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Today, we would like to talk about the jerk.

Not necessarily the jerk that cut you off in traffic before you read this entry. Although, that is one sort of jerk. And if by some chance, YOU are the jerk who cuts some one off in traffic always remember to give the courtesy wave. (1)

Jerk is an interesting word.

I looked up the definition in Webster’s Dictionary. Now, I could get off on a whole tangent about Noah Webster but will save that for another time. (2)

The first definition of jerk, is:

1- That A-hole that cuts you off in traffic on the highway knowing full well three lanes are changing to two in summer construction season, yet he barrels up in the right lane and imposes on your progress by cutting you off because you were the considerate driver who left a safe interval between you and the car in front of you.

OK. I made that one up. But here’s some other definitions from the Merriam Webster Dictionary:

-A single quick motion of short duration.
-A jolting, bouncing, or thrusting motion.
-An annoyingly stupid or foolish person.
-The pushing of a weight from shoulder height to a position overhead. As in “clean and jerk.”

Then if we start adding modifiers to jerk, we end up with jerk offs, knee jerk reactions, jerk chicken, beef jerky, jerkwater towns and soda jerks.

There was even a dance called “The Jerk” in the 60’s recorded by a band called the Capitols.

A quick digression to the Soda Jerk and his theater of operation.

The soda fountain was a social gathering spot in the late 40’s and 50’s in Americana. Many of them were in Drug Stores. Some of them were stand alone Soda Shops. Some of them were called Malted Shops. Some of them were in Diners.

The most famous replication of the soda fountain social setting were as follows:

1) Arnold’s Diner in the TV series, Happy Days. Richie Cunningham and Arthur Fonzarelli hung out here. “Ehhhhhh.”


2) Danny and Sandy meet on occasion at the Frosty Palace in the movie Grease sometimes sipping a soda with the Pink Ladies and T-Birds. “Summer Days, drifting away to, uh oh, those summer nights.”


3) While much of the action takes place with the fast cars in the parking lot at Mel’s Drive-In, there is a less featured soda fountain inside. “Rock ‘n’ Roll will stand man. Who’s this on the Wolfman telephone?”


4) The Chok’lit Shoppe was the comic book Soda Shoppe hangout for the Archie comic book series. It was run by “Pop” Tate and if you ever read the comic book series, who can forget frequent scenes where Archie is flanked by Betty and Veronica sipping sodas. Oooo what a Lucky Man he was.


You can dance it, you can eat it, you can beat it, you can lift, it you can be it. Ladies and gentlemen, let’s hear it for Jerk. Just don’t be one.

(1) In case you missed the inaugural Wedwand post, here’s a read on the courtesy wave:

(2) Noah Webster lived from 1758 until 1843. His Dictionary, the Webster dictionary took 26 years for him to compile. It sold 2,500 copies.

Hey! how ya doing??

What’s happening, man? Good to see you.

What’s up? Long time no see. Looking good.

I am the master of those sorts of greetings when I run into people on the street, in the store, at the fest, where ever. These are people I know. This is what I say to them. Can you tell me what’s missing??


1) ONE MAN is anagram for this.

Still wondering?

2) The title of a song by the band American contains what is missing.

Tick tock tick tock. One more clue.

3) What is Clint Eastwood’s character in the movie, “The Good The Bad and the Ugly.”

Give up yet?

Ding ding ding. The answer is, “no name.”

Yes, sadly, that’s what is missing in my greetings. Names. No names are given in the afore mentioned greetings.

Why? Because I an terrible at remembering people’s names.

Doesn’t mean I don’t love you. Doesn’t mean I don’t remember you. Doesn’t mean I don’t know anything about your life. I do. I can carry on a whole conversation with you about your kids, your job, your hobbies, your interests, but I can’t always remember your name.

Now, I know some people who are outstanding at that. Bless their souls, and I’d mention them, but right now, I can’t remember their names.

