Et Ceterating the Rainbow

[Today's monologue, which was inspired by Craig's graphic, is making a guest appearance on the One Letter Words weblog. It is being simulcast here for the convenience of our viewers.]

All that glitters is not gold. Ampersands never glitter. Therefore, all ampersands are made of painted plastic. Aunt Blim was confused about many things, and shouldn't have been allowed near the children. Her habit of mixing metaphorsespecially in combination with her disregard for syntaxwas bad enough, but when I told my classmates that Goldilocks had murdered the leprechauns because they threw cold porridge in her face, I was chased around the schoolyard until I fell down.

Worse, aunt Blim had been schooled during a particularly difficult periodcirca 1880, according to her parrotand so had learned to place an ampersand at the very end of the alphabet, after the letters ran out. It was a peculiar way of suggesting that more letters might follow, if only one were willing to wait a while. In effect, it was an et cetera at the end of the alphabet. While her classmates had moved forward and simply ignored such eccentric teachings, aunt Blim internalized them, passing the madness on to succeeding generations. Unfortunately, this included mine, which is how I came to believe her twisted version of the Goldilocks tale in the first place.

Passing on warped fables to classmates is one thing, and arguing for archaic principles with your grammar-school teacher is another, but combining the two is likely to get you a fat lip, followed by expulsion. At least that's the way I remember it. As I was being conducted to the principal's office by one ear, my teacher was bellowing in the other.

"There is no ampersand at the end of the rainbow!"

"There is no ampersand at the end of the rainbow!"

I think she was wrong.


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