The Society for the Preservation of Self-Deprecation recently sent me on a fact-finding mission to the South Pacific. I found no facts, but under a coconut tree I found the Ukeleleans, a lazy, down-on-themselves tribe of basically nice people who once were followers of Tiny Tim.
They have good intentions. It’s just that they never follow up on them. All they do is sit around playing the ukulele and peering into their cell phones. At night they feel so badly about themselves that they text one another the following sorts of messages.
Owa-Tahgu-Siam. For when they have done something really stupid.
Owa-Todger-Kiam. For when they say something that hurts another’s feelings.
Owa-Tahnur-Diam. For when they don’t have a date.
Owa-Tahfu-Liam. For when they fall for a cell phone scam.
I asked them for more of their self-deprecation, but they have terrible memories and no one has yet gotten around to writing The Ukelelean Book of Self-Deprecation. “Owa-Tahway-Stiam,” their chief scribe told me.
My trip was not entirely a waste, though. The next time you foul up, you too can chant the above self-deprecating syllables slowly and think about the meaning. Or you can sing them as you play your ukelele.