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03 April 2005

geezer acronymns

I shall eventually report
on the society of which I was a founding member when I was a South Parkie at Ben Murch Elementary and Alice Deal Junior High School in Washington DC in the 1960s, The Duck & Cover Club.

(General MacArthur said, "I shall return," which was wrong. He should have said: "I will return," which is the form of the first person singular future tense that reflects emphasis. Well, what do you expect from a West Point grad?)

But last post which teased about the details of TD&CC mentioned ICBM, the very very popular and universally familiar acronym for InterContinental Ballistic Missile. Every geezer or junior geezer knows ICBM, but now that Earth no longer has ICBMs or thermonuclear weapons, have all you young youthoid whippersnappers forgotten what an ICBM is?

Oh. Wait. I just surfed a little, and it turns out Earth still has lots of ICBMs and thermonuclear weapons, all gassed up, key in the ignition, ready to rock n roll. Well, knock me over with a feather and color me startled. I thought I'd read all that shit was gone forever.

Anyway, how about MIRV? Do youse youthoid whippersnappers all know what a MIRV is? We're on the Pizza Slice Honor System again, No Surfing, just what is right now resident in your organic wet hard disk (the thing above your chin and behind your nose). Like, what's a MIRV? Geezers also feel free to answer, but also strictly from Organic Memory, no digital or mouseal or dictionarial assistance.

JANFU (WW II and 1950s military): Joint Army-Navy FuckUp

NRTS (1960s US Air Force): Not Repairable This Station

What you stencil on the debris of a piece of expensive electronic equipment which you accidentally dropped down the stairs before you send it back to the factory. (Thanks to my brother Maury.)

Pizza Slice for: LSMFT

FUBAR: Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition

LP: Long-Playing

Peter Goldmark, head of scientific research at CBS/Columbia, was invited to a friend's Manhattan apartment one night in 1947 to listen to a new recording of a classical symphony on a stack of 78 RPM platters. Just as he was weeping with musical ecstacy in front of the state-of-the-art stacking record changer, the gizmo abruptly stopped making the beautiful music, and went KLIK! ZZZZ ! WHIRRR KA-KLONK!!! ZZZZ and then resumed the symphony. It did this five or six more times before Shostakovitch was finished.

The next morning, back at the lab, Peter told his elves they were now about to invent a new kind of music playback medium, he didn't care about the shape, size, color or smell, but it would sound 100 times less crummy, and be long enough to play half of an entire Malheresque symphony (the longish ones), with the other half on the flip side, without making loud awful mechanical noises. A few months later, the 33 1/3 RPM Hi-Fi LP was born, and a couple of years later, STEREO LP.

Pizza Slice Honor System: HUAC and S&H

Pizza Slice for definition and Best Comment about: WWJD and ATHF


Blogger Mike said...

Well, let's see:

MIRV = Multiple Independant Re-entry Vehicle.
WWJD = What would Jesus Do (more on this later)
S&H = Shipping & Handling (something every E-Bayer knows)
HUAC = I have no idea
ATHF = I have no idea

Now, back to the WWJD. This is actually one of my favorite little acronyms, right up there with WTF and RTFM. Most of the time, people who use that are so far off, and they don't even know it. If you believe in the Christian religion is irrelevant. Based on what was written about the man himself, you could still gauge what he would do. You could do the same if asked WWCD (What Would Conan Do). Jesus was a revolutionary, and rebel. He didn't play by the rules. All these people in all these churches around the world still talking in Shakespearian English because that's what's in the Bible have another thing coming. First off, Jesus wasn't English. He didn't speak it, so why cling to a form of English that he didn't even speak because it's more traditional. If you want tradition, do the damn sermon in Aramaic. He ran around in robes. So what? That was the style of the time. Today, he might wear baggy pants and have an iPod. And my favorite is still all these Religious wars. People fight over religions , but fail to remember things like, "Do unto others" (back to that English thing), and "Love thy neighbor". People only think about WWJD when it's convenient for them. INFURIATING. So, I guess, the quick answer to WWJD is, “Not what you think.”

Blogger Bob Merkin said...

You got the MIRV right. When the ICBM is 2 minutes from Moscow, its nose opens and 4 or 5 or 6 H-bombs fly out and go to different places -- I don't know if controllable by fins, TV cameras and gyros (a "smart bomb"), or if by engines.

