Q. Why is your Tumblelog called "My Ear-Trumpet Has Been Struck by Lightning"?
A. Because "My Grandmother's Ear-Trumpet Has Been Struck by Lightning" wouldn't fit in the available space.
Alphonse Mucha - L’Illustration
Albert Bridges (1840–42). Henry Inman.
Sensual denim elegance
Wedding Ceremony - ritual - Photo by Solar Doe-Hare
Another medieval…wedding? No, she really don’t love him
turnofthecentury: La Belle Jardiniere – Décembre ,1896 by Eugene Grasset
[thanks again to Bob Young;]
notmaryverycontrary asked: Not sure if you've been asked this but...did your grandmother really have an ear trumpet?
I have been asked this question before - but I shall provide a slightly different and somewhat more complete answer than previously.
The short answer is no. The long answer is to tell you a story that I once read in one of Stephen Pile’s Book of Heroic Failures. I am having to rely on memory but the story goes something like this. The protagonist noticed on a holiday to Wales that he was being charged more than his Welsh speaking friend. Wherever they went in Wales, his friend would say certain phrases in Welsh to the service staff and he would receive the native’s price rather than the inflated tourist’s price. The protagonist begged his friend to teach him a phrase so that he could receive a discount to - so his friend did. However, when he came to use it on a later holiday when his friend was not around - he found the phrase failed to achieve it’s desired effect and the recipients looked puzzled. He found out later that the phrase he had been taught to make him sound like a native and which he had been confidently expounding to the service staff for several weeks translated as: “My grandmother’s ear-trumpet has been struck by lightning.”
So no the phrase is a linguist’s joke used by a number of language teachers to display grammatical relationships - it is not actually a biographical incident in my grandmother’s life.