Even worse, I actually thought it was spelled “habidasher”.

Recent conversation between me and my coworker DiscoJamboree, who has the horrible job of auditing the tickets to local attractions that we occasionally sell to employees:

DJ (huffily throwing himself into one of my chairs):  So I just had to send out an email to everyone in our department because none of you are selling tickets correctly.

Me: Weird.  I was coming to tell you that I just sold a bunch of tickets for some hair.

DJ:  Oh.  Awesome.

Me:  I wish I really had some hair to give you now because that would make this even funnier. 

DJ:  *not laughing at all*

Me:  For me.

DJ:  Do you have any idea how difficult it is to rectify these sales?  The other day someone came in and tried to buy tickets for. their. word

Me:  Which word?

DJ:  No, like someone came in and ordered three tickets and when I told them how much it was they were all, “Well, I don’t have any money…but I give you my word.

Me:  Well that’s…kinda fucked up.  But I like my way better.  Like if they offered their word and I’d be all “Okay, hit me” and they’d be like, “Okay, ready?   …Tintinnabulation”  And I’d be all, “Damn.  That’s a pretty kickass word.  Here’s your tickets”.

DJ: Yeah, but in real life they’d probably say something useless.  Like, I dunno…”sponge”.

Me:  Or “snausages”. 

DJ:  And you’d have to be like, “Okay, just no.  We have standards.  Please leave.”

Me: Exactly.  Hey, do you know what a “haberdasher” is?  Because I just found out I’ve been using it wrong for…my entire life.

DJ: I use that word all the time and I have absolutely no idea what it means.  I just randomly yell it at people as an insult, like“You insolent haberdasher!”  Like a Victorian alternative to “asshole”.   Isn’t it a ‘hat dealer’ or something?

Me:  That’s what I thought, but I totally got called out for using the word incorrectly.

DJ: Hmm…google it.

Me:  Okay… “Haberdasher: A dealer in notions.”  Dude.  I’m a dealer in notions. 

DJ:  Me too!  I deal in notions all the fucking time.  We’re freaking haberdashers, dude.  Kick-ass.

Me:  Yeah, like right now? I’ve totally got a good notion to sell some tickets for hair.

DJ:  You.  Fucking.  Haberdasher.

PS.  This isn’t really a “recent” conversation.  It’s more like a “two-week-old-conversation-that-I-forgot-to-publish-because-of-this-damn-hurricane”.  All of my real recent conversations have involved insurance appraisers and two staight days of being bed-ridden with fever dreams, which I blame on brushing my teeth with contaminated water and not on eating spoiled sour cream because the contaminated water thing sounds more exciting.  I was gonna write about how this whole you-must -boil-all-your-water-after-a-hurricane-or-you-will-die thing was a total hassle because I was spending all my time boiling water to flush the toilet, but that my toilet has never been cleaner, except that that black floaty thingy melted to the inside of the toilet tank the first time I poured boiling water in there and clearly was not tested to withstand hurricanes, but after two days of feeling like I was going to die it all seems slightly not as funny and makes much less sense now.  Possibly because I’m still delirious.  Or not delirious enough.  Probably the last one.

Comment of the day ~ Masterbasher: A dealer in lotions. ~ Karen

113 thoughts on “Even worse, I actually thought it was spelled “habidasher”.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. You have THE BEST coworkers of anyone I ever heard of.

    I had no idea that you are I were in the same career line, but I also deal in notions. I am not sure I’m comfortable with my career choice being describable in the very same terms as a bookie’s, but I think bookies are haberdashers too. I’ll leave you to guess whether I’m a bookie, a hair saleswoman, a seamstress, or a philosopher. (When you think about it just right, those four are all pretty much the same job anyway.)

    MommyTime’s last blog post..Top Ten Reasons I Love My Kids’ Daycare

  2. Cool conversation! I agree with Cara; “haberdasher” makes a great insult.

    Buying tickets for your word, huh? Sounds eerily familiar. I remember hearing this story about a guy who got sued by his bank for depositing empty envelopes into the ATM and then immediately withdrawing the fictitious deposits. His argument was that the envelopes weren’t really empty; they contained IOU’s. And he really didn’t understand why it should be a problem that he was taking out money he didn’t have; he’d given them an IOU, after all!

