PRUNE: a dried plum

Boy … talk about nostalgia! (Which is not always pleasant, incidentally!) During a recent hospitalization I was presented with two sealed cups of prune juice, for obvious reasons.  I had almost forgotten that such a thing existed.  Being hermetically sealed in a plastic cup with a tight-fitting top that it took an engineer to remove, […]

PRECIPICE: (press’-i-piss) a cliff overhanging a sharp decline

The reality that the government of the United States has driven itself to the edge of a very dangerous cliff has given rise to the use of the word precipice. It means the sharp edge of a cliff overhanging a dangerously steep decline.   The most dramatic image I can conjure up (apart from the photo […]

DOG DAYS: a period marked by lethargy, inactivity, or indolence.

These long, hot, humid days have been unbearable for most of the country. Weather reports of clouds and showers today are welcome news for anyone except those planning an outdoor activity.  I heard on the news today that there is a low-level weather disturbance/hurricane heading for the coast of Texas and people are happy! These […]

TRANSPARENCY: full disclosure

This isn’t the first time I’ve posted about the word transparency. I looked at it more generically in a previous blog posting and have mentioned it off and on in other postings. But something occurred to me when I was watching Morning Joe this morning, listening to a vocal member* of the Tea Party rant […]

POLITICAL METAPHORS: imagery used to describe politicians and their shenanigans

I have an unusual habit of reaching for my BlackBerry first thing in the morning and scanning the news before starting to stir.  It gives my wife a little respite before her alarm. There are several sites (apps) to which I go, including The New York Times. Even though I will scour the pages in […]

DEGAGE (de ga jhay’): detached, unconnected

When I first saw this word, degage, I thought to myself, “Oh, that’s interesting.  Must be the opposite of engage.” I was right about the meaning, but I was surprised when, later, I heard the word pronounced.  It isn’t “dee-gaj.”  It retains its French derivation and pronunciation and is pronounced as de – ga – […]