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Jul 22, 2018
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AWADmail Issue 838

A Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Other Tidbits about Words and Language

Sponsor’s Message: What Stephen King said about books applies equally to our wicked smart word game: “(One Up!) is uniquely portable magic.” It’s also way faster and funner than Scrabble and Bananagrams. No board. No complicated rules. 20 or so wicked fun cutthroat minutes. And stealing is the name of the game! Rinse (off your ego), and repeat. Congrats to Email of the Week winner, Arun Kumar (see below), as well as all AWADers -- you’ll get “free sardines” with every order of $25 or more. Feed your head now >

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

Amazon Should Replace Local Libraries to Save Taxpayers Money
[This was published on Jul 21, not Apr 1. Forbes has not been taken over by The Onion. The only possible explanation is that the author of this article, and the editor who approved it, have never stepped into a library. Maybe they should check with the publisher Malcolm Forbes (1919-1990), who once said:
“The richest person in the world — in fact, all the riches in the world, — couldn’t provide you with anything like the endless, incredible loot available at your local library. You can measure the awareness, the breadth and the wisdom of a civilization, a nation, a people by the priority given to preserving these repositories of all that we are, all that we were, or will be.”]

Everyone Has an Accent
The New York Times

Starbucks to Open Its First US Sign Language Store This Year
Los Angeles Times

These Polyglots Have Tips For How To Learn As Many Languages As You Want

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Behind the scenes

From time to time we take you behind the scenes here at Wordsmith.org.

We present a short exit questionnaire to readers who unsubscribe. Most leave because of mundane reasons. Here are some of the more unusual ones we received from our ex-subscribers:

Sue wrote: “I loved reading these every day at the start of my work day. I have retired, and find that I just don’t have/make time for these emails now.”

Laura wrote: “Loser old boyfriend turned me on to it, and I’m purging anything related to him. Nothing personal.”

Liam wrote: “Ex-girlfriend had subscribed me to this, and though I enjoy it, it reminds me of her, and she is a real b*tch” [Liam did not bleep out the b-word but we have to, to avoid having this email caught by filters at many schools and corporations.]

The girlfriend-boyfriend tiff aside, most recipients of A.Word.A.Day love it. Send it to your friends and family.

From: Lisa Hyatt Cooper (lisahyattcooper gmail.com)
Subject: number of times

Latin has words for once through fource: semel, bis, ter, quater.

Lisa Hyatt Cooper, Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania

From: Ferenc Korompai (korompai msn.com)
Subject: Re: Once, twice, thrice...

Hungarian uses a suffix to the number to indicate recurrence. It is sz*r. The *vowel is variable because of vowel harmony. Eg.: 6 is hat, 6X is hatszor, 7 is hét, 7X is hétszer, 100 is száz, 100X is százszor.

Ferenc Korompai, Temple, Texas

From: Daniela Curti (dfdanielacrt gmail.com)
Subject: Italian

In Italian we have duplice (double rather than twice), triplice, quadruplice, quintuplice, as well.

Daniela Curti, Genova, Italy

From: Mary Boy (mary.miller.boy googlemail.com)
Subject: How many times?

In the German language, it is very simple to express how many times something occurs or has occurred. Just take the number and add “mal” -- einmal, zweimal, dreimal, viermal... zehnmal (10), elfmal (11)... zwanzigmal (20)... hundertmal (100)... tausendmal (1000)... ad infinitum.

If it is an unknown, usually vast, number of times, x-mal is the word. We would probably say in English “umpteen times”.

Mary Boy, Falkensee, Germany

From: Steve Benko (stevebenko1 gmail.com)
Subject: suggestions for the numerical series

To follow once, twice, and thrice, my suggestions for “four times” and “five times” are “limce” (based on our having four limbs) and “hance” (based on “handful”). From there, lacking relevant numbers of body parts, we could move on to “six times” as “geence” (based on six geese a-laying), seven as “swance” (for seven swans a-swimming), and so on. That would take care of things up to twelve!

