Thursday, November 29, 2018

The Quoting Quotable Quotations Quotient



Chris McGinty of AccordingToWhim.com

I’ve started to wonder about the quotations that we see as we’re scrolling down social media, and through quote websites. I’m not going to pretend that every quotation prior to the internet was entirely accurate. “Play it again, Sam,” was never said in “Casablanca.” The thing that started bothering me is that some quotations are starting to feel like social media postings. I don’t know if that’s a result of people using social media more, or if it’s that people who are using social media are making things up and rather than applying the standby “Anonymous” label, they’re just picking someone respected.

Let me talk about movies for a minute. I swear it has something to do with the topic, as long as I remember what my point was to begin with.

In 2008, there was a movie released called “The Happening.” Nathan said of the movie and I quote, “This is probably the best movie ever. Ever!” But don’t take my word for it. You can read his blog post about it, and you’ll find that exact quotation. Exact!

Note to self: Go edit Nathan’s blog post about “The Happening.” Include made up quotation.

“The Happening” was very good… at first. Then it was pretty good. Then it was questionable. By the end of the movie, I started to feel like it was a good movie as long as there was some sort of deeper meaning behind it that I was having trouble grasping. It really didn’t. The entire movie is predicated on a quotation attributed to Albert Einstein. The quotation – “If the bee disappeared off the face of the Earth, man would only have four years left to live.” – was featured in some form in the movie.

As I was reading about this quotation, it’s widely noted that there’s no record of him saying it. Some people feel it’s the kind of thing he might have said while another thought process was that it was made up by an environmental group.

Ultimately, I walked away from the movie not really being all that impressed. It had its merits, but I just wasn’t impressed. I need to talk about a good movie now.

In 1999, we were treated to “Mystery Men.” This was a fantastic superhero movie when no one was making fantastic superhero movies. It’s a comedy, so it has its detractors, but screw those people. It’s a funny and quotable movie. In fact, one of the characters, The Sphinx, is the master of sound bite wisdom, like the following:

“To learn my teachings, I must first teach you how to learn.”
“He who questions training only trains himself at asking questions.”

Each time he busts out with one of these gems, the group acts like their minds have been opened and enriched; except, that Mr. Furious starts to find himself not buying into it until finally he gets fed up.

Scene from Mystery Men: You can read along below. You'll know it's time to turn the page when Bob Seger...

Mr. Furious: Okay, am I the only one who finds these sayings just a little bit formulaic? “If you want to push something down, you have to pull it up. If you want to go left, you have to go right.” It’s...
The Sphinx: Your temper is very quick, my friend. But until you learn to master your rage...
Mr. Furious: ...your rage will become your master? That's what you were going to say. Right? Right?
The Sphinx: Not necessarily.

Relating these two movies to the topic, what started bothering me is that there would be Sphinx like quotations on social media that would be attributed to people who are great thinkers.





Maybe these are legitimate. Maybe The Sphinx was modeled after the use of these types of quotations. Or maybe The Sphinx stopped training superheroes and became an internet troll. 


Now, I understand that there are plenty of sarcastic and ironic quotations out there that are meant to make us laugh.



Those are not what I’m talking about.

I’m going to create some new rules about quotations. I’m not sure what qualifies me to do this, but I’m going to do it anyway. You know why? Because the internet.

Let’s start finding quotations that are verified. What I mean by this is pull the actual quotations from sources you’re familiar with in some way. If you’re listening to an interview and someone says something interesting, quote from that. If you’re reading a book, and you find something interesting, quote from that. If you’re watching Albert Einstein’s You Tube channel… nevermind.

“If you make up a quotation, go ahead and take credit for it.” – Chris McGinty
“If you don’t want to take credit for a quotation you made up, go ahead and attribute it to no one.” – Anonymous

Finally, if you need to paraphrase something you heard, but either need to make it read better, or you can’t completely remember the quotation, go ahead and note that.
“If you gotta paraphrase, just let us know, a’ight” – Chris McGinty (paraphrased)



I’ve decided that 90% or more of the time, I’m only going to quote if I’ve pulled the quotation from a source directly, or at least verified it. The other 10% of the time it’ll be things that are just difficult to get verification of because it was prior to mass media, or if I feel like the quotation sounds enough like who it’s being attributed to. The main point is that I want some quotations out there that are for sure legitimate.

In the meantime, if you’d like to read a quotation blog post that I created before I made these rules for myself. I’m reasonably sure that the quotations are valid, but I didn’t really verify them.

“I think I agree.” – Nathan Stout

Note: I’ll possibly write about context some other time.



Chris McGinty is a blogger who is clearly worth quoting. This is not to say to use direct quotations. He suggests that you look through his blog posts and find the words you need and arrange them into your own new quotations. "Go ahead. Verify these are legitimate. The blog post is a result of these 'The Happening' training Nathan, an internet troll, to master not really being all that impressed."

Monday, November 26, 2018

Oh-Mazh, If You Will...



by Chris McGinty of AccordingToWhim.com
A long time ago, on a DVD commentary far, far away, I noticed that someone said something to the effect of, “We were paying Oh-mazh, if you will…” It didn’t really catch my attention until I noticed that every time someone said it they would say, “Oh-mazh, if you will…” If it wasn’t for that weird apology, I think it would have never caught my attention. It would have been one of those words that my brain tuned out because I didn’t know the meaning, but I caught the context. But that, “If you will…” jarred me back to reality, and I realized that they were saying, “homage.” I’ve been bitching about it since.

