The Worldwide Weblog of Donald Pincher

by Joshua Gaskell

The WEBMASTER to the READER

I am the WEBMASTER, and it is I who will be presenting to you, READER, the private journal of Donald Pincher, aspiring author. How I came to be possessed of it is no concern of yours. And in any case, if I did go about to tell you by what accident I obtained covert access to the file, it would in this unbelieving age pass for little more than the cant or jargon of the blogosphere. Suffice it to say that he types Journal.doc on his computer (Windows ME) and, in his careless cyber-luddism, has left open a pathway vulnerable to exploitation by those of us who know the ways of data capture. Pincher is a pious, small-c-conservative young fogey of the leftmost wing. He lives unfashionably in the London district of Forest Hill SE23, and devotes his life to writing entries in his Oxford Urban Dictionary, trying to find someone willing to publish his novel – five-hundred pages of relentless socialist manifesto masquerading as literature – and to being fruitlessly apoplectic about the price of things in the capital. A privacy obsessive, much of his novel consists of (in equal measure) decrying the dangers of the Internet age, and mocking its pretentions. Which is why I thought it would be funny for him to write his own blog, even if it is one that he doesn’t know he’s writing. Though the automatic-upload macro I’ve attached to Pincher’s journal makes me something of a deistical Prime Mover, I will occasionally deign to intervene in ‘the cool of the day’ (to footnote, to hyperlink, to tag, or otherwise curate). To this end you will know me by my dark-blue font. Without further ado, I present to you what I’ve chosen to dub, in the idiom of its unwitting BLOGGER, The Worldwide Weblog of Donald Pincher

Saturday, 1st August 2015

The Oxford (Urban) Dictionary of (Really) Modern Quotations:

‘As the actor said to the woman bishop’, a catchphrase mischievously implying a sexual innuendo in a preceding innocent remark. (Also in forms, ‘As the actor said to the bishopess’*; ‘As the actor said to the she-bishop.’) Cf. ‘That’s what she said’; ‘Not sexually’; ‘Quoth’.

Draft addition: ‘As the actress said to the woman bishop’, ‘As the actor said to the gay bishop’, etc.

* The OED defines bishopess as, ‘A female- or she-bishop. (Here used jestingly.)’ but notes that ‘This entry has not yet been fully updated (first published 1887).’

Friday, 31st July 2015

A new Coca-Cola advert plays on the urban legend, which claims that only two executives know the drink’s secret recipe, and that they’re not allowed on an aeroplane together in case it crashes and the secret is lost:

Wednesday, 29th July 2015

U-turn, n.

Pronunciation: /ˌjuːˈtəːn/
Etymology: < U n. + turn n.

An act of walking or pacing genteelly around or about a limited area, as your park, garden, or sequence of streets; a short walk (or ride) forth and back, esp. by a seemly route; a stroll from the top drawer.

Tuesday, 28th July 2015

Unobsolete: an occasional column devoted to tracking social and lexical change with reference to words, phrases and definitions in the OED that are labelled ‘Obs.’ but are now unobsolescing: in universe disappears from OED current usage as, ‘universally; so as to include or apply to all. Obs.’, and reappears in Wiktionary as,

Referring to a perspective or view from the context of a fictional world, in contrast to a perspective from the real world.

Friday, 24th July 2015

Unobsolete: an occasional column devoted to tracking social and lexical change with reference to words, phrases and definitions in the OED that are labelled ‘Obs.’ but are now unobsolescing:

Enormity, n.

Pronunciation: /ɪˈnɔːmɪtɪ/
Etymology: < French énormité, < Latin ēnormitātem

Excess in magnitude; hugeness, vastness. Obs.; recent examples might perh. be found, but the use is now regarded as incorrect.

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