When Your Best Ain't Good Enough

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Lady: Do you wish to accompany me to the Gala Ball this eve? Surely many Lords and Ladies of the highest standing shall be in attendance.

Scoundrel: Not this eve, I'm afraid, my gracious lady. For the fellow rogues, blackguards, scalawags, dastards, Svengalis, de Sades, Lotharios, Cheneys, and I plan to raucously booze it up at Barnadine's before we go a-hog-dogging. But give the upper elite my very best!

We recently wondered what "My Best" signifies in the command, "Give Them My Best." My Best what? My best tie? My best turtleneck? My best sacrificial goat? We figure it can't be My Best Greetings, because if it were our best greetings, why would we send them by proxy--we'd be there to deliver them ourselves.

Yet greetings seem to be the most common connotation of "My Best," which can only mean that the greeter who requests that his best be sent believes his greetees prefer the proxy to himself.