Steve Benko, New York, New York

From: David Micklethwait (micklethwait hotmail.com)
Subject: cynophobia

There was a magical secret garden at my school, where the little brass plate at the entrance had words in Greek from the book of Revelation 22:15:
ἔξω οἱ κύνες ... καὶ οἱ φονεῖς
It means “dogs and murderers, outside!”

David Micklethwait, London, UK

From: John D. Laskowski (john.laskowski mothman.org)
Subject: fear of blue dogs

So then cyano-cynophobia must be the fear of blue dogs!

John D. Laskowski, Carsonville, Pennsylvania

From: Jim Lockard (jalockard gmail.com)
Subject: German

In German, I believe any number can be combined with “mal” to indicate number of times. For example, zweimal is twice, sechsmal is six times, zwanzigmal is 20 times, tausendmal is a thousand times, etc.

Jim Lockard, Sycamore, Illinois

From: Ueli Haenni (euricio gmx.ch)
Subject: Once, twice, thrice in Swiss German

As to “once”, “twice” and “thrice”: In my mother-tongue, which is Swiss German, we say “einisch” (once) and “zwoinisch” (twice) but there is no word for “thrice”. However there is one for “many times”, which is “mängisch”. The stem “mäng”, by the way, has the same root as the English “many”.

Ueli Haenni, Wettingen, Switzerland

From: Glenn Glazer (glenn.glazer gmail.com)
Subject: once, twice, ...

First, a bit of explanation. Japanese uses a numeric system where the words for the numbers change with the thing being counted. The key observation is that while the writing is very regular, with the kanji for the number followed by the kanji for the counter, the pronunciation of these can vary wildly. There are examples and a discussion of Japanese counters here. For those that don’t read hiragana, as an example, the first three ordinal numbers (one, two, three) are pronounced ichi, ni and san. So for flat things like paper that use the counter mai, it is just ichimai, nimai, sanmai... very regular. On the other hand, the counter for people, hito, goes wildly off the beaten path from the start: hitori, futari, sannin, but gets more regular after that. In essence, the irregular pronunciations came from the ancient Japanese prior to the Chinese introducing kanji.

As for the counter for occurrences (once, twice, thrice a week), these use the kai counter and are very regular. I have never heard of an upper limit to numbers that can be used with counters, e.g., 百回 (hyakukai) is a hundred times, 千回 (senkai) is a thousand times and so on.

Glenn Glazer, Felton, California

From: Ana Ross (via website comments)
Subject: phillumenist

Early in the 20th century there was a guy named Ivar Kreuger who was known as the match king. He became obscenely wealthy by cornering the world market in matches, which were terribly important in an age before Zippos and Bics. He virtually invented the financial instrument we know as the derivative and nearly wrecked the economies of a few nations. Unlike the bankers of today though, Ivar was an actual genius who believed in what he was doing but in the end got caught in his own web, so to speak. There is a fascinating book about him The Match King: Ivar Kreuger and the Financial Scandal of the Century. IMO, he was one of the most interesting people of the 20th century who at his peak was worth about 100 billion dollars in today’s money.

Ana Ross, Honolulu, Hawaii

Email of the Week brought to you by One Up! -- Summerize your mind >
From: Arun Kumar (via website comments)
Subject: Phillumenist

Here’s a lovely short movie (15 min.) about a phillumenist, by animator and filmmaker Gitanjali Rao. Enjoy!

The movie is Gitanjali’s tribute to the memory of her late mother. For those who love Indian classical dances, there’s a smidgen of Kathak in it as well.

Arun Kumar, Cary, North Carolina

From: David Brooks (brooksdr sympatico.ca)
Subject: phillumenist

I visited a great matchbook museum (Museu Dos Fosforos) in Tomar, Portugal, a few years ago. Room after room of display cases. Some young university kid was sitting at the reception desk. I got the impression that I’d been the first person to visit in days. Which is a shame -- it was fun.