    Peoples is sooo stoopid.

    Trish’s last blog post..This is what it sounds like when pigs fly

  3. I don’t know, I can’t imagine accepting an existing word as payment. I mean, I’ve got tons of them lying around already. They’re all over the place. Cluttering up books, magazines, credit card statements. Even some stuck to my TV remote. “Haberdasher”? Bah, already got that word. Worthless to me. Now, something like “clumbrial”, that’s worth something.

    Steve’s last blog post..Oh Those Belgians…

  4. The only reason I know what a haberdasher is I once did a report on Harry Truman and I remember he was one. So, just remember if you insult haberdashers, you insult the Presidency.

    Neil’s last blog post..Goody Two Shoes

  5. I had never heard of haberdasher before this conversation. I trust you, though, and will hope your definition is correct so I don’t have to google it for the next time I use it in conversation.

    Actually, I can’t think of one logical conversation to use the word in its correct meaning. So, I will instead use it as a Victorian Asshole. I like that better. Also? Though, If I am calling someone an asshole, albeit Victorianly, it really isn’t a two way conversation. More like a volley and and leave.

    KEEP

    Angie @ KEEP BELIEVING’s last blog post..That time of month again…

  6. You could blog out a mini cookbook of hurricane recipes:

    -toilet water tea leaf vodka
    -toilet top ramen
    -toilet water toffee latte
    -toilet water sparkling water with lemon
    -toilet water instant mash potatoes

    Just a thought. I’d be down.

  7. Two things:
    I am going to yell “SNAUSAGE!!!” every chance I get tomorrow just to see what the reaction is.
    Secondly, I hope you get power and all that good stuff back soon…My SIL has been operating a high end soup kitchen in Memorial all week as the power came back on for her side of the street, but not the other…what. the. hell. She’s on her way to Dallas now and has turned her house into a hotel…must pamper her this weekend!
    Good luck on a return to normal living!!

    The Stiletto Mom’s last blog post..Oy Vey! Sweepstakes…With Nominally Valuable Prizes!

  8. Your spelling mistake is perfectly logical. It’s most likely the result of a synaptic spoonerism in which your hurricane-addled brain accidentally combined the words “haberdasher” and “rabidasher,” that’s all.

    What’s that? Rabidasher? Of course it’s a word. It means “someone who is suddenly fleet of foot when confronted by a dog, squirrel or spouse that is foaming at the mouth and looking all zombie-like in the eyes.”

    Okay. Fine. I made it up. Is it kickass enough?

    I’ll take two tickets please.

  9. How many habers would a haberdasher dash if a haberdasher could dash habers?

    A haberdasher would dash as many habers as a haberdasher could dash if a haberdasher could dash habers.

  10. Ok, ok, as a “milliner” and “haberdasher” I really need to defend the word, even if this isn’t funny. “Milliners” make hats for women. “Haberdashers” make hats for men. “Haberdasheries” are like accessories shops for men. Notions means like fashion accessories notions, not ideas. Like hats, neckties and cuff-links.

    My favorite words:

    urvurm: German word for that song you get stuck in your head (as in ear worm), not sure how it’s spelled.

    horripilation (when you get goosebumps)

    omphalaskepsis (gazing at one’s navel)

    Emily’s last blog post..I Discovered the Most Extraordinary Thing Today

  11. Tintinnabulation was totally my word of the day.

    I’m sure there are dozens of words that I use incorrectly, but no one has told me thus far so I’m going to pretend I’m in the clear.

    Maxie’s last blog post..The Camera

  12. Umm…when they say “notions” I think they mean “socks” not “mindless drivel.” As in “I went to the haberdashery and got a wicked cool pair of socks!” Meh that’s boring I like you’re thing better!

    Kile’s last blog post..Tuesday Smackdown

  13. Before I became a stay-at-home mommy, I worked in PR for a hospital. We had to write a really lame employee newsletter that nobody read unless they were in it. One month my boss and I decided to shake things up with a word of the month where we would look up ridiculous words and write their meanings. After the first month (Huggermugger- noun 1.) Secrecy, 2.) confusion; muddle), we were told not to do it again.

