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Bielsko-Biala, Poland

Photographs by Michal Slaby
A map showing Bielsko-Biala's position within Silesia
Bielsko-Biała lies in the corner of Silesia
Margo behind a tree

Shorts, a cultural introduction

Getting to know the word from all angles...

Michal's contemplating the concept of reinforcing his lavish Fiction Corpus with a treatise on blank calendars; cites fatigueDictionary icon

I can't reject the concept of administering English as everybody's second language. I don't believe in the prevailing style in which English is presented for study.Pointer

Fine-tuning one's know-how with a language isn't like creating a bigger bomb. A language - a spoken tongue - isn't just a tool that you can teach yourself to exploit with a greater amount of precision. A common tongue can't be detached from the shared logic of a clan of people of which it is a description. A language isn't recited; it happens - and keeps happening as long as a circle of people keeps using it.

Teaching a person to recite English is to deprive him of its cultural context. A worthy teacher has to find a method of introducing it; the perceptive pupil goes out to seek it.

A dictionary has the potential to be an influential tool. The best dictionaries define words based on a particular corpus, a body of written works of varying scope and consistency. Such a corpus might include anything from a book about literature to some truly brilliant fiction stories. I burnt many candles creating my "paltry" Fiction Corpus in order to form a distinct type of dictionary based on the ability of one man to tell a story in many different forms. It is a labor of love and listening.

I have pieced together a million words and I have divided them, reframing them - not just to teach a language but to promote the human spirit, and to propel that spirit or soul not just to recite but to happen.

Michal's Dictionary Navigation

Artifacts, fuels, and persons: Definitions in Michal's FictionPointer

More: Fetishes

Common fetishes appearing frequently in Michal's Corpus

Michal's Dictionary:
Understanding the word Shorts

A word can represent many things. First and foremost it represents a type of gesture. A specific way of speaking. A specific way of inscribing a mark. A specific way of moving your hand. To know one of these kinds of gestures is to know how to pronounce the word shorts in some kind of way.

If you want to communicate an idea using the word shorts, you will need to know what other people are made to think when you make the gesture. You will never have complete awareness of or control over the associations or identities that are invoked by a set of words, but you can know what was and what is a single word's jointly accepted definition, at least for a given place, thereby tracing a direction which will help you to understand what kinds of associations and identities are driving its use.

By using the word yourself, you enter into a long-standing albeit oftentimes unconscious debate over its definition, forever entangling yourself into the history of its use. The way you use it, and which other words you use it with carries weight.

The more you know about where the word shorts is located in the fabric of a language, the better you will be at exploiting its cultural power.

Pronunciation of ShortsMargo on a trampoline

I have yet to publish a pronunciation for the word shorts.

Video of me pronouncing "shorts."

Definition of ShortsMargo on a trampoline

I have yet to publish the definition of shorts.

I'm sure it won't take too long.

Common use of shorts in illustrative example sentencesMargo on a trampoline

  1. Get a look at those short shorts. Mamma mia.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:
  2. I'm never quite sure exactly how short my shorts are supposed to be.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:
  3. Every time the floor gets a little wet the toaster shorts out.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:
  4. I have yet to come up with a fourth sentence using the word shorts.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:
  5. I have yet to come up with a fifth sentence using the word shorts.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:
  6. I have yet to come up with a sixth sentence using the word shorts.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:
  7. I have yet to come up with a seventh sentence using the word shorts.

    Audio of me saying the sentence:

Usage of Shorts in Michal's Fiction CorpusMargo on a trampoline

An image of young Michal sitting on a potty in front of a typewriter

Michal's Fiction Corpus of Acceptance Literature (FiCAL) is presented under the Bare Bottom imprint. It is currently comprised of six bodies of work, each representing a different pillar of culture and incorporating a wide variety of writhing styles.

Bare Bottom ImprintBack to Usage of Shorts: Table of Contents

Shorts, a morphological approach

I have yet to make a morphological analysis of the word shorts.

That doesn't mean it's not high on my list.

Table of Frequency for the Word "Shorts."

This table lists in descending order the total number of times that the word shortsand any of its morphological derivations appears in the Fiction Corpus, along with a breakdown of frequency by title, the respective rank of each word in the complete list of all words in the Corpus, as calculated both densely and competitively, as well as the percent increase in frequency of the word over the frequency of the next lowest rank in the complete list.

