Palindrome Follow-Up June 16, 2010 12:46 PM   Subscribe

Mefite Jaltcoh sent me a MeMail the other day reminding me of this old comment in a thread about palindromes, where I say, “Gotta say, I’m a big fan of palindromes. My entire career, marriage and life might all be very different if not for palindromes. I’ll have to tell you about it sometime, say January 2, 2010.” In the MeMail, he asks, “It's now past January 2, 2010. What's the story?” Forgot about that old post. With that big of a buildup, I wish it were a better story, but here goes:

As I’m nearing college graduation in March of 1997, one of my professors at the University of Kansas gets a call from the executive editor of People magazine saying he wants to come interview graduating seniors in the magazine journalism department who are willing to move to New York. He tells her the joke in New York publishing is that affirmative action means “hiring outside the Ivy League,” and he wants to see what some of the other journalism schools have to offer, coming as he does from one of those other schools himself. The university had about 25,000 students; the journalism department maybe a thousand; the magazine department, about 50; graduating, 20-ish; willing to move to New York, I think 8 or 9. So that narrowed it down. Being a magazine major, I had always considered that I might one day want to move to New York, but knowing how expensive that would be and seeing as how I had never been to New York and knew the city only as a set for Seinfeld and Friends (come to think of it, I watched Mad About You back then too), I never considered moving to New York feasible. But I was willing, whatever that meant.

So he comes to town a few weeks later and, when I sit down to meet with the guy, I think I was the last of his interviews. I had done my research: I knew the history of the magazine and its origins, and the important names involved--never mind I hadn’t ever cracked open an issue (and really haven’t to this day). So he asks me what my story is. I tell him my cute and various college-y desktop publishing experiences up to and including my then current work for the university public relations department, where I mostly scanned photos and inserted them into these pre-fab pamphlets we were making for each of the hundreds of departments at the university. It was clearly mindless gruntwork, so he asks, “But you’re a word guy, right?” I say--because I’ve always been a smidge egotistical—“I’m the word guy.” To be fair, among those he was interviewing, I really was the word guy. He’s clearly a magazine editor and not an HR guy because he looks at me and says, “What are the three most famous palindromes?”

I say, “I guess what you’re looking for is how Adam introduced himself to Eve in the Garden of Eden: ‘Madam, I’m Adam.’ And then there’s ‘A man, a plan, a canal, Panama.’” Took me another couple of seconds before, “Oh, and Napoleon’s lament, ‘Able was I ere I saw Elba.’” He smiles like he’s just found his guy.

After that he and I shoot the breeze for ten minutes and okay, thanks, good luck, see you later. A week or so later I’m in my advisor’s office and my other professor runs in and hugs me and says congratulations, I have no idea what for. She says he just called and told her he likes me, wants to hire me and is just calling to confirm I’m not a psychopath. That evening, I get the good word from him and I turn around and call my girlfriend and say, “You know that trip to New York you’re taking in a few weeks? You might want to schedule some job interviews if you want to move there with me for my new fucking job at People fucking magazine!

So she does, she gets a job and snags us the cheapest apartment in Brooklyn Heights. I move out a month later with all our crap in a U-Haul two sizes too big. Forget the part where I took the first possible wrong turn after coming up from the Holland Tunnel (“Sad little Midwestern boy alone and lost in the Big City”) and remember instead the part where I’m like the golden boy of the journalism department for scoring a job at the biggest magazine in the country (“Hometown hero hits it big in the Big City!”). Turns out all they can offer is an eight-week internship, but that sprawls to eight months and after a year and a half, I go freelance.

Long story short (too late, I know), five years later I’m burnt out on the whole journalism career thing and do what everybody says they’re going to do: I become a teacher. (We’ll save that story for some palindromic date yet-to-come.)

