Saturday, April 21, 2007

addenda

Two more things:

Did anyone catch the Sean Penn/Stephen Colbert Metaphor-off on Comedy Central? It was quite honestly one of the funniest things I've ever seen. GOLD. You can watch it here.

Also? Best word-of-the-day ever.

John Barleycorn \JAHN-BAR-lee-korn\ noun

: alcoholic liquor personified

Example sentence: "Eureka was, after all, the last home of Carry Nation, that ax-wielding foe of John Barleycorn, Demon Rum and all their evil ilk." (Charles Allbright, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, November 19, 2003)

Did you know? "Inspiring bold John Barleycorn! / What dangers thou canst make us scorn!" Robert Burns wasn't the first to use "John Barleycorn" as a personification of liquor when he penned those lines in his poem Tam O'Shanter in the late 1700s. The term had been part of English vernacular for more than 150 years before Burns's heyday, but the poet played a key role in popularizing it by carrying it into literature. "Barleycorn" undoubtedly became part of that euphemism for alcohol because barleycorns (that is, grains of barley) are a key ingredient in malt liquor. And "John" has long been used as a generic name or personifier in English.

Brilliant.

3 Comments:

Blogger Krysten said...

"...and all their evil ilk" was my favorite part of that WotD.

sometimes they are pretty funny.

April 22, 2007 10:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now, this is surely going to date me, but one of my all-time favorite albums is Traffic's "John Barleycorn Must Die." Steve Winwood's voice on that track is so exquisite that, back in the day, I could get lost in it for hours!
-- Magnoliajem

April 24, 2007 7:58 PM  
Blogger Brain Diva said...

See, the metaphor off was funny, but it just felt overly scripted. I prefer the crazier stuff that is not clear where it is going like Stephen's interview with Jane Fonda and Gloria Steinem where they were making apple pies.

April 25, 2007 2:05 PM  

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