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passible (PAS-uh-buhl) adjective

Capable of feeling, especially pain or suffering; susceptible to sensation.

[From Middle English, from Middle Latin passibilis, from Latin passus, past participle of pati (to suffer).]

"Only the most sensitive of seats in the thinnest of pants worn by the most passible of owners will detect differing harmonies of the Accords." Paul Dean, Honda Finally Comes to an Accord With a V-6, The Los Angeles Times, Nov 25, 1994.

It's good to have modern computers around that can scan thousands of lines of text in a jiffy and provide quick fixes with their handy find-and-replace feature. I heard there was a story in a newspaper that talked about the dramatic turnaround of a business. It had been deeply in debt earlier but now it was "running in the African American."

While these electronic beasts are useful to keep our wayward fingers in check and take care of sundry typos that creep in, they are no substitute for humans. This week's words are the ones that defeat the spell-checker. You could use them to your advantage: to defeat your opponents in a game of Scrabble. These words appear to be mis-spellings of common words but they are fully accredited, licensed, certificated words from a dictionary -- as official as any word can be in the English language. -Anu


It is a bit embarrassing to have been concerned with the human problem all one's life and find at the end that one has no more to offer by way of advice than "try to be a little kinder." -Aldous Huxley, novelist (1894-1963)

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