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Sep 24, 2023
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Words related to colors

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AWADmail Issue 1108

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

Sponsor’s Message: “Way faster and funner than Scrabble and Bananagrams.” One Up! is the wickedest word game in the world. “It’s mental!” Free shipping. Shop now.

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

The Animals Are Talking. What Does It Mean?
The New York Times

China’s Language Police
Foreign Affairs

Europe Talks to Itself in Many Languages. That’s Why English Is Vital to its Democracy
The Guardian

Annals of Mindless Filtering: At some schools, if your email talks about Moby-Dick, they think it has dirty words.

From: Mail Delivery System (noreply ces.cisco.com)
Subject: Message Notification

Please note that your email to xxxx.xxxx@kenton.newcastle.sch.uk with the subject [BULK] A.Word.A.Day--castaneous has been blocked due to containing profanity and\or sεxual content. Please resend and exclude this content.

One of the words matched was dick.

From: Grant Agnew (ggttwwaa gmail.com)
Subject: The Orange Monster

No doubt, you will cop some flak for your comments about The Orange One. My comment is to say: keep at it. Don’t be intimidated. BTW, has anyone else noticed the similarities between Trump and Vidkun Quisling? Their sizes and appearances are somewhat alike, their “policies” appeal only to the rabid, the ignorant, and the cynically self-serving, and their uses of moments of crisis as excuses for treason are breathtakingly almost identical.

The only major difference between them is that Quisling understood both the theory and the application of grammar and syntax -- he could form a coherent sentence.

Grant Agnew, Brisbane, Australia

From: Bruce Barrett (bgbama mediacombb.net)
Subject: My regrets

I was a long-time subscriber to A.Word.A.Day until Anu started using the website for his political campaign against Donald Trump. I, like hundreds of others, cancelled your service in 2017.

As it turns out, Anu was, and is, absolutely correct, while the rest of us were very, very wrong.

I just resubscribed. Thank you.

Bruce Barrett, Orange Beach, Alabama

From: Richard Pearton (richard thorpeandhands.co.za)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--castaneous

Your comparison between Trump and Captain Ahab resonates a lot here at the tip of Africa. I know it is a long way from the lights of the US and no doubt far from the news you receive, but we have leaders of the same ilk. Spend a bit time looking into the exploits of our former president Jacob “Shower Head” Zuma. From all walks of life, it seems, somehow they ascend to power with a mob of fanatical followers. So it goes.

Richard Pearton, Durban, South Africa

From: Jenny Firth-Cozens (jenny.cozens gmail.com)
Subject: Ahab and Trump

Wonderful piece of writing. Thank you. I’ll try and think of a literary analogy for our disastrous lot in the UK. I think it will be the weasels in Toad Hall.

Jenny Firth-Cozens, Aberdeen, UK

From: Glenn Vanstrum (glennvanstrum gmail.com)
Subject: Ahab vs Trump

At last a new analogy for 45! Certainly his willingness to take down the Good Ship Democracy is Ahab-like. Yet the comparison is not fair to Melville’s character, who was a complex individual with some redeeming qualities (it’s been a while since I re-read Moby-Dick, I confess). I don’t see much redeeming about the thug that is tRump.

Glenn Vanstrum, San Diego, California

From: tao (kreelah gmail.com)
Subject: rubricate

In Portuguese, the term rubricate is rubricar, which has many different meanings. The most common, everyday uses are:
  • to sign with a short signature (ex: a scripted “P. Sand” instead of “Pauline Amelia Smith Sand”)
  • to make annotations on a text
It also gave us rubrica (feminine noun), of which most common usages are:
  • the short signature on a document
  • a periodic article, TV or radio broadcast on a specific subject or by an author
Reference: Infopédia

tao, Setúbal, Portugal

From: Maria Scurrah (scurrah gmail.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--rubricate

In Peru, the word rubrica means the squiggles you put under (or over) your signature to make it unique. Some are incredibly elaborate, as part of a cumbersome and ineffective legal system. I wonder how that word came to be used but rubricas are very important and part of the national identity card kits to identify you. For example, if you open a bank account you rubricate your signature. [See also paraph.]

Maria Scurrah, Lima, Peru

Email of the Week -- Brought to you buy One Up! -- “The best game in the game.” “A devilish gift.”