Margo stretching her arms
Percent Increase over next rankRANKWORDFrequency
TOTAL # of occurencesMCDONALDSJESUSSEXTSIGAJACKSONDINGBATS
densecompetitivemodern/sloppybiblical/tersepoetic/high-browhard/fasttalkymixed salad
-----------
I have yet to publish the table of frequency for the word shorts, but I will get to it shortly. -Michal

Bare Bottom ImprintBack to Usage of Shorts: Table of Contents

Usage of Shorts in Death to McDonalds

An aerial view of Dodger Stadium in the foreground, with an imaginary partially submerged Los Angeles behind

A story bible for a comic book series set in a post climate-change California narrated by eight characters who live through a natural disaster that sinks Los Angeles and triggers a war with an expansionist Mexican government covertly supported by China.

Frame #1662

im being put in a jail cell. im not allowed any personal devices so in case i get shivved i just want to say bury me with my shorts on.

Justin Bieber

14 August, 2:24 AM

Frame #1658

the shorts are on the dashboard. i put my pants up there too. they got moist. much better now.

Justin Bieber

14 August, 1:37 AM

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Usage of Shorts in The Gospel of Jesus H.

A picture of the planet Mars

An experimental science fiction Christology that makes Jesus the hard boiled narrator of his own early years on a bizarro earth made dark by volcanic ash and informally ruled by a man from Mars who sells bottled air.

"Shorts" does not make an appearance in The Gospel of Jesus

- Michal Slaby

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Usage of Shorts in Sex for Children

A drawing of a man between a woman's legs in front of another man in a hospital bed

A literature book narrated by a pair of siblings on either side of the Atlantic whose profoundly weird sexual experiences pose a serious challenge to their traditional understanding of mathematicians, marriage, gay young men and God.

Now how would you express tolerance with your face? I have no idea, but he was doing it, consciously or not. It must have had something to do with the way he was balancing his body and turning his head, and, of course, the way his face was composed, which includes, naturally, his beard. But I really have no idea. What's even more funny: because it was a warm day in spring and he was wearing some very nice leather sandals, it suddenly occurred to me that he looked very Roman - very ancient Roman. The shorts he was wearing and his t-shirt began resembling an ancient tunic. Then I realized: we were his clients; he was our patron.

– Title 3, Regarding a Dream, Chapter 2, The Second Day, Part 1, Labor & Economic Reform, Section 6, Doing Business, Paragraph 4

Bare Bottom ImprintBack to Usage of Shorts: Table of Contents

Usage of Shorts in Tsiga Tsiga Tsiga

Bullets whizzing by a statue of Nikola Tesla

A collection of stories featuring a sexy Parisian ghost, a spooky Moon base full of vagina-faced aliens, a policeman with an Irish name, a truck full of watermelons, a flautist, and a man who has to see another man about a diseased horse.

Patsy unfastened his pants. Ever so carefully, he wiggled them down. Next came his shorts. As much as they would burn, his cheeks had to provide traction. With the smell of burning flesh already seeming to fill his nostrils, Patsy clutched either side of his collar and gently inched back his fingers. Supporting more of his weight on the fabric was dangerous but unavoidable. He could only hope he reached the loop in time.

– from “A Cop Named Patsy,” a funny story featuring international cooperation

"It's a pair of hot pants."

"My God," said Patsy. "How are we going to recognize him?"

"What are we going to do?" asked Juanita.

"I'm going to blend in," said Patsy, taking off his shorts.

"Dios mío," said Juanita.

– from “A Cop Named Patsy,” a funny story set first in New York

Clark tied the sleeve to the branch with an awkward solemnity. He looked ridiculous with one sleeve.

Shephard reached into his pants. He tore off a square of fabric from his boxer shorts. He pinned it onto the branch.

The policeman didn't want to stick out. Ripping the manufacturer's tag from his tie, he wrapped it around the branch and knotted it.

Back at the mosque, Shephard had Clark call the hotel. Coke was still waiting in the lobby. "Finally," he said. "It's time and a half for making me wait."

– from “Two Dudes and a Chinese Desert,” a friendship story set in a place most people haven't heard of

"Why would she scream if she wanted to jump?" asked Patsy.

