Tag Archive | words

Laughing with Words

The Washington Post hosted its annual Mensa Invitational, a contest that invites readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it (by adding, subtracting or changing one letter) and then supply a new definition. I got a kick out of the creative words and definitions the contest generated. At one point, I was laughing so loud and so hard that I had to stop reading to catch my breath and wipe tears from my eyes. I hope you enjoy these winning entries as much as I did.


1. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time. 
2. Ignoranus: A person who’s both stupid and an asshole.

3. Intaxicaton: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.

4. Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.

5. Bozone (n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.

6. Foreploy: Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid

7. Giraffiti: Vandalism spray-painted very, very high.

8. Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn’t get it.

9. Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.

10. Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit)

11. Karmageddon: It’s like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it’s like, a serious bummer.

12. Decafalon (n):The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.

13. Glibido: All talk and no action.

14. Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.

15. Arachnoleptic Fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you’ve accidentally walked through a spider web.

16. Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.

17. Caterpallor (n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you’re eating.

Oh, but wait, there’s more. A second word contest sponsored by the Washington Post asked readers to supply alternate meanings for common words. This word list is just as entertaining. Enjoy!

1. Coffee, n. The person upon whom one coughs.

2. Flabbergasted, adj. Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.

3. Abdicate, v. To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.

4. Esplanade, v. To attempt an explanation while drunk.

5. Willy-nilly, adj. Impotent.

6. Negligent, adj. Absent mindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.

7. Lymph, v. To walk with a lisp.

8. Gargoyle, n. Olive-flavored mouthwash.

9. Flatulence, n. Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run over by a steamroller.

10. Balderdash, n. A rapidly receding hairline.

11. Testicle, n. A humorous question on an exam.

12. Rectitude, n. The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.

13. Pokemon, n. A Rastafarian proctologist.

14. Oyster, n. A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.

15. Frisbeetarianism, n. The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.

16. Circumvent, n. An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men.

Welcome to National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month and to celebrate both poets and poetry, I pulled from my bookshelves some of my favorite local or regional poets’ volumes of poetry to share with you. You may not have heard of some of these poets because many do not have the notoriety of Sonia Sanchez or Nikki Giovanni. But in the southwest region, they are loved. So I present to you (drum roll please) “One Poet — One Line,” poets and one line from one of their treasured poems. Enjoy!

My hair has many blues like inner city streets, yet it thrives like ghetto hymns, never facing defeat” —Che’

“I am that which is good and positive tempered with my own humanity” — Herman Wilson II

“Down in the dumps is not my home Good-bye old friend; I’m moving on” — Doris House Rice

“Death came to remind me that earth has no sorrow that heaven can’t heal” — Evelyn Dees Kelly

“With strings and borrowed trumpets their genius reigned despite denial, bringing the world jazz” — Lisa Brown Ross

“The forecast in my eyes is rain pouring, from seeing the blue oceans through the lens of past happy days” —Pari Danian

“Life is a canvas waiting to be painted by the colors of our own choosing” — Irene P. Zucker

“Thank God it’s not just me, or eventually I would fall” — Pam Fields

“The beauty of giving Is to give from the heart” — Le’Juana Searcy

“Set your Self and your Spirit free; Give your Self permission just to ‘be'” — Martha Switzer

“If my tears can wash away your ignorance, I’ll cry you a river!” — Nichole L. Shields

“It’s past time We live past our feelings…Put aside our petty differences Reach out to each other in love.” — Jeanetta Britt

“With each morning comes a new day – a new chance to make peace with the world and all its people.” — Hugh M. Bouvier

“Pain wore her face like a road map…” — Quraysh Ali

“Put faith before doubt. For everything in life will work out.” — Sharon Jones-Scaife

“I am of no color For in many eyes I do not exist” — Katherine Smith

“How ya livin’, depends on the choices you make, how ya livin’, depends on what you ask for when you pray.” —Rudy V

Encountering the Written Word

Words, writing, and books….these are topics I can talk about for hours, and typically do with a friend who is as into these topics as I am. Recently, this friend and I were talking, trying to determine if we could live one day without encountering the written word. Not necessarily in book format but in any form. We decided we couldn’t but to help us reach that decision, we walked through a “normal” day. Below is a sample of a normal day for me and as you’ll see, I could not avoid the written word all day (of course this makes me happy).

A Normal Day:
I wake up and start journaling my dreams and thoughts. Words. Before I finish journaling, I want coffee. So off I stumble to the kitchen to make a few cups. Since I’m a coffeeholic, there’s no bumping into written words since there’s no need to read directions. All that’s required is action (an aspect of writing that we’ll leave for another day) and barely any thought.

Resettled in my favorite chair, the bed or the sofa, I sip coffee, finish journaling (is one ever finished journaling?) and decide to catch the morning news as I wait for my computer to boot up. Turning to a local channel, I see words on the screen. Did you catch that? …words on the screen.

My cell phone dings and by the sound I know it’s an incoming email—words. I turn off the TV and turn toward the computer to check email and then write, write, write. Nothing but words. (Okay, so maybe that’s cheating since I am a writer and that’s what I do most days.)

Some hours later, it’s errand-running time. I turn off the computer and dash out of the house. Again no words, but lots of action. As I’m running errands, I read billboards, road signs, traffic alerts, etc. Words, words, with a few numbers thrown in (yuck to numbers!). I sign my receipt at the grocery store (one of my errands) and see enticing words offering me a percentage off of this, a percentage off of that, words and numbers (yuck to numbers!).

Back at home, I settle back into my work, writing, which is not work at all except when it comes to editing (yuck to editing!). My stomach growls and it’s getting dusky outdoors so I know it’s time for dinner. But it’s also time to exercise so I grab a quick snack and off I rush to the gym or track. No written words required. Just action and sweat. In an hour, I am back home and seriously scouring the fridge for a real meal. I throw one together which does not require written words except when I decide to try a new recipe, then it would be an encounter with written words. But trust me, that doesn’t happen often. I try to spend as little time as possible in the kitchen.

To end the day, I watch TV–no words unless I accidentally hit the subtitle button or view certain commercials such as those featuring class action law suits against drug companies or Meow Mix or the starving artist art show. Finally, after the evening news, it’s time to read myself to sleep–words, words, and more words. Hmmm…are there words in my dreams?

What about you? Can you make it through a “normal” day without encountering any written words? If so, how in the heck did you do that?