From: Eric Ahrendt (eric eawriter.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--cerulean

We all learned to respect “cerulean” from this scene (3 min.) in The Devil Wears Prada with Meryl Streep as a frightfully frosty Anna Wintour. I’ll never call a cerulean sweater blue again!

Eric Ahrendt, Orinda, California

From: Sandeep Tungare (stungare vistaar.com)
Subject: Cerulean

Our family has been big fans of Wordsmith for a long time. Imagine my daughter’s reaction to today’s word when she just released this song titled Cerulean last month! (video, 4 min.)

Sandeep Tungare, Morristown, New Jersey

From: Kiko Denzer (kiko handprintpress.com)
Subject: colors

Our kindergarten teachers
taught us to mix ...
blue + yellow = green.

But X + Y
a story does not make.

Saffron Sun
Cyan Sea
got married.
After their colors joined,
their children arrived
dressed all in green.
They root down
for dark maternal damp
and reach up
for the distant, bright, giver of light, of food.
Spruce, Alder, Elder, Fir
and all their sisters and brothers ...
they still hold us,
cousins of Earth and Sky,
all together.
We chop, cut, harvest, sell
and don’t even say thank you?
Just Blue + Yellow = Green.

Kiko Denzer, Blodgett, Oregon

From: Kent Rhodes (krho1 aol.com)
Subject: A Thought for Today

Learning is acquired by reading books; but the much more necessary learning, the knowledge of the world, is only to be acquired by reading man, and studying all the various editions of them.
-Lord Chesterfield, statesman and writer (22 Sep 1694-1773)

Reading so many of today’s newsmakers is like reading so many horror stories. You can only take so much evil before you have to put the “book” down.

Kent Rhodes, Charlotte, North Carolina

Seeing Red
From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: rubricate and cerulean

The Red Shirts were mid-19th century volunteer militiamen who followed their patriotic leader, Italian liberator, Giuseppe Garibaldi, into battle, identified by their puffy, bright red shirts. The billowy Garibaldi shirt’s styling ultimately became the prototype for the modern woman’s blouse. Here, Garibaldi takes umbrage with Jerry Seinfeld, who, in a Sep 1993 (5th season) episode of his eponymous sitcom, was duped into wearing this froufrou, puffy white shirt when guesting on a late-night network TV talk show, hosted by Bryant Gumbel. Gumbel, chuckling, points out the odd styling of Jerry’s shirt, opining, “It looks a lot like a pirate shirt.” Jerry is not amused.

Birds of a Feather Mock Together
In contemplating our word “cerulean” my birder-brain kicked into high gear, as I recalled a handsome US songbird, the Cerulean Warbler, its dominant color being a distinctive sky blue. IMHO, the Western, Eastern* and Mountain Bluebirds have even more brilliant blue plumage than the slightly more muted blue of the Cerulean Warbler. But no need to quibble over who’s the bluest of them all. The Indigo and Lazuli Buntings can more than hold their own in that regard. I speak from first-hand experience in the field, having all these aforementioned species on my “life list” of observed birds. *The Eastern Bluebird is the one depicted in my illustration.

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California


This week’s theme: Words related to colors
1. Castaneous
2. Rubricate
3. Cerulean
4. Brunneous
5. Variegate
= 1. Sweet auburn
2. Restore some red to area
3. Clearest blue
4. Dark cocoa
5. Liven with contrasting hue uses
= 1. Gate rust color
2. Accentuate a wine-red hue
3. Blue skies
4. Earth brown color
5. Use a diverse assortment
-Josiah Winslow, Franklin, Wisconsin (winslowjosiah gmail.com) -Dharam Khalsa, Burlington, North Carolina (dharamkk2 gmail.com)

This week’s words related to colors
1. Castaneous
2. Rubricate
3. Cerulean
4. Brunneous
5. Variegate
= 1. Chestnut, russet
2. Rouge, red as wine, roseate
3. Elite blue
4. Dark as nut brown, cacao
5. Color varies
-Julian Lofts, Auckland, New Zealand (jalofts xtra.co.nz)

Make your own anagrams and animations.



