My Dad was a Toro man.  He owned plenty of toys equipment over the years. His first score was the Homelawn, a power mower designed specifically for a young buck with lots of green grass and a bank tab.



When I was about eight, Dad bought a rider.  I begged him to let me drive that mawn lower.  Yes, you read that right.  Mawn lower.

Dad Me Tractor 001


Slip of the tongue?  Slip of the brain is more like it. But as it turns out, I wasn’t the only one whose mouth moved faster than my noggin.



I heard about William Archibald Spooner when I was in high school.  He was a scholarly gent who is remembered for his brilliance peculiar speech errors.

He reportedly ended a wedding he was performing with: “It is now kisstomary to cuss the bride.”  Tip of the slung, as they say.


Recently, though, I stumbled across this fascinating snippet. There’s a word, marrowsky ((MUH-rau-ski), that’s a predecessor to the spoonerism.


Egads! Who knew?

Did Mr. Spooner? Frances, his flinty wife ?

Were they totally bummed?


Marrowsky is defined in the Oxford English Dictionary as “a variety of slang, or a slip in speaking, characterized by transposition of initial letters, syllables, or parts of two words.”  The origin of marrowsky is  uncertain although word geeks think it may have come from the name of a Polish count who was prone to this phenomenon.

I love that language is a dynamic high-spirited plaything in everyone’s sandbox. Shel Silverstein was  a crackerjack.  Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook was his last children’s book.



He’s a guy who appreciates a good marrowsky, don’t you think?


George Carlin

If you’re a fan of the King of Clever Wordplay (and his anti-establishment edge), you might already know this one.

Don’t sweat the petty things and don’t pet the sweaty things.

Prudent advice, really.

Well, it’s been a bit of a ramble today, from Toro to tip-off, but I’m curious ~

Have you have ever been pit nicked for turning words outside in?

Toni  6/30/16  

Shorpy photo




In Italy, everyone loves pasta, il primo piatto.  North, south, rich, poor, it’s a shared gastronomical religion.  Each region stakes its claim to a distinctive design. ( I know, I’ve tried them all.)  When I stayed in Trappani, I devoured the local handmade pasta called busiate, Sicily’s most famous pasta lunga. Knobs of dough are formed into ropes and rolled around a ferretto, or thin iron rod, something like a knitting needle.

image image


The curves hold the pesto Trapanese, one of Sicily’s traditional sauces, that soars with the flavors of garlic, basil, and almonds.

busiate trapanesi con pesto ai capperi

In Sicily, point your car in any direction and you’ll find pasta, it’s such a part of Sicilian life.   As I hiked across the island, I read through Andrea Camilleri’s mystery series. His fictional detective, the astute Montalbano, is always in a state of silent ecstasy while enjoying a dish of busiate.

Sound marvelous?  It is.


What’s your favorite pasta?

Toni 6/24/16

Serendipitydoodah! I meet H.P. Wood and wonder if there’s a poet laureate of Coney Island.

Thorton Wilder (he wondered about that poet laureate gig too) would like Magruder’s Curiosity Cabinet.  And he’d love H.P. Wood.  Her novel transports you to the rollicking resort at the bottom of Brooklyn.

I say, who better to be a poet laureate of Coney Island than Ms. Wood?

I hope HPW meets songwriter Amos Wengler when she does her next reading July 9, 4pm: Sideshows by the Seashore, Coney Island, NY.   I think they’ll have a lot to talk about.

Toni 6/21/16