language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that the phrase “pitch-perfect” is banned

No Gravatar

I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 104: It was one thing when Paula Abdul started using the phrase to describe a good performance on “American Idol.” That was just annoying; which is to say: that was just Paula Abdul. But, recently, the Emperor saw the phrase “pitch-perfect” used in a book review to describe a writer’s prose. What the Hades does that mean? — his writing was “pitch-perfect”? Reverse the words, and you have something: a “perfect pitch” is a 104 MPH fastball, with tons of movement, that catches the corner of the plate and is completely un-hittable, even though it is still in “the zone.” “Perfect pitch,” in music, is the ability to identify or to reproduce an exact tone on the scale without having heard it first or without having heard any tones in reference: “Hey, Mel! Sing me a third-octave Bb…”  Bing! Laaaa! Mel delivers. But, pitch-perfect? We don’t think so.

The Punishment: Anyone heard using this phrase will be brought to Imperial Park (home of the World Champion [Every Year, or Else] Minions). Behind home plate, there will be a plywood cut-out of a catcher (which, in fact, on the back side, is actually an old-fashioned “stocks” [ah, the classics…]). There will be a hole in the catcher’ s mitt and the offender will be forced to push his head through the stocks and out through the hole. He will then, quickly, most unfortunately, and quite finally, find out what a perfect pitch really is…

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

Chris Matarazzo is a writer, composer, musician and teacher of literature and writing on the college and high school levels. His music can be heard on his recent release, Hats and Rabbits, which is currently available. Chris is also the composer of the score to the off-beat independent film Surrender Dorothy and he performs in the Philadelphia area with the King Richard Band. He's also a relatively prolific novelist, even if no one seems to care yet. His blog, also called Hats and Rabbits, is nice, too, if you get a chance...
Print This Post Print This Post

Discussion Area - Leave a Comment