Why Old English Insults Were Better
Let's face it, modern English insults are boring. Our language lost the imaginative flair that made Old World insults so deliciously insulting a long time ago! Think about it — isn't calling someone an "elvish-mark'd, abortive, rooting hog" so much more satisfying than calling said person a pig? (Disclaimer: I actually love pigs. No hard feelings.)
Old English insults are delightfully descriptive word concoctions that conjure up all kinds of bizarre pictures in the mind. Shakespeare was a master at the art of the insult and Old British dialects are full of them as well. Here's a look at some of best old English insults from written records and, of course, the Bard.
You Crooked-Nosed Knave You
A much better insult than "ridiculous" and "low-class," isn't it? This insult was immortalized when it became the subject of a defamation lawsuit in 1555. A man named Warneford had the audacity to call John Bridges a "crooked-nosed knave" in public. Appalled at the blow to his character, Bridges took the only legal avenue available — he sued. Sadly, the ruling was not recorded. We'll never know if John Bridges' nose was really as crooked as Warneford claimed.
You're Not a Slave, But You Are a Churl!
It turns out you didn't have to be a slave to fall victim to upper class disdain in jolly Old England. You could be a "churl" instead. Churl derives from the word "ceorl" which literally means an individual whose standing is a tiny step above a slave. So a little better than a slave, but not much.
Think You Have a Weird Business Idea? Get a Load of These!
OK, it's Friday. What better way to wrap up the week than a quick look at some enterprising entrepreneurs with strange business ideas that actually took off? Hey, if they can do it, maybe you can, too.
Surprise Them With ... a Potato?
A gift potato would definitely surprise me. Probably not in a good way. I have Irish ancestry. I love potatoes. But, as a gift - I don't think so.
The folks at the Potato Parcel don't let me stand in their way, though. I mean, what do you do if you've run out of gift ideas? Send your loved one a potato. Not just any old potato, but a potato with a loving or playful sentiment on it. Your sweetie's going to love receiving an "I Love You" potato on Valentine's Day.
Reserve Your Spot Now!
A little worried about where you'll end up in the afterlife? Worry not, you can reserve your spot in heaven. Perhaps it's not you you're worried about but a somewhat naughty loved one. No worries, you can purchase a spot for the questionable personage as well.
With a Reserve a Spot in Heaven kit, you'll receive an official reservation certificate, ID card, navigation map and a money back guarantee if your reservation isn't accepted. Reserve a spot in heaven for your pets, too!
Quality Handcrafted Furniture at Its Ugliest
Unfortunately, it looks like this business may have fallen by the wayside, but I love the idea. Ugly Furnitures is, or was, a group of talented woodcrafters who set out to create high-quality and functional furniture. Their criteria? Make it as ugly as possible.
Personally, I don't find the pieces ugly, but they won't fit your decor if you're interested in a cohesive look. They're certainly conversation pieces. I hope they're still in business or someone else takes up the idea.
There you have it - strange ideas that turned into businesses. If you're thinking about starting a business and your idea is a little on the weird side, it doesn't mean it can't succeed. Do your research to make sure there's a market and your idea fills a niche and you're on your way.
Do you know of any weird businesses or business ideas that may or may not work? I'd love to hear about them.
It's not my fault, I inherited it from Dad
For several years during our childhood, my dad painted houses for a living. No, that's not my dad in the picture. I have no clue who this guy is. My dad would never have been caught dead wearing socks like that. Please!
But, I digress. Dad was a fantastic house painter who didn't scrimp on prep work, materials or his time. Every job got his professional best.
But, guess who's house never got painted? Yep, that would be ours. He almost got there. I distinctly remember three of the four sides of our house with fresh paint. But that fourth side never made it. It just sat there as the other sides basked in their glory. A bit sad, actually.
It's the dilemma of freelancers and contractors everywhere - we work hard for our clients. We know what needs to be done. We know what recommendations to make. But, there's only so much time in a day. Clients come first.
So, yeah, like my dad, I may not always get around to writing new blog posts here. But also like Dad, I'll always give yours my all. Just sayin'.
Do your accounting, create graphics, protect files, and more with these free business apps
The good old days of everything free on the internet may be over, but that doesn't mean you can't find awesome free tools for your small business. And that's a good thing because buying software, upgrading and paying for online subscriptions is expensive. Why do it if you don't have to?
Over the years, I've used lots of free and low-cost software program. I've found some gems, too. Here are five free programs that cover everything from accounting to graphic creation. I've used and still use most of them myself.
Note: All of these programs have been around for long time. The information herein is accurate at the time of this writing. But, nothing's certain except... well, you know. Check out each program's current features and requirements before committing yourself.
Also be aware that some of these applications offer pay-based as well as free plans.
Did you hear about the tiger that had spots like a giraffe? If not, you're in for a tasty tale.
When little Lily Robinson, who was three at the time, went shopping with her mom at the U.K.'s Sainsbury's supermarket, she couldn't believe her eyes. The tiger bread had spots, not stripes. Tigers don't have spots. Calling it "tiger" bread was just plain wrong. Lily had to speak up.
With Mom's help, Lily wrote a letter to the store. She said "Why is tiger bread called tiger bread? It should be called giraffe bread. Love from Lily Robinson age 3 and 1/2." What the store did next is the stuff of legend.
Sainsbury's service team member, Chris King, wrote Lily back immediately. He explained it was called tiger bread because the baker who first made it years ago thought it looked "stripy." King went on to say he agreed that the spots looked more like a giraffe's. He called Lily's giraffe bread idea "brilliant." In keeping with Lily's nod to accuracy, he signed his letter "Chris King (age 27 & 1/3)."
The story didn't end there. Thanks to Lily's astute observation, tiger bread was re-branded and guess what? It's now called giraffe bread. You can't engage customers much more than that!
Little Lily's story made the rounds of social media when it happened and every once in awhile the charming tale makes the rounds again. Lily is older now, but she'll always have the satisfaction of knowing she is why the iconic spotted loaf is rightly called giraffe bread.
How to Handle Negative Comments & Reviews
Remember what it was like when you read your first positive Facebook review? Oh, the joy! As more positive comments rolled in you thought "My hard work is paying off!" Life was good!
Then one day you got up, checked your Facebook page and, what did you see? A complaint. Someone's angry with you and they're shouting it to the world. Your heart sinks. How could this happen?
If it hasn't happened already, it will. Along with all the marketing advantages social media brings is the risk that an angry customer will complain. It won't be pretty. It won't be quiet. And, everyone from your followers to your mom will know.
What should you do? Jump up and down and clap your hands in delight, that's what. Why? You've just been handed a golden opportunity. Here's why.
Something's Not Right ...
When someone happens upon your Facebook business page, they're looking not only for information about what you do but how you do it. They read reviews to evaluate your products and services, but also to see how you communicate and respond. They need to get to know you before they trust you with their money.
Most people who research your business are realistic - they understand that not every transaction is perfect. What they want to know is how you deal with problems when something goes wrong. If they see you did everything in your power to make things right, they'll trust you to do the same for them.