    Woodlandmama’s last blog post..Home Movie Nightmares

  14. Cause you know i had to go google the word because I thought it was hat-related too. Not that I don’t trust you with your sparkly English goodness, but I also fully understand the likelihood that you would deliberately mislead us so you can sit back and giggle yourself into a seizure while the rest of us unknowingly try to misuse haberdasher on our blog.

    And say to yourself “I did that!”

    I got “a person who sells small things for sewing, buttons, zippers, etc”…so now I’m really confused. THANKS!

    Anissa@Hope4Peyton’s last blog post..We MUST protect our children

  15. Oh crap. I just came from dooce, who introduced me to “you’re a magician spencer, a furious magician, spencer.” Combine that with “you insolent haberdasher” and I may never walk upright again because I can’t stop laughing so damn hard….
    Thanks… I think…

  16. Girl, I had a long conversation today with my boss, AKA my coffee bitch, about the wonders of an empty bladder.

    I am totally making him a sign for his back saying ‘dealer in motions’ and calling him bladderdasher now.

    Thanks! You rock.

    Kelley’s last blog post..That kid will go far in life…

  17. You sent me to the dictionary twice in one post, so I gotta respect that.

    I feel reaffirmed that hat(etc.) seller is one of the definitions, because that was my understanding, like you. Random House saved my mind from being blown by Merriam-Webster.

    Do you want me to boil my toilet water in sympathy? I hope things get back to normal soon!

    LiteralDan’s last blog post..Classic quotes, Vol. 7

  18. My husband has many many words that he uses that are the completely incorrect meaning. I usually don’t correct him, because it’s much funnier that way.

    And add me to the list of people who thought haberdasher was a hat maker. Where did we all get that idea?

    Kylie’s last blog post..Good With The Ladies

  19. Dude, honestly? I’m just going to be all dramatic and tell you that I hope you’re feeling better and that the fucking hurricane bullshit comes to a happy end for you and yours.

    You creepy harberdasher, you.

    xo

    b.

    just beth’s last blog post..The Bitch Is Back!

  20. What I want to know is how you managed to boil your toilet water without electricity!!!!!!!! Man I would have LIKED to have boiled that water we hauled up from the neighborhood pool before tossing it in the toilet. That was some nasty stuff.

    As always SOOOOOOOOOO funny!!!!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Jill/Twipply Skwood’s last blog post..Gesundheit Houston!

  21. So, basically, in a nutshell, you’re trying to pawn off a conversation that happened over two weeks ago in an effort to make us not acknowledge all the crap you’re going through now in the aftermath of a hurricane? You’re giving us the notion that everything is back to noble? Haberdashery at its best.
    Hope all is well.

    Sprite’s Keeper’s last blog post..The Spin Cycle: You’re Embarrassing Me..

  22. Of course you know now that you are personally responsible for all of these people who were using the word “haberdasher” correctly getting it wrong from now on.

    It like the plural of potato problem. Now I can’t remember what’s right. And now I always want to put food on my family.

    Haberdashers make MEN’S HATS!

    Emily’s last blog post..I Discovered the Most Extraordinary Thing Today

  23. I think I’m going to have to third the people above who justhadtoOMGOMGOMG correct the idea that notions, in this case = ideas. Notions as in sewing notions, not as in random thinkery. Yes? Clearly a nearly obsolete definition of the word, since it doesn’t seem to register much, but still valid.

    You are not responsible for correcting people’s incorrect usage of the word, cause those people aren’t incorrect. *G*

  24. The definition of “haberdasher” from Merriam-Webster is confusing because, in its definition of this arcane word, it uses an obscure definition of the word “notion.” This is not the “notion” we use in common American English, meaning “an idea or concept.” Rather, this is the definition of notion (listed 11th–and last–in the OED, by the way) meaning “small wares, especially cheap, useful articles.”

    Looking at the OED definition, we see that “haberdasher” means several things. In the UK it chiefly means a dealer in these small items, such as needles and buttons for sewing. In the States, it means either a hat-dealer (but really, how many of these do we have?) or a dealer in men’s clothing.

