Spring, and I was out in the garden planting seeds and clearing winter debris while listening to Radio 4's Saturday afternoon play An American Rose. This slot is usually good, the play often based on some event in history or an actual person. Today's was about Rosemary Kennedy, the Kennedy daughter who had mental problems and was lobotomised, and her lively sister Kathleen, a war widow, who was killed in a flying accident. It was well written and well acted, but I was happy to find two anachronisms.
Rose Kennedy scolds her daughters for lying on their beds wearing "designer gowns". This is the 1930s - was "designer" used as an adjective then? Wouldn't she have said "haute couture" or just "couture"?
Someone is described as a "commitmentphobe". They certainly had the thing then, but the word? That is very recent - appearing in the last 20 or 30 years I would have said.
When I say I was "happy" to find two anachronisms, I'm remembering Hazlitt's remark:- "He who is not in some measure a pedant, though he may be a wise, cannot be a very happy man.'
The bloke next door said I must be pleased to be gardening again since I missed last year, having been absent from my flat because of its half destruction by pipes bursting upstairs on Boxing Day 2010. He cheered me up by saying last year had been a terrible gardening year. It rained a good deal and courgettes rotted.