But here’s the thing, when one of my Brooklyn public-school students balks at some piece of minutia, saying “When am I ever going to need to know this?” I say, “Christ, you never know when the smallest piece of information might come in handy. Let me tell you a story…”

Before this all went down, me and that girlfriend--she’s my wife of 12 years and mother of my children now--we were thinking of moving to Cincinnati.
posted by etc. to MetaFilter-Related at 12:46 PM (139 comments total) 217 users marked this as a favorite

A happy tale, congrats!
posted by Simon_ at 12:52 PM on June 16, 2010


Are we not drawn onward, we few, drawn onward to new era!
posted by Perplexity at 12:52 PM on June 16, 2010 [78 favorites]


Wow.
posted by ND¢ at 12:57 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


wow
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:01 PM on June 16, 2010


GODDAMN YOU INDECENT
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:01 PM on June 16, 2010


At least you didn't say "Evil did I dwell; lewd I did live" to the People guy!
Great story!
posted by pointystick at 1:02 PM on June 16, 2010 [10 favorites]


[this is good]
posted by delfuego at 1:02 PM on June 16, 2010


This is good.
posted by chunking express at 1:03 PM on June 16, 2010


Great story. Makes me want to buy you a drink. Mostly so I can say, "Yo! Bottoms up! U.S. motto, boy!"
posted by Solon and Thanks at 1:03 PM on June 16, 2010 [14 favorites]


"Not New York," Roy went on.
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 1:05 PM on June 16, 2010 [7 favorites]


[!][+] 61 enuJ no MP 70:4 ta ekiBhsiF by detsop
heh
posted by FishBike at 1:07 PM on June 16, 2010 [10 favorites]


Wait, where's the flameout?
posted by mkultra at 1:09 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


I probably would have blanked on the one about Elba and gone straight for "racecar". Good thing you were up for the job and not me.

I was commenting to somebody the other day how U-Haul refuses to stock their fleet properly. I estimate that only maybe 10% of U-Haul customers reserve a truck of size X and actually get size X. Can somebody research this and make a FPP?
posted by knile at 1:09 PM on June 16, 2010


I'm not going to participate in filling this thread with unrelated palindroms. Instead, I will contribute an unrelated failed palindrome.

Mefites and word games name same god damn semites.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:09 PM on June 16, 2010 [3 favorites]


Cool! :)
posted by zarq at 1:10 PM on June 16, 2010


"Gig! Peep gig!"
posted by naju at 1:10 PM on June 16, 2010 [4 favorites]


Sit on a potato pan, Otis.

(I too love palindromes. As a possible explanation for this, click my profile and have a look at my last name.)
posted by Skot at 1:11 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Excellent story, and also I'm a bit let down that the Three Palindromes were ones I knew. I was hoping for SRS INSIDE PUBLISHING palindromes.
posted by everichon at 1:12 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


May 25, 2025. Just you wait. I have the most epic tale to tell.
posted by yeti at 1:13 PM on June 16, 2010 [9 favorites]


Reviled did I live, said I, as evil I did deliver.
posted by zarq at 1:15 PM on June 16, 2010 [22 favorites]


hah
posted by LobsterMitten at 1:18 PM on June 16, 2010


Aha!

Glad I asked, and thanks for delivering. Way to go, word guy!
posted by Jaltcoh at 1:23 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


A man, a plan, a canoe, pasta, heros, rajahs, a coloratura, maps, snipe, percale, macaroni, a gag, a banana bag, a tan, a tag, a banana bag again (or a camel), a crepe, pins, Spam, a rut, a Rolo, cash, a jar, sore hats, a peon, a canal – Panama!
posted by darksasami at 1:24 PM on June 16, 2010 [192 favorites]


You can cage a swallow, can't you? But you can't swallow a cage, can you?
posted by shakespeherian at 1:25 PM on June 16, 2010 [6 favorites]


I'm a lasagna hog; go hang a salami.
posted by m0nm0n at 1:25 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


I was really, really hoping that story was going to end up being a huge palindrome.
posted by koeselitz at 1:25 PM on June 16, 2010 [9 favorites]


Doc, note I dissent - a fast never prevents a fatness. I diet on cod.
posted by zamboni at 1:26 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


You can cage a swallow, can't you? But you can't swallow a cage, can you?

