Category: words

Tuesdays With Charley, Or Where Did That Cramp Come From?

  If its Tuesday, it’s pinochle at my aunt’s. We were sitting round her kitchen table, a few Tuesdays ago playing the venerable card game when Aunt Ger brought her muscle cramps up.  It’s a topic she brings up on occasion, that is to say, regularly. Sharing a few nagging episodes of my own, I... Read more »

"This Place Is a Zoo"---A Libelous Misnomer

Note: I am indebted to ChicagoNow blogger Margaret Laing (a.k.a. Margaret Serious) whose post ”This place is a zoo’ is a compliment not an insult” was the genesis of the following verse. Some people who don’t have a clue Might utter “This place is a zoo:” Although  chaos,  there’s more On a  stock exchange floor... Read more »

For Lexophiles(or Lexiphiles) Only: Ten Original Contributions

(Many Thanks to Dennis Byrne whose post “For Lexophiles Only” was the prompt for the following.)   1, When the police turned the screws on the book thief,  he began to speak volumes. 2. The horse whisperer was ordered off the ranch.  His services were  not allowed. 3. A wife accused her husband of having... Read more »

Clerical Cuss Words: A Limerick

    (Inspired by ChicagoNow Blogger Margaret Serious. Specifically by her post “Some Curious Things about the Word ‘Curious'”)   There once was a curious curate Who suffered from what is called Tourette. It made his flock nervous When at Sunday service He’d curse Father, Son, and the Spirit.  

A Case of Semantics (My Apologies to ChicagoNow Blogger, Margaret Serious)

  Is it “nauseous”or just  “nauseating”? Both indicate something one’s hating. The object most foul? Its  effect on  your bowel? Which one is which I’m still debating.  

It's Always Good to Have the Last Word. See If You Do by Taking This Test on Hamlet.

William Shakespeare’s Hamlet is considered by many the greatest play ever written.  Many of its lines have become embedded in the collective memory of readers around the world.  It is no exaggeration to say that recognizing them is an indication of one’s cultural literacy.  How well can you complete each of the following quotations culled... Read more »

Do You Understand Cuisinese? Take This Quiz and Find Out.

When it comes to food and drink, I’m basically  a meat and potatoes guy.  I rarely experiment on my palate.  A  given whenever I eat out  is that I avoid the spicy food   for the life of me.  Literally.  I suffer from severe allergies to hot peppers and all their derivatives. Once I got... Read more »

Isaac Asimov: I, Renaissance Man

Born today was Isaac Asimov. To his memory I bid a fond mazel tov. Prolific author of fiction and non- Somewhere, I wonder, if he’s writing on. I won’t pretend to be objective about Isaac Asimov. I may have read more of his books than any other author’s.  He wrote more than 500 of them. ... Read more »

Samuel Johnson: Panjandrum of Prose and Poetry

Today’s birthday is Samuel Johnson’s. On proper English brooked no nonsense. He did pontificate upon Them in a famous lexicon. “As Samuel Johnson paused to rest on a London park bench one hot summer’s day, his profusely sweating bulk caused a young woman sitting next to him to accuse him of smelling. ‘No, Madam,’ he... Read more »

Whatever Works, Whatever

   Language News: The Marist College Institute has named “whatever” the most annoying word for the 4th year in a row.  It’s so annoying when they say “Whatever” in reply, Or use it as a substitute For “See ya” or “Good-bye”. They need to find some other word, One fresher and more clever. A word,... Read more »