by Marsha Ward
Since I began a trend in lampooning English gaffs, I seem to have tuned my ear (and eye) more towards the "oopsy" moments around me.
This week someone mentioned they saw a blog where the term "pre-Madonna" was used. Incorrectly, as it turns out. They weren't referring to the era before the singer became popular, nor to the 1997 album by Stephen Bray. Not even to the American singer/songwriter's own "Pre Madonna" album.
No indeed. I looked up the blog, and it's here, if you want to see LeBron James characterized as a self-concerned person, more important than the normal human being. Unfortunately, the proper insult term is "prima donna". The writer only got it right on his second attempt.
Prima donna comes from the Italian term for "first lady," usually used in an opera context to denote the lead female singer, who often acted in life in a high-handed manner. A similarly-used term is "diva," and both have become slang references to temperamental and conceited persons of either sex, whether in a film, music, or sports context.
You can read more here, here, and here.
I continue to snicker and LOL at these egregious misuses of English. I'm not immune to making some of them, but I do admit to hooting with laughter when I come upon such horrible examples used by poor souls who don't know any better.
On a more sober note, this week we've said goodbye to two of our blog team members, Krista Darrach and Sarah Albrecht, and welcomed our new contributors, Susan G. Haws and Tanya Parker Mills. We appreciate all that our departing friends have shared with us, and look forward to reading wonderful posts from our new members. There will be more changes in a few weeks.