Sort of funny you missed HUAC and ATHF ... HUAC is way way geezer, and ATHF is way way right now so cool Youthoid.

Uhhh ... okay, Shipping & Handling, our producers tell me we'll grudgingly accept that. But for everybody else, we're still looking for another geezer meaning for S&H.

Cool Comment on WWJD. I'll have some ignorant blogging on that when all the other Comments (hint hint) come in.

Blogger Newphew Kwak said...

I knew MIRV, scout's honor (for whatever that's worth -- and if it ain't worth anything no skin off my teeth since I never was a scout to begin with). And WWJD. I guess I agree mostly kinda with what Mike said though I don't share his tone. S&H I only know as well as Mike and am very curious about what the geezer version is. HUAC = House Un-American Committee, most famous for the antics of (Wisconsin?) Rep. McCarthy. But what my fellow non-geezers tend not to know is that the committee was much larger than McCarthy and lasted long after McCarthy took leave of the House. Right? Maybe I'm not such a smart near-geez myself. I don't know much more than that, other than the HUAC folks were rat bastards who may have had very good reasons for being virulently anti-Commie but had very bad reasons for being such miserable failures at participating in and promoting that which was supposed to be good about democracy and America and blah blah. ATHF, that I didn't know but couldn't wait so googled it. But I won't tell until the contest is over. Anyway, I don't have a TV so how could I know what kids these days are up to? The last thing I learned was "off the hook," and I gotta say it was really strange hearing it come out of the mouth of an ardent college Zionist talking about terrific parties at the Hillel House. Maybe I'll come back later and give my 2cents on WWJD. But then anything I say on the matter won't be news to anyone.

Blogger Maury said...


I did not tell my brother Bob the meaning of the acronym NRTS for the simple reason that I have never before heard it. I was serving in the USAF at the time he suggests, of course, but he got this piece of 411 from some other source. (I never dropped any equipment down any stairs either — my big USAF foul up had to do with a milk container I encountered while on KP).

* LSMFT: Lucky Strike Means Fine Tobacky.

Blogger Mike said...

More from me on the WWJD. I'm sure I'm going to piss off someone with this.

Blogger Bob Merkin said...

Maury wins the Vleeptron Pizza Slice or Endive for LSMFT!

In those days, if the FBI thought you were a Russian spy, they would ask you what LSMFT was, and if you didn't know, on went the handcuffs, and it could be used as evidence against you.

Okay, I say Airman Maury of Bolling AFB told his little brother Bobby about NRTS, and ox-blood, and SAC, TAC and CONAC, and many other fascinating AF details, but if he now says No, who am I to disagree? (Sometimes it's as if we lived on different planets, like Earth and Vleeptron.)

But the best story (I don't think he told me At The Time, or I would have required South Park Elementary psychological counseling) was the day he was put on Extra-High Special DEFCON 1 Alert during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962.

The night before he had to report for Armageddon Duty down to the Air Force Base in Washington DC USA, he and his pals were getting very fluid at a bar on Wisconsin Avenue, and singing new lyrics to the smash hit (45 RPM vinyl disk with a real big hole in the center on the Wurlitzer juke box) of the moment:

"Will we still be here ... tomorrow?"

(cf. Vleeptron post with Tom Lehrer's patriotic WWIII pop song)

HONOR SYSTEM NO-SURFING PIZZA SLICE for anyone other than Maury to supply the original smash hit lyrics, and the original artiste.

Blogger billnye said...

So you don't allow anonymice to post to your blog, Sir Elevator, Sir Droog4? How practical and how elite.

I knew MIRV, WWJD, and S&H, but those have already been taken. I am, however, a bit surprised to suddenly have ATHF pop into my head, mostly because of context. I don't think I'd have put it together with you if you hadn't come out and said that it's "out of character".

Anyone who wants a hint, think night-time teevee for childish adults. Also: The lyrics don't mention "and I'm a tard", though in early seasons it sounds a lot like it. I think they caught on, later, and dubbed over it a little more clearly.

blast from the past,
John M

Blogger Bob Merkin said...

Woo woo BillNye what a supercallifragialisticexpialidocious blast from the past! Welcome!

(Everybody on your toes, BillNye could end up hosing up all the pizza on Vleeptron. This guy knows some stuff!)