Hey, good idea!
posted by Jaltcoh at 1:31 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


For whatever reason I prefer the word-level ones.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:32 PM on June 16, 2010


Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:32 PM on June 16, 2010 [4 favorites]


For whatever reason I prefer the word-level ones.

Me too. They actually sound like English.
posted by Jaltcoh at 1:36 PM on June 16, 2010


Wet sand, DNA stew.
posted by edgeways at 1:38 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Level three challenge: Palindromes that are also anagrams for something.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:39 PM on June 16, 2010


Was it metafilter thread or something else I saw on-line that started with "A man, a plan, a canal: Panama" and people started adding bits to the middle until it was the most long, nonsensical, and insane thing, but still a palindrome? That was cool. Probably nobody knows what I'm talking about.
posted by not that girl at 1:43 PM on June 16, 2010


A man, a plan, a canoe, pasta, heros, rajahs, a coloratura, maps, snipe, percale, macaroni, a gag, a banana bag, a tan, a tag, a banana bag again (or a camel), a crepe, pins, Spam, a rut, a Rolo, cash, a jar, sore hats, a peon, a canal – Panama!

That's hilarious. I thought it was brilliant, then thought "wait, no it must be a trick". Then I actually checked it over. Genius.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 1:44 PM on June 16, 2010


Wow, should have previewed! That's exactly the kind of thing I was talking about.
posted by not that girl at 1:45 PM on June 16, 2010




All this talk of palindromes is obscuring the more important discussion of how awesome I am. Let's get this thread back on track, people!

Anyway, my best creation:

Won't safe zoos laminate wet animals' ooze fast now?
posted by etc. at 1:47 PM on June 16, 2010


A man, a plan, a caret, a ban, a myriad, a sum, a lac, a liar, a hoop, a pint, a catalpa, a gas, an oil, a bird, a yell, a vat, a caw, a pax, a wag, a tax, a nay, a ram, a cap, a yam, a gay, a tsar, a wall, a car, a luger, a ward, a bin, a woman, a vassal, a wolf, a tuna, a nit, a pall, a fret, a watt, a bay, a daub, a tan, a cab, a datum, a gall, a hat, a fag, a zap, a say, a jaw, a lay, a wet, a gallop, a tug, a trot, a trap, a tram, a torr, a caper, a top, a tonk, a toll, a ball, a fair, a sax, a minim, a tenor, a bass, a passer, a capital, a rut, an amen, a ted, a cabal, a tang, a sun, an ass, a maw, a sag, a jam, a dam, a sub, a salt, an axon, a sail, an ad, a wadi, a radian, a room, a rood, a rip, a tad, a pariah, a revel, a reel, a reed, a pool, a plug, a pin, a peek, a parabola, a dog, a pat, a cud, a nu, a fan, a pal, a rum, a nod, an eta, a lag, an eel, a batik, a mug, a mot, a nap, a maxim, a mood, a leek, a grub, a gob, a gel, a drab, a citadel, a total, a cedar, a tap, a gag, a rat, a manor, a bar, a gal, a cola, a pap, a yaw, a tab, a raj, a gab, a nag, a pagan, a bag, a jar, a bat, a way, a papa, a local, a gar, a baron, a mat, a rag, a gap, a tar, a decal, a tot, a led, a tic, a bard, a leg, a bog, a burg, a keel, a doom, a mix, a map, an atom, a gum, a kit, a baleen, a gala, a ten, a don, a mural, a pan, a faun, a ducat, a pagoda, a lob, a rap, a keep, a nip, a gulp, a loop, a deer, a leer, a lever, a hair, a pad, a tapir, a door, a moor, an aid, a raid, a wad, an alias, an ox, an atlas, a bus, a madam, a jag, a saw, a mass, an anus, a gnat, a lab, a cadet, an em, a natural, a tip, a caress, a pass, a baronet, a minimax, a sari, a fall, a ballot, a knot, a pot, a rep, a carrot, a mart, a part, a tort, a gut, a poll, a gateway, a law, a jay, a sap, a zag, a fat, a hall, a gamut, a dab, a can, a tabu, a day, a batt, a waterfall, a patina, a nut, a flow, a lass, a van, a mow, a nib, a draw, a regular, a call, a war, a stay, a gam, a yap, a cam, a ray, an ax, a tag, a wax, a paw, a cat, a valley, a drib, a lion, a saga, a plat, a catnip, a pooh, a rail, a calamus, a dairyman, a bater, a canal – Panama!
posted by empath at 1:48 PM on June 16, 2010 [35 favorites]


