Monday, May 05, 2008

Poetic hi-jinks.

They're a persistent lot, the International Society of Poets at Having ignored their first mail about the Las Vegas thrash, I had the above in my mailbox this morning. I still won't be going, but I checked the RSVP link to see if there was any way to tell them, politely, where to go. However, it's like all their other bits and bobs - there is no way to refuse, only to sign on the dotted line.

What interests me is what happens when you don't actually turn up. Does the original poem still feature in the competition, the way missing prizewinners were still awarded their prizes at school prizegiving and applauded briefly before their absence registered? Or is it quietly dropped? I shall only know, of coursed, if I win. I'll keep you posted. Don't hold your breath.


  1. Anonymous12:31 AM

    Best Beloved...
    Leaving aside the authenticity of this lot & their persistent invitations, let us consider the wording of same: "Please R.S.V.P.". What they are saying is "Please reply please", which is otiose, tautologous and somewhat too insistent. One can almost hear "Ple-e-e-e-e-ase!".

    Note how R.S.V.P. has become a verb to the ignorant: I aressveepee, thou aressveepeest, he/she/it aressveepeeth... etc.

    I am reminded of an old school chum, now resident in Australia. (He worked for Schindlers Lifts - I kid not.) In our first S1 English exam we were asked to explain and source several common abbreviations. R.S.V.P. was one. Herbert had no idea, but, knowing that examiners are like nature in their abhorrence of a vacuum, he guessed "Royal School of Veterinary Professors". Quite good for a 12-year-old, doncha think?

  2. I still think you should go Mrs Blethers, if only to give these tables another whirl! As the US considers more Clinton years, I warn from last time, RSVP stands for Remember Shitty Vice President

  3. Anonymous6:06 PM

    Just consider the current one: Really Scary Vice-President.

  4. abf - it would seem that your old chum is as enamoured of he joys of paronomasia as you are.

    Kenny, one trip to Vegas is enough for now, thanks - and the thought of all these "poets" - aargh!

  5. Anonymous11:35 PM

    I own that a missing 't' is as nothing compared to a comma splice: fast fingers as opposed to slow brain.

    PS - "Schindler's (or Schindlers) Lifts" is real.

  6. abf - fast fingers assisted by an aging keyboard - my "t" often sticks. Do we think this sufficient reason to go out and buy a replacement?

  7. Anonymous12:55 AM

    Replacement! The very word sounds as a knell.

    My central heating boiler has this night finally given up the ghost, I think. The nice engineers from Scottish Gas, who have kept the thing alive these several years, will have to be summoned. I'm afraid they'll shrive it, pronounce it deceased and try to sell me one of their very expensive ones. I'll have to go through the trauma of getting a new one installed. I hate change and disruption - even more than spending money on a new, efficient boiler. And just when I was considering treating myself to a new computer for my birthday. Boo flaming hoo! (Is that tmesis?)

    PS - Buy a new keyboard.