I need one of those guys that follows politicians around at fund raisers and whispers in their ear, “Mick Jagger, lead singer Rolling Stones. British.”

Then, instead of saying, “Hey skinny British guy, what up”, I could say, “Hey, Mick. When’s the next Stones tour? I can’t get no satisfaction either. Glad to see you made it over the pond to visit us.”

That would be great.

Oddly, I remember places. In college I’d walk around campus saying, “Keokuk, let’s grab lunch.” “Burlington, didja study for that test?” “Cedar Rapids, wanna shoot some hoops later?”

Names however, elude me.

That’s why, when I win the Pulitzer Prize for excellence in blogging, I will thank nobody by name, because, well I can’t remember anybody’s name. So don’t feel slighted if I forget you, but I will be giving you a shout out when I say, “Thank you, America. Thank you, World. And just in case, I’d like to thank all you Extraterrestrials.

And, I’d like to thank you all for reading this week, whatever your name is.

What’s your Name

FOOTNOTE: The answer to the hints are:

1) ONE MAN = No Name
2) “A Horse With No Name” by America reached number one on the US Billboard charts in 1971 or 9172. Oddly research revealed the song was number one in Finland too.

3) Clint Eastwood is billed as “Blondie” for the movie, but also referred to as “The man with no name.”

Last week on Wedwand… (Isn’t that what they always say when Part 2 of a series starts?) … we took a look at sports managers and coaches and their game clothing.

Hockey coaches wear suits and look slick and sharp. Basketball coaches wear suits and some look bouncy and their lapels are pointed and crisp. Some resemble a traveling salesman.

Baseball managers wear the very same uniforms as the players and look silly. Perhaps we should call it an apparel error.

Now in the history of the game of baseball, while the vast majority of managers were clad in uniform, not every manager indeed wore a uniform.

The most notable exception was one Cornelius McGillicuddy, Sr. who managed the Philadelphia Athletics from 1901 until he retired at the age of 88 in 1950. Yes, you read that right, Connie Mack, as he was commonly known, managed the Philadelphia A’s for fifty years.

Another nickname for him was “The Tall Tactician”. Connie Mack stood 6’1″ tall and was renown for wearing a suit in the dugout.

Now isn’t this:

Better looking than that:


But the most amazing thing that research revealed was something Mr. Mack developed in 1916. It is called The Connie Mack Code of Conduct. It merits mention in its entirety.

I will always play the game to the best of my ability.
I will always play to win, but if I lose, I will not look for an excuse to detract from my opponent’s victory.
I will never take an unfair advantage in order to win.
I will always abide by the rules of the game—on the diamond as well as in my daily life.
I will always conduct myself as a true sportsman—on and off the playing field.
I will always strive for the good of the entire team rather than for my own glory.
I will never gloat in victory or pity myself in defeat.
I will do my utmost to keep myself clean—physically, mentally, and morally.
I will always judge a teammate or an opponent as an individual and never on the basis of race or religion.

Please re-read this Code of Conduct written 98 years ago and ask yourself how much is practiced in professional sport today. Connie Mack, oh that you were here today to drive home the significance of those Codes, especially the, the, well they ALL are outstanding.

Hats off to hockey for the handshake tradition which comes the closest to this tenet.

So, I know what you’re thinking. Hey Camel, you forgot football coaches.

Indeed we did. The NFL “always make a profit machine” mandates that coaches wear officially NFL licensed goods on the sidelines and Wedwand neither endorses nor encourages those “dress for pay” standards.

For real?

Now isn’t This:


Is better than that?:


It appears to me that a classy suit and the dapper Tom Landry hat are much preferred to the officially licensed Jedi attire of Obi Wan Belchekenobi.

Wedwand prefers the Landry Look, the Connie Code and as ZZ Top said, “Everybody’s crazy bout a sharp dressed man.”

Thanks for reading. As always, your input is appreciated.