Level three challenge: Palindromes that are also anagrams for something.

"Racecar" anagrams to "a car rec."

Sorry, I'll try harder next time.
posted by etc. at 1:51 PM on June 16, 2010


So cool. I'd love to see more mefites sharing stories like this.
posted by special-k at 1:52 PM on June 16, 2010


The "Panama" riff is genius, yes, but not my genius. Sadly, the best and only palindrome I've ever come up with was "See, Pete Seeger, are geese tepees?"
posted by darksasami at 1:52 PM on June 16, 2010 [5 favorites]


Paging oozy rat in a sanitary zoo.
posted by Skot at 1:53 PM on June 16, 2010 [6 favorites]


To give credit where credit is due, empath's Panama palindrome was first said by waxpancake in the 10/2/01 thread.
posted by Jaltcoh at 1:54 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


(Or, maybe not "first" said, but first said on Metafilter.)
posted by Jaltcoh at 1:55 PM on June 16, 2010




In honor of your new teaching career, etc., I wrote this for you:
"Rot Curt's nipple! Help, instructor!"
or, if you prefer,
"Rot Curt's nipple-kelp, instructor."
posted by msalt at 1:56 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


great story! the only thing i don't understand is five years later I’m burnt out on the whole journalism career thing and do what everybody says they’re going to do: I become a teacher.

all my fellow burnt-out journalist buddies became ... lawyers.
posted by msconduct at 2:07 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Palindromes are pretty sweet. Twee syt terper asemord nilap.
posted by owtytrof at 2:20 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


GNU DUNG!
posted by Miss Otis' Egrets at 2:21 PM on June 16, 2010 [4 favorites]


Bolton.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 2:23 PM on June 16, 2010 [4 favorites]


I palindrome I
posted by elmono at 2:32 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Rettebs, I flahd noces. Eh? Ttu, but the second half is better.
posted by the latin mouse at 2:42 PM on June 16, 2010 [13 favorites]


Ten animals I slam in a net.

(not mine, read it somewhere when I was a little kid. I, uh... I got nuthin')
posted by Navelgazer at 2:43 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Go home, emo hog!
posted by joe lisboa at 2:43 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


To give credit where credit is due

I linked to where I got it from, which has the original source.
posted by empath at 2:50 PM on June 16, 2010


Ever hear of a palindrone? S/he goes on about wanting the constitution back.
posted by Cranberry at 2:50 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


taco cat!
posted by GuyZero at 2:53 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


The president of the Palindrom Society just bought a new car.

A Toyota.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 3:08 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Mornington Crescent!


WIN
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 3:11 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


A negro with a gazelle never hesitates in the rain. I mean, ein Neger mit Gazelle zagt im Regen nie.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 3:23 PM on June 16, 2010 [3 favorites]


Mornington Crescent!


WIN
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 3:11 PM on June 16 [+] [!] [quote]


That's the downside of the Popular Beat Variation; all flair and no strategy.
posted by rhizome at 3:44 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


O I hope Ed 'n I see referees in deep Ohio.
posted by applemeat at 3:45 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


This totally made my day, and justifies the many hours I spend browsing Wikipedia for nothing at all.
posted by Phire at 3:47 PM on June 16, 2010


My favorite palindrome thing: Baby Gramps live on WFMU (audio link)
posted by bobobox at 3:52 PM on June 16, 2010 [3 favorites]


