Thursday, July 19, 2007
Jennifer Snow has been blogging up a storm lately, and she's looking for advice on cat breeds.
Needless to say, I can't let such a request pass without noting that my Turkish Van is the best cat I have ever had.
Verbal Question Marks
Myrhaf discusses an annoying social phenomenon that I mentioned in passing in my very first post: the verbal question mark. He cites the following from the Los Angeles Times:
[Speech coach Bob] Corff thinks a high-pitched voice that rises at the end of sentences signifies a lack of accountability for one's words. He also pointed out that in a culture that tends to have a hair-trigger reaction to even the mildest form of dissent, speaking with authority can be a dangerous prospect. "Years ago, people prided themselves on communicating," Corff said. "Today, they're afraid they'll get in trouble for saying the wrong thing. When your speech dies away or goes up at the ends of phrases, you're saying, 'I'm not sure what I mean,' and sometimes people feel safer that way."Over the past couple of years, my thinking started to head in this general direction, but I hadn't made this connection explicit.
Cell Phone Update
Before heading to Telluride, I asked for (and got) advice on finding a new cell phone. The two quizzes on cell phones and service plans were most helpful since the latter quickly showed me that I could save lots of money if I could find a way to stick with Sprint.
My service plan is twenty dollars a month lower than the lowest-priced adequate plan I could find through the first quiz.
A quick call to Sprint confirmed that I could keep my plan with a new phone, so I then took the phone quiz and screened for Sprint phones. This got me to the store, but I found that I did not really like the looks (or price) of the top Sprint phone that showed up -- the Sanyo Katana. I am old enough that my description of its styling would not be "retro", but "outdated". Fortunately, I very quickly found what I did end up buying: A Sanyo SCP-2400.
I could have had this one for free if I took a new two-year contract. However, my current contract already was adequate for my needs and was so much cheaper than the new contract that even the salesman quickly conceded that I'd come out ahead by forking over the 160 smackers and sticking with the old plan. (At that point, he probably just wanted to get me out of the way so he could make some real money off another customer!)
All that was left was to select the color. As the salesman unpacked the several phones he brought up from the back room, he ticked off colors. I almost told him not to bother getting out the "brown" one (pictured), but then I saw it and liked it the best.
I've had it for a couple of weeks now and have zero complaints.
The Pregnant Buffet Customer as "Smuggler"
I ended up in the lab until 10:30 last night and listened to some Phil Hendrie in the background at one point.
I don't know whether Phil Hendrie really qualified as a "shock jock", but if he did, he was the only one I ever liked.
If you liked that, you'll love this one, featuring a dead-beat dad as the "guest".