Tag: Word of the Month

Word of the Month

Bowdlerization David Zapatka Reading one of my favorite magazines recently, I came across an article titled “The Real Frankenstein and Its Author” by John Lauritsen. 2018 was the bicentennial of Frankenstein, the most famous work of English Romanticism. It was published anonymously on January 1, 1818. To commemorate the anniversary of its first publication, events…

Word of the Month: Deuce

  David Zapatka Watching the Australian Open Tennis Championships reminded me of the strange way tennis is scored. Zero is announced as love. Theory is that love arose from the French word for “egg,” l’oeuf, because a zero on a scoreboard resembles an egg; a clever but unsubstantiated claim. One point is called 15, two…

Word of the Month: Skedaddle

  David Zapatka Reader Kim Park read about “smithereens” in a previous column and had this comment and suggestion for this month’s issue. “I loved your WOTM column on smithereens! It threw me back to my youth and reminded me of what my mother used to say when she thought I wasn’t getting ready quickly…

Word of the Month: Patronymic

  David Zapatka At the urging of friend Betz Wyllie, I’ve acted on my intrigue with genealogy. Betz is a genealogical whiz and offered to help with my family history. In what seemed to be a relatively short period of time but certainly a ton of work for Betz, she produced about 200 names for…

Word of the Month: Bonhomie

  David Zapatka While speaking with friends from out of town at a recent bridge tournament, I heard this description of a mutual friend who was not present. “It’s so refreshing to have a man of his character in our game. He exudes a fresh and easy bonhomie.” Being unfamiliar with the word “bonhomie,” I…

Word of the month: Synesthesia

  David Zapatka Reader Yasmin John-Thorpe of Quail Creek writes, “I am a Canadian snowbird who spends my winter months at Quail Creek. I’ve only just received my mailed copy of the August Crossing which features your ‘Word of the Month’ – Synesthesia. I wanted to share with you my association with this phenomenon. My niece’s…

Word of the Month: Fluorescence

  David Zapatka I was reading in the Costco magazine about Marvel Studios movies and how they have become so popular when I ran across the word “zeitgeist.” The article read, “10 years ago, Marvel truly exploded into the zeitgeist when the Marvel Cinematic Universe launched with Iron Man.” Zeitgeist – noun zeit·geist ˈtsīt-ˌgīst, ˈzīt- 1. the…

Word of the Month: Synesthesia

  David Zapatka Reading about cognition and perception recently, I was introduced to the word “synesthesia” which is this month’s WOTM. Synesthesia – noun syn·es·the·sia si-nəs-ˈthē-zh(ē-)ə 1. a concomitant sensation: especially a subjective sensation or image of a sense (as of color) other than the one (as of sound) being stimulated. 2. the condition marked by the…

Word of the Month

  David Zapatka Friend and reader Connie Wilkinson writes, “I came across something I thought interesting while reading a book The Sugar Barons, by Matthew Parker, about the sugar trade during colonial times in the Caribbean. I always thought ‘toking’ had to do with marijuana, but apparently the word ‘toping’ meant to drink an alcoholic drink…

Word of the day: Hoedown

  David Zapatka Listening to classical music this morning as I do every morning and evening, I heard Aaron Copland’s familiar Hoe-Down classic. I’ve always thought a hoedown was a country-style social gathering with dance and music. Right on track, the upbeat and catchy Copland tune comes from his score to the ballet Rodeo, which…