Our signmaker observed that if a bill is a “written or printed public notice or announcement,” then a “Post No Bills” sign is itself a bill; as such, it’s an example of what not to post.
While I was browsing the aisles of a used book store last Friday, my gaze fell upon the spine pictured above. With no disrespect to the author, I hope I may be forgiven for interpreting the title as Onions: Bearers of Meaning and believing for a moment that the book was really about the semantic potential of this indispensable vegetable. For no reason noble or worthwhile, I decided to devise a few titles for possible sequels to Onions: Bearers of Meaning. Here they are:
Shallots: Capsules of Signification
Pumpkins: Vessels of Erudition
Lima Beans: Agents of Reference
Eggplants: Envoys of Intellection
Potatoes: Canisters of Qualia
Brussels Sprouts: Vectors of Logicality
Peas: Pellets of Gravitas
Tomatoes: Conduits of Intention
Artichokes: Impresarios of Allusion
Radishes: Couriers of Denotation
Avocados: Vehicles of Symbolization
Carrots: Utensils of Argument
Parsnips: Virtuosos of Ratiocination
Cannellini Beans: Custodians of Discernment
Yams: Emissaries of Reason
I seem to be trying to start a tradition of refuting April Fools’ Day each year, so here is my current effort:
The assumption that today is April Fools’ Day is widespread, but so is influenza, and neither are good. In fact, April Fools’ Day was officially cancelled in 12 AD by Emperor Augustus after he was presented with a bronze bust of himself blowing an ancient Roman form of bubble gum. He declared “Stultorum infinitus est numerus,” a phrase he obtained by typing “Latin phrases about fools” into Google. Since that time, all celebrations of April Fools’ Day on the first of the month have been illegitimate, although in modern times, a little-known UN resolution A/RES/66/2938 revived the holiday and moved it to April 2nd.
I came across a fork in the road. I tried to take the road less traveled but this was Times Square and there wasn’t one. I almost got stampeded.
REALISM: “This is not a pipe: ¦” SURREALISM: “This is not a pipe: |”
I’m going to try my best to persuade you that today is not April Fool’s Day. You might recall that I’ve tried this before, and from my perspective things went well, so if past is prelude, this is going to go great. My new arguments? First, April Fool’s Day should occur in April but many people consider the current month to be huhtikuu. You may have been told that it’s April Fool’s Day but if that were so, you should expect that people are fooling you. In fact, people seem to shout “April Fool” immediately after doing something discrediting. Although The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, and MSNBC are reporting that today is April 1, 2017, these have all been declared to be fake news organizations by the President of the United States. Today is April Fool’s Day if this sentence is right — I’m sure we can agree on that! – but this sentence is not right because I assert that pigs are turquoise. April Fool’s Day probably happened on November 8, 2016 and it hasn’t been a year since then. Proponents disagree as to whether the day should belong to one or many fools (April Fool’s Day or April Fools’ Day), and while there’s ongoing controversy, celebrations should be deferred. April Fool’s Day is not a public holiday in any country so it can’t “be” April Fool’s Day in any official sense. Besides, the only kind of institution that would establish a holiday for hoaxes is not to be taken seriously. And given the overwhelming preponderance of non-hoaxes that have already occurred today, we should call it April Seriousness Day. Lastly, it can’t be April Fool’s Day because it’s actually International Edible Book Day. Today is the day when people eat books. And if you still think there’s truth in April Fool’s Day being today, perhaps you didn’t hear the news of truth’s passing?
An office chair so good, you could sit on it.
(Attribution: chair images adapted from work by Paul Robinson.)