    Historically, however, haberdashers were more varied with their wares, selling many different types of items that eventually became specialized industries unto themselves. Thus the confusion with haberdashery today: if someone claims a haberdasher was a hat-maker, he’s right. If someone else tells you a haberdasher is a sundries salesman, she’s also right. If someone tells you a haberdasher is a seller of spiritous drinks, she is also correct. At one time, someone who did any of these things could be called a haberdasher. In fact, the word “tape” was once a slang word for gin, so haberdashers often sold both tape and “tape.”

    That said, I think “haberdasher” is an excellent non-specific insult, especially when spoken with a faux-Victorian brogue.

  25. Dude. Wikipedia agrees with me. And Wikipedia is ALWAYS right.

    =====

    A haberdasher is a person who sells small articles for sewing, such as buttons, ribbons and zippers.[1] In U.S. English, haberdasher is another term for a men’s outfitter.[2]

    A haberdasher’s shop or the items sold therein are called haberdashery.

    Obsolete meanings of the term “haberdasher” refer to a “dealer in, or maker of, hats and caps”.[3]

    Aimee Greeblemonkey’s last blog post..The After Party

  26. That was one heck of a PS, your freakin’ haberdasher, you!

    I knew you were bad off when I saw your ask Black Hockey Jesus’s nurse wife for meds. I’m sorry you were sick.

    Bad water does sound slightly more romantic…

    and you reminded me that I need to go give my mom’s dog it’s narcotics. Don’t ask. He’s staying with us and he’s already pooped in. my. bedroom.

    Rhea’s last blog post..Fizzing Thoughts

  27. i remember my first disco jamboree when i was a cub scout. the pack leader was doing lines of coke off of a stripper’s tits. cub scouts kicked ass. wait, i’m confusing cub scouts with last weekend again.

    furiousBall’s last blog post..Porkadillo, The Song

  28. My husband and I were in NY last year with my co-worker and her husband and we were walking down the street when we heard one New Yorker tell another one that he was going to stop by one of the street vendors to buy some “snausages!” REAL STORY! So people really do use that word and by the way you are a TOTAL Haberdasher. YOU ROCK!

    Shoegirl’s last blog post..We’re Fine!

  29. Not ever having to pour water int6o my toilet to flush it, I didn’t get that one pours it into the TANK, and not the BOWL. Therefore, while reading your post, I thought that the “black floaty thingy” that melted when your poured water on it was actually your euphamism for excrement – which surprised me because I know that you could have come up with a much more interesting, and much less polite, euphamism for excrement!

    Vamanos’s last blog post..Adventures in eating octopus

  30. I loved Are You Being Served

    “Ground floor perfumery,
    stationery and leather goods,
    wigs and haberdashery
    kitchenware and food…going up”

    Gotta love a place where you can get a frying pan AND a wig.

  31. Speaking of wigs and things…

    There is a store in Loveland, Colorado that specializes in selling wigs…and Bibles. Yes, you read that right. It’s a wiggidashery and a Christian bookstore wrapped into one.

    Don’t laugh. (Well, go ahead and giggle a little. I did, until I discovered why they were in the wig business, then I got all quiet and reflective and felt just a little foolish for having giggled.)

    Still, while hundreds of other Christian bookstores have shuttered their doors or been gobbled up by corporate Goliaths (irony intended), this little shop has continued to thrive in its one-of-a-kind niche.

    In case you’re wondering, Jenny, every one of the wigs they sell is a “confidence” wig.

  32. Haberdasher… huh. I like that word. Lately, I’ve been tossing around the word “knackered” like nobody’s business (and I’m not even British, in fact I live in Kentucky), but I’m willing to give it up for “haberdasher”.
    Thanks for the new word… my husband is getting pretty sick of the old one.

    Sam (The Edge OF Insanity)’s last blog post..Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

  33. I thought a haberdasher WAS a men’s hat! you know.. like a fedora, only fancier – ‘dear, could you hand me my haberdasher please?’

    Um.. yeah. It’s totally a hat seller. Notions: as in sewing notions, accessories, and other such things.. especially men’s ‘such things’.. like HATS.

