Monday, December 17, 2012

Word Nerd

Yes that's me.  I'm a word nerd - I get a kick out of learning new words, especially those that I've never heard a person use in conversation before.

In fact, I love that the husband/lover/best friend has a word app on his smart phone.  He receives the "Word of the Day."  Sometimes he shares them with me, but most days I just wish he would.  Maybe I should get a smart phone.  Learning all those new words would definitely make me smarter, right?

So I have a few new ones to share with you that I am pretty excited about.  I just can't wait to throw one of these babies around at the next family gathering.  Read these and exercise your mind:

1.  diurnal
     At a recent camping trip we were sighting bald eagles almost every day.   Thinking we were seeing also some juvenile bald eagles, we looked for an internet picture to be sure.  Yes, they were indeed juveniles, but in doing the research we also learned that bald eagles are diurnal.  Diurnal animals and birds are those that are active during the daytime.  They sleep during the night.  Many birds, squirrels, tortoises, farm animals, green snakes, and others are diurnal animals.  I previously knew the meaning of  "nocturnal," but had never known its counterpart word.

2.  plinth
     Because we are in the middle of a major household renovation, I've been paging through many remodeling books.  In one of them I came across the word "plinth."  Investigating further, I learned that a plinth is the base upon which a structure rests.  Since I was looking specifically at a photo collection of bathroom furniture, in this case the plinth was the base of the bathroom vanity cabinet on that page.   Here is a picture of a bathroom vanity that has used the space within the plinth for a drawer.

You better believe I'll be throwing that word around on the day my vanity is installed.  Nevin, my carpenter, is gonna love that.

3.  ?????
     Recently I watched that old ridiculous Christmas movie, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.  There is a scene in the movie in which the main character, Clark Griswold (played by Chevy Chase) has been pushed over the edge into a state of euphoric insanity by the chaos of the family happenings.  He lops off the ball on the top of the stairway post with his chainsaw, and yells down to his wife, "Honey I fixed the ?????? post!"

     This led to an immediate debate between myself and my son-in-law Lance as to how ????? is spelled.  Let's set it straight for the record:  it's "newel."  He fixed the newel post.  

4.  flavortism
      I found this word in a magazine on a page advertising Wisconsin cheese.  Here is the definition given there:  "A harmless condition in which a person's taste buds desire nothing but the very best."  I like that.  Of course, I love cheese too, so I plan to participate in some flavortism now and then.

I started wondering if the word "flavortism" had actually made it into any dictionaries, so I googled it and was immediately taken to the Urban Dictionary, which defines it this way:  The act of making a biased opinion or judgment on some whack fool's style because you know you are cooler than him.  Applying personal opinion to public popularity."  Hmmm.

Let me know if you find any good words out there along your travels.  I'm always looking for something new to sparkle up the vocabulary.

Special wishes to you that your Monday be semantically spectacular.


  1. While I'm not a fan of the actual thing, I've also thought "phlegm" was an amazing word. To me, you couldn't have picked a better sounding or spelling for the word for what it is. I'm also a fan of "plethora," "schlep," "tukhus" and "bupkis." I use these all the time--think I picked them up when I worked in NYC. Mostly Yiddish in origin; all of 'em fun to say. neighbor BCS

  2. Marquetry. Furniture inlaid with multicolored wood, ivory, or metal.

  3. kewl...that theres some different words for sure...