The ranger shrugged. "They say everybody regrets it half-way down."

Another ranger said, "I saw her falling from below the shoulders. It looked to me like she had slid off. I don't know if she had meant to do that, but, to me, it looked like she was panicking."

"For how long did she scream?" asked Patsy.

– from “A Cop Named Patsy,” a funny story featuring a dog and a pair of red shorts

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Usage of Shorts in Sorry Ms. Jackson

Chiseled letters from an ancient stone tablet hanging on a wall

A real play. With drama in it. Talk fast. It takes two hours. Set in a guest house. In a small community. After a murder. Lots of suspicion. The characters learn to listen to each other. It's funny.

"Shorts" does not make an appearance in Sorry Miss Jackson.

- Michal Slaby

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Usage of Shorts in Miscellaneous Dingbats

The title of the book at the end of a string of miscellaneous dingbats

A story book full of short fiction stories. An interesting bedtime mystery. A fairy tale. Science fiction romance. Adult life. Uninspiring gay fiction. Horror.

"Shorts" does not make an appearance in Miscellaneous Dingbats

- Michal Slaby

Bare Bottom ImprintBack to Usage of Shorts: Table of Contents

Collocation of Shorts in the Fiction Corpus

Table of Collocation for the Word "Shorts."

This table lists in descending order of frequency a selection of word pairs that appear in the Fiction Corpus and groups them according to the morphological derivation of the word shorts that appears in the pair.

TypeWORDFrequency
TOTAL # of occurencesMCDONALDSJESUSSEXTSIGAJACKSONDINGBATS
modern/sloppybiblical/tersepoetic/high-browhard/fasttalkymixed salad
--------
I have yet to perform a collocation analysis of "shorts." I hope I can get it done sometime soon. -Michal

Love is the answer...

What are we waiting for? Let's accept it!

Are you a eunuch?

The art show that defies abuse

Still Life, Patriarchy

Contemporary wall art to remind us that Father always says Father knows best

To promote democracy, the strong must empty themselves of their strength. The weak must be granted the opportunity to grow strong. We cannot force the end of patriarchy. To do so simply perpetuates feudalism under a different name.

A miniature portrait of MichalMargo at the beach

Your purchases keep the "Shorts" page up and running...

If you love women and art...

Michal is importing art...is he crackers?

Michal's Sales Pitch
Lot 1: Silesian Handicrafts

  1. T-shirt fundraiser for sale

    Handcrafted t-shirt fundraiser for sale.

    Last T-Shirt with the logo that I designed. Pointer

    From a set of, I believe, twenty produced by Margo and given out to a portion of the last 20 women to finish the 20th anniversary Fiat Road Race in Bielsko-Biała, cf. the movie. This is the last one left in it's original packaging and my supporters - like the poor women of Bielsko - are going to have to fight for it. Whoever invests the most money with me, and who lets me borrow it to invest in the next lot, will not only be rewarded with some beautiful piece of art, but will get this priceless t-shirt as a reward for being my top supporter. $1000.00 or best offer. Remember to authorize me to hold the sum as credit against a future purchase and to authorize me to borrow against it.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #1 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  2. Felt handbag for sale

    Handcrafted felt handbag for sale.

    Felt bag by Dorota. Pointer

    Entirely hand-sewn. Base: polyester felt, 100% PE. Motif: South American woolen yarn, dyed, 100% wool. Hand-worked with a needle. Unique and inimitable design. Inside: cotton fabric, closes with zipper, inside pocket. Available now for $220.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #2 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  3. Decorative collar for sale

    Handcrafted decorative collar for sale.

    Decorative collar by Zuzanna. Pointer

    Ethnic layered cloth jewelry constructed on a cotton base and adorned with ribbons, tassels, and a yellow fringe. Fastened on the side with 11 buttons, fitted entirely with a pleasant lining. The style is an Indo-Asian-African multinational color combination. The collar is very extravagant and an extraordinary addition to any clothing, guaranteed to attract attention. Just a simple dress and a unique image is ready. Dry-cleaning recommended. Available now for $200.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #3 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  4. Seamless handbag for sale

    Handcrafted seamless handbag for sale.

