Gabriel's Horn, Pastor George Weaver, February, 2011

posted Feb 25, 2011, 12:36 PM by Lois Kerchner   [ updated Apr 1, 2011, 8:38 AM ]
Proverbial Slogans and Sayings 

Have you ever thought about the various kinds of proverbial sayings and slogans that one finds on t-shirts and bumper stickers? You will find that dictionaries generally define proverbs as brief, fixed popular sayings that state a commonly held belief. In their thematically arranged dictionary of American proverbs, Mieder Kingsbury and Harder include ninety-eight proverbs and variants under the rubrics age, aged, and old. Of these, there are seventy-five depicting old age in a negative fashion, while twenty-three offer a positive view. Proverbs such as "nature abhors the old" and "there is no fool like an old fool" are reflections of the negative perspective on older adulthood as depicted in proverbial language, while "with age comes wisdom" and "old foxes are not easily caught" express the positive viewpoint.

A study of seventy-two Italian proverbs about aging and older people by Frank Nuessel in 2000, found that thirty-nine were positive, thirty were negative, and three were ambiguous in their interpretation.

Closely related to proverbial language is the slogan-a memorable, fixed catch phrase intended to advance some cause. The ubiquitous bumper sticker is one of the most common manifestations of this linguistic form. Some of the better known examples of slogans have a positive reference, including "age is just a number" and "older is bolder." Such slogans frequently affirm old age and older adults.

If we were to design a bumper sticker to promote the “Super Seniors” of Leola UMC, what do you think it should say?

Merriam-Webster, the dictionary folks, are selling a with the slogan “I am kind of sesquipedalian.” That’s kind of interesting, but I’m not sure whether any one would know just exactly what that means, or for that matter whether I do myself. lt could mean, for example, “long winded” as in a “sesquipedalian orator.” (Notice I didn’t say “preacher”).

Perhaps a revision of the above such as “Hang out with Septuagenarians,” or even this one Hang Out With the Sex and Septuagenarians - Leola Super Seniors” might do the trick. By the way, that means folks in their sixties and seventies.

Check out our church website or pick up a brochure to see the 2011 schedule of activities for the Leola UMC Super Seniors. Join up with those sexagenarians.

George Weaver, Pastor of Maturing Ministries