Satan oscillate my metallic sonatas!
Why hello there! How are you doing, Mr. Mgnioduoyerawoherehtollehyhw?
posted by juv3nal at 4:02 PM on June 16, 2010 [8 favorites]


Anna Renner Racecar Mom!
So can we hurry up and destroy our environment now, and run out of gas, so that we can get on with living in extremely enticing world of Mad Etc.: Beyond Palindrome, following etc. in adventures around Kakuguk, AK.
heh, a Palin-Drome.
Also, Thank You, and congratulations.
posted by infinite intimation at 4:04 PM on June 16, 2010




Good thing you didn't say "step on no pets", because Cat Fancy was hiring, too.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 4:54 PM on June 16, 2010 [3 favorites]


I say--because I’ve always been a smidge egotistical

If you had been egotistic enough, simply "I" would be the only palindrome you'd need.
posted by qvantamon at 5:11 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Mom I poop I mom.
posted by frecklefaerie at 5:13 PM on June 16, 2010


A man, a plan, a cameo, Zena, Bird, Mocha, Prowel, a rave,
Uganda, Wait, a lobola, .... a lobo, Lati, a wadna, Guevara, Lew, Orpah,
Comdr, Ibanez, OEM, a canal, Panama!

That ellipsis saves you from seeing the block of text that is the 17,826 palindrome
posted by filthy light thief at 5:17 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


I love you all.
posted by rtha at 5:33 PM on June 16, 2010


Yay!
posted by rangefinder 1.4 at 6:10 PM on June 16, 2010


was it a cat i saw?
posted by wondermouse at 6:23 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


On second thought, Cat Fancy wouldn't have been that bad a job.

Meet animals, laminate 'em.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 6:26 PM on June 16, 2010 [6 favorites]


That's a right good yarn, matey!
posted by Mister_A at 6:29 PM on June 16, 2010


The president of the Palindrom Society just bought a new car.

A Toyota.


Not a Civic?
posted by slogger at 6:32 PM on June 16, 2010


Oh man, this is really dorky, but the Palindome was always my favorite area in Kingdom of Loathing. You fight such shady characters as the "evil olive," the "taco cat," and "Dr. Awkward." Other adventures include, "Flee to me, remote elf!" and "Strategy: Get Arts."
posted by gueneverey at 6:37 PM on June 16, 2010 [11 favorites]


Weird Al Yankovic and palindromes.
posted by Vindaloo at 6:52 PM on June 16, 2010


$5 to the first people who reminds me of this comment, on June 16th, 2020. Of course, by then, $5 will be worth nothing, mwahahahahahahaha.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:56 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Eva, can I stack Rod's sad-ass, dork cats in a cave?
(the best choice before you fight Dr. Awkward in the aforementioned Palindrome from KoL.)
posted by Lemurrhea at 6:57 PM on June 16, 2010 [3 favorites]


Do geese see god?
posted by starman at 7:11 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


Satan, oscillate my metallic sonatas!
posted by Tapioca at 7:11 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


User 22022, reporting for duty.
posted by Quietgal at 8:13 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


$5 to the first people who reminds me of this comment, on June 16th, 2020.

It's in my calendar, TPS. Assuming all of Google's servers aren't destroyed simultaneously in an act of inter-corporate warfare, consider yourself reminded.
posted by nobody at 8:20 PM on June 16, 2010


"Naomi, sex at noon taxes," I moan.
posted by matildaben at 9:09 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


lol
posted by oddman at 9:22 PM on June 16, 2010


"Weird Al" Yankovic – Bob. A Bob Dylan homage where the lyrics are all palindromes.
posted by WCityMike at 9:28 PM on June 16, 2010


"A man, a plan, a cameo, Zena, Bird, Mocha, Prowel, a rave, Uganda, Wait, a lobola, .... a lobo, Lati, a wadna, Guevara, Lew, Orpah, Comdr, Ibanez, OEM, a canal, Panama," sides reversed, is "A man, a plan, a cameo, Zena, Bird, Mocha, Prowel, a rave, Uganda, Wait, a lobola, .... a lobo, Lati, a wadna, Guevara, Lew, Orpah, Comdr, Ibanez, OEM, a canal, Panama."
posted by flabdablet at 9:31 PM on June 16, 2010 [2 favorites]


RATS DROWN IN WORDSTAR
posted by kindall at 9:48 PM on June 16, 2010


May a moody baby doom a yam.

