Monday, November 30, 2009

Boring, Bored, Bore

Boring: tr.v. To make weary by being dull, repetitive, or tedious.
Bored: adj. The state of being weary or uninterested due to repetition, tediousness, or dullness.   
Bore: n. One that is wearingly dull, repetitive, or tedious.
Though I am often weary of the repetitious nature of housework, I am rarely bored.
I am, however, increasingly concerned that I am becoming boring. Boring as dirt (in a non-Hodgins way). That’s why I was so interested in this article in today’s Boston Globe, as the author discovers much to his dismay, that he is becoming boring. 

After initial assessment of his own dullness, the author discusses how people are boring when they think they know it all (i.e. a bore) and how they are charming when they actually do know it all but hold it close to the vest. That’s more of a personality issue.  My concern with being boring is limited to my being boring to even myself.  Sadly, this sometimes happens.
But what struck me as most important in the article was the actual moment in which the author realized that he was boring.  It occured when, upon seeing a lady walk by with her dog, he stated to his wife, "You know, you hardly ever see an airedale anymore." His lack of explanation about why that is a notable experience for him makes the statement both boring and hilarious, as an apparent non sequitur, at the same time.

"Who cares?" seems to be his logical follow-up to his own random observation. 

Well – I do.
First, I’m interested in dogs bred for man’s use – tenacious terriers in particular – and Airedales are an old breed of terrier.  Secondly, I’m interested in fashion trends as indicators of cultural importance. A remark on the scarcity of a once popular breed of dog, therefore, indicates that one has noticed that a particular animal has fallen out of favor.  So the correct, non-boring follow-up question to his observation is "Why?" What can this tell us about our culture? 
Further, on the author’s statement itself, I am curious as to why a professional writer would not capitalize the proper noun ‘Airedale’. An Airedale is a specific type of terrier from a geographic region of the Aire river valley in England, and as such, it should be capitalized.
In short, for the three reasons I have indicated, I found the author’s statement not boring, but keenly interesting as I compared it with and integrated it into my own knowledge. 
Of course, it’s quite possible that I found his observation terribly exciting for the sole reason that just last week, I made that very same remark.


Amy said...

I love this post. Hilarious!

Lynne said...

I couldn't believe it when I read the article! It was as close to an official designation of my boringness as possible. I'm glad you enjoyed my effort to fight back somehow.

Shez said...

One of my nannies was an Airedale. My grandmother's family were farmers who bought a pup each time one of the women became pregnant. This meant that the dog would be fully trained by the time the child began toddling.

The dogs were trained to protect the child and then the child was given a lot of freedom. My dad and his sibs had German Shepherds. I had an Airedale called Biddy.

She was an amazingly patient dog. She let me ride her like a horse and pull her ears.

My sister had a black lab and my brother a Bouvier.

Sadly I did not continue the tradition. We live on a property that is too small for large dogs and I was so overwhelmed by twin infants that I would never have managed twinfants and puppies.

Lynne said...

Ah, a kindred spirit in the missing of the Airedales!

Thanks for sharing your very interesting story (love the name Biddy). You've since made up for not having the pups with the twinfants, though, haven't you?

I have no personal experience with them other than fondly remembering the children's book, Junket from second grade.