PERORATION [per-uh-REY-shuh n]: a long speech characterized by lofty and often pompous language.


Every time I hear one of President Roosevelt’s speeches I am struck by the fact that he does little if anything to disguise his elite background.  His speech is that of a man who has had a superb education, was schooled in eloquence, and has a vocabulary of a scholar.  He thinks nothing of dropping […]

WARILY: cautiously, carefully


The article in the Daily Herald indicated that President Obama and President Putin circled each other warily at the International Conference in China.  Is anybody surprised?   The flow of words between them for the past several months has been anything but cozy. To deal with each other warily means that they were cautious and careful […]

PRESIDENTIAL GOLF: and the problem is?????

obama golf

The critics of President Obama (there seem to be lots of them) fall into a variety of categories. There are legitimate critics who focus upon his economic, foreign policy, political, or domestic issues. There are racists, who are critical of him simply because he is an “uppety Black man” in their minds. There are political […]

SISYPHEAN [sis-uh-FEE-uhn]: an endless task


The ancient Greek myth about Sisyphus, tells us about a man who was sentenced to roll a huge boulder up a mountain until it could lodge at the peak.  He spent the rest of his life pushing the heavy rock up the mountain, but whenever he tired the rock would roll back to the bottom.   […]

A LINE IN THE SAND: to establish a boundary that cannot be crossed without retailiation

A line in the sand

A Line in the Sand is a  phrase that is so common that it takes very little explanation.    It stems from the practice of creating a demarcation limit.   Quite simply, a line is drawn in the sand and the opposition is told that they are free to take whatever actions they require on the other […]

MUFTI: wearing civilian clothes

obama casual

I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve heard someone say that “she went mufti.“  It’s not a mystery word.  I’ve always known that it meant that someone was “dressed down.”   But I’ve never taken the time to do any research to discover where the word comes from and what it really means […]