Thursday, June 29, 2006


A few Words Of The Day.

As the eternal optimist might say: 'I will soon have plenty to write about.' However until I do I'm going to concentrate on a few newly dusted off words instead. Words. One of the main reasons I started this blog. And one of the main reasons I finished my last was that I just didn't think my old readership would have appreciated this kind of navel-gazing. I want to navel-gaze, that's why I'm here.

The word Divarication dropped into my inbox this morning. The action, process, or fact of spreading apart. A divergence of opinion.

'A divarication ( a wide difference of opinion) arose over how to handle next year's themed party, with one faction arguing for a Hawaiian luau and another proposing a 1950s sock hop.' Divarication is better than difference because the two options are so completely different.

Transmogrify. Do we like transmogrify? Possibly a humorous blend of transmigrate (for the form) and transmute (for the sense) and a word to describe a change into a different shape or a transformation , often with bizarre or humorous effect.

For the impulsive sin of turning to look back at the funereal pyre of Sodom and Gomorrah, Lot's wife is transmogrified into a pillar of salt as she flees the inferno.

Roast chicken is still roast chicken whether you label it haute cuisine, bourgeois cuisine or country cooking; even calling it "poulet roti" will not transmogrify this simple bird.

Quirk: a curve, or twist: "David quirked his eyebrow in perplexity at his companion's curious remark."

It says: "Did you expect "quirk" to be a noun meaning "a peculiarity of action or behavior"? If so, you're probably not alone; the "peculiarity" sense of the noun"quirk" is commonly known and has been a part of our language since at least1878. But "quirk" has long worn other hats in English, too. It has been used as both a noun and a verb since the 16th century. The noun "quirk," which essentially means "a curve, turn, or twist," has named everything from curving pen marks on paper (i.e., flourishes) to witty turns of phrase to the vagaries or twists of fate. In contemporary English the verb "quirk" is most often used in referring to facial expressions, especially those that involve crooked smiles or furrowed eyebrows. "

I however will continue to use 'quirk' as a noun to refer to small eccentric characteristics. I like the peculiarity sense too much to ever use it in another sense, but I accept the older meaning where it is used as a verb as it's not a million mile away. "The road to Worcester is full of quirks (twists turns curves (unexpected peculiarities in the lie of the road and the route you would take).

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