Lawn Rolling Here
By ice rivers
Last night we watched the latest episode of The Crown in which Margaret Thatcher is betrayed by Geoffery Howe. The episode portrays Howe's decisive speech. Because I am losing my hearing, when I watch teevee, I have to read the captions to understand what is being said
Definitely a huge moment in British politics. The end of the Iron Lady. Thatcher had lerned the hard way that betrayal preceds change. When change comes ya gotta roll wif it. Figuratively.
I knew very little about that conservative coup until last night.
I learned something else last night.
When Howe rose to speak he began with the words (according to the caption) "Hear, Hear."
This cleared up a mystery for me.
I always thought the words were "Here, Here". with an outside possibiility of both "here, hear" , "here, here" and "hear here."
"Hear, hear" stands for the superlative form of hearing. The listener is being warned in advance; not only must you hear but you must rehear what you heard.
Awright I heard you the first time.
I prefer "here, hear" which reduces the "hear" superlative to the comparative degree and specifies the the third person as those people "here" who are within shouting or whispering distance of the speaker depending upon appropriate level of discretion.
"Hear, here" suggests the importance of subject matter rather than the listeners to that suject who are being told Here is what I want to tell you. Hear right here in my hands or in the telepromptet is the subject of what I want you to listen. This right here. nothinh' else just this here.
"Here, Here" is what my grandmother used to say to me when I came to her crying or upset. She would take me into her arms to let me know that I was safely "here" in her house and "here" in her arms.
It's also what you might say to a dog when you want that dog to go somewhere specific rather than where the dog is going.
This conundrum reminded me of 60 plus years past when we, the members of the Panther patrol of Troop 37 were walking home from our Boy Scouts Troop meeting at St John the Evangelist Church, there was a home that we passed on Merchants Road. The home had a sign that read "Lawn Rolling". Every Friday we would stop at this house and roll on the lawn. Imagine six boys in boy scout uniforms rolling around in the Friday twilight as cars passed on thier way to Winton Road.
Gary Geiger, who owned the house never came out. I imagine Gary figured the situation out but since no harm was done, he grew to enjoy the ritual. One Friday he told his date Margaret about the boys rolling on the front lawn. She wasn't paying attention. He called her attention to him when he said "hear, here". He repeated the story of the unusual, harmless and hilarious ritual that he had been observing for weeks. Margaret didn't believe him.
We eventually showed up, commenced to roll on the lawn and made the stifled laughs of discretion that we always made when lawn rolling. Geiger, the far more attuned of the two, heard what Margaret didn't. He called Margaret to the window and said "here, hear."
Margaret heard something but wasn't wasn't sure what she was listening to as she hadn't been listening the first two times that Gary told her waht to listen for. Maybe he should have been mored demanding of her attention but it was only thier second date and "Hear, Hear." hinted at potential issues of control.
Geiger went to the window, opened it, saw us rolling around and called Margaret to see. When he called Margaret to witness he pointed to the muted commotion and said "Here, here."