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Apr 14, 2024
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Words from chem lab

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AWADmail Issue 1137

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

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From: Rosann Farber-Petes (rosann_farber med.unc.edu)
Subject: Precipitate

Many years ago I wrote to a Nobel-prize winning scientist in France to inquire about the possibility of obtaining a postdoctoral position in his group. His polite but brief reply stated that his lab was “so close to saturation, that, if I add one more person, I’m afraid it will precipitate.”

Rosann Farber-Petes, Chapel Hill, North Carolina

From: Stephen Smith (lfssfs verizon.net)
Subject: precipitate

“If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the precipitate” ... unless one is a colloid.

Stephen Smith

From: Matt A Nash (mattanash live.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--precipitate

It occurs to me that some people could best become part of the solution if they would simply dissolve.

Matt Nash, Whidbey Island, Washington

From: Milo Grika (milo grika.com)
Subject: Re: A.Word.A.Day--precipitate

Little Miss Muffet
Sat on a tuffet,
Eating her casein precipitate and solution;

Along came a spider,
Who sat down beside her,
But the cheese had bestowed her a firm resolution.

Milo Grika, St. Paul, Minnesota

From: Troels Forchhammer (troels forchhammer.net)
Subject: solution

I have always liked the oldie “Technically, alcohol is a solution.”

Troels Forchhammer, Hedehusene, Denmark

From: Terry Stone (cgs7952 bellsouth.net)
Subject: When Titrate Requires an Adverb

Doses of medication can be titrated, but it is important to add a specific adverb particle -- up or down -- when giving an instruction about it. A physician will often tell a patient to “titrate the dosage up” (or down) to adjust the quantity to be dispensed, usually in tiny increments. This is often necessary when attempting to determine if changing how much is taken will counter adverse symptoms and side effects, particularly when dealing with hormones. A related word, titer, is used as medical shorthand to quantify the amount of a particular substance in an ampule of blood drawn in a lab and may be described as high or low, as in “Your Lyme titer came back high.”

Terry Stone, Goldendale, Washington

From: John Nugée (john nugee.org.uk)
Subject: A.Word.A.Day--crucible

Snooker fans -- especially those in the UK -- will know the Crucible as the name of the theatre where the World Snooker Championship is played each year. It is in Sheffield, and well qualifies as both “a trying experience” for the players and “a place where forces interact to bring about great changes.”

John Nugée, London, UK

Shrink Rap
From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
Subject: sublimate and volatile

Sigmund Freud defined sublimation as redirecting primal/instinctual impulses (the Id) to something more socially acceptable. Oftentimes he cited sεxually obsessed artists, who he contended, creatively sublimate their carnal urges into their artworks, rather than acting on them. Psychiatrist Carl Jung, Freud’s younger heir apparent, wasn’t totally sold on Freud’s concept of sublimation, more focused on his self-coined personality concepts of “anima”/”animus”, “archetypes” and the “collective unconscious”.

Whirling Devilish
When it comes to volatile comic book or animated cartoon characters, for me, the Incredible Hulk and the Tasmanian Devil (aka Taz), come to mind. True confession, I have a particular soft-spot for the whirling dervish-like, devilish Taz, since in the early ‘90s I had the privilege of designing key background layouts for the resurrected Taz, for “Taz-mania”, at Warner Bros. Studios. Taz, back in the day, was one of the most beloved of Warner

characters. And yet, inexplicably, he had a very limited early run.

Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California


This week’s theme: Words from chem lab
1. Precipitate
2. Titrate
3. Crucible
4. Volatile
5. Sublimate
= 1. Throw; weather
2. Test the limit
3. Vessel, pot, tub
4. Be mercurial, fickle
5. Impact: solid became air
= 1. All the leftovers
2. Stir ‘til I am altered
3. Bucket with a hot brew
4. Seismic impact
5. Become pure
-Dharam Khalsa, Burlington, North Carolina (dharamkk2 gmail.com) -Josiah Winslow, Franklin, Wisconsin (winslowjosiah gmail.com)
This theme: Words from chem lab
1. Precipitate
2. Titrate
3. Crucible
4. Volatile
5. Sublimate
= 1. Cause
2. Test chemical with probe
3. Thermic pot, it is torture
4. Labile, flammable
5. Divert
-Julian Lofts, Auckland, New Zealand (jalofts xtra.co.nz)

Make your own anagrams and animations.



