27 February 2006

0 to flick or not to flick

yesterday at movie night, someone mentioned that they love "netflixing"- which sounded all wrong to me. obviously it should be "netflicking." that's what i've been calling it for months. but then it hit me that perhaps "flix" was right since it's in the original name itself. who knows.

but it brought up the fact that somewhere along the way i developed a tempestuous relationship with the word "flick." when i was a kid (and i was a deaf-o, so maybe that accounts for all of this) everyone "flicked" people off. well, not really everyone- just the bad kids in the back of the school bus. (incidentally: this will undoubtedly make it sound as though have done nothing the past ten years but hang out with people who do nothing but give the finger.)

the only time i actually did it myself with any sincerity was in the eighth grade. have two versions of the memory. in both, tiffany b.- my neighbor and archnemesis- said something horrendous and i- all primed for a fight in white shortie shorts and keds- responded by flicking her off. it was so terrifically empowering that i never did it again.

in the first version, it was an impetuous act, committed while we were still on the school bus and risked being captured by the surveillance cameras that reportedly lurked behind what i now know to have been a massive rear-view mirror. in the memory, i kind of balanced in the aisle (we were an especially bumpy, rurual route) and flicked her off with a sweeping flourish. but that sounds too john wayne to possibly be true.

in the other, less ballsy version- i was standing on the sidewalk and flicked her off as the bus drove away. that memory is a little more vivid- with the dust whipping up in the air and me all pollyanna-like, running home as fast as i could. more likely, that's the way it actually happened.

it wasn't until college that i heard of "flipping" people off and always assumed that it was a regional difference- a warping of the word through generations of the mississippi twang. but after a quick poll of my franklin friends, have ascertained that it was just me. but in my defense, and to perpetuate my years long battle for the recognition of "flicking off" as the most appropriate phrase:

Main Entry: FLICK
Function: verb
transitive senses
1 : to remove with light blows
2 : to direct flicks at something

olines don't flip. we're all about light blows and well-directed flicks.

UPDATE: alas, further proof- It's Pretty Safe to Say Lindsay Lohan Likes to Flip the Bird

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