of the Week
word or phrase to add to your army.
I don't know too many people who aren't thalassophiles, but among those who aren't, there might be thalassophobes.
A thalassophile (thuh-lass-uh-file) is someone who loves the sea and ocean. I am one of them. I particularly love to lie on the beach in the dark and listen to the powerful waves roar and hit the sand. -phile at the end of a word generally means 'lover of.'
A large group of thalassophiles in their natural habitat.
A thalassophobe (thuh-lass-uh-fobe) is someone who fears the sea and ocean. I am definitely not one of those! Also, -phobe at the end of a word generally means 'one who is afraid of.' Like in phobia or fear of something. A claustrophobe is afraid of small places, which I am.
A very unlikely thalassophobe!
In the United States right now, there is a great schism (skiz-um), mainly in the area of politics. It is a schism between the Republicans, the Democrats, and the people who don't support either party. It is a 3-way schism.
So, what is a schism? It is a split or division between groups of people, generally with respect to government, religion, or cultural ideas.
The Protestant churches were born from a schism in the Catholic church. The Independent Party was realized from a schism in the Democratic and Republican parties.
Though a schism can be unsettling, it generally results in new ideas and change for the better.
Brachiate is a fun word that can be a noun or a related verb. Even more fun, it is pronounced two different ways; one for the noun and a different pronunciation for the verb.
The verb, brachiate (bray-key-ate) is what monkeys do in trees or you might do on the monkey bars at school. When you swing with alternating arms grabbing limbs or bars, you are brachiating.
When you see a tree with limbs on opposite sides of one another, those limbs are brachiate (bray-key-at).
No go forth and brachiate on a tree with brachiate limbs, or better yet, a set of monkey bars!
Believe it or not, fatuous (fat-chew-us) has nothing to do with body size or weight. It has everything to do with silliness and absurdity.
Have you ever told anyone, "If you die, I'll kill you!?" Kind of a pointless thing to say if they are already dead, right? That would be a fatuous statement.
Fatuous can describe words, people, actions, concepts, thoughts, and much more. While it might seem that all things fatuous are also useless, I can defend the word wholeheartedly when it comes to comedy.
Some of the things that make us laugh the hardest are considered fatuous by some. A pie in the face serves no purpose but to make us giggle. Physical comedy, also known as slapstick, is often fatuous and effective.
So I try to keep my thoughts from being fatuous, but often speak in a fatuous manner for a laugh.
A fun side note: the word infatuated comes from the word fatuous. It means a love that is superficial, a crush, a desire to be in love, but without the substance and backbone to make the commitment to a real relationship.
All animals have a favorite time of day or night when they are most active and alert.
For many, including my cats, Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley, the times are matutinal (dawn, or sunrise) and vespertine (evening or sunset). When animals are most active at those times of day, they are described as crepuscular (creh-puss-kew-lur).
We've all heard of nocturnal animals, meaning those who are most active during the night. Crepuscular animals want to hunt, play, and disturb the sleep of their owners during those times when it is dim, not light and not dark.
Some humans are also crepuscular, coming very much alive and accomplishing more during the evening and early mornings, but not me. No way! I am nocturnal. So, it is a slight conflict when the furry boys want to play predator when I want to catch up on my sleep in the early morning. This is what they look like:
"Hey, lady, is it time to play, yet?"
Bill Walsh, head coach for the San Francisco 49ers during the 1980s, was a sagacious man. This quote by him is a very eloquent way of explaining flying by the seat of your pants.
There are times when flying by the seat of your pants is the only thing you can do, but generally, there is an opportunity to stop and make a plan, which is a sagacious thing to do.
If you find yourself being chased by a lion through the jungle, it might be time to fly by the seat of your pants. But, in almost all other situations, it is advisable to take a few moments, collect yourself, and figure out a way to proceed.
What do you think?
If someone is considered sagacious (suh-gay-shuss), they are thought to be wise. The expression 'wise old owl' could also be said, 'sagacious old owl.'
Many consider that becoming sagacious happens with age; that older means wiser, but I have known some mighty sagacious youngsters in my time. I have learned a lot from children who have an innate (natural) sagacity (suh-gah-si-tee) about them. It is marvelous to behold (see or witness).
Sagacious is something we should all try to be, but if we don't have it yet, should look for a friend who is. It is a better alternative than 'flying by the seat of our pants*.'
*See next week for the explanation to this phrase!
Today's word is one that I made up. I think it is quite OK and very creative to make up your own words if all other words fail to express what is in your heart and mind.
Deliberaffabilizen (de-lih-bur-aff-uh-bil-ih-zin) is a noun and a state of being made up of three different words that work together to mean what I am feeling and what I hope you will also feel.
Deliber(ate)-to intentionally do or feel something, this sometimes requires real work on your part.
Affabili(ty)-to be affable, or possess affability, is to be pleasant and kind.
Zen-Zen is the state of being in which you are focused, aware, in the moment, and not worried about things you cannot change.
So, then, deliberaffabilizen would be choosing to understand that terrible things happen all around you and sometimes the news is so full of that terrible that you want to crawl into bed and pull the covers up, but instead, you live your life, moment by moment, loving every good thing, not worried to the point of dysfunction, and remaining kind and thoughtful to those around you, and you do all of this very deliberately and thoughtfully, focusing on the things and people you love.
Get it? Got it? Good!
This word is, without a doubt, the most ridiculous word in the English language. Seriously! When you find out what hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia means, you will crack up laughing and probably roll on the floor.
You see, hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia means a fear of something. -phobia is a suffix that always indicates an irrational fear of whatever word comes before it. Acrophobia, for instance, means a fear of heights (as in acrobat).
So what is hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia? An unnatural fear of hippopotomuses* or hippopotomi*? A dreadful anxiety over monsters? A fitful restlessness about equipment or flowers? Ha! You aren't even close!
Hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia is . . . wait for it . . . this is where the ridiculous part comes to light . . . a panic over long words. The craziness of this is that the word itself is 35 letters long. It is a LONG word. So those who are afflicted with this phobia can't even tell you what they are afflicted with because of their affliction of being afflicted with the affliction of long words.
Does this make any sense whatsoever to you? Me, neither! Whose insane idea was this?
Anyway, I hope that none of you suffer from the terrible fear of long words, or, that big long word that means fear of long words, hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia.
*hippopotomuses is the common plural of hippopotamus. Though it is of Latin origins, and those who are fussy about keeping true to the language would say hippopotomi, most use the much easier plural of hippopotomuses.
Thank you, Bryant Oden, for this brilliant
rendition about the Warrior Word of the Week!
Dearest, darling word warriors! My most sincere apologies for the tardiness of this new word of the week.
You see, I have been in the process of moving in with the person who gave me words—my mother. She has recently had a small stroke and briefly lost all of her words.
She is now relearning to read and I have moved in to aid her in her recovery.
This move is anything but nugatory (new-guh-tor-ee), especially for her. She needed help and I was more than happy to oblige*. Nugatory means insignificant, trivial, or unimportant. Since mom is delighted (most of the time) to have me there as assistance, that makes it not nugatory.
*Bonus word: oblige (uh-blije)—doing as someone wishes or asks in order to help or please them.
His efforts to lose weight by eating
only donuts were nugatory.
I am Becky Lyn Rickman. I am a writer because I love words almost as much as I love the people in my life. I want to fill the world with magnificent words and then jump in and splash around in them. I live with Mr. Bingley and Mr. Darcy, my cats, but the only words they really love are "meat" and "gravy."