Archive for October 16th, 2009


Jonny, Mnemonics Explained

October 16, 2009

I forgot how you are never one to let a misspelling slide, Twin Brother. You caught me. I made my last post without my Penguin Classic (take that, Wordsworth) handy.

In my head, I think of Brobdingnag as “Brodbignag.” Let me explain why:

The citizenry of Brobdingnag are giants, hence broad.

Brobdingnagians are big. (See my comment re: giants).

And that Glumdalclitch: nag, nag, nag.

Broad + big + nag = Brodbignag.

Hence “Brodbignag” instead Brobdingnag. Please, Pardon my mnemonic. I promise henceforward my trusty copy of Gulliver will not leave my side so as to be handy for reference for all future posts.

I can’t help but notice that you are once again racing ahead of me in reading. Might I suggest you take the weekend off from reading Gulliver? Instead you might read one of the two books I gifted you last weekend:

The Humbling by Philip Roth–a very Rothian exploration of aging, impotence (of one sort or another–in this book he can’t perform…on stage.) And I will leave it at that.

The Man Who Loved Books Too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett–Sadly no, not a book about you or me, but instead a very fast reading book with a little bit of everything: rare books, mystery, more rare books. (Who could ask for more?)

Just a suggestion. I too should be setting sale from Brobdingnag soon, and then I’ll be forced to come up with a new mnemonic.