June 5, 2014 by John Crapper
Today I just want to have fun and not be serious so please indulge me.
Just to set the record straight right up front. I’m a 63 year old white male.
I’m also an English as a Second Language teacher. I’ve been doing it for over twenty years. I love it. Teaching the language I’m continually fascinated with the weird quirks and bizarreness found in it.
For instance, why do we park on a driveway and drive on a parkway? Doesn’t make any sense.
How come you can buy a complete chess set in a pawn shop? Doesn’t make any sense.
I constantly tell my students that English is Crazy.
Being an ESL teacher, I find myself spending an inordinate amount of time thinking in creative ways regarding its use. All language is a living, changing, dynamic process. What is acceptable language use today was not so 50 years ago. What will be acceptable language use 50 years from now, you can rest assured, will not resemble how we write and speak today.
Realizing this, it is fun for me to be minutely involved in contributing to this morphing process and offer a little language change for future generations. So without further ado let me introduce the newly minted acronym -SOWP.
As baby boomers age in this country there are just a lot more older people around everywhere. And I’ve noticed a lot of people hovering around my age level acting in stupid ways.
How can you tell when you see a SOWP in action. They will typically enter a building and stand in the doorway and gawk around for about 10 to 15 seconds with mouth open, before entering. They will stand in the middle of an isle blocking both directions while they stare at cans or bottles on the shelf as if in a trance. They will tilt their heads back severely while looking up, mouth gaping open, in a vain attempt to peer through their bifocals to read product labels.
When driving they are easily identified. First clue is the type of car they typically drive. You know the ones – old, big, gas guzzling relics from an age gone by. SOWP drivers usually fall into two distinct categories – pedal to the metal or slow mo on the go! Both are wrecks waiting to happen.
Turn signal use usually notifies other drivers of where they have just turned rather than where they will turn. Another typical turn signal practice is to signal turning left right before executing a right turn.
SOWP fashion also falls into two distinct categories One is the “I just got out of bed and ate breakfast and half of it is on my shirt for later and I might reek of bacon – that’s why I put on so much perfume or cologne types. They have reached the age where they can be who they want to be.
Then there are the “I’m as young as I look” group. The men look like disco daddies wearing their hunk a hunk of burning love muscle shirts,sadly without muscles, but plenty of gray hair, age spots and large blue veins. Adorning their bodies are usually gold chains. The women – shrink-wrapped barbie dolls wearing too much make-up, gaudy nail polish on ridiculously long fake nails, with bleach blonde hair driving around in convertibles scaring other drivers while believing all the stares they’re getting are because they still look hot.
And then there is the SOWP noise. Why is it SOWPs are always snorting, sniffing, farting, grunting, moaning, groaning, belching and clicking without regard to the proximity of others? They also incessantly clear their throat especially while on the phone. One endearing trait I’ve noticed in my neighborhood is a SOWP who routinely blows his nose while standing in the living room window but my wife always reminds me not to do this.
Verbally SOWPs are extremely adept at making up shit. The line between truth and bullshit is very foggy for them.
If the shoe fits wear it. I’m guilty as charged. I’m a SOWP!
The mind is the first thing to go but the mouth is the last thing to stop. (Shitbit by Poop John the First)
Please note: If you are so inclined to actually think you are old and smart this acronym works for you too.
SOWP – Smart Old White People