And my favorite Panama variant:

A foof, a man, a plan, a canal - Panama foofa
posted by Gorgik at 10:06 PM on June 16, 2010


Goddam elated! De tale - mad, dog!
posted by naju at 10:30 PM on June 16, 2010


A man, a plan, a canoe, pasta, heros, rajahs, a coloratura, maps, snipe, percale, macaroni, a gag, a banana bag, a tan, a tag, a banana bag again (or a camel), a crepe, pins, Spam, a rut, a Rolo, cash, a jar, sore hats, a peon, a canal – Panama!

I will now give you an earworm from which you will be unable to wrest yourself free.

Tom Jobim, Waters of March.


Then there's ... Sarah Palindromes. Things which make no sense read backwards or forwards.

Party boobytrap.
posted by dhartung at 10:30 PM on June 16, 2010


With appropriate apologies to the fine people of Oklahoma:

Tulsa nightlife: filth, gin, a slut.
posted by palindromic at 10:43 PM on June 16, 2010 [5 favorites]


Yawn. Madonna Fan? No damn way!
posted by lazaruslong at 10:52 PM on June 16, 2010


Ah, Satan! No smug smirk rims gums on Natasha. -- Howard Bergerson
posted by msalt at 11:12 PM on June 16, 2010


It's Ade, Cilla, Sue, Dame Vita, Edna, Nino, Emo! Come on in and eat, I've made us all iced Asti.
posted by the latin mouse at 11:20 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


And no evil star rats live on DNA.

I still remember that one from some book that happened to briefly mention palindromes. So goofy and pseudo-sensical, made my pre-teen TNG-fan mind run wild.
posted by aydeejones at 11:45 PM on June 16, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh and when I initially started scanning this post absentmindedly without appropriate attention my mind immediately lept to the conclusion that OP actually acquired his fascination with palindromes via MeFi and was specifically made aware of the "three most popular" because of it. MeFi made this dude's career! Obviously I skipped past the date-stamp embedded at the very beginning of the story.

But still, great story. It's funny how little tidbits of retained information can convince people you know "everything" sometimes...or at least, the right thing at the right time to suitably swoon them.
posted by aydeejones at 11:49 PM on June 16, 2010


Enid and Edna dine.
Dennis and Edna sinned.
posted by msalt at 12:00 AM on June 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


Oh man, that's an awesome story. I deal with a palindrome every day at work! POOP!

Yep. Seeing myself out right now.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 4:19 AM on June 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Rot Curt's nipple! Help, instructor!"
or, if you prefer,
"Rot Curt's nipple-kelp, instructor."


msalt, you're one P off!

/pedantic
posted by Dr. Wu at 4:41 AM on June 17, 2010


Satan, oscillate my metallic sonatas!
posted by Tapioca at 4:11 AM on June 17


Oh my god! When I was 14 I used a washroom at the University of Victoria, and someone had written "Satan oscillate my needs" on the bathroom wall. In the 17 years since I have very often thought of that and wondered what the hell it meant and where it came from, but I guess it was just a variation on a well known palidrome? Maybe the rest of the variation was scrubbed off. Let's try...

