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The Slow Lane shuts itself up

I don't know exactly what the deal was with the Mayor telling a constituent to shut-up, twice. But I always liked our Mayor, and I still do.

I don't know exactly what the deal was with the Mayor telling a constituent to shut-up, twice. But I always liked our Mayor, and I still do. My sources (yeah, I got 'em) tell me he's frustrated with the same issue coming up despite, I'm told, feeling it's being dealt with.

Only don't quote me on that.

Regardless, rudeness isn't an option and we must cherish citizens willing to put time into going to meetings and to expressing opinions and such. One nice thing about the whole affair, or sort of nice, is that we made the CBC News, even if for the wrong reasons that's still kinda cool.

On that CBC story the aggrieved party seems to have taken it well, which is commendable. There are many who would have flipped-out and made a big deal of it. But her reaction made me think of something my mother often says: it'll all come out in the wash.

I mean, providing we're not letting fists fly or pitching rocks at one another, our quarrels on Bowen should come out in the wash. Mind you, that's easy for me to say, I wasn't told to shut-up at a council meeting. Here's something: I saw the tape and she did a nice job of soldiering on.

So kudos to her.

Here's something else: if a man tells another man to shut-up in a public dispute, our social code can require that the man told to shut-up must indeed let fists fly. Of course when men tell one another to shut up in public they more often say 'shut the (blank) up!'

Now this seems odd but I believe it to be true: it's less-accepted in our society to tell someone you don't know very well, or at all, to shut-up, than it is to tell someone you know and love to shut-up.

Shouldn't that be reversed?

Of course it's rarely a good idea to tell anybody to shut-up, though I've done it; I've never felt particularity good about it afterwards. Have you ever told anyone to shut-up? I expect most people have, only except not someone like Mahatma Gandhi, Nancy Lee from the General Store (Nancy is very nice) or Louise Wright from the Ruddy Potato (Louise is nice, too).

To my knowledge many languages have the equivalent of a shut-up, so right or wrong it's a command that gets a lot of usage. In English it originally had a different meaning, more like to 'shut up the horses in the barn before the storm.' From that came 'shut your mouth up' and thence followed 'shut-up'.

I read all of that on Wiki.

Will there ever be a world without 'shut-up?' We could try. We could start a massive campaign, like the anti-bullying campaign that's swept the Western world, and seek to shut down all those shut-ups.

"Help stop the code of silence around 'shut-upping'," an ad might say. "And stand up to all those shut-uppers by joining our anti-shutting-up campaign today! Don't shut yourself up!!"

Say, I've just decided I'm gonna make something positive out of all this by vowing to never tell anybody to shut-up again. Wanna join me? Naturally I only mean the use of shut-up in the pejorative sense; you can still use it the way Elaine on 'Seinfeld 'did, her shut-up meant 'you're kidding, no way!'

And finally here's this: Bowen is known for brouhahas and this latest mischief joins the list. I can see the tourism brochure already: "The lively island of Bowen has had fights at council meetings, placard-waving groups protesting the (much-used by kids!) A.T. turf-field and one rambunctious Mayor even told a constituent to shut-up!"

Okay. Done. Enough. Subject exhausted. Like I said it should all come out in the wash anyhow and in meantime I shall do just one more thing here and then be done.

I shall shut-up.