If you ain’t Dutch…
Readers from a Dutch background are undoubtedly familiar with the slogan, “if you ain’t Dutch, you ain’t much.” Those same readers might be surprised to know that the Dutch are not the only ones to come up with a bit of rhyming nationalistic bravado. Below are just a few of the many out there:
- “If you ain’t Greek, you must be weak.”
- “If you’re in a hole, look for a Pole.” (It’s admittedly unclear if this is a nationalistic slogan about how helpful the Polish are, or perhaps just a bit of practical advice on how to get out of pits.)
- “To be Swiss is bliss.”
- “Only a Czech deserves a peck on the neck.” (As is well-known, Eskimos kiss by rubbing noses, the Tookinese do it by rubbing ear lobes, businessmen by rubbing elbows, and apparently, Czechs prefer pecks on their necks.)
- “Aussies rule!” (It may not rhyme, but they make up for it with vigor.)
- “Only the best of the lot, get to be a Scot!”
- “If you ain’t Finnish… then keep going.”
- “If you ain’t Canadian, that’s okay too.”
• Do the “Alphabet Song” and “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” have the same tune?
• How come wrong numbers are never busy?
• Do people in Australia call the rest of the world “up over”?
• How can there be self-help “groups”?
• How do you write zero in Roman numerals?
• Why do the signs that say “Slow Children” have a picture of a running child?
• What was the best thing before sliced bread?
• Why do people tell you when they are speechless?
TV was pretty weird two decades ago too
We’ve got thousands of channels and nothing good to watch, and so much weird stuff to avoid. But lest we despair, let’s remember that the former days were not all that different than today (Eccl. 7:10). In 2004, this is what RP was warning readers to watch out for, as it was “coming to a TV near you.”
- The Swan – Women undergo drastic plastic surgery and then compete in a beauty pageant.
- The Littlest Groom – Dating show. A 4-foot-5 man dates a bevy of similarly sized women, then gets to date some full-size ladies and must choose one.
- Playing it Straight – Another dating show. Woman seeks suitor from a group of good-looking guys, but some of them are gay. She wins if she picks a straight guy.
- My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiancée – Yet another dating show. Woman tries to convince her family to let her marry a jerk. She wins big bucks if her family doesn’t love her enough to object.
- Temptation Island – Adultery show. Couples are separated and then sent to two exotic islands where models tempt them to cheat on their partners.
- Fear Factor – Gameshow. Contestants compete by bobbing in a barrel of cows’ blood, and by eating maggots, eyeballs, and worms.
Couldn’t count, but had a way with words
“There are only three ways to teach a child. The first is by example, the second is by example, and the third is by example.” – Albert Schweitzer
Oh, what a feeling!
Some years ago a minister heard several other ministers rave about the high-powered Christian meetings they had attended. They all talked about how warmly they had felt and what a great shared spiritual experience it had been.
After overhearing this, the first minister decided to share with them his own experience of a meeting he had come from the previous night. He described in great detail the feelings that had come over him when 40,000 sang the same songs. What an unforgettable experience!
His colleagues all agreed and wanted to know more about the extraordinary event. What was it all about, they wanted to know. Who was the special man who organized it?
“Oh,” he replied, “It was a Paul McCartney concert.”
This little story is told by Sjirk Bajema in the Feb. 2004 issue of Faith in Focus, and there is a moral to his tale: feelings alone are no guarantee of God’s presence or His approval. Christians who seek to experience God must not neglect His Word, lest they lose sight of the fact that while the love of God is an extraordinary experience, extraordinary experiences can (at least temporarily) be had apart from the love of God.
Bad, like ham left out of the fridge all day
The following are taken from an email that circulated some years back that was supposed to be a compilation of some of the worst/most brilliant analogies and metaphors written by American students.
- Even in his last years, Granddad had a mind like a steel trap, only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.
- He was as tall as a six-foot, three-inch tree.
- Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.
- John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.
- The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.
- He was deeply in love. When she spoke, he thought he heard bells, as if she were a garbage truck backing up.
- From the attic came an unearthly howl. The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you’re on vacation in another city and Jeopardy comes on at 7:00 p.m. instead of 7:30.
- Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.
To get your team going
“Being defeated is often only a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.” – Marilyn vos Savant
“In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. But, in practice there is.” – Jan L.A. van de Snepscheut