David Brooks, Toronto, Canada

From: Milan Schonberger (milan.schonberger sbcglobal.net)
Subject: phillumenist

As a child in Czechoslovakia, now the Czech republic, I used to be a phillumenist and amassed scores of colorful matchboxes. Phillumeny or phillumenism used to be a common children’s hobby. I had been very proud of my collection and enjoyed showing it to our family guests.

Milan Schonberger, Los Angeles, California

From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: cynophobia and pathophobia

Cynophobia Pathophobia
In this scenario, I’ve revisited the infamous summit meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and Russian President, Vladimir Putin. Knowing of Merkel’s cynophobia, in the middle of their tête-à-tête, the Ruskie tyrant introduces his pet Labrador retriever to the scene, eliciting a fearful reaction from Frau Merkel, who retreats, cowering behind her chair. Admittedly, I’ve tossed in a dose of hyperbole in re-imagining this tense confrontation.

Playing off the Hitler-referenced USAGE example for our word pathophobia, I’ve set up this admittedly unlikely scenario, where Freud is analyzing prostrate fellow native Austrian, Hitler, clearly a confirmed pathophobe. I would submit that Freud’s “sicko” diagnosis encompasses far more phobias, neuroses, fetishes, and deep-seated prejudices, than a mere blanket fear of “diseases” would indicate. Sadly, history has borne out Hitler’s myriad pathologies, to a most tragic degree.

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Anagrams of this week’s words

1. cynophobia
2. phillumenist
3. virilocal
4. pathophobia
5. paragnosis
= 1. I panic, “A pup!”
2. hobbyist
3. his living plan
4. “Oh, a hospital room!”
5. oracle
-Dharam Khalsa, Burlington, North Carolina (dharamkk2 gmail.com)
There's a word for it
1. cynophobia
2. phillumenist
3. virilocal
4. pathophobia
5. paragnosis
= 1. no puppy love?
2. match his hobbies!
3. I'd a roof at in-laws'
4. ailing, I? Oh, horror!
5. a spectral tip
-Robert Jordan, Lampang, Thailand (alfiesdad ymail.com)

From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
Subject: Limericks

Among all our copious phobias,
one of the worst's cynophobia.
I can't comprehend
having fear of best friend,
and this dog-lover finds it quite odious.
-Anne Thomas, Sedona, Arizona (antom earthlink.net)

Some dyslexics for "dog" pronounce "god"
And often for "doc" utter "cod",
But when agnostic, go strobic,
far beyond cynophobic!
It's too dog-damned odd, if dog's god!
-Brenda J. Gannam, Brooklyn, New York (gannamconsulting earthlink.net)

Patricia's cynophobia was intense.
If a Great Dane approached, with her bag she would fence.
If a small Daxie ran up to her feet,
She would kick out with a piteous bleat!
That dogs could be loved, to her, did not make any sense.
-Monica Broom, Morogoro, Tanzania (monicabroom2015 gmail.com)

Cynophobia dogged him for years,
But he would not give into his fears.
A service dog calmed him.
If a dog should alarm him,
His barked, bit, and brought it to tears.
-Judy Distler, Teaneck, New Jersey (jam1026 aol.com)

My kitty's got bad cynophobia;
At the sight of a dog she's all over ya.
She hisses and scratches,
A furball dispatches,
And then comes complete catatonia.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Collectors, by and large, are interesting folk;
They carry on despite cynics who poke
Fun at them. One might
One day need a light--
The phillumenist comes to the rescue -- no joke!
-Marcia Sinclair, Newmarket, Canada (marciasinclair rogers.com)

Now Phil was a phillumenist,
Quite the matchbox enthusiast.
Hard to find him a match,
Since he's not a good catch.
No wonder, he's never been kissed.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

I know a sweet lady phillumenist
Who loves to behave as a humanist.
But when Trump ups her ire
She starts a new fire
With pics of that lewd-ly chauvinist.
-Ron Rosier, Columbia, Maryland (rosier georgetown.edu)