Nathan and I named the first episode of According To Whim “Homage.” This was because of my irritation with the pretentious pronunciation of the word. Because of this the naming convention of the episodes of Season One was a single word with a pronunciation and a definition. After that first one, we themed the word to the episode, but the naming convention was created because of this. This was 2004, so it’s been irritating for a while.

Let me say this. I’m not an expert on the English language, spelling, grammar, or punctuation. I don’t get everything right. It’s likely that I’ll screw something up in here as well. My complaint is the more that people point out that there is no such word that is pronounced “Oh-mazh” the more argumentative that people get about it. Seriously, there is an argument now that “Oh-mazh,” which is spelled “homage” is not the same word as homage… which is spelled “homage.” They say that while they have similar meanings that they’re not the same.

Let’s follow that:
1. Same spelling.
2. Similar meaning.
3. Massively different pronunciation that changes both vowel sounds and adds a Z somewhere in there.
4. Seems legit.

Let’s look at the definition real quick.

The definition that people feel it is pronounced like the dictionaries is as follows:
1a : a feudal ceremony by which a man acknowledges himself the vassal of a lord
b : the relationship between a feudal lord and his vassal
c : an act done or payment made in meeting the obligations due from a vassal to a feudal lord
2a : expression of high regard : respect bowed in homage to the king
b : something that shows respect or attests to the worth or influence of another : tribute

Now let’s look at tribute:
1a : something given or contributed voluntarily as due or deserved especially : a gift or service showing respect, gratitude, or affection a floral tribute
b : something (such as material evidence or a formal attestation) that indicates the worth, virtue, or effectiveness of the one in question the design is a tribute to his ingenuity
2a : a payment by one ruler or nation to another in acknowledgment of submission or as the price of protection also : the tax levied for such a payment
b(1) : an excessive tax, rental, or tariff imposed by a government, sovereign, lord, or landlord
(2) : an exorbitant charge levied by a person or group having the power of coercion
c : the liability to pay tribute

Basically, the same word.

So I declare that from this day forward that artists don’t pay tribute to other artists because it’s archaic and references kings and rulers, like homage. From here forward, it shall be pronounced “Tri-byoo-tay,” because it’s a completely different word, like “Oh-mazh.”


Chris McGinty is a mediocre blog writer who recently realized that Hollywood pronounces Homage like Homogenize, as if they're trying to say that everything they make is uniform or similar. Almost as if they are excusing the fact that they fear, or can't create, original ideas.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

When you die...

by Nathan Stout (of AccordingToWhim.com)

Now that I have your attention...
In our society we often say things like when I get to heaven they are going to have never ending buffets of my favorite foods/drinks/etc... well for me I need a Coke Freestyle machine.

Not any Freestyle machine. Almost ALL Freestyle machines SUCK. When you get your Coke, you get Coke with a hint of whatever was dispensed a moment before. Here's a hint, when you have a self-server Freestyle machine, let it run a for a second before your pour your own drink (you'll thank me).

Anyway, this Heavenly Freestyle will every soda, never give you hints of any previously dispensed soda. Of all the vices of my life soda is the one I can't quit. Soda puts a smile on my face every time.

Along with the soda I politely request Jet's Pizza, Chicken Tikka Marsala, Steak, and a Godiva store for good measure.

Don't forget something to watch while I am eating in a Drive-In Movie theater settings with access to every movie ever made.

Thank you.


Monday, October 1, 2018

October is here! Yay.

by Nathan Stout (of AccordingToWhim.com)

It's been a busy year and we are already at the 10th month. It's one of my favorite months! When we lived in the country I would always go on how I can't wait to live in the city so I can decorate for Halloween. We finally moved back and I instantly backtracked on my Halloween wish. I hate giving candy to kids. I like decorating but not handing out candy. I want to decorate then pull it all down the day before Halloween. In the neighborhood I live people come by the TRUCKLOAD, dumping their ungrateful pre-teens/teens to bother you.

I enjoying taking my kid to Home Depot/Lowes/Walmart to see the Halloween yard blow up decorations. She is mildly spooked by it all but seems to enjoy it. I also enjoy taking her trick or treating at events but not door to door. I guess it all boils down to the fact that I am anti-social or something.

What adds to my enjoyment of the months is the fall weather/feel of the changing season. If Halloween was in Summer, I don't think I'd like it so much.


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Tuesday Junk

by Nathan Stout (of AccordingToWhim.com)

Been a while since I posted last so here are some random thoughts for you look at (chewing gum for the eyes!).

  • I got sick the last day we were at Disneyland (November 7th) and have been sick for 2 months now. Not just lightly sick either, full blown snot, etc... then I got the flu a couple of weeks ago. Been a sucky couple of months. It's starting to clear tho...
  • Funny things my 2 1/2 year old says: 
    • "Get out the carpet" (when I'm sitting on the floor). 
    • "Get out the couch" (when I'm sitting on the couch). 
    • "Go feep" (when pretending to sleep).
  • I just watched an old anime called Castle of Cagliostro . Man I love old anime. It just satisfies so much more than current stuff.
  • I'm getting Long Distance Blues and want to be back in the city so I can see the few friends I have more regularly.
  • My doc has me on 15 supplements... I better live forever now (or something)...
  • I was the guinea pig for a new MRI test at work a couple of weeks ago and they needed to shoot me with contrast and they stuck me 6 times and could not get a vein.... 6 times! They even used a vein finder and they couldn't do it!