Your precipitate action, young sir,
Caused a chain of events to occur.
You ignored, “Do Not Smoke!” --
Irresponsible bloke,
And the school has burned down -- Saboteur!
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

He’s sidetracked by any distraction
And prone to precipitate action.
The result is a mess,
So Doc’s patients express
Their general dissatisfaction.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“Having dinner with me may precipitate
Your attempt to a good lover imitate,”
Worried Stormy. “I’ll pay,”
Answered Donald, “OK?
And a POTUS they cannot incriminate.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Uncle’s crankiness gets out of hand --
There are limits to what one can stand --
So, we titrate his mood
With strong drink and rich food;
While he sleeps it all off, life is grand!
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

Dear doctor, I hope and I trust
My blood pressure meds you’ll adjust.
Please titrate the dose;
So far you’re not close --
Right now I don’t feel so robust.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“Me a highly intelligent primate,”
Said Oog; “next to others, no lightweight.
So incredibly bright
That to stay warm at night,
Into air, greenhouse gases me titrate.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


Fiery crucible maketh the man --
That’s to say, if he’s willing, it can.
Trials expose what is dross,
Which, let go -- it’s no loss --
Will leave only pure gold -- that’s the plan.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

In Salem, the life was serene,
Until rumors abounded, obscene.
And the people, seducible,
Then lived through a crucible --
A witch-hunt like Trump’s never seen.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

A crucible, yes -- an ordeal,
Was Trump’s time in office, I feel.
His term was so trying,
I often was crying --
That some want him back is surreal.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

The day I tried out for a musical
Was like being inside of a crucible.
When my time came to dance,
They took one little glance
And said, “Next please; this one isn’t usable.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


“Our headteacher -- we must call him, ‘Sir’ --
Is a volatile man.” “I concur!
Sweet and gentle one mo’,
Then, for no cause, he’ll blow.”
“And no knowing when this will occur.”
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

On abortion Trump’s waffled again,
As he does more than just now and then.
His volatile views
Are always bad news.
Some day he’ll be muzzled. But when??
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

A volatile temper he’s got;
Trump’s famed for erupting a lot.
A tantrum he’ll throw
(With ketchup, you know!)
Behaving maturely he’s not.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

We never know what she will do..
In behavior she’s nothing like you!
You are calm under stress,
She’s a volatile mess
It’s amazing you’re sisters, you two!
-Bindy Bitterman, Chicago, Illinois (bindy eurekaevanston.com)

Said Spock, “McCoy’s temper is volatile;
I’m finding him highly illogical.”
Answered Kirk, “Don’t you fret;
With the ratings we get,
Season 4 appears highly improbable.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


I have urges, all common to men,
Which I sublimate, channel, and then
Use the energy gained
To work hard, unconstrained,
And I learned how to do this through Zen.
-Tony Holmes, Launceston, UK (tony_holmes54 outlook.com)

When you sublimate carnal desires,
It is known, here’s what often transpires.
According to Freud
You’ll be overjoyed
Writing lim’ricks to put out those fires.
-Rudy Landesman, New York, New York (ydur36 hotmail.com)

A rodeo star they call “Tex”
Is plagued by some urges that vex.
He feels better now
That he’s lassoed a cow;
It sublimates yearnings for sεx.
-Marion Wolf, Bergenfield, New Jersey (marionewolf yahoo.com)

“Though ya ply me wi’ gold by the ‘undredweight,
You’ll still ‘ave to put on a rubber, mate,”
Said the tart to her john.
“Though ya don’t want one on,
That desire o’ yours ya must sublimate.”
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)


“When you’re served a little glass of the island’s famous Limoncello DiCa-precipitate-ypically to your usual habit of gulping down your drinks,” said the guidebook.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“We titrate-rs like you to the foremast and flog ‘em,” said Admiral Nelson to the sailor discovered to be spying for the French.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“I’m afraid you can’t join our crucible,” said the rowing team captain to the young woman with multiple personality disorder.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“This is our chance for a celebrity bathroom renovation. Send Robert Du-volatile sample of the one we propose,” the interior decorator instructed her assistant.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

“These sea biscuits o’ yours are simply sublimate-y,” said the sailor to the cook.
-Steve Benko, New York, New York (stevebenko1 gmail.com)

The supreme accomplishment is to blur the line between work and play. -Arnold J. Toynbee, historian (14 Apr 1889-1975)

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