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AWADmail Issue 722A Weekly Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Tidbits about Words and Language
From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
It’s Not Easy to Destroy a Book (video, 4.5 min.)
From: Dave Shelles (writesdave gmail.com)
Today’s word calls to mind one of the great relationships in sports -- broadcaster Howard Cosell, who never met a word he didn’t like, and Muhammad Ali, who had a gift of gab of his own. One interview produced this exchange:
Cosell: You’re being extremely truculent.
Shelles, Cheyenne, Wyoming
From: Joe Coughlin (coughlin_joe comcast.net)
Several months ago Tom Bodett told this story on “Wait, wait ... Don’t Tell Me”. Tom Bodett and Howard Cosell were in a broadcast booth, broadcasting a sporting event and were “on the air”. Cosell commented how “truculent” a participant was. Cosell paused and then speculated, out loud, that Bodett didn’t know what he meant when he used the word “truculent”. Bodett protested, saying that he did know. Bodett then said, “Used in a sentence I might say, ‘As soon as I’m done with it, I’ll return the truck you lent.’”
Joe Coughlin, San Jose, California
From: Dominique Mellinger (dominiquemellinger yahoo.co.uk)
Strangely enough, the word truculent in French, same word, is a very
positive word applied to people larger than life, with a great ability
with words and the language in general. A lot of Shakespeare characters
can be seen as truculents in the French sense, a storyteller often is,
Gérard Depardieu can be at times and in real life too. It describes
someone who takes a lot of space, speaks with wit and laughs aloud,
shows a lot of panache and tells impressive stories, some kind of
big-hearted lion without the cruelty nor the claws.
Dominique Mellinger, Gorze, France
From: Karen Larson (cache.seeker gmail.com)
Just yesterday, while watching Simply Ming, I heard that word used as a description of pasta sauce he made. Didn’t sound right. Got out my old Webster’s Dictionary. Decided I didn’t want to make that recipe...
Karen Larson, Jamul, California
From: Lora Walker (bookabrick aol.com)
When I first saw the word, I imagined it meant “having an insatiable appetite for truth.” I imagine that personal connotation will always be in the background for me, even though I now know it simply means truthful.
Lora Walker, Tacoma, Washington
From: Alex McCrae (ajmccrae277 gmail.com)
For a nano-second there I confused today’s word “doughty” with “dowdy”, but on reading its meaning... “brave; courageous; determined”, I immediately realized these two descriptive words were miles apart in terms of definition... the former having a decidedly positive meaning, whilst the latter, far from it. They aren’t even pronounced similarly.
“Dowdy”, more often describing the sartorial image projected by an “older” woman, means old-fashioned, or lacking stylishness... in sum, unattractive, or shabby looking. Hardly reflective of a doughty individual. But the two character traits are not necessarily mutually exclusive in a singular person. Disheveled, old-school absent-minded profs come to mind.
Alex McCrae, Van Nuys, California
From: Dharam Khalsa (dharamkk2 gmail.com)
Dharam Khalsa, Espanola, New Mexico
From: Anu Garg (words at wordsmith.org)
“No wonder that Ted is so truculent,”
The slippery-smooth Dapper Dan,
Groaned Samson, “When I was hirsute,
In politics, being veracious
The Knight though courageous and doughty
From: Phil Graham (pgraham1946 cox.net)
I’m angry! That truculent me has no brakes!
“What made our unctuous out?,” wondered Huey, Dewey, and Louie.
Sorry I broke your guitar. Irresolute -- you can play it instead.
“Considering his blindness, Mrs. Charles, why did you ha’veracious down that ski slope?”
I doughty was ever afraid of anything.
Phil Graham, Tulsa, Oklahoma
From: Mary Helen Bowrin (marybowrin gmail.com)
Oh, what a magical week meeting old friends. Spice of life meeting new ones. Words are dear friends but as my old autograph book in high school had written in it, “Make new friends but keep the old, one is silver, the other gold.” Love you, Anu.
Mary Helen Bowrin, Kemptville, Canada
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:High is our calling, Friend! -- Creative Art / (Whether the instrument of words she use, Or pencil pregnant with ethereal hues,) / Demands the service of a mind and heart. -William Wordsworth, poet (1770-1850)