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Dec 10, 2023
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AWADmail Issue 1119

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

Sponsor’s Message: Go Army, beat Navy. Introducing our West Point UP-i-tees: “The Corps Has”, “Sing Second”, and “How is the cow?” A fantastic gift! Explore the collection >

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

Hallucinate, AI, Authenticity: Dictionaries’ Words of the Year Make Our Biggest Fears Clear
The Guardian

Scientists Have Reported a Breakthrough In Understanding Whale Language

From: Kathleen Marx (kathleen66207 yahoo.com)
Subject: Leah!

I LOVE Leah Palmer week! I uttered a squeak of delight when I saw that we were to see her amazing work again!

Kathleen Marx, Prairie Village, Kansas

Email of the Week -- Go Army, beat Navy! -- Explore our USMA UP-i-tees (sponsor’s message).

From: Rachael Cohen (rachaelamycohen gmail.com)
Subject: Aristology

I just started reading Poison a la Carte in one of Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe trilogies. Murder takes place at a dinner hosted by the fine-dining group, the Ten for Aristology. Wolfe looked up the word in the dictionary and “declared that ‘aristology’ meant the science of dining, and therefore the Ten were witlings, since dining was not a science but an art.” (Three at Wolfe’s Door, p. 2)

Anyone who wishes to improve their vocabulary by reading mystery novels should select Rex Stout’s work. His detective’s diction is precise and erudite.

Rachael Cohen, Putney, Vermont

From: Rick Carmickle (via website comments)
Subject: Aristology and aristocracy

Aristology and aristocracy are unrelated words.

From Liddell and Scott, the academic classical Greek lexicon:

Ariston is a neuter noun:
ἄ̄ριστον, τό, morning meal, breakfast, twice in Hom., later, breakfast was called ἀκράτισμα, and ἄριστον was the midday meal, our luncheon, cf. Th.4.90, 7.81; (source)

Aristos is an adjective:
ἄριστος [ᾰ], η, ον, “best in its kind, and so in all sorts of relations, of persons, best in birth and rank, noblest. (source)

Rick Carmickle, Denver, Colorado

From: Steven Lipschultz (mrweevy yahoo.com)
Subject: patriotism

I realize that patriotism is not enough. I must have no hatred or bitterness towards anyone. -Edith Cavell, nurse and humanitarian (4 Dec 1865-1915)

I am a Dodgers fan because I happened to be born in Los Angeles. Patriotism is no less arbitrary.

Steve Lipschultz, Truckee, California

From: Bryan Todd (bryansink yahoo.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--heliophilous

For someone heliophilous like me living at 40° north latitude, Dec always brought on heavy seasonal affective disorder. (By contrast, in June I’m practically manic.) This dogged me for decades. The answer for me, I discovered, is a midday outdoor walk, 20+ minutes every day, regardless of the temperature. (I’m lucky enough to work from home.) If the sun is shining, even in Dec the dose of direct light on my face and neck is enough to keep me energized and sane.

Bryan Todd, Lincoln, Nebraska

From: Brenda J. Gannam (gannamconsulting earthlink.net)
Subject: Umbriferous

A man nicknamed his girlfriend Umbriferous because she was always casting shade on someone or something.

Brenda J. Gannam, Brooklyn, New York

Strange Bedfellows
From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: diablerie and lotic

Our word diablerie jogged my memory of the macabre painting, “The Nightmare”, by the 18th-century Swiss-born British artist Henry Fuseli. Is the fair maiden wrapped in a deep dream-state, as the title of the piece suggests, or has she expired, perchance from sheer fright? In my scenario, Froggy has replaced Fuseli’s mare’s head emerging from the drapery as portrayed in the original.

The word lotic reminded me of a unique family of birds, namely the dippers. Their preferred habitat is fast-flowing mountain streams. These diminutive, dark-plumaged, chunky birds dive into the rushing current in search of food, which includes insect larvae, small amphibians, tiny fish and fish eggs. Dippers are able to stay submerged for up to half a minute. They’re called dippers because they dip (bob) their bυtts while perched stream-side.

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California


This week’s theme: Illustrated words
1. Aristology
2. Diablerie
3. Heliophilous
4. Lotic
5. Umbriferous
= 1. Foodie sup rule
2. Boorish theurgist
3. Solar clime & utilities -- I like both
4. Stream dweller
5. Shadowy
= 1. Rule of how to eat
2. Suspicious or hideous ill
3. Likes day more
4. Water dribbles there
5. Limits light
-Shyamal Mukherji, Mumbai, India (mukherjis hotmail.com) -Josiah Winslow, Franklin, Wisconsin (winslowjosiah gmail.com)
= 1. Elite hobby; Milieu? Uh, it is food!
2. Sorcerer
3. I like solar light
4. Stream dwellers
5. I put out shadows
= 1. Bellies sigh it’s how to eat
2. Impious sorcery
3. Like to be out of dull shade
4. Water hurries, rill
5. Dim
-Dharam Khalsa, Burlington, North Carolina (dharamkk2 gmail.com) -Julian Lofts, Auckland, New Zealand (jalofts xtra.co.nz)

Make your own anagrams and animations.



