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By Laurence J. Sasso, Jr.
It’s time to drop some things. They’ve had their moment.
For example, it’s clearly well past time to drop “drop the mic.” Originally, introduced by comedians and singers as a dramatic and startling way to punctuate the end of a performance, it has now migrated to commercials promoting everything from cell phones to furniture. Where once it might have been amusing, now it is plain stupid and worse than that, totally mundane. Drop it!
Also, let’s drop the pants. Wait, let’s re-phrase that. It’s time to end the slim jeans/pants thing, especially with brown shoes. Aren’t we about one step away from Li’l Abner yellow shoes territory? (If you don’t understand the reference Li’l Abner was a popular comic strip set in a mythical hillbilly hamlet called Dogpatch. Created by Al Capp, the strip ended in 1977 after 43 years of entertaining and alienating (some) readers. The central character, Li’l Abner Yokum, wore high top yellow shoes.) Also, those extra tight legged pants can’t be easy to get on and off, and they don’t look good on more than a few of us.
Next, there’s insane pancake toppings. Combinations of gunk that would be difficult to tolerate on an ice cream sundae are touted as the latest greatest thing to hit the surface of PANCAKES and sometimes waffles. How little do you have to like the delicate taste of a well-made pan or griddle cake to obliterate it with fruits and candies and syrups and sprinkles and who knows what else? Good old maple syrup, and not too much of that, is just fine. Drop the slop.
In a much more serious vein, it is long, long, long past the time to discount and do away with the term “fake news” when it is used in reference to legitimate news outlets which carefully edit, vet, and fact check their stories. It is a disservice to the very essence of democracy. Drop the propaganda vernacular!
Back to the lighter side. Okay, strip away the legends, the loyalties, and the traditions and professional sports is really just a business. Even more disturbing to some of us, it’s the entertainment business, which may account in part for some of the elaborate pantomime celebration scenarios that football and baseball players have developed (like the act the Red Sox outfielders perform at the end of games). Not to be a wet blanket or stuffed shirt, but this stuff used to be considered “hot-dogging” and was verboten by managers and coaches. Come the days of huge contracts and players unions and things changed (we won’t even get into taking a knee here). Rob Gronkowski, Gronk of The New England Patriots, spiking the ball after a touchdown, seems to have patented just about the perfect way to express elation. It’s swift, it’s emphatic, and, frankly, it’s kind of awesome. Drop the silent movie scenes and such!
It is probably harder to stay abreast of language changes today than it ever has been. Cell phone apps and programs such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook have all widened the playing field when it comes to inventing new words and phrases. Contexts for inventing linguistic forms and creating new words have multiplied. However, there are certain concepts that you instinctively know are better off being discarded the moment they appear. So, when anyone older than a middle schooler says you are cray cray, (meaning crazy) tell them nay nay, it is they they who are coo-coo.
On Monday May 28, Balfour-Cole Post 64 American Legion and the Smithfield Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2929 will host the annual town observance of Memorial Day. It begins at 10:30 a.m. at the Veterans Memorial in Deerfield Park. The program is offered in remembrance of those who served and made the ultimate sacrifice for their nation in all wars. It isn’t necessary to drop your plans to celebrate the beginning of the warm weather months with a barbecue or a picnic. Just push them back long enough to give some time to honor those who gave all the time they had to give.