More Serious questions...

More Serious questions...

Here is another list of questions I've been thinking about -- and since they're mine, they're Serious questions. (For the previous list, catch up here.)

Why do we call certain birds seagulls when they're around Lake Michigan? Is it something like the Englishman who found out I was from Chicago and told me he loves our "seafront?"

How did charge plates (credit cards), chargers (trays) and chargers (phone cords) get such similar names when they're so different?

Why is it so difficult for so many people to enjoy silence?

How did there get to be two kinds of people in the world: the kind who divide people up into two groups and the kind who don't?

There's a piece of music called "Song Without Words." Is that less logical than words without music?

Why do the weather forecasters all say "Cooler near the lake" in the summer rather than "Hotter inland," which is the same thing?

Finally, a "when" question: When you go to the zoo, which do you watch more -- the people or the animals?
For more fun with words, stop by the Margaret Serious page on Facebook.

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  • Love this batch of Serious Questions - they are fun and thought-provoking, and tease my imagination, as well.

  • In reply to folkloric:

    Thanks. I'm glad to prove that provoking thought can be fun.

  • The weather people have defined the difference between "partly cloudy" and "partly sunny" as mostly the other thing. Similarly, the "by the lake" is an exception because supposedly we are in the middle of a continental land mass.

    Everyone knows that to stop an elephant from charging, you take away its credit card. Other than that, the question is whether the word origin is ancient French or something else.

    I always wondered about seagulls around here.

    Finally, if I want to see the animals known as humans, I can go to the mall. No need to go to Brookfield for that. In fact, I wondered why the Brookfield Zoo is the Chicago Zoological Park.

  • In reply to jack:

    Thanks for the clever replies, Jack. I'd wondered about the "partlies" (if that is the correct plural). I know that "cooler by the lake" is the exception," but I continue to be puzzled about why no one seems to use "warmer inland" when that's just as true. On the other hand, since I posted these questions, I'm not hearing "cooler near the lake" quite as much. It figures.

  • Interesting questions...Great answers, Jack!

    I thought it's cooler by the lake because of the architecture and beaches, public transit, Lake Shore Drive, sailing on the Lake, fireworks at Navy Pier, etc. Also, cooler sounds cooler...

    But you were talking about the weather, weren't you? Maybe I will do a post and link to you.

  • In reply to Weather Girl:

    Thanks. I recognize the reasons for why it's cool -- sometimes thanks to your own posts. I'll leave the meteorological explanations to you; I was looking for a linguistic one. It may be, as you suggest, that cooler sounds cooler.
    As for linking, sure -- be my guest anytime.

  • I love these kinds of questions and the quirkiness of the English language. I would write more but I have to go polish off a Polish sausage.

  • In reply to Kathy Mathews:

    I'm glad you're enjoying my new idea of questions, Kathy. Your second sentence reminds me of when my cello needed quite a lot of repairs. Having charged me a hand and a foot (i.e., not quite an arm and a leg), the folks at the repair shop threw in a bottle of cleaner and a bottle of polish for the surface of the instrument. "This one is the cleaner and this one is the Polish," said one fellow. "No," his colleague said, "that's polish -- you're Polish!" I managed to keep the worst of the giggles away until the cello and I were on the way home.

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