Aristology, gourmets will know,
Is the art of fine dining. To throw
A banquet at which
Ev’ry dish is both rich
And in synch with all others, just so.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

I told the gourmand on our date,
“I believe aristology’s great!”
He too was gung-ho,
And the next thing you know
That fellow was licking his plate!
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

Mickey D’s was Joe’s place for a meal;
Resigned, he was keeping it real.
Aristology lay
Far ahead, though he may
Beg or borrow, or God forbid, steal!
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

Most people today eat and run,
Consuming fast food on a bun.
That is folly, for me.
Aristology, see,
Is fine dining, and so much more fun.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

Said the cordon bleu chef, “Areestology
Pays my bills, and eet’s partly psychology.
As part of my job,
Clients theenk I’m a snob,
And for zees I weel make no apology!”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Though those parents may think their kids swell,
They are terrible brats, I can tell.
Their diablerie’s why
Each new nanny will cry,
For those children are charges from hell.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

We are playing a game on a board.
You’ve collected some cash; you have scored!
When out of the blue
You are wiped out! Yes, you
Faced diablerie -- act of the Lord?
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

Since her boys were too quiet in bed,
What diablerie did lurk ahead.
The mom knew they would
Be up to no good.
“Now don’t even think it!” she said.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“Drink this hemlock to end it all, Socrates,
For we’re tired of all your diableries.”
And he did so, with hopes
He could outwit those dopes:
“Plato, hurry and fetch me Hippocrates.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Heliophilous persons invade
Beach and garden, eschewing the shade.
When the sun takes his stand,
And bedazzles the land,
Then all manner of flesh is displayed.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

A traveler most heliophilous
Was happy to tour the Acropolis.
“However,” he said,
“I view with much dread
The subway in any metropolis.”
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

No question about it -- that’s moi.
When the sun comes up, I let out “Aaaah!”
A heliophilous chick;
Days of gloom and I’m sick!
And why, you ask? Je ne sais pas.
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

At the beach to the girls heliophilous,
Billy Crystal intoned, “You look mahvelous.”
But alas, those great tans
We may lose as the sands
Wash away in a climate apocalypse.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Quite at home in the fast-flowing stream
Are the salmon, the trout, and the bream.
Lotic all, there they breed --
Meet and mate, spread their seed --
All three fish, gourmets highly esteem.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

In the Tiber that’s flowing through Rome
Lives a mermaid. It’s there she’s at home.
With proper decorum
She visits the Forum.
It’s all in her lotic genome.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

A creature that’s lotic would know
It’s best if you go with the flow.
This is true for a trout
And I haven’t a doubt,
It’s also how humans should go.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

Let me live in a lotic environ.
Let it be with a young, gorgeous siren!
We’ll swim and carouse
Long as nature allows;
Of that life who would ever be tirin’?
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

I once knew a fellow named Jim,
Who liked to each day, take a swim.
Asked why he would go pick
A pastime so lotic?
He said flowing water suits him.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“Every day for my workout aerobic,”
Said the duck, “I come here where it’s lotic.
Then you guys come along;
But thank God you aimed wrong!’
Cheney’s friend said, “To shoot me was low, Dick.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


If you aren’t heliophilous, shade
Is your preference -- seek out a glade.
An umbriferous tree
Will look kindly on thee,
And ensure the sun’s rays don’t invade.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

It was leafy and therefore umbriferous.
On its branches were songbirds vociferous.
In the shade of that tree
I was napping, you see.
It was all simply so soporiferous.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

Peter Pan’s lost his shadow, alack!
But a Darling young girl sews it back.
He’s umbriferous then
And he’s happy again
Until Hook and the pirates attack.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

You can’t see the paths for the trees,
But that’s why we go there -- one sees
Umbriferous giants.
And nature, not science
Bids, “Stay here as long as you please!”
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

Now the scientist took many trips,
Just to see at first hand an eclipse.
With the love of his heart,
When the viewing did start,
‘Neath umbriferous sights, they locked lips.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

Said the T-Rex, “I’m not just carnivorous;
My roar also makes me vociferous!”
A small mammal replied,
“But you soon will have died;
See that asteroid? So large it’s umbriferous!”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


“I study the odd British fondness for descendants of ancient feudal tyrants,” said the aristologist.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“During her marriage to Charles, the princess did 100 sit-ups a day in this room. She called the regimen Diablerie,” said the palace tour guide.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“Doc, all night I dream of filling up party balloons and watching them float away.” “Ah! Zis is classic case of Heliophilous Complex.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“Hel-lotic!” The vet greeted the nasty bug he had just removed from the Corgi’s ear.
-Joan Perrin, Port Jefferson Station, New York (perrinjoan aol.com)

“Ma’am, I understand that Lyme disease is a serious problem where you come from, but you’ll be very hot in those clothes. I assure you we have an extremely lotic population here in Egypt,” said the Sahara tour guide.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“What’s with the Mexican hats every day?” “It’s my new thing. I’m s-umbriferous.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

For what are stars but asterisks. To point a human life? -Emily Dickinson, poet (10 Dec 1830-1886)

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