Sunday, September 20, 2009

September 20: "Talk Like Carrie Nation Day"

Dusty Diary is officially declaring, with the power and authority vested in me by virtue of... being... uh... someone with a lot of power and authority about special secret things that you don't know about but take my word for it--September 20 as "Talk Like Carrie Nation Day."

I'll start. "I felt invincible. My strength was that of a giant. God was certainly standing by me. I smashed five saloons with rocks before I ever took a hatchet. My tongue was aflame when I spoke God's Gospel to the beer-bloggers. When they decried me, I took my hatchet to their wireless routers, shattering them, and they were sore afraid."


BF said...

It seems she was not too fond of men, either:

“Men are nicotine-soaked, beer-besmirched, whiskey-greased, red-eyed devils.” is attributed to her.

I take umbrage at the phrase "nicotine-soaked"!

Anonymous said...

Um, come on now Carrie--I'm beer besmirched, and I'm a woman! (I had to look up what besmirched means, btw and I'm still not really sure what she means)

"Sore afraid" reminds me of Linus telling Charlie Brown WHAT CHRISTMAS IS ALL ABOUT! He says something about the angel appearing and they were sore afraid which I would be too, if something appeared out of nowhere in front of me.

Dusty D said...

BF: She was married twice and attributed her passionate temperance campaigning to the fact that her short first marriage was to an alcoholic.

But I don't buy it. Her first husband died in 1869 (they had already separated), and Carrie didn't set up her first Temperance group until 1889.

I wonder how much of women's temperance efforts were simply due to women wanting to assert a public political voice for themselves in general, with voting denied them.

Mental illness ran in Carrie's family. Sometimes her mother was convinced she was Queen Victoria. Carrie did marry again, so apparently her low opinion of men abated long enough for the ceremony at least. (It didn't last; he divorced her).

Dusty D said...

Teacher Patti: I don't think she's using "besmirched" in its usual sense of "smear with dirt." "When I slid into the ditch, my brand new coat was besmirched with mud."

You can't besmirch your skin with beer, unlike mud, because beer is a mostly clear liquid and just runs off.

Does beer leave a stain in clothes? Maybe sorta one, but not much.

But I think she meant a metaphorical use of the word in which beer is the "mud" smearing men's souls and dirtying and corrupting them.

Still, if it needs that much explanation, it's not a good use of English.

Wystan said...

Carrie came to Ann Arbor in May, 1902, determined to save the souls (and livers) of the sorely-tempted college boys. She also visited Milan. I don't think she made it to Ypsi, though:

Wystan said...

Another try for the link:

BF said...

Wystan -

Nice photo and write-up of Carrie.

URL is:

BF said...

Well... that's irritating. For some reason the full URL isn't showing up.

Try this:

Dusty D said...

Ah, the tinyurl works: thank you Wystan and BF, that is a simply delightful write-up, so vivid and realistic! And I recognize that spot on State Street, as a longtime local who's lived in AA and Y since 1985.

My, those college kids were irrepressible, weren't they? Hydrogen sulfide indeed! Where's the respect for their elders?!

Of course, any time you hoist yourself up on a soapbox, it's a chance for others to poke you all the more easily...