There is something about the sound of a word, not necessarily the meaning, that either makes me cringe or dance the Happy Dance like Snoopy.
My husband and me were having dinner the other night, and as usual, we got into a lively discussion about certain words we loathe and love.
As you can imagine, our list of words we loathe far outnumbered the words we love. This is probably because the words are often used by people we dislike, or have no clue about the context of the word but use it anyway because it sounds cool. Additionally, some of these words just sounded awful–more like crummy–to us.
Surprisingly, most of the words we loathe seem to fall under the edible category:
Panties (these can be edible, ya know)
Agita (This is an Italian word meaning heartburn)
Spunk and/or Spunky
Big-Boned (technically not one word, but two words put together to sound despicable)
I bet you’re thinking, Really? Ejaculate? Yeah. I mean, Ejaculate can mean several things and not what you would typically think (my readers have sex on the brain). It can be a form of crying, or a way to eject something, or someone, from something that, Q, James Bond’s creative inventor from the 007 movies, would design. It’s an odd word, and I can bet any of you reading this that from a sexual perspective you don’t say, “Honey, I’m going to ejaculate now” during your sexual performances. As a woman, it would first make me think, are you half machine? Where’s the mute button? Likewise, it would make me run away; as far away as the milky way. Speaking of milky…
Milky, moist and ointment all seem to fall under the “creamy” category. These words are hated more for their lack of visual appeal. As an example (stick with my thought process on this), there is a person talking non-stop; typically a guy. He blabbers on and on about something, and yet you are intently focusing on a white substance forming within the corners of his mouth. It’s a milky substance; like spit. You would think he would feel it on his lips and wipe it away. He starts to look like a rabid dog. He finishes his conversation and walks away with no hand wiping evident.
That’s why I don’t like the word, milky. I know. I’m weird.
I don’t have a problem with panties or kibble, but my husband does; that’s why they’re on this list. I don’t like the word, juicy, only because a certain perfume or brand uses this name. I tried the perfume and loved it, but stopped buying it. Anything using the word, juicy, on my body is about as appealing and sensual as smearing a half eaten, overly ripe pear on your neck and wrists.
My issue with the word, gill, is simple. A gill is something that is on a fish. If Blue Gill is on a restaurant menu my first thought is toothpicks. Why toothpicks, you ask? Because if I eat a gill, it would get stuck in my teeth like strings of celery or mulch. I don’t make it a practice to eat mulch, but you can never get too much fiber in your diet–Just ask my dogs. I completely understand that a restaurant would not technically serve you a gill attached to a fish (unless you were in China). But, the name alone makes me think that I am.
Agita has been around in my Italian family for generations. “Oh, I have aaaaaaagita.” Pronouncing agita is like pronouncing Chicaaaaaago; it’s typically spoken in a raspy voice while eyes start rolling toward the back of your head. It’s insulting to the cook. It means her (or his) meal caused you heartburn. This would result in the cook walking to the kitchen where she would grab for her wooden spoon, still laden with gravy (not sauce), and throw it at you. Her shoe would be the next weapon thrown at your head if the gravy spoon missed on the first try.
Please exit to your right, and don’t trip over the cement statue of the Virgin Mary or the tiered water fountain on your way out.
For years, the word, irregardless, has been misused. Even though it’s listed in the dictionary (my husband and I have numerous conversations about this), it’s a non-standard word and should not be used because of two negative elements: ir and less. If you want to use the word in an analogy, be my guest. Wait. Don’t be my guest because I won’t invite you.
“Oh, you’re just big-boned.” No–I’m fat. Using the word, big-boned is a nice way of telling me when I was younger that I was fat. There is no such thing as being big-boned. Everyone is born with the same damn bones. They may be longer than yours, but they aren’t any thicker than the average person’s bones. What makes them big is the amount of food you eat. I was fat and I craved crullers, which I never got a chance to eat because they didn’t make them when I was a little girl. Only Aunty Em made them, which makes me switch over to words I love.
I just adore the word, cruller. I’ve only heard it used once my entire life. It was a line that Aunty Em used in, The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy was upset about Toto. Aunty Em handed a plate to Dorothy with what looked like plain donuts and said, “Here–have a cruller.” They actually looked good even though a tornado was heading in their direction. That’s the power of a word for you. I was anticipating what the cruller would have tasted like rather than worrying about the horror that awaited Dorothy and poor Toto with a category 5 tornado headed in their direction.
I love the words, ruckus, martini, cremate, conundrum and penchant.
Ruckus is just a fun word. It reminds me of my dogs. Honestly, Otto, my youngest puppy, should have been named Ruckus. My recent study suggests that one in four puppies need copper wiring from lamp cords in order to satisfy their daily dietary requirements. I’ve never had a puppy pull on lamp cords causing a beautiful mercury silver lamp to come crashing down onto the floor. I won’t discuss the floor lamp in our bedroom that I woke up to one morning; it was a murder scene. I drew a chalk outline, snapped a picture on my iPhone and asked my husband if he could resuscitate it so it could burn bright again.
Cremate is easy to say and do. It’s a no fuss situation–one that I embrace wholeheartedly. Conundrum is an awesome word. It’s one of those words that Bugs Bunny could get away with right after saying, “I should have taken a left at Albuquerque.”
Penchant can mean a variety of things. You have a penchant for eating spaghetti. You have a penchant for making spaghetti. Liking, talent, beliefs, skills. Penchant is a very versatile word.
Last but not least we can’t forget the word, martini. I don’t think I need to go into why I love this word. I certainly can’t drink them like I used to, but the word flows off your tongue perfectly even if you’re drunk. You become a classy drunk because you can’t slur the word, martini. It’s shaken, not slurred. Get it?
I know, I kill me.
But, you can break those fancy martini glasses with grandiose hand gestures. This is part of the night’s program where you may want to consider switching over to a sippy-cup and wearing non-skid socks like a toddler.
As you can see, I have past experience in drinking martinis and walking at the same time. I only feel it’s my duty to impart my wisdom on my readers so I can spare some of your martini glasses from an unpleasant and unexpected death.