Satan, oscillate my needs. I want Nawis Deeny metallic sonatas!
posted by molecicco at 4:42 AM on June 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


(That was also when I learned the word oscillate - I had to go to a dictionary the first chance I got)
posted by molecicco at 4:43 AM on June 17, 2010


It occurs to me now that my present-tense retelling of the story makes it unclear that I've been doing the teaching thing for eight years now. It's awesome. Everything is awesome, I've learned.
posted by etc. at 5:37 AM on June 17, 2010


But now I've become obsessed with palindromes and I'm incapable of constructing one! My brain wants to and yet it cannot do it. I keep reading sentences thinking other people are being enormously clever and then I find out that they're not (well, some people are, but I think they're just quoting). It's the worst earworm I've ever experienced.
posted by h00py at 6:02 AM on June 17, 2010


Eyeworm? Brainworm?
posted by h00py at 6:03 AM on June 17, 2010


Brainworm. Known to his friends as Mr Own I. Arb.
posted by quin at 8:14 AM on June 17, 2010


MeTa DNA: puts gnats in a noon e-zoo. Ooze no onanist angst. Up and at 'em!


(recycling this comment from long time ago. not because it is good; simply because I worked way too long on coming up with it. pathetic, really.)
posted by barrett caulk at 8:45 AM on June 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


Eyeworm? Brainworm?

I just realized "eye" is a palindrome, and also that it looks sorta like a pair of eyes. Though the Spanish word for eye, "ojo", is more eye-like.
posted by naju at 8:47 AM on June 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


naju: "ojo"

haha! it's a bald man with glasses!
posted by molecicco at 9:02 AM on June 17, 2010


msalt, you're one P off!

Dang it! That's my worst flub since I was 9 and my brothers and I wrote a failed dirty palindrome -- "Eat poop tea!" Let's see.

Hem, idyll, axe, Trocadero bored a Cortex ally. Dim, eh?
posted by msalt at 9:23 AM on June 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


In a regal age ran I!,
Raw was I 'ere I saw war!
Oh who was it I saw, oh who?

Too far away, a war afoot.
Are we not drawn onward, we few, drawn onward to new era?
No, in union,
Name no one man.
Now do I repay a period won.

Draw, O Caesar! Erase a coward.
Evil is a name of a foeman, as I live.
Live not on evil deed, live not on evil.

Draw noses onward!
Dump mud! Dump mud!
Draw putrid dirt upward.
Puff in, sniff up!
Pull up if I pull up.
No, it is open on one position.
Stop! Murder us not, tonsured rumpots!

In words, alas, drown I.
A day, a day... yada yada...
posted by Nossidge at 9:45 AM on June 17, 2010


Apologies to the MeFite whose name I couldn't stop seeing in these...

A man, a plan, a Pastabagel, a leg, a bat, sap... anal Panama!
posted by Earl the Polliwog at 9:58 AM on June 17, 2010


A man, a plan, a Pastabagel, a leg, a bat, sap... anal...

Start over!
posted by zarq at 10:23 AM on June 17, 2010


Be careful to avoid these failed palindromes, courtesy of John Hodgman:

Slow speed: deep owls

Drat that tard

Two owls hoot who owls hoot too (owt)

Sour candy and Dan C. roused

Desire still lisps: Arise! D.

A man, a plan, a kind of man-made river, planned.

Hobos! So!

Eh, s’occurs to me to succor she

Tow a what? Thaw!

posted by albrecht at 10:37 AM on June 17, 2010


But now I've become obsessed with palindromes

*hides*
posted by waraw at 11:13 AM on June 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni.
posted by leapfrog at 11:35 AM on June 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


Nerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrds.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 11:41 AM on June 17, 2010


Anal sex at noon taxes lana.
posted by Danf at 11:45 AM on June 17, 2010 [7 favorites]


So wait, the other journalism hopefuls didn't even know these simple, famous palindromes? This explains so much about the state of journalism.
posted by DU at 11:53 AM on June 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


dirtynumbangelboy: “Nerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrds.”

Let's see... s... d... r...

Nope. That's not a palindrome. Try again.
posted by koeselitz at 12:08 PM on June 17, 2010


I thought a lot of mefites would make good palindromes, but I'm having trouble finding any. Um...

"I om," led Delmoi.