    Handbag by Sylwia. Pointer

    Handmade from felted all-natural Australian and South American wool. Entirely felted, seamless. Finished with a white lining, inside is a small pocket. Lining is sewn and stitched in by hand. Available now for $180.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #4 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  5. Patchwork quilt for sale

    Handcrafted patchwork quilt for sale.

    Patchwork quilt by Alicja. Pointer

    Bedspread made of cotton and polyester material. Inserted with polyester lining. 90 by 70 cm. Available now for $120.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #5 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  6. Nuno-felt shawl for sale

    Handcrafted nuno-felt shawl for sale.

    Shawl by Sylwia. Pointer

    Scarf made ​​with the nuno felting technique (wet felting fibre into a silk gauze) using South American wool. Two-sided scarf with latticework at the ends. Wholly in the colors red, black, green in an abstract pattern. Available now for $100.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #6 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  7. Clara the doll for sale

    Handcrafted clara the doll for sale.

    Clara by Alicja. Pointer

    Clara loves roses and greenery, adores tormenting spiders with long legs and sleeping soundly in the afternoon. Cuddly toy made of cotton and polyester, stuffed with polyester lining. Available now for $70.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #7 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  8. Noah the doll for sale

    Handcrafted noah the doll for sale.

    Noah by Alicja. Pointer

    Noah doesn't know what to like and what not to like but keeps wondering and thinking about it. Cuddly toy made of cotton and polyester, stuffed with polyester lining. Available now for $70.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #8 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  9. Black suspenders for sale

    Handcrafted black suspenders for sale.

    Black suspenders by Zuzanna. Pointer

    Two-sided suspenders from black material with a rose motif on one side and striped cotton on the other. Connected by a leather triangle. Adjustable length. Hand washing in cold water recommended. Available now for $50.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #9 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  10. Orange suspenders for sale

    Handcrafted orange suspenders for sale.

    Orange suspenders by Zuzanna. Pointer

    Two-sided suspenders made of denim and orange material with a Polish floral folk design. Connected by a leather triangle. Adjustable length. Hand washing in cold water recommended. Available now for $50.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #10 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  11. Green suspenders for sale

    Handcrafted green suspenders for sale.

    Green suspenders by Zuzanna. Pointer

    Two-sided suspenders made of denim and green material with a mountain folk design. Connected by a leather triangle. Adjustable length. Hand washing in cold water recommended. Available now for $50.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #11 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  12. Felt earrings for sale

    Handcrafted felt earrings for sale.

    Felt earrings by Dorota. Pointer

    Material: South American woolen yarn, dyed, 100% wool. Hand-worked with a needle. Pendant of anti-allergenic metal. Available now for $40.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #12 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  13. Round ceramic earrings for sale

    Handcrafted round ceramic earrings for sale.

    Round ceramic earrings by Dorota. Pointer

    Material: Glazed ceramics, hand-molded. Available now for $40.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #13 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  14. Oblong ceramic earrings for sale

    Handcrafted oblong ceramic earrings for sale.

    Oblong ceramic earrings by Dorota. Pointer

    Material: Glazed ceramics, hand-molded. Available now for $40.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #14 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

  15. 'Coral' necklace for sale

    Handcrafted 'coral' necklace for sale.

    Corals by Sylwia. Pointer

    Necklace made ​​of cotton pieces with organdy and decorated with beads, suspended on cotton strings. Can be worn as a necklace, as a brooch or as a belt tied at the side. Available now for $40.00. Ships free of additional charge via USPS (uninsured) unless otherwise directed.

    To purchase please mail a USPS money order in an envelope clearly marked Lot #1/Item #15 to M. Slaby at house number 201 on Ridge Road in the town of West Milford, in the state of New Jersey, one of the beautiful United States of America. The postal code is 07480-3112.

Handcrafted t-shirt fundraiser
Handcrafted felt handbag
Handcrafted decorative collar
Handcrafted seamless handbag
Handcrafted patchwork quilt
Handcrafted nuno-felt shawl
Handcrafted clara the doll
Handcrafted noah the doll
Handcrafted black suspenders
Handcrafted orange suspenders
Handcrafted green suspenders
Handcrafted felt earrings
Handcrafted round ceramic earrings
Handcrafted oblong ceramic earrings
Handcrafted 'coral' necklace