Workin' On Her Fitness: February Update
Read With Us: Announcing Our Next Book Pick

Here We Go Again

It's Monday.  Time to . . . 

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"Springtime is the land awakening.  The March winds are the morning yawn."
        --- Lewis Grizzard

Welcome, March.  
(Let's get this party started.)

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Signs of life in my garden.

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I don't have a word for you this week.  Instead . . . I have a rhetorical phrase.  And a question for you.

So.  Let's say you're . . . unconcerned about something.  Maybe you're unconcerned in a sarcastic way, or maybe it's because you're just not at all interested.  What do you say?

I couldn't care less . . . 

OR

I could care less . . . 

And . . . do you think that one of these phrases is more grammatically correct than the other?  (I have always been in the couldn't-care-less camp myself.)

Well, it turns out that the Merriam-Webster dictionary considers these two phrases . . .  synonymous.  While "couldn't care less" is the older and more obvious phrase from a grammatical standpoint, the two phrases have been confused for so long now that both are considered correct.  (You can read more about it here, if you're so inclined.)  (Or perhaps you couldn't - or could - care less?)

How about YOU?  Which one do you say?

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I generally avoid news-related topics here on the blog (you get enough of that on your own time, I'm sure), but there's one particularly important topic right now that I think we should all pay (at least some) attention to you.  Yeah.  I'm talking about COVID-19 . . . the coronavirus.

Like most people I talk to, I'm kinda creeped out by the possibility of a pandemic . . . while at the same time trying not to dwell on it . . . and determined not to panic about it.  But still, I'm paying attention to it.  I'm not so worried about getting it, but I am trying to be smart and prepare myself for the possibility that it may cause hiccups.  So I wash my hands all. the. time.  (While singing Happy Birthday or maybe running through the ABC song.)  And I'm using those little wipes they have at the grocery store and Costco to clean off my cart.  That kind of thing.  And over the past few days, I've started stocking up my pantry, my freezer, and my medicine cabinets --- NOT because I think there's going to be a shortage (or armageddon), but because if there IS an outbreak in my town, I want to be prepared to hunker down at home for awhile.

Anyway.  Here's a practical and not-panicky article from NPR . . . about how to prepare at home for the coronavirus.  It's worth reading!

How about YOU?  Are you doing anything to prepare for the coronavirus?  Or . . . is this something you (ahem) couldn't care less about???

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So.

Is anybody else counting the days until the third installment of Hilary Mantel's trilogy hits the bookstores?????  (As of this morning, there are 8.)

I've had my copy on pre-order for months and months.  I. can't. wait.  (Even though I know how it ends. . . )

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Speaking of books . . . be sure to join Bonny, Carole and I TOMORROW as we announce the next Read With Us bloggy-book-group selection!  

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Okay.  I feel sort of guilty telling you about this -- because I lost a couple of hours down this rabbit hole -- but I must!  Last week, I discovered Blue: the Tatter Textile Library -- which is physically located in Brooklyn . . . but you can bring a lot of it right into your own home thanks to your computer!

I won't tell you any more right now . . . but when you need a little break, go take a peek.  It's balm for the soul!

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And there you go!
Monday morning, started right.

Enjoy your week!

Comments

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Juliann

I don’t use either of those phrases - not sure why but I don’t like them (same goes for it is what it is).
And about that virus, it has hit very close to home this weekend and I am in a planning/preparing meeting at school today. The stores around here are a mess - absolutely no toilet paper in any stores and much of the canned food section and bottled water is gone. I went to the store for soba noodles and coconut milk and I was shocked to see so many people with overflowing carts. It is a bit scary.

Bonny

I understand that language grows and evolves, but I just can't agree with M-W's reasoning that just because the two phrases have begun to mean the same thing that "I could care less" is correct. I use "I couldn't care less" because I want to say what I mean.

I do care about COVID-19, and since I heard a fact-based interview with a scientist from the WHO (of course I can't find it online now), I've felt less scared and more prepared. I've begun doing the same things you talked about. The scientist said that proper handwashing is key, along with reducing the number of viruses that might be on surfaces with wipes. So now I have a supply of wipes, hand sanitizer (there are lots of places where you can't wash your hands or there is no warm water or soap), and I've always had full freezers in both MD and NJ. Far better to be ready than to rely on the miracle Trump said could happen.

Now I'm off down the rabbit hole of the blue version of Barbara Walker's 1st Treasury. Thanks; taxes and laundry can wait!

Iris

No opinion on the care less thing but that is an interesting new development.

Re: hand washing, I’m a piano teacher and I have to wash hands constantly anyway. My solution for wintertime cracks in my fingers is to slather my hands with straight up lanolin before I put on gloves to leave the house (I get mine from LI Yarn and Farm, but any good hand cream would probably work if you’re not nuts about the smell of lanolin). I have also done the slather/gloves routine overnight using cotton gloves I inherited from my husband’s grandmother.

Vera

I'm with Bonny on the "Couldn't" debate. To me they don't mean the same thing and I say "I couldn't care less."