A man, a poop, Stavrogin, Igor, vats, poo: Panama!
posted by msalt at 2:18 PM on June 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


A few more:
Empath, tap me!
Burhanistan at sin – ah, rub.
Orb2069: 602, bro!
Mediareport: oh hot rope! Raid em’! (or Mediareport, a trope: raid ‘em!)
Tizzie, izzit?
Not no pap – onion on oinopaponton.
posted by msalt at 3:11 PM on June 17, 2010 [4 favorites]


"Didi's Evita now? I -- damned I am! Eh? The maiden mad I won at Ives? (I did!)" Tom said palindromically.
posted by aws17576 at 3:16 PM on June 17, 2010




Sator, etc.: which is not only an awesome word square but the oldest palindrome known to man -- found as a graffito at Pompeii (79 C.E.)

The book "Oddities and Curiosities of Words and Literature" (1905) by c.c. bombaugh claims that the following word square works in both English and Latin:

TIME
ITEM
METI
EMIT

"This word, Time, is the only word in the English language which can be thus arranged, and the different transpositions therof are all at the same time Latin words. These words, in English as well as Latin, may be read either upward or downward. Their signification as Latin words is as follows:-- Time--fear thou; Item--likewise; Meti--to be measured; Emit--he buys."
posted by msalt at 9:53 PM on June 17, 2010


Empath, tap me!

This is literally the best thing ever.
posted by empath at 5:26 AM on June 18, 2010 [6 favorites]


"This word, Time, is the only word in the English language which can be thus arranged, and the different transpositions therof are all at the same time Latin words. These words, in English as well as Latin, may be read either upward or downward. Their signification as Latin words is as follows:-- Time--fear thou; Item--likewise; Meti--to be measured; Emit--he buys."

Also, Mite.
posted by empath at 5:27 AM on June 18, 2010


I'm not sure it can be made into a word square though. Then again, I'm not sure how anybody figures those things out.
posted by msalt at 9:28 AM on June 18, 2010


Zeus, Lanaca, a Canal, Suez.
posted by mreleganza at 12:49 AM on June 20, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm sure I once heard Baby Gramps say this during this, but maybe that was a different broadcast. And I also thought it was longer, with a lot more. words between "Doc, note I dissent" and "I diet on cod".

1991! 2002! 2112!
posted by e-man at 10:28 PM on June 21, 2010


BOOBLESS

no wait
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:06 AM on June 22, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm glad I'm not the only one who is incapable of intelligent palindroming.

Wow

Yay

Do geese see God (I stole that)
posted by h00py at 3:20 AM on June 22, 2010


Dogma: I am God. I wrote this on the blackboard before we started poetry class. Of course, my contribution to this genius palindrome, was just remembering it from the night before, which was difficult enough. My neigbour the philosopher with that insane memory quoted this gem. It came up in a conversation that is typical for them college days: it lasted allmost all night and was fueled by cheap wine and cigarettes. The topics were: life, language and existence in general, the crowd consisted of smart-ass philosophers and punk-ass linguists.

Nobody in class really cared. But as the professor came into the room, he glanced at the text, held his breath and said "WHO wrote THIS?" I raised my hand. "Thank you so much!", he said and instead of the scheduled Petrarca reading, he came up with a fantastic impromptu lecture on the fragile relation man has with the All Seeing Eye. He was in top form and spent the complete hour talking about the text on the blackboard. Then, the bell rang, the hour had passed.
"One thing I want to know before you leave", he said, "WHY did you write this?" "Well, I would like to discuss this during structuralist linguistics class, that is about to start rrrrrright now!"

This is some 20 years ago, and I am still in touch with this brilliant man. Last year I called him to see how he was doing. He answered the phone with: "Sorry man, but today I am God".
posted by ouke at 4:14 AM on June 22, 2010 [5 favorites]


Doc, note I dissent. A fast never prevents a fatness. I diet on cod.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:07 PM on June 22, 2010


BOOBLESS? Nup. Spun: 55378008
posted by flabdablet at 2:45 AM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Hardcore taters re-tater Ocdrah.

Nerd thunderdome? Mod Red, Nuht, Dren.

Yeah, I suck at this.
posted by the latin mouse at 4:15 PM on June 23, 2010


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