I found this oddball word in an article from The Smithsonian Magazine, which is an online, subscription only magazine. An interrobang is a fairly new punctuation mark, coined in 1967, meaning an exclamation point inside of a question mark.
“The mark gets its name from the punctuation that it is intended to combine. Interro is from “interrogation point,” the technical name for the question mark, and bang which is printers’ slang for the exclamation point. The interrobang is not commonly used-its absence from standard keyboards can explain its paucity in print.”
A lollapalooza (n.) means “a remarkable or wonderful person or thing”, which is a term that originated in either 1896 or 1901 from American English, also meaning “a fanciful formation”. Other spellings include: lallapaloosa and lallapalootza.
Google tells us “Lollapalooza is the annual North American alternative pop music concert which started around 1991. It’s a music festival featuring alternative rock, heavy metal, punk rock, hip hop, Electric Dance Music bands, artists, dance and comedy performances and craft booths. It happens in Grant Park, Chicago, IL on Aug 3 – 6, 2017 and has been active for 20 years!”
Ok, for those of you who have never heard the phrase, hunky-dory is an adjective that means “about as well as one could wish or expect; satisfactory; fine; OK” according to the Dictionary.com website post at (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/hunky-dory).
However, its origins are shrouded in the mists of time, from around 1866 to be exact. It’s an American English phrase (popularized c.1870 by a Christy Minstrel song), perhaps a reduplication of hunkey, meaning “all right, satisfactory” (1861), from hunk “in a safe position” (1847) New York City slang, from Dutch honk “goal, home,” from Middle Dutch honc “place of refuge, hiding place.”
No one has a clue where “dory” came from!
Sometimes it’s easy to forget which word we want to use, whether it should be dessert or desert.
I like using mnemonic devices to keep things straight. A mnemonic device is a mind, memory or learning aid.
For example, dessert is something sweet you can eat, whereas the desert is a place that is hot during the day.
In order to remember which to use, just think: “I’d like to have a second helping of dessert” (use two “ss” instead of one), whereas “I’m staying in the desert for only one day because it’s too hot here” (use only one “s”).
Do you have any other mnemonic devices you like to employ to remind yourself which word to use? Enlighten us!
I saw a man wearing this T-shirt today and think it’s a new word that should be added to our daily lexicon…
Eracism- to nullify the effects of prejudism and racism in society.
I introduced myself to the man and his wife and complimented him on a t-shirt that was not only witty but had positive social commentary on it. He responded that he wears the shirt for just that reason, to encourage people to communicate and participate in the message.
Although I don’t usually like t-shirts with writing on them (because I don’t want to be a walking advertisement for a product or service), I did approve of this one.
It can be found for sale with a few other items on the National Civil Rights Museum’s website based in Memphis, Tennessee.
To a better day and a better way of living it,
I received this from VocabVitamins.com and found a new meaning to a word I was already familiar with…what a treat!
haggard (adjective, noun) [HAG-ahrd]
1. showing the wearing effects of overwork or suffering: “Her face was haggard from worry and lack of sleep.”
2. wild or unruly in appearance
3. (as in falconry) unmanageable
4. (as in falconry) a captured wild adult hawk
adverb form: haggardly
additional noun form: haggardness
Approximately 1567; from Old French, ‘faulcon hagard’: wild falcon, literally, falcon of the woods; from Middle High German, ‘hag’: hedge, copse, wood.
So a “hag” is an old woman of the wood!
Share your word treasures here…………….Huzzah!
Wordmeisters,not only is this a cool sounding word (notice how it just rolls off one’s tongue) it has an interesting message for us all.
amelioration (noun) [ah-meel’-yah-RAY-shahn]
1. the act of relieving ills and changing for the better
2. an improvement: “Tom is convinced that no amelioration of human suffering has occurred in the last two thousand years.”
Origin: Approximately 1659; from Old French, ‘ameillorer’ (‘a’: to + ‘mellior’: to better, from Late Latin, ‘meliorare’: to improve, from Latin, ‘melior’: to better).
“Biological diversity is the source of critical resources such as food, fiber and medicines essential to human well-being. In Colorado alone, biodiversity contributes significantly to the recreational economy and enjoyment of the outdoors by residents and visitors alike. Properly functioning ecosystems play essential roles such as nutrient cycling, detoxification of wastes, amelioration of climate extremes and maintenance of the hydrological cycle.”
Philip Cafaro, Barry R. Noon and Holmes Roston III. “Perspective: Preserving our biological diversity,” The Denver Post (February 26, 2006).
—– Now it’s your turn to share the cool, intriguing words you’ve run across this week!