John Walker would have been surprised
to see the match boxes and labels so prized;
phillumenists gone gaga
over a label's saga?
when the real power lay in the heads pint-sized!
(John Walker invented the friction match.)
-Shyamal Mukherji, Wakefield, Massachusetts (mukherjis hotmail.com)

Though you think you're a simple phillumenist,
your collection can be something "luminist".
Don't just curse the dark.
Light a candle, that spark
can mark you, as well, as a humanist.
-Zelda Dvoretzky, Haifa, Israel (zeldahaifa gmail.com)

As we keep burning fuel that's bituminous,
The air becomes more and more glutinous.
When we realize that fire
Is making things dire,
Our matchbooks we'll give to phillumenists.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

When I pledged my vows to my man,
Virilocal was not our plan.
Don't misunderstand.
I love my husband,
But did not marry his whole clan.
-Lois Mowat, Orinda, California (lmowat1810 gmail.com)

In a practice that is virilocal
Male domination is most focal.
While it may be okay for guys,
Modern gals find it unwise
And in their dislike are quite vocal.
-Del de Souza, Mumbai, India (deldesouza hotmail.com)

He's just a local yokel,
But always very vocal.
He said to his wife:
"For the rest of your life
Your residence will be virilocal.”
-Jan Bosman, Cape Town, South Africa (jbosman media24.com)

She moved to his family’s farm.
Its outhouse she viewed with alarm.
“I married this yokel
And went virilocal,
But life here is lacking in charm.”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

The first lady is keeping her distance
From his virilocal insistence.
For his adulation supply
He keeps family close by.
Melania smiles but we feel her resistance
-Gayle Tremblay, Saint John, Canada (gayletremblay hotmail.com)

As I talked of a life virilocal,
My bride became suddenly vocal.
“My mother-in-law’s
Got those razor-sharp claws,”
She quite coolly explained -- then went postal.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Pathophobia: “fear of disease”.
Our president: definition of “sleaze”.
Vladimir is his ally
And neither’s a good guy.
“Would” or “wouldn’t”? Who cares? Shut up. Please.
-Joe Budd Stevens, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico (joebuddstevens gmail.com)

Pathophobia was no stranger
And a constant companion to her.
She’d drive people away
When she’d constantly say
“I may have it. I’ll see my doctor.”
-Lois Mowat, Orinda, California (lmowat1810 gmail.com)

Said the doctor, “I hope it will sober ya
To learn that it’s just pathophobia.
I’ve known all along
That there’s nothing else wrong;
I could see it despite my myopia.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

There is surely a clear-cut prognosis
For a man with a flagrant neurosis.
Take our Prez, he’s the one
Who demands that we’re run
On his own brand of weird paragnosis.
-Judith Marks-White, Westport, Connecticut (joodthmw gmail.com)

“My little Deanna’s precocious;
It’s from me that she gets paragnosis,”
Cooed Ms. Troi, “Wait till when
She’s on ‘Star Trek Next Gen’;
Keeping secrets from her will be hopeless!”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

From: Phil Graham (pgraham1946 cox.net)
Subject: There’s a pun for it

A pounding heartbeat when a dog nears is a sure cynophobia.

My gold-digger wife tells me, “Oh, Phil! Phillumenist egg.”

As we neared the RR tracks I told my Uber driver, “You’d better virilocal is coming!”

The anxious, pregnant mother lisped, “Can I pathophobia on to my children?”

If you want a baby gno, you’ll need a paragnosis.

Phil Graham, Tulsa, Oklahoma

From: Stephen P. Robinson (spr lawrobinson.com)
Subject: Suggestion (or n’t)

Since “n’t” is certain to win “meme of the year” honors, I think negative contractions deserve induction into the AWAD honor roll. (Or n’t.)

Steve Robinson, Glendale, California

If it is committed in the name of God or country, there is no crime so heinous that the public will not forgive it. -Tom Robbins, novelist (b. 22 Jul 1936)

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