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An unlikely critic

The other day I was dropping my son off at preschool.  One of the other boys ran up to me and asked, “Why is your belly so big?” I tried to ignore him, but he kept bothering me as I tried to say goodbye to my son.  Finally I looked at him and said, “I don’t know,” not the truth, true enough, but I was hoping that this would make him go away.  No such luck.  He pointed his finger at me and said, “You eat too much!”

Normally I would just shrug off something like this, but it bothered me all day. The problem that I had (besides the fact that he was reminding me how out of shape I am) was his tone.  This little imp wasn’t doing the typical kid without a filter routine.  No, he was intentionally being mean. Now, from my little interaction, this made little difference, but I started to wonder a couple of things.  First, was this how he treated the other kids in class? Is he one of the kids that makes fun of my son for being short? (No kidding here. Preschoolers already being mean to each other.) The other thing that bothered me was that he was obviously mimicking things that he had heard from his parents.  The kid probably asked about me (or some other overweight person) and instead of having a discussion about the many factors that could make someone be overweight, or perhaps about not judging people by the way they look, he was likely just shooed away with “he/she eats to much.”

Anyway, it put me in a bad mood. I suppose in a backwards way it motivated me. In any case, I just want to say to parents: Teach your children well.

 

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Blog Reboot

It’s been over a year, and I have decided to pick up blogging once more. More than anything, this has to do with keeping myself accountable for my own well being.  I am still dealing with my depression, but I have decided that I need to work on physical fitness.  The other day I got on the scale and was horrified at what it was telling me: 309.  A mere three years ago, I was around 240.  That is insane folks.  There are reasons (excuses, really) for how this got out of control, but I can’t help but feel that it has a major bearing on my mood.

 So I am shifting gears as of today.  I’ll still mention mental health in passing, but this is all about losing weight, exercising more, eating better, and becoming healthier.  There is more to come, I promise.  Expect a visual makeover, for one.  

In the meantime, I will leave you with this.  Today is Wednesday, and I “started” on Sunday.  I have not killed myself exercising, nor starved myself.  Instead I am getting back into shape slowly, and eating sensibly (more on both later.) The result: according to my handy dandy app, I have lost 7.2 pounds so far.  Eat your hearts out, Biggest Losers.

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The South Dakota Pronunciation Guide

So I noticed that recently I have been mentioning my great home state in a lot of my posts.  I decided that I should start occasionally posting about interesting things about the Rushmore State (interestingly enough, when I was a kid we went by the Sunshine State.   Who where they trying to kid?).

For the first post, I decided to included a handy-dandy, perhaps unintentionally humorous pronunciation guide.  In the great tradition of States on the upper great plains, we don’t pronounce things like they should be pronounced.  Nebraska has Beatrice (bee-AT-riss) and Norfolk (NOR-fork), while Iowa has Madrid (MAD-rid) and Nevada (nuh-VAY-duh).  It’s a strange phenomena, of which South Dakota is not immune.

The first is our state capitol, Pierre.  Raise your hand if you pronounce it (PEE-air).  You’re killing me, Smalls.  The correct pronunciation is (PEER).  Now go to your closest fourth grader and sheepishly admit that they were right.  Go ahead.  I’ll wait.  Oh, and if you did have it right, feel free to smugly gloat.  You are probably from around here.

English: I took this photo on July 12, 1999 at...

Image via Wikipedia

Next is Belle Fourche.  This could go so many ways, couldn’t it?  But I bet that you weren’t expecting it to be (bell FOOSH).  Yeah, I don’t get it either.

How about Sinai?  In an odd manner of vowel juxtaposition, this is pronounced (SIGH-nee-eye).  It doesn’t have to make sense.  It’s South Dakota.

Lake Andes.  Sounds like a beautiful mountain vista in South America, no?  rearranging the syllabic emphasis, it is pronounced (lake an-DEES).  And it is located on the flat side of the state.

While we are on the subject of emphases, let’s talk about Aberdeen.  The truth is, a lot of South Dakotans get this one wrong.  A true Aberdonian would pronounce this (ABER-deen).

If you get thirsty, consider a trip to Beresford (BEERS-furd).

Hayti might make you stop to think that this is pronounced like the country, albeit with an alternate spelling.  Nope.  It’s (HAY-tie).

Last but not least is Jefferson.  It is in fact pronounced Jefferson.  But once upon a time it went by Adelescat.  You might find it interesting to know that it was named after a girls missing cat.  That’s right.  Adele’s cat.

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