Monday, May 27, 2013

Cup of Joe--an Etymology.

The May 26/26 issue of Wall Street Journal contains Robert K. Landers'  review of a biography of Josephus Daniels, by Lee A. Craig.    Josephus Daniels was Secretary of the Navy under Wilson.    One of his less popular reforms was to prohibit alcohol on all navy vessels and shore stations.  Coffee was offered as a substitute.   This coffee was disparagingly referred to as "the  cup of Joe Daniels;"  and later, "a cup of joe."

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Laundry List Sonnet

It has recently been suggested that I'm the kind of crazy bastard who would write his laundry lists in sonnets.  Well, it's all true--I confess.

Ye Olde Laundry List Sonnet:

My sweatshirts--prithee wash them cold with jeans.
(This last instruction should'st not be forgot.
Learned I when I was barely in my teens,
"Hand puppets" they become if washed too hot.)

And then my briefs--they number seven each.
Such briefs once sized to gird my youthful butt,
(Please wash them hot and do not spare the bleach)
Now  briefs too brief to span an aging gut.

And shirts, whose very image doth depress,
Their manufacture steeped in human sorrow;
Song of the Shirt, Triangle fire, and yes
In Bangladesh, our past is their tomorrow.

When finished with my socks, thou may'st inquire
If one lone stocking lurketh in the dryer.