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AWADmail Issue 283

December 2, 2007

A Weekly Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Other Interesting Tidbits about Words and Languages


From: Anu Garg (words wordsmith.org)
Subject: Interesting stories from the net

Why Zack is a Failure and Andy Succeeds:
nature.com

Underfunded Schools Forced To Cut Past Tense From Language Programs:
The Onion
(satire)


From: Nathan Horowitz (toanke yahoo.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lagniappe

To this day, in Ecuador, if you go to a market and buy some pieces of fruit, the seller may throw in one more for good measure -- that is the "yapa" or "llapa".


From: Javier Estrada (jestrada plantcml.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lagniappe

There is a similar word in Spanish in Mexico--and particular only to Mexico: pilón.

As a child, growing in the 60s and 70s, it was very common to receive el pilón (some would actually demand it) in the form of candy or cookies after buying milk or bread in the local grocery store. This lagniappe was lost with the years, and a few years ago there was an intense TV campaign for the return of el pilón, but it took a commercial spin in the form of card with points that you would then exchange for a gift. Needless to say, this was no pilón.


From: Marjo van Patten (marjovp sbcglobal.net)
Subject: lagniappe

Lagniappe was a favorite word of my mother who grew up in Louisiana. I've always thought it sounded so much more cosmopolitan than 'baker's dozen' and now I know it truly is cosmopolitan and international.


From: Marta Guirao (martaguirao yahoo.es)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lagniappe

Interestingly, in colloquial Spanish (from Spain) today, a "ñapa" often means a quick fix done in a slapsdash manner, a patch. It is definitely "something added", but not in a good or orthodox way.


From: Bridget O'Brien-Mitchell (bridget.obrienmitchell gm.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lagniappe

I was surprised to see that today's word is lagniappe, since tonight is Lagniappe (with the capital L) in Rochester, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. Rochester has had Lagniappe for 35 years in downtown and virtually every merchant participates -- giving the 'little something extra' to customers.

Last year, Rochester started their Big Bright Light Show and the million plus colored lights on the buildings get turned on tonight. See pictures, though the pictures don't do it justice!


From: Mike Morton (mike mikemorton.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--lagniappe anagrams

"Lagniappe" is one of my favorite single-word-to-single-word anagrams, turning into "appealing".


From: Elias Nule (eliasnule hotmail.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--El Dorado

El Dorado is a very familiar word for us, the Colombian people, as it's also the name of the Bogotá International Airport and the famous avenue that goes towards it, so we all feel closely identified with that word.


From: Edye (ewfocused aol.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--El Dorado

As a resident of El Dorado, Kansas it was a pleasant surprise to see today's word. As the story goes, in 1867 some settlers topped a rise east of present day El Dorado and saw the late afternoon sun glinting golden colors off the meandering Walnut River in the valley below. One settler was so impressed that he exclaimed, "El Dorado!". The city was incorporated in 1871, and in 1915 one of the largest oil strikes of the time was discovered just outside El Dorado. This confirmed the town's status as "the gilded one" in the petroleum industry as El Dorado became a leading producer of oil for several years.


From: Peter Hedman (phedman fas.harvard.edu)
Subject: El Dorado in Iowa

I recently located the Lost City while exploring Iowa. There were fewer gilded buildings and much more corn than I had expected, but discovering the unknown is the essence of adventure. Here's the image.


From: Sandor Soon (sandbox74 hotmail.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--azimuth

Just like your popular "there's a word for it" theme, this word is illustrated by people when they are checking out others: "There's a hottie on your 3 o'clock."


From: Richard Shroyer (shroyer uwo.ca)
Subject: azimuth

I find a word like azimuth, without an example or diagram, rather puzzling. Here's a diagram.


From: Israel P (israelp pikholz.org)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--algorithm

I thought AlGorithm had something to do with a belief in global warming.


From: Lyle D. Gunderson (lyle mac.com)
Subject: Redundancy

The redundancy that seems to pop up most often these days is 'PIN number'. I once heard somebody talking about their personal PIN number.


From: Patrick V. Russo (prusso ucsd.edu)
Subject: redundancies

I elicit many strange looks when I refer to my PI number! Another annoyance occurs here in San Diego with reference to our famous hotel, Hotel Del Coronado. The locals refer to it as "the Del"! What they are really saying is "the Of the"! Nice!


From: Christine Sinnott (xinesinnott comcast.net)
Subject: another commercial redundancy

TCBY Yogurt: The Country's Best Yogurt Yogurt

For a while when I was a teenager a friend of mine and I said the last word of every sentence twice twice. It was especially funny to do when we were inside one of TCBY's stores stores.


From: Carolanne Reynolds (gg wordsmith.org)
Subject: a haiku

Words as scales, stories
carapace covers
palimpsest of history.


From: Eric Shackle (eshackle ozemail.com.au)
Subject: El Dorado

"The 12 Days of Christmas" could perhaps be described as an artist's El Dorado. Artists and photographers delight in depicting one of the world's favorite carols. You can see several wonderful examples by following the links in my December e-book.


There is no more irritating fellow than the man who tries to settle an argument about communism, or justice, or liberty, by quoting from Webster. -Mortimer J. Adler, philosopher, educator, and author (1902-2001)

This week's theme Words with built-in definite articles.

This week's words
lagniappe
alcove
el dorado
azimuth
algorithm

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