29 October 2009

24 Goldwynisms from UUs

. . . The word Goldwynism was coined in the early 20th century for a quotation that carries an internal contradiction. It was named for famed movie producer Samuel Goldwyn (1879-1974) who was notorious for making firm pronouncements that seemed clear but, technically speaking, simply made no sense, such as: "Include me out"; "I'll give you a definite maybe"; "We're overpaying him but he's worth it."

The following Goldwynisms, lovingly collected over many years, sprung from the mouths of confused Unitarians and Universalists all across the world.

1. "I cherish the greatest respect toward everybody's religious obligations, never mind how comical." Herman Melville

2. "Say NO to negativity." the Rev. John Corrado

3. "The Garden of Eden is boring as Hell." the Rev. Davidson Loehr

4. "He's universally loved by dozens." U. Utah Phillips, singer-songwriter

5. "If you're going to misuse a word, do it right." Jessie Munro, author, critic

6. "I know what pot smells like because I've read all about it." Jessie Munro

7. "It just isn't Christmas until we've sung the Hanukkah song." overheard during coffee hour at a UU church, reported by Elizabeth Norton, 2008

8. "I have approximately nothing to report." William Hatton, committee chair

9. "It's so hot my armpits are sticking to each other." college student Kathleen Jacobs-Johnson

10. "I like the Ann Arbor art fair better because they have a better variety of crap." art fair visitor Kathleen Jacobs-Johnson

11. "Compassionate conservativism? When I hear neocons using the word compassion I just want to slug them." liberal-minded Kathleen Jacobs-Johnson

12. "Turn off that noise—I can't hear a word edgewise!" disgruntled roommate Kathleen Jacobs-Johnson

13. "I've had an excellent vocabulary since before I could talk." Gwen Foss

14. "You're throwing money out the window when you leave the door open." Gwen Foss, trying to convice thoughtless roommates to close the door during winter

15. "There are three kinds of people: those who can count and those who can't." overheard

16. "I washed a sock. Then I put it in the dryer. When I took it out, it was gone." overheard

17. "You can go with me or we can go together; it's up to you." Henry Clerval, college professor

18. "Occasionally I decide to be impulsive." Vanity Decklestad, author, folklorist

19. "Can you keep your voices down so everyone can see?" Bonnie Schorer Clark, trying to run church auction, to unruly crowd

20. "No one can shut me up unless they tie my hands behind my back." Heather Hicks, religious education teacher

21. "Does the album have any songs you like that aren't on it?" Henry Newt, music critic

22. "He had the same condition I've got, only mine is much worse." overheard at a funeral

23. "The show's only a half hour long. You can't do Hitler justice in half an hour." Peter H. Foss, my dad, complaining about the length of a certain television documentary

24. "If you haven't seen it before, it's certainly worth seeing again." Millie Foss, my mom, trying to talk a friend into seeing one of her favorite movies


Many of these quotes first appeared in The Confused Quote Book: 395 Slips, Misses and Errors Spoken by the High, the Mighty and other Celebrities, compiled by Gwen Foss, Avenel NJ: Gramercy Books/Random House Value Publishing, 1997, long out of print

Click here for my book of UU jokes, The Church Where People Laugh

And please visit TomFolio.com, a cooperatively-owned website of independent professional book and paper dealers, for all your used book needs.


No comments: