Sunday, September 04, 2005
diddle v. 1. Slang. To cheat; swindle. 2. Computer Science. To fabricate, change, or otherwise manipulate (data) illegally. [Perhaps akin to Old English dydrian, to deceive, or from variant of dialectal doodle, fool, simpleton; akin to Low German dudeldopp.]
diddle v. 3. Slang To waste time:
(from The American Heritage Dictionary)
What follows below is excerpted from Edgar Allan Poe's 1850 essay titled "Diddling". Given the the pathetic, hapless, dithering, and just plain speakin' altogether incompetent response from the Bu$hGov Mismanagement Holding Company - to the horrific ordeal(s) following hurricane Katrina - I thought it necessary to reproduce some of Poe's observations here. Likewise, given the recent thouroughly pointless bleatings and sociopathic pantings from some of the easily frightened intellectually stunted growth occupying various damp pee-soaked corners of the Rightwing-o-sphere,... see:
The Sad State of the Righty Blogosphere
Do These People Live On My Planet?
An Open Letter To The Other "Other America"
... I also figger'd Edgar Allan's contribution to diddler explication and identification would provide a useful field guide of sorts. Not only for you there my articulate intelligent well groomed alert bong-water drinking sin-soaked French Quarter homo-hugging gasoline scrimping anti-Murican God-hating moonbat readers. All 15 of you; and you know who you are. But I also post this bulletin (a kind of mirror so to speak) for the aid and benefit of whatever distressed specimen of bedraggled self-absorbed go-getter reactionary right-wing sooper-dood hurrion might chance to flutter into the room seeking some further guidance or larnin' experience or simply respite from the ruthless storm swept seas of neoconservatarian idiocy. It's not easy being a poor put-upon seasick Bourbon soaked Bu$hCo spinnaker set adrift on a salty churning ocean of grinning diddle drenched GOP idiocy these days. Ya know.
Considered as One of the Exact Sciences
by Edgar Allan Poe - 1850
Diddling, rightly considered, is a compound, of which the ingredients are minuteness, interest, perseverance, ingenuity, audacity, nonchalance, originality, impertinence, and grin.
Minuteness:–Your diddler is minute. His operations are upon a small scale. His business is retail, for cash, or approved paper at sight. Should he ever be tempted into magnificent speculation, he then, at once, loses his distinctive features, and becomes what we term "financier." This latter word conveys the diddling idea in every respect except that of magnitude. A diddler may thus be regarded as a banker in petto–a "financial operation," as a diddle at Brobdignag. The one is to the other, as Homer to "Flaccus"–as a Mastodon to a mouse–as the tail of a comet to that of a pig.
Interest:–Your diddler is guided by self-interest. He scorns to diddle for the mere sake of the diddle. He has an object in view- his pocket–and yours. He regards always the main chance. He looks to Number One. You are Number Two, and must look to yourself.
Perseverance:–Your diddler perseveres. He is not readily discouraged. Should even the banks break, he cares nothing about it. He steadily pursues his end, and
Ut canis a corio nunquam absterrebitur uncto
["the old dog will never learn new tricks" ~ Sermonum Q. Horati Flacci Liber Secundus]
so he never lets go of his game.
Ingenuity:–Your diddler is ingenious. He has constructiveness large. He understands plot. He invents and circumvents. Were he not Alexander he would be Diogenes. Were he not a diddler, he would be a maker of patent rat-traps or an angler for trout.
Audacity:–Your diddler is audacious.–He is a bold man. He carries the war into Africa. He conquers all by assault. He would not fear the daggers of Frey Herren. With a little more prudence Dick Turpin would have made a good diddler; with a trifle less blarney, Daniel O'Connell; with a pound or two more brains Charles the Twelfth.
Nonchalance:–Your diddler is nonchalant. He is not at all nervous. He never had any nerves. He is never seduced into a flurry. He is never put out–unless put out of doors. He is cool–cool as a cucumber. He is calm–"calm as a smile from Lady Bury." He is easy- easy as an old glove, or the damsels of ancient Baiae.
Originality:–Your diddler is original–conscientiously so. His thoughts are his own. He would scorn to employ those of another. A stale trick is his aversion. He would return a purse, I am sure, upon discovering that he had obtained it by an unoriginal diddle.
Impertinence.–Your diddler is impertinent. He swaggers. He sets his arms a-kimbo. He thrusts. his hands in his trowsers' pockets. He sneers in your face. He treads on your corns. He eats your dinner, he drinks your wine, he borrows your money, he pulls your nose, he kicks your poodle, and he kisses your wife.
Grin:–Your true diddler winds up all with a grin. But this nobody sees but himself. He grins when his daily work is done–when his allotted labors are accomplished–at night in his own closet, and altogether for his own private entertainment. He goes home. He locks his door. He divests himself of his clothes. He puts out his candle. He gets into bed. He places his head upon the pillow. All this done, and your diddler grins. This is no hypothesis. It is a matter of course. I reason a priori, and a diddle would be no diddle without a grin.
Hail diddle diddle, Dear Leader did fiddle, as New Orleans became a lagoon.