A few weeks ago I asked for your favorite word. After including some of mine as well, I collected thirty-five samples, now presented here in mini-dictionary form. Instead of constructing a poem from the words (though I challenge readers to do so!), I did use 2, 4, 9, 18, 26, 28 and 33 in a recent review. Go on, don’t be insouciant–use one today in your blog post or in conversation.

But don’t stop there–on to sayings. Whether corporate cliches or proverbs from our elders, we’ve got ’em, use them, in writing perhaps try to avoid them or at least use them wisely, and now we can ruminate (#29) on them. One I used recently: Whatever curdles your cream, a version of to each his own, whatever floats your boat, and so forth . . .

And you? I’d love to know your favorite sayings, either ones you love to use, or love to hate.

    1. adumbrate: report or represent in an outline
    2. anodyne:
    deliberately uncontentious or inoffensive
    3. bollocks:
    expression of contempt
    4. chatoyant:
    having a changeable luster, like a cat’s eye
    5. desuetude:
    the cessation of use, discontinuance of practice or custom
    6. embellish: make more attractive by adding features
    7. epitome:
    perfect example of a quality or type
    8. ethereal:
    extremely delicate or light, too perfect for this world
    9. fossick:
    to rummage, search
    10. fostoogle:
    confuse
    11. gloaming:
    twilight, dusk
    12. hubris:
    excessive pride or self-confidence
    13. hyperbole:
    exaggerated claims not meant to be taken literally
    14. imponderable:
    difficult to assess or estimate
    15. infinitesimal:
    extremely small
    16. insouciance:
    casual lack of concern, indifference
    17. knackered:
    tired out, exhausted
    18. legerdemain:
    skillful use of hands when performing conjuring tricks
    19. masticate:
    chew
    20. mellifluous:
    sweet or musical, pleasant to hear
    21. myopic:
    lacking imagination, foresight, or intellectual insight
    22. nadir:
    lowest point in the fortunes or a person or organization
    23. nefarious:
    wicked or criminal
    24. nestle:
    lie comfortably within or against something
    25. penultimate:
    second to last in a series
    26. protean:
    tending to change frequently or easily
    27. quagmire:
    current Iraq war [okay: awkward, complex or hazardous situation]
    28. raconteur:
    person who tells anecdotes in a skillful or amusing way
    29. ruminate:
    think deeply about something
    30. smithereens:
    small pieces
    31. snarky:
    sharply critical, cutting, snide
    32. spifflicate:
    treat roughly or severely, destroy
    33. success:
    accomplishment of an aim or purpose
    34. swivet:
    a fluster or panic
    35. tangelo:
    a hybrid of the tangerine and grapefruit

Definitions from the OED

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