But Bill ... what DO you think S&H means? For me, it's a geezer thing, and it's NOT Shipping & Handling. Just come right out and type it here.

Pizza slice (extra anchovies) credited to your account for the clear hints and clues you provided about the way cool youthoid right now ATHF.

NEPHEW KWAK: It was worse than you retro-remember!

McCarthy was a SENATOR, not a measly Congressman. He was a Republican from Wisconsin, and called himself "Tail Gunner Joe" to remind voters that he'd just come back from Europe as a decorated Air Force bomber veteran.

He had nothing official directly to do with HUAC, the House Un-American Activities Committee. It was on a Senate Committee that he did all his notorious damage, accusing the Truman-Eisenhower State Department of being filled with scores of secret Communists and "Fellow Travellers" -- pinko intellectuals who were screwing up our foreign policy for their Kremlin friends. China had just gone Mao, and McCarthy blamed this on the secret traitors in the State Department.

During the mesmerizing live TV broadcasts of the Army-McCarthy Hearings, McCarthy went so oberboard and was such a public sleaze while the nation watched that later, the Senate publicly censured him. He died not long after of cirhossis, he was a hard-core lifelong alcoholic. Some have suggested this may from time to time have affected his Judgment Center.

In the movies, McCarthy is depicted as Sen. Johnny Eislin in the original version of "The Manchurian Candidate" -- 23 stars, sez Bob, rent it tonight, skip the re-make. Frank Sinatra, Janet Leigh, Lawrence Harvey, Angela Lansbury, directed by John Frankenheimer.

It's still Very Easy to surf the Web and find McCarthy described as a great patriotic American hero, who was destroyed by a conspiracy of evil pinko homo knee-jerk bleeding-heart liberal Kommies. Look for a background of a big waving American Flag.

As a new Congressman, Nixon (Republican from California) made his bones as an anti-Communist attack dog on HUAC. He claims to have found "the pumpkin papers" -- microfilm spy stuff hidden in a hollowed-out pumpkin in a pumpkin patch, which proved that the State Department's Alger Hiss really was a Kommie Spy.

If so, that would probably be the only True Thing Nixon ever said, in or out of public life. Don't take my word for it, in the White House he tape-recorded everything he ever said, and sincerely assumed it would all remain secret forever, because he was The Most Powerful Human Being on Earth, and His Word Was Law. You can go to the website of The National Archives and order secret Nixon conversations like you order stuff at Burger King.

Blogger billnye said...

Well, at first I thought you did mean Shipping & Handling, but if it's geezertude, you probably mean GreenStamps, though I don't remember what it stood for.

I barely barely remember those, if it helps make you feel any geez-er, and I probably would have remembered it as P&G or something if I hadn't just stumbled across something about them a few months back in my random webwandering.

I'll have you know, Mr. Merkin, that I had to create a blogspot account just to post here, and them bitchez don't mess around... they made me pick a name for my unwanted page and everything, hehe.

I was forced today to use the actual interface, as my computer with all the pop3 proxying and netscape mail spamfilter goodness is daid as a doornail at the moment, and saw the old bobmer@javanet on the contacts list. I knew from past puttering that the actual javanet page was history [and knew that the wayback machine still knew about parts of it], so I did a little googling and eventually tracked you to here.

I also uncovered all of the sordid secrets of your shady past, which will remain secret provided the money is deposited in the account as arranged. [not really, but I did see some really old emails from back when you were a number at compuserve]

It's really a shame that my procrastination on redeeming my previous food prizes has outlasted the Miss Flo's of old :\ If I do wander up in your neck of the woods, though, I'd love to meet the missus and take a substitute culinary reward in stead.

never had anchovies, but love the wor cest er shire,
John M

Blogger Bob Merkin said...

GREEN STAMPS IT IS ... one of the two giants was Sperry & Hutchinson, the other was Top Value Stamps. Everybody in America was collecting gazillions of em, pasting em in their books, and trading em in for cheesy stuff like lamps and radios and lawn chairs. Every supermarket and drug store and gas station was in on the deal, and then they'd have double and triple stamp bonus days ...

and then, after maybe ten years, they vanished, surely by 1970. They were sort of like supermarket coupons, but with cancer. S&H boasted that they printed more stamps each year than the Post Office.


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