JULY 25, 2011
"We should build a pergola," Asa Watten said during a conference call. All the others on the call, Jenny Hansell, Brad Rourke and Amy Voigt, made various knowing hums of approval.
Me, I'm thinking, "What the hell is a pergola?!"
While Jenny mellifluously rattled off Important Organizational Details of which I no doubt should be taking careful note, my mind was flipping through the possible meanings of "pergola."
My first thought was that Pergola sounded like a brand of fancy espresso makers. Or maybe it was a European model of a car? Equally likely, pergola sounded like a disease of the skin or respiratory tract, y'know, like pleurisy but modern. And itchy. Wait, Asa went to Roeper. He might be talking about a fancy mathematical name for a geometric shape. My desperate mind wheeled back to Shirley, I mean, Elaine Eklund's geometry class. Hmmmm....yeah...I got nothin'. All I remember from that class was the general feeling of vexation at taking a class with 6th graders in it.
"Context, Victor. Context," I harangue myself while Brad contributed still more Important Organizational Details to which I should be attending. I do surface mentally into the conversation long enough to tease Brad about sounding like a grumpy old man. I say, "Get off my lawn, you kids!" Judging by the silence that follows, my timing might have been a wee bit off.
So, I did what any sensible person would do. I Googled "pergola."
For your information, a pergola is shade-providing garden structure. It's like a permanent chuppah.
If you don't know what a chuppah is, you need to get some more Jewish friends.
Or Google it.
-contributed by Pam Victor