Friday, July 29, 2011

Rick Schroder & "Facts of Life" cast

Rick & FOL Cast, originally uploaded by authorwannabe.


Just the other day my husband and I were discussing the kinds of programs our nieces and nephews watch and how their choice of role models no doubt affects their behavior, and not necessarily in a good way. Unlike when we grew up in the 70's and 80's, cable television was still kind of new and there certainly weren't any channels dedicated solely to entertaining children. When we got home from school we usually had to settle for reruns of our favorite primetime shows, or maybe “The Brady Bunch” or “Little House on the Prairie” (though not sure they were my role models).

If I had to choose people similar in age to myself that I watched growing up, I guess I'd say Ricky Schroder for one. I liked his sweaters, and the way he wore his plastic bracelets intertwined any one of us kids could easily imitate his style (as these were the Madonna years, we definitely had plenty of plastic bracelets!).

I also very much looked up to the girls on “Facts of Life.” I thought they were cool because they got to go away to boarding school, and they had the fabulous Mrs. Garrett to look after them. Later on I identified more with Natalie, who was the writer of the group and even took a year off (college) to work a few deadend jobs just for the experience. I briefly entertained this notion until my dad talked me out of it (and I think he was right). Also, the girls got to visit exotic places like Paris and Australia, which I definitely watched with great interest.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Alternate Swear Words

In light of all the frustration I've been feeling lately (mainly because of having a million things to do and not having enough time to do them all), I thought it only appropriate I write about swear words in this week's blog topic – but not just any old swear words, but alternate (and sometimes funny) swear words.

For instance, I used to love how Sarah Chalke's character on “Scrubs” would say “Fric!” instead of, well, you know. On my favorite not-so-politically-correct British sitcom, “Father Ted,” they were quite fond of using the word “feck” or “feck off.”

Young Ralphie in “The Christmas Story” used the word “fudge,” only that's not what he really said (the narrator says), which earned his mouth a date with a bar of soap.

I used to know a lady who sometimes said, “that's just duckie!” Being a mother I guess she felt she ought to exercise some restraint, but if things ever got really bad, I'm sure she slipped up occasionally.

Having visited and lived in Britain for about 10 years, I managed to pick up quite a lot of the British slang, which of course included off-colour phrases like “sod off!” or “bullocks.”

Of course in other languages there is subtle body language that is as good as swearing like when you give somebody the middle finger in America. In Britain it's the two finger salute, so if someone looks like they're flashing you the peace sign and you only see the back of their hand, it's not a friendly gesture.