Thursday, August 19, 2010

Be Afraid...Be Very, Very Afraid

While working on an essay for The Homeschool Apologist I used the term “brainstorming,” which readers of Arby’s Archives might recall was banned in one English borough for being offensive. Let’s take a short trip through the archives…

I’m not one to scare easily, unless you jump out from behind a door and yell, “Boo!” Oh, I do have a healthy case of Ballistophobia. Most people do. If a bullet is heading my way, I usually duck. Whenever someone points a bazooka at me I tend to scramble for cover. Like most people, I am a bit Bolshephobic. I have a fear of Bolsheviks. I will admit here and now that I have one darned good case of Politicophobia. This probably comes from living in Chicago where you learn early in life that if a politician pats you on the back with their left hand you can be certain that their right hand is reaching for your wallet. My fear of politicians only increased this morning when the Boss sent me a link to a news article about our cousins across the pond. The UK’s Telegraph, “Britain’s #1 Quality Newspaper Website,” is reporting that the Tunbridge Wells Borough Council in Kent has banned the term “brainstorming” from use by borough staff. The preferred terms are “thought showers” or “blue-sky thinking.” In an excellent use of taxpayer’s pounds, the council already put staff through formal training to remove the offending verbiage from their lexicon.

I like the term “brainstorming.” I use it in my writing instruction all of the time. I used it in my classroom regularly. Never once did I have a problem resulting from using the term “brainstorming.” Maybe the problem was that I didn’t have any epileptics or mentally ill people in my classroom to complain that use of the term “brainstorming” was offensive to them. Apparently, the Wells Borough council in Kent has. But I take umbrage at the substitute terms suggested by the borough in Kent. On behalf of Ombrophobes, Lilapsophobes, and Cyanophobes the world over, I protest! The new terms are insensitive to people with genuine fears.

How can we justifiably ask someone with a fear of being rained on to engage in “thought showers?” That is horrendously insensitive to people who suffer from Ombrophobia. They might drown in a pool of their own thoughts. Equally appalling is asking a Cyanophobe, some one who is afraid of the color blue, to engage in “blue-sky thinking.” It would be like asking Chicken Little to look up! If we are to abolish anything, we must abolish the entire concept of generating ideas, as Lilapsophobes, people who fear tornadoes and hurricanes, might not be cable of brainstorming in any form or under any name. “That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” The esteemed Tunbridge Wells Borough Council never considered this in their extended original thinking sessions.

I’m sure that by now many of you are thinking, “Hey, Arby, You are being unfair. You’re obviously a moronophobe.” I may be guilty as charged, but I see insanity spreading in this world. It’s a communicable disease that is well on its way to becoming a pandemic. That makes me an Agateophobe.

4 comments:

joysandrewards said...

LOL!!! Great post...if that was in from Arby's Archives, I must have missed it the first time! Glad you reposted!

Michelle said...

I see you did a lot of "brainstorming" on that one!! have a great day!

Subvet said...

The inmates are really running the asylum. We are so screwed.

S.K. said...

I think what we are experiencing is a storm of no brains......