The virus thing is quite scary. We picked up more wipes and Lysol spray this weekend when grocery shopping. Also stocked up on some non-perishables (our store offered buy 2, get 3 free pasta!!). The freezer is full and we have plenty of veggie broths and cans of beans. Trying not to panic and instead just be prepared to stay away from stores and everyone if need be (and have plenty of yarn on hand to keep me occupied!!). Thanks for the NPR article link - very good.

And Blue - what a rabbit hole! Thank you.

Carolyn Seymour Thomas

Ack!!! I can't believe Merriam-Webster is condoning that butchery! Kills me. I'm clearly in the 'couldn't care less' camp...(because there's still room for me to stop caring quite as much as I do). Ugh. Are they going to add 'covfefe' to the dictionary now?
My virus concern started to increase last night when I heard about the confirmed cases in WA, IL & RI. I'm typically very much an under-reactor to things in this camp, but that's starting to shift in this case. Preparation & homework. Thank you for the link!

eileen

I do think this COVID-19 is going to be a problem in the US. If it is going to spread over the entire country, hard to say yet. But I think their is no reason for panic! Common sense preparations is always a good place to start. Hand washing and daily supplies topped off at home, just to be able to stay out of stores if positive cases pop up in my town.
I have no, none, nada faith in the Trump/Pence actions to contain this virus, or the information they put out on TV. I watch the CDC site as well as my local County Health site for accurate information and any directions to heed.
Stay safe and healthy!

Carole

It's couldn't care less, obvs. What is wrong with Merriam Webster?! We've got a full freezer in our garage most of the time and a cabinet in our mudroom with a fair amount of canned goods. I think we'd be okay if we were hunkered down at home for a couple of weeks. So long as my books hold out I'm good! One good outcome of this virus is the heightened awareness of hand washing - let's hope that lasts!

Kat

I am in the "I couldn't care less" camp but I find it curious at the idea that both are correct.

I did brave Costco over the weekend to stock up on some staple items, because even if our government is not prepared, my house is. And, I have a little bottle of hand sanitizer in my purse now (and I have always been a hand washer but after watching an interesting video posted by nurse - I am now a much more diligent washer of those commonly missed spots!) You can see it here, if you are so inclined (https://twitter.com/ali_noorani_teh/status/1231800964945862661). Also, the Life Kit podcast had a great episode on things to do to preparedness!

And, I have Wolf Hall but have never read it - looks like I should add it to my list!

Thank you as well for that incredible link to Blue... wow. Just wow!

Sarah

I'm very firmly in the "couldn't care less" camp. If you could care less about something, then you still care about it some, which is not at all what you're trying to communicate!

We just had to clean out our freezer due to an accidental thaw (I apparently did not close it all the way one morning), so now there's room to stock up. I'm not too terribly nervous about the virus, though obviously I don't want anyone to get sick, but I'm pretty proactive about that stuff. In my family, we always wash our hands when we get home, no matter where we've been, and I wash my hands frequently throughout the day. I've also discovered that Trader Joe's has a lovely citrus antibacterial spray that's a nice change from the usual gel.

(BTW, couldn't view/leave comments on Firefox today. I checked my settings and they're on Standard for security, so I give up!)

Kathleen

I couldn't care less!
We're knee deep in calving season so I've got plenty of supplies on hand so I don't have to run to the store at an inopportune moment. My city house is 30 miles from where the original folks were quarantined...they go home today...and most people around town are going about their business as usual. The store shelves are fully stocked and delivery trucks are showing up on time. If nothing else, this is a wake up call to resume manufacturing our own meds, etc.and stop relying on foreign countries! Happy spring everyone!

Debbie

I'm in the "couldn't care less" camp.
As far as my prep for an outbreak, I'm handwashing and keeping my pantry & freezer stocked. I always get a little worried when I'm sick because I live alone, so I've contacted some single friends and we will check up on each other if we get sick.
So many great new books are coming out and I want to read all of them! I really look forward The Mirror & The Light!
I've got some errands to run, then I'm going to explore the link to Blue!

Vicki

Couldn't.Care.Less

I'm not terribly worried about an outbreak, and think it helps that people becoming more aware & informed. And prepared. I selfishly hope that it doesn't throw a wrinkle into my vacation/travel plans!

margene

I thought about reading all Wolf Hall and Bringing up the Bodies again, but just couldn't get excited about it. I have too many other good reads at hand. It's been a long time since the other two were published and I'm not sure I want to dive right into The Mirror & the Light. I am excited about the Women's Prize longlist being revealed today (within the hour!).

margene

PS. I want to live in that blue library!!

Jane

I rarely use the couldn't care less phrase. I did stop at the grocery store over the weekend for a few groceries. I added extra cans of beans, plenty of my favorite flavors of hot tea. My freezers have a good supply of extra foods. The meals might be a little wacky but we could get by and not go hungry. I've always been a hand washer and a hand sanitizer. I also have plenty of yarn to keep me busy!

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