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Being “Down With” Something…

Well, I’ve just proven my point about language. It’s constantly changing, evolving, growing.

I’m behind the times…

In my last post, I assumed (one should never assume anything) that to be “down with” something is like being “down on” something. It never even occurred to me that this phrase would have any other meaning.

I’m an idiot. On old, out-of-sync idiot…

I was completely wrong.

My sweet and darling friend Julie has just informed me that my entire post is completely ill-wrought. And that being “down with” something actually means being in favour of something. I just looked it up. I never dreamed the opposite is true, but it is.

Look at this. Where have I been? I feel simply terrible, awful and I would love to kill that post, but it’s too late. The whole blogosphere, or at least the few people who know me, will know what a fool I really am. I know nothing. I want to crawl into a hole and die.

So, I owe Zoë Kessler a huge apology…

For so stupidly misinterpreting her and for going on about the word that she says I am in favour of ~ which of course, I am ~ thinking that she meant I was not in favour of it. That I was “down on” it.

I think I’m going to give up writing altogether. It’s obviously a young person’s game and I’ve outgrown my usefulness.

That’s how I’m feeling right now…

Mind you, I will never, ever make that mistake again. Although to be honest, the phrase makes little sense to me.

You come “down with” a cold. That’s not a positive thing.

Why would being “down with” something mean the opposite?

This is just all too, too much for me. I’m putting down my pen. Giving up for a while. This is one of the most embarrassing mistakes I’ve ever made, but I’ll never make it again.

On one hand, though, mistakes can be your best friends…

Knowing that, though, doesn’t take the sting out of my public embarrassment.

I always tell my students that mistake-making can be a very positive thing because you remember your mistakes and often never make them again. So a mistake is a good thing. I wish I felt good about this, but I don’t.

Zoë, please forgive me…

I loved your post, regardless of how absolutely asinine I’ve been in my reading of it and in my letter to you. I hope you can understand how awful I feel. Really really dumb.

Now, I’m going to try to go to sleep and forget this whole thing.

Hugs and trust me, I will never make this mistake again. You’ve taught me a very important lesson.

And profound thanks to my friend Julie for pointing this out to me. Where would I be without you?



Being “Down With” Something…

Sandy Naiman

Sandy Naiman is a Toronto freelance journalist.

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APA Reference
Naiman, S. (2011). Being “Down With” Something…. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 10, 2020, from


Last updated: 3 Feb 2011
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