Her gray hair she decided to dye;
A castaneous shade she would try.
Thus her youth she’d restore,
But in truth it takes more,
And some Botox she’ll have to apply.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

As a kid, the sun lured me, come June
(As opposed to a guy ‘neath the moon).
But castaneous skin
Irked my doc, who said, “Bin,
Dried-up chestnut’s as bad as a prune!”
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

Her lovely long locks were castaneous;
His passion for her was spontaneous.
So her beau called her “Red”,
And soon they were wed.
Late that night? Happiness simultaneous!
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“I come from a world that’s castaneous;
Green and blue there are frankly extraneous.
You’re destroying your trees
And your beautiful seas!”
Wept the Martian - an outburst spontaneous.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


As we know, men need minutes to dress,
Whereas dames oft take hours to impress --
Not one hair out of place;
Apply make-up to face;
And, last, rubricate lips -- while men stress.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

She’s so sεxy in those mini-skirts!
And wow! Do I love how she flirts!
I don’t want to miss
The girl’s sensuous kiss,
Though her lipstick does rubricate shirts.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

To give pupils the feedback they need,
Profs rubricate essays they read.
But students have said,
“Use green ink instead,
For red is upsetting indeed.”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

He was bashful right out of the gate!
I recall, at not much past age eight,
When he talked to a girl
His skin, mother of pearl
Would go paler still, then rubricate!
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

“For the males all around me to cumulate,
My bottom I somehow must rubricate,”
Said the female babοοn.
“At that sight they all swoon;
Think I’ll try monosodium glutamate.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


With cerulean dome overhead,
I stretched out in my hammock and read
Till the sun went his way.
(He was done for the day.)
Time for dinner, I think, and then bed.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

She fell for a fellow named Julian,
Whose eyes were a lovely cerulean.
She got carried away,
And she even would say,
“His peepers are Peter O’Toole-ian!”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

To my grandmother, words are hypnotic!
Why be plain when she could be exotic?
Calling plain old sky blue
“A cerulean hue”?
To me that would sound idiotic!
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

“The flaws in this calendar Julian
Make my face turn a color cerulean,”
Said the cardinal. “Pope Greg,
Though, is such a good egg;
He will fix it. It’s antediluvian!”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


A rich brunneous choc’late would be
Uppermost on a list that, for me,
Would include fav’rite things
That my paramour brings
When he stops by for crumpets and tea.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

The girl with the brunneous hair
Declared that it didn’t seem fair --
“Why should blondes have more fun?!”
And she said, “I for one
Am actively seeking my share.”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“Yer toast was alright, nice and brunneous,
But them eggs that ya made were th’ runnies’!”
Said Pa. Ma replied,
“Just can’t please ya! I’ve tried!
Now quit sayin’ things so durn calumnious!”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Mother Nature, whose palette is broad,
Variegates here at home and abroad.
Pelt and plumage display
Colour riots all day --
And how many the greens of the sward?
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

The garden’s a gorgeous array,
A variegated display.
It refreshes my soul,
And it makes me feel whole
But needs to be weeded today.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“OMG! Must be something that Sarah ate,
For our love life she now wants to variegate,”
Said Abraham. “Ninety!
And yet The Almighty
Says, “Abie, her eggs go and marinate!”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


“I think I’ll castaneous as the hero in my story of the founding of Rome,” thought Virgil.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

The old Japanese tourist asked the pharmacist, “Do you have a moisturizer to rubricate my dry skin?”
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“British spies drink their martinis shaken, not stirred. It-cerulean, and your Bond character must follow it,” scolded Fleming’s editor. -Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Cale-brunneous thy nose, but thou hast served me well and faithfully, and I shall reward thee with lands abounding in Kleenex,” said the Lord.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“Nixon only did a Watergate. I do Air, Fire, Earth, all kinds. I can really variegate,” said Donald.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

Back from the Brink
From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: Back from the Brink

This past Aug 29-30, the LA Zoo released 170 endangered southern mountain yellow-legged frogs into their San Gabriel Mountains native habitat. The 1.5-3.25” frogs, bred in captivity, originated from eggs nurtured at the LA Zoo’s amphibian room. Similar frog restoration projects are happening at both Orange County’s Santa Ana Zoo and Long Beach’s Aquarium of the Pacific. Fingers crossed that these recently released at-risk creatures will survive and thrive.

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California

Men are often capable of greater things than they perform. They are sent into the world with bills of credit and seldom draw to their full extent. -Horace Walpole, novelist and essayist (24 Sep 1717-1797)

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