    So, turns out you’re smarter than you thought. 😉

    and, as if your post wasn’t funny enough.. i bout peed my pants on your PS! It’s a good thing we didn’t have to do the water boiling after our recent floods.. my kids probably wouldn’t have any taste buds left if we did.. or my cats.. and i’m sure i would have destroyed random items around my home as well, in the process. good times.

    churchpunkmom’s last blog post..Passing it on..

  34. Wendy, a dealer in potions used to be referred to as an apothecary….has since been transformed into a pharmacist. =)

    Jenny, the time that I ate bad sour cream, I was visiting Palm Springs and was forced to go to a WATER PARK, with my bottle of Pepto-Bismol. Sparing details, it was a terrible experience. Makes you want to go swimming (in lots of chlorine,) right?

    ps. Anne Hathaway’s dress was my favorite of the year…definitely stunning.

    Erin’s last blog post..People Magazine’s 2008 Best Dressed

  35. Have you not seen the movie “Spinal Tap”? One of the best movies, ever. The lead guitarist was asked what he’d be doing if he wasn’t into the whole sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll thing. He stared into space reflectively for a moment, then said, “I’d be a haberdasher.” (The bassist who kept a cucumber in his pants to impress the ladies said, “I think I’d work with children.”)

    Personally, I think “smelly haberdasher” is the best adjective for use as an insult.

    Dolanmama’s last blog post..Organization

  36. “Snausages” wouldn’t get a ticket?? That’s crazy talk, woman.

    Does it have to be a real word? I’m a big fan of “retardulous” lately.

  37. I think they mean “notions” as in sewing accessories and materials… like needles, velcro, etc.

  38. Can I come work where yo work? It’s way more fun than where I work. Of course, I work at home with two toddlers yelling at me. Maybe I should start calling them Haberdashers? I’m pretty sure CPS wouldn’t go for that.

  39. I’ve never known the other connotation of haberdasher. Who says you can’t learn anything useful from the bloggess? Um…not that I subscribe to anything said by them. You’ve taught me lots of great stuff.

    Jim’s last blog post..I’ve moved

  40. Jenny, I would have thought you would like “triskaidekaphobia” best.

    I guess Walmart is our modern haberdashery.

  41. I wonder how many tickets I can get with “pastafarianism”? LOL

    Totally pimped you out in my own little blog. You’re H-I-LARRY-O-U-S!

    Glad to see you’ve kept a spastically funny upper lip through the horrors of hurricane ike. Hope things will get better for you soon!

    thedemigod’s last blog post..Friday Fimfing

  42. I was gonna write something like, “What’s your beef with snausages, man?” because I was feeling all indignant on behalf of the snausage… but then I looked at the billions of comments you already had and it turns out that was not an original thought at all because at least three other people ALSO think that snausages are awesome.

    And now I’m lost because I totally was NOT expecting that. Who knew that so many other people besides me (three) also dig snausages?

    I mean the word, not the food.

    bejewell’s last blog post..You Know You Do It Too

  43. Can I just point out that there’s a haberdashery at the end of my street here in Embra, Scotchland, Englandland*, and that they do indeed buy and sell all kinds of notions, including the notion that you can use words as currency?

    I bought sparkling last year from Miss Tickle. Fact.
    Here’s the proof.

    *Scotchland isn’t really in Englandland, but most Merkans seem to think so, so I’d better just go with the flow on that one.

    Mr Farty’s last blog post..Today Be International Talk Like A Pirate Day!

  44. I like “Victorian alternative to asshole” much better, and that is how I will continue to use this word. Because nobody else knows what the fuck it means either!

    Kristi’s last blog post..You Go Girls!

  45. I know I’m comment #110 but I still want to tell you that you are the cleverest person I read online.

    P.S. don’t tell the other bloggers I said that.

    P.P.S. I’m glad you have power and are feeling better.

    P.P.P.S. I love you on Twitter too.

    Lianne/Celia’s last blog post..Smell? What smell?

  46. That’s pretty much the nicest comment I’ve ever gotten. Thank you!

    Unless you meant it sarcastically. In which case, Uncle Frank, you aren’t fooling anyone by posing as two chicks. Get off the booze, Uncle Frank.

  47. Hmpf. I always thought it was some kind of reference to material and sewing stuff…
    See, Jenny? You are educating the World.

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