Monday, November 29, 2004


Crazy Person: (muttering) I hate the New York Times!

Me: Why?

CP: (glaring wildly) Because they hate Israel!

Me: Really? Do you have an example?

CP: They always put dead Palestenians on the cover. They're trying to say that Israel doesn't do anything but kill Arabs!

Me: I understand. But you know, to be fair, I do recall seeing dead Jews on the cover, too. Several of the bus bombings have been shown on the front cover, for example.

CP: See what I mean? What kind of monsterous anti-semites put pictures of dead Jews on the cover of a newspaper!!

Me: (Rapidly backpeddling away from the crazy person) Okay...


Jason H. Elbaum said...

"Rapidly backpeddling away"?

I hate to do this, but it's tit for tat time.

To "backpedal" is to pedal backwards, as in a bicycle. Colloquially, it means "to change an opinion that you had expressed before, or do something different from what you had said you would do".But you didn't change your mind, you just backed away. You didn't "backpedal" unless you were on a bicycle at the time.

To "backpeddle", on the other hand (aside from not being a word) is to peddle backwards, which a traveling salesman might do. Whether this means to reverse a sale, or to sell someone something he had sold you, or to sell your wares while pedaling backwards on a bicycle, remains unclear.

I think you really meant "rapidly backing away" - right?

Must be those churning monkeys again.

(I agree it's a great story, though - kol hakavod!)

DovBear said...

I don't spell, but I know what words mean. Check your dictionary again.

Backpedal: To move backward by taking short quick steps, as in boxing or football.

If you spent more time on your writing, and less on your spelling you'd be a better blogger.

Jason H. Elbaum said...

Leave it to boxers and football players to mangle the English language. It ain't in my dictionary.

DovBear said...

Time to upgrade to an adult dictionary, I guess.