April 22, 2006

i'm supposed to be working

I have a shitload of work to do. For my Canadian friends, allow me to translate: It's a busy time, eh?

And it's not so much that I can't do the work, but that I seem to be unable to actually get the work done........ because I keep falling asleep.

It's not me, really. It's my bed. The problem is my bed. (she said.)

There's a certain point with this old king-sized mattress sandwich that I'm completely unable to resist. It's when the sheets are just about ready to be changed, and they're all crinkled and rumpled and askew, and I haven't made the bed in days, and the pillows are every which place, and my laptop and canvas SXSW bag that now contains too many items I need to address are at the foot of the bed, and what am I supposed to do? Ignore it?

The strange thing is that I have always adored a well made bed dressed in textures and layers, pressed cotton sheets with tight seamed corners. Oh!

But now? This is not my beautiful bed.

This new era Jeneane can't resist burrowing down into a mis-made, half-assed, crumpled-up, laundry-imminent, unmade bed. Taking an all-akimbo, acid-washed two-hour nap. Say my prayer of thanks for having a fine roof (even if it leaks) over my fine head (even if its roots are showing) in a fine room (even if it's a disaster) in my fine house (even if it's in disrepair) on this fine, fine, fine (low-end) king-size bed.

I find it ir-fucking-resistible.

So what am I supposed to do?

George says: "You know, you could work at your desk."

Sure, but where would I sleep?

[[Breaking News: Amyloo corrects my usage -- suggests the right word is "irre-fucking-sistible". I stand by my mashup: "ir-fucking-resistible" for two reasons--1) it uses a first-syllable break, and 2) sistible's not a word. We are writing ourselves into ex-fucking-istence over here. Let's get it right. You are welcome to weigh in on the matter in comments.]]

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Amy said...

Hard to argue with your reasoning. I think my way scans better. Maybe I'll make a recording to demonstrate, because this is important.

george Girton said...

most people complain about in-fucking-somnia, you know. are you sure you,re okay? you have definitelf gotten me to try that q-manna, by th way (i havva cold so can't type, lying down in bed. my mileage may vary but soon i2ll be asleep: thus yr blog posting was v.wellreceived.

Jeneane Sessum said...

george, i hope you are on the fucking mend soon!!!

HI Amyloo--a recording might help me understand, kind of like dictionary.com does. I think perhaps I am using my hyphens as poingant pauses, to emphasize my zest, so to speak. In other words, when I say my fuck-mashup word, I say: Ir. Fucking. Resistible! Perhaps you are saying yours in a single flow. Which brings the question: How many ways are there to intersperse Fuck?

Yes, audio may be useful in discerning proper pronunciation in this instance.

Hil said...

I reckon it should be irre-fucking-resistable. The two syllables scan better than one at the front, and the re can bear repeating to keep the sense at the end.

I like messy beds too.

Stowe said...

The "fucking infix rule" works like this:

[from http://www.everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=503811]

"Since the linguists have thought about this, they have come up with some linguistic rules that govern how you'd place "fucking" inside an English word. (This work is part of the study of prosody, which is the study of patterns of intonation and accent of speech, and how it affects meaning.)

The fucking infix is nearly always placed before a stressed syllable. Thus we have "fan-fucking-tastic" but never "fanta-fucking-stic", and "abso-fucking-lutely" but not "ab-fucking-solutely". "Un-fucking-believable" is a counterexample that has seen lots of discussion -- the rule would dictate that we'd say "unbe-fucking-lievable", but nobody says that!

The number of syllables in the base word is important -- there needs to be at least 3. It usually won't work with a 2-syllable word. An exception might be words that have two equally stressed syllables, like "sawhorse" -- "saw-fucking-horse". Although, when you'd have an opportunity to say that, I would never know. Two-syllable words with the accent on the first syllable probably never lend themselves to being augmented with an expletive infix. Consider "coffee", "dongle", "printer"... the infix would sound very awkward with these!

The use of expletive infixes seems to be actively evolving, in all English-speaking areas. Some sources claim that "fucking" is the only English word that can be used in this way, but there are several other examples that come to mind: "bloody", as in "kanga-bloody-roo", and "damn", as in "guaran-damn-tee" or even "guaran-goddamn-tee"."

I think "irre-fucking-sistible" sounds better than "ir-fucking-resistible". But I think the example above, "unbe-fucking-lievable", is a grey area, and so is your example. Because we can shift stress patterns in words to represent irony or intensity, and as a result the natural paterns shift, and rules like this become variable instead of absolute.

Jeneane Sessum said...

Holy Fucking Shit! There really IS a rule. Hmmm. Given the above, I think I have to give Amy the nod, because SIS really is the emphasized syllable.

w00t Amyloo!!!!!! ((Fucking infix omitted because that would be rude)).

thanks Stowe, and Hil!

Amy said...


Who knew linguists were doing something so practical and useful? Thanks for the education, Stowe!

Jeneane, I do get your abrupt, punctuated read, too. And it seems like the phonologists support following the intended sound. Maybe punctuation is the answer.

Your staccato way would be:
Ir. Fucking. Resisible.

And my all-in-one way would be:
Irrefuckingsistible. Or irrefuckingzistible.