3.06.2008

define

i am exceedingly bad at explaining my thoughts. at least, verbally. and even in written form i stumble often.

my understanding is great, but my ability to render feelings into definitive statements is inadequate.

to come to a point, if you ask me the definition of a word, even though i know what it means, i can't give you an answer less than 5 minutes long of hemming and hawing with the acrid smell of thought-smoke while i try to explain how the word makes me feel.

so i'm going to try to learn actual definitions of words. and i'll throw in some words i don't know in the mix as well.

natalie angier uses some of the most beautiful words in her writing; here, i'll share!
  • captious - marked by a disposition to find and point out trivial faults; intended to entrap or confuse, as in an argument
  • imprecation - "the act of imprecating"; a curse
  • perambulations - to walk through; to inspect (an area) on foot
  • outre' - highly unconventional; eccentric or bizzare
  • accreting - to make larger or greater, as by increased growth
  • parthenogenic - of, characterized by, or produced by parthenogensis; development of an egg w/o fertilization
  • cosseted - to pamper; a pet, especially a pet lamb
  • peregrinations - to journey or travel from place to place, especially on foot; to travel through or over, traverse
  • capacious - capable of containing a large quantity; spacious or roomy
  • pertussive - relating to pertussis (whooping cough)
  • hoary - gray or white with or as if with age; covered with grayish hair or pubescence; so old as to inspire veneration, ancient
  • antediluvian - extremely old and antiquated; bible, occurring or belonging to the era before the Flood
  • tsuris - trouble, aggravation
  • cavil - to find fault unnecessarily; raise trivial objections; to quibble about, detect petty flaws in

most of these words i've seen and know. some i just liked the sound of. some i had forgotten (parthenogenesis? 6th grade?).

2 comments:

Madge said...

oooh, this is wonderful. all of it. i am horrible at explaining my thoughts, too. it is kind of sad - i agree to things i do not feel simply to quit explaining myself because going in that loop de loop is exhaustive!

i tell people i am the world's worst dictionary; i know what a word means, but to define it? torture!

"thought-smoke"! well-said.

Smirking Cat said...

I like "hoary". It sounds like a bad word.