This blog is intended to be nonpolitical, for the most part. But sometimes, it’s impossible to ignore opportunity when it’s staring you in the face.
Case in point: the reemergence (N.B., not resurgence) of Sarah Palin into the public’s psyche. Just when we thought it was safe, here she comes strutting her stuff once more on the United States’ center stage. Again, without trying to be political (more like plain old common sense), I’d like to share my hope that her presence this time around will be even shorter lived than that time eight years ago. My bet is that this hope is not a preposterous dream.
Sarah Palin’s use of language is too much of a hoot to let slip by with nary a glance, so why not have a little bit of fun with it before bidding her adieu?
If you haven’t read too much already about the newest liberties that Ms. Palin has taken with the English language, here are a couple quick reads that are enlightening, and not simply cutting. They show that there is some complexity to the twisty phrases that are strung together.
Excerpt from Anna North’s recent piece, Sarah Palin’s English:
· Mrs. Palin is also a big fan of the participial phrase. “And that blank check too,” she said on Monday, “making no sense because it’s led us to things, oh gosh, to pay the bills then, we have had to uh, print money out of thin air.”
In this case “making no sense” and everything that follows appear to modify “blank check”; though it can be a little hard to tell with Mrs. Palin, the participial phrase seems to function as an adjective.
I am certain that this Taking Note article was not intended to be snarky, but educational, because it refreshed my memory of what a participial phrase is, and the definition of an ablative absolute!
Among the phrases from Ms. Palin’s speech endorsing Donald Trump, called out by Katy Waldman in Slate, I think this one is my absolute (!) favorite:
· “Exactly one year from tomorrow, former President Barack Obama. He packs up the teleprompters and the selfie-sticks, and the Greek columns, and all that hopey, changey stuff and he heads on back to Chicago”
Like Ms. North’s New York Times article, there is enlightenment to be gained by reading Ms. Wald’s thoughts about Ms. Palin’s rhetoric. These two articles try their best to extract the meaning behind the strange compositions. Or perhaps they are only trying to determine whether there is any meaning to be had.
Now, why didn't I think of the word hopey?