said, “Nay, we are seven!”

    You might be interested in this from a 1958 Mad Magazine ... if you are a Wordsworth fan.

    I Wandered Lonely as a Clod

    I wandered lonely as a clod,
    Just picking up old rags and bottles,
    When onward on my way I plod,
    I saw a host of axolotls;
    Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
    A sight to make a man’s blood freeze.

    Some had handles, some were plain;
    They came in blue, red pink, and green.
    A few were orange in the main;
    The damnedest sight I’ve ever seen.
    The females gave a sprightly glance;
    The male ones all wore knee-length pants.

    Now oft, when on the couch I lie,
    The doctor asks me what I see.
    They flash upon my inward eye
    And make me laugh in fiendish glee.
    I find my solace then in bottles,
    And I forget them axolotls.

    The song in the video is really lovely, and it's sad if you listen to the words.
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  14. Thanks. I was curious and glad to have read it but, while I do like some bits, I'm not generally that into poetry.

    My mother is though and likes to quote it.

    Sometimes, when I'm about to leave the room, I say to her "I will arise and go now" and she starts quoting and I say "NO! I'm going!"...

    (The Lake Isle of Innisfree, WB Yeates)
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  15. Well that is cowabunga cool. And of course, I thought of Thoreau's Walden at the mention of lake and cabin. I only recently heard of Yeats because he knew another American author, Ezra Pound, who I think it is fair to say was a bit of a kook. I learned about Pound because he helped promote Hemingway and TS Eliot. It is sort of bizarre to think about the possibility that we would not have The Old Man and the Sea, the novel, or Cats, the musical without Pound, who made radio broadcasts during World War Two promoting the Axis view of things, and attacking the Allied view.
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  16. Norfolk Biffins -- apple originally from Norfolk England

    "Norfolk Biffins, squat and swarthy, setting off the yellow of the oranges and lemons, and, in the great compactness of their juicy persons, urgently entreating and beseeching to be carried home in paper bags and eaten after dinner."

    A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
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  17. I'll have to look out for them... Believe it or not, we have a Welsh apple (Bardsey) in our garden in Norfolk...
  18. Looks like to get to Bardsey Island, go as far as you can go. Then go just a little bit farther.

    My history teacher divided the Industrial Revolution into eleven categories. Pollution is not one of the categories, unless maybe it would be part of urbanization.

    The Bardsey apple is in a section of a Christmas Carol in which Dickens wants to show the opulence of the London market. I suspect that even though it is fiction it is a real description of fresh food in December. Pre-revolution food in December likely would be dried or canned It could be an example of economic change, which is one of the things I am supposed to learn.
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  19. contiguous - sharing a common border; touching;

    Seems like Chelsie, London, and Southwick must form a contiguous bunch. The same must go for chloroplasts, mitochondria, and lysosomes as well as Galileo, the King James Bible, and Shakespeare The numbers 1, 4, 9, 16, ..or 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 21 … must form contiguous groups because they touch

    Would Romeo’s contiguous hand offend when his two blushing lips stand ready with a kiss?

    Weak knees do to a
    Contiguous Romeo.
    Hands, lips make it so.
  20. #220 Ghid, Oct 22, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2014
    interchangeable parts -- parts that are almost identical, or so nearly identical that they will fit into any assembly of the same type.

    Parts that are so nearly identical that they produce the false gods we call cell phones, which are something like an altar to Baal as people walk holding them instead of kneeling before them.

    It is so bazarre.:)

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