December 9th, 2002

Salvation on the Cheap

Saturday last, I bought a pair of jeans at a new Salvation Army, one of those where
they arrange everything according to the colors of the rainbow. It’s a good system and looks
nice….but it’s also somewhat creepy to see a bunch of purple stuff including crocheted kleenex
dispensers, purple mini-coolers, and a purple package of Depends.

December 9th, 2002

this is a test of things to come….

UPDATE 01.22.2005: this no longer seems to work. As an aside, it was used as an aside in a side bar for the blogger-version of the blog for a long time.

December 9th, 2002


Sometimes, words get stuck in my head.

It seems to have been yet another of those gloriously facetious bits of wordplay so characteristic of America in the nineteenth century. Quite how it came about is a matter of some guesswork, but it looks moderately certain that the first part derives from the beginning of umbrella, with a b put in front so that it makes the evocative and forceful first syllable bum; the second half, as you surmise, is a respelling of the final syllable of parachute, presumably because of the similar shape.

Don’t assume that any word derived from parachute must be at all recent. Perhaps surprisingly, that word dates from the early days of Montgolfier ballooning and first appeared in English in 1785. (Umbrella itself dates from the early seventeenth century, originally from an Italian word for a sunshade, with the first part traceable back to Latin umbra, shadow.)

The first example of bumbershoot in Professor Lighter’s Random House Historical Dictionary of the American Language is from 1896. There were some variations around in the early days, such as bumbersol (with sol presumably taken from parasol) and bumberell. By the first decade of the twentieth century it had settled down to bumbershoot.

This fairly rare example of the word in print comes from L Frank Baum’s book Sky Island of 1912:

“This umbrella has been in our family years, an’ years, an’ years. But it was tucked away up in our attic an’ no one ever used it ’cause it wasn’t pretty.” “Don’t blame ’em much,” remarked Cap’n Bill, gazing at it curiously. “It’s a pretty old-lookin’ bumbershoot.”

December 9th, 2002

Dear Esteemed Person,


Compliment of the season, Permit me to inform you of my
desire of going into business relationship with you. I know
this mail may come to you as a surprise, since we have not
known orwritten before.

Our Mother died long ago when she was about to
delivered my most junior sister ESTHER, she is 10
years old as of today, based that we lost our mother
so early our father took us so special, we are only
three from my mother’s side, I and the two girls.
Introducing myself , I am CHARLES ANTHONY,
the only son of the late Chief and Mrs
EDWARD ANTHONY, My father was a gold and cocoa merchant
based in Accra, Ghana and Abidjan ( Ivory Coast ) , he
was poisoned to death by his business associates onone of
their business trips.

Before the death of my father on 28th February 2001 in
a private hospital here in Abidjan. He secretly called
me on his bedside and told me that he has a sum of
USD$12.5M ( Twelve Million five hundred thousand U.S),
deposited in Bank in ( Abidjan Cote D’Ivoire , that
he used my name as his beloved son for the next of
kin in depositing the fund. He also explained to me
that it was because of this wealth that he was
poisoned by his business associates, that I should
seek for a foreign partner in a country of my choice
where I will transfer this money and use it for
investment purpose such as expansion of his existing
cocoa business and real estate management overseas. I
have make an arrangement with the Local bank manager
here on how best to transfer this money to oversea
please, I am humbly seeeking your assistance in
thefollowing ways.

1- To assist me in providing an account of yours
where this fund can quietly be transferred into..
2-To serve as the guardian of this fund since I am
still in the secoundary school with my junior sisters.
3)- To make arrangement for me to come over to your
country to futher my education and to help me secure a
residential permit in your country.

Moreover, I am willing to offer you 15% of the total
sum as compensation for your effort/ Input after the
successful transfer of this fund into your nominated
account overseas, while 5% will be set aside to offset
any expenses we may incure.Furthermore, you can indicate
your option towards assisting me as I believe that this
transaction would be concluded within the shortest possible
time if you signify interest to assist me.

NB: Please contact me immediately you receive this
message through the above e-mail address if you
intend to help us.

God bless

Yours sincerely

Gagne une PS2 ! Envoie un SMS avec le code PS au 61166
(0,35? Hors co?t du SMS)

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