Titivate is the word today. I got this one from one of the Words By Bob readers. She said the word was used in a television. She thinks it was used incorrectly, and the interviewer was looking for the word tittilate.
Here are some definitions of titivate:
To make small improvements or alteration to (one’s appearance etc.)
to add some finishing touches to.
to make smart or spruce
Synonyms for titivate include beautify, deck out, embellish, gussy up, prettify, smarten and spiff up
The word comes from a modification of earlier spelling– tidivate . It may come from the word tidy and-vate. Some suggest it follows the pattern of words like cultivate and renovate
Alternate spellings are tidivate, tiddivate or tittivate
Posted in Use the right words, Word origins
Tagged alter appearance, beautify, deck out, definition of titivate, embellish, gussy up, make small improvements, make smart, meaning of titivate, prettify, spiff up, spruce up, tiddivate, tidivate, tittivate
Lemniscate is not a term most of us use but we have seen the figure the term represents.
A lemniscate is a figure-eight shaped curve. Many, like me, refer to it as the infinity symbol.
The label lemniscate makes sence because it comes from the Latin word lemniscatus—meaning decorated with ribbons. This in turn relates to the Greek Island of Lemnos. On this island, ribbons were worn as decorations. Some think the word derives from the wool that the ribbons were made of.
The first usage of the word leminscate was in about 1781.
New Latin lemniscata, from feminine of Latin lemniscatus with hanging ribbons, from lemniscus
Carhawk or car-hawk is the word for today.
This word comes to me because I heard it talked about on a podcast I listened to yesterday called A Way With Words. If you are into words–a word nerd–like I am, I suggest you give it a listen.
The other factor that made carhawk relevant is that it has snowed here in Colorado every day for the past few days. Additionally, the temperature has been below zero when we wake up in the morning.
Carhawk is a play on words for the term Mohawk–as in Mohawk haircut. As you may know, this Native American-style haircut is basically a strip of hair down the middle of the head, with the rest shaved.
It refers to how your car looks after you wipe the snow from the windshield. On some cars, like my van, it is next to impossible to reach the center of the glass.
This strip of snow that remains is a carhawk.
I submit that it could also be called a snowhawk.
Horologe was a clue in a recent crossword puzzle I completed.
This word, horologe, was new to me so I thought I should blog about it on WordsByBob.com.
The definition of horologe is any instrument for indicating time—especially a sundial or an early form of clock.
Next time you do a crossword puzzle, you can answer this clue with ease.
This is an interesting set of words that are used in different ways.
First, it is not uncommon to hear some one say, “What are you up to?” Ignoring the preposition at the end of the word, it is interesting that the “up” has nothing to do with height.
This term “up to” cropped up again the other day. I saw a poster in a business advertising a job opening. This one happened to be for an installer of satellite dishes for television reception.
The part that caught my eye was that the pitch said you can earn, “up to $60,000 in your second year.”
That seems odd to me, and very open-ended. If I earn $15,000, have they failed me? I think not, since I did not exceed their $60K limit.
The same holds true for the numerous weight loss products. Some say you can loss up to $50 pounds in the next six months, or some other number of pounds and months.
Again, if I only lose 2.5 pounds, I have met their statement of losing up to 50 pounds.
So, if you read this post, you can earn up to $100,000 AND lost up to half your body weight.
You are very welcome
Homographs are words of like spelling but with more than one meaning.
A homograph that is also pronounced differently is a heteronym.
You think English is easy??
I think a retired English teacher was bored…THIS IS GREAT!
Read all the way to the end……………..
This took a lot of work to put together!
1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish furniture..
A proverb is a short, pithy statement of a general truth. It condenses common experience into a memorable form. Miguel de Cervantes defined a proverb as “a short sentence based on long experience.”
Well, now there are sayings called anti-proverbs. Another name for anti-proverbs is perverbs since they are a perversion of the original.
Wolfgang Mieder, a professor of German and folklore at the University of Vermont, says anti-proverbs are “parodied, twisted, or fractured proverbs that reveal humorous or satirical speech play with traditional proverbial wisdom”.
I discovered these phrases while surfing the web recently. All of them combine parts of one real proverb with a part of another one.
Here are some examples of these funny sayings. I bet you can figure out the original proverbs.
- No news is the mother of invention
- What doesn’t kill you makes you stranger.
- Don’t count your chickens in midstream
- The road to Hell wasn’t paved in a day or the road to Hell is the spice of life.
- When in Rome, do it yourself.
- Beauty is the best policy.
- Once bitten, three’s a crowd.
- Absence speaks louder than words or absence makes the heart go wonder.
- One good turn is another man’s poison
- A miss is as good as a molehill.
- Virtue is its own punishment.
Posted in Use the right words, Words can be funny
Tagged anti-proverbs are perverbs, combining parts of real proverbs, defiintion of anti-proverb, examples of anti-proverbs, Miguel de Cervanties, parodied, Perverbs, twisted or fractured proverbs, what is an antiproverb, Wolfgang Mieder