Bibulous definition

Bibulous  Now that is a word that I have never heard before.

As usual, I always look for different words as I read blogs, articles, etc.  I hear many on the podcasts I listen to.

In researching the fact that the inventor of the Pet Rock, Gary Dahl, died recently, one website had an interesting phrase.

In detailing how Dahl came up with the idea of the Pet Rock, the site stated that it all happened in a bar in a “flash of bibulous inspiration.”

Bibulous means excessively fond of drinking alcohol.  Additional definitions include absorbent or spongy.

Origin   1665-1665-Latin bibulus (bib (ere) to drink (cognate with Sanskrit píbati(he) drinks) + -ulus ulous )

Montebank — do you know one?

montebank definition


Mountebank is a word that I have never encountered.  I read the word recently, and thought I should investigate it.

Mountebank definition –

a person who sells quack medicines from a platform or a a boastful unscrupulous pretender.  This person may even be labeled a charlatan.
Origin of mountebank  — Italian montimbanco, from montare to mount + in in, on + banco, bancabench    It was first used in 1577.

Synonoms for mountebank:    phony, fraud, imposter, trickster, hoaxer

When thinking of this term, the 1970s craze of the pet rock came to mind.  Some might say that Gary Dahl, the inventor of this toy was a charlatan.  I disagree.  In my mind he was a marketing genius.  I must admit to falling for this crazy fad at the time.

By the way, Dahl died on March 23 of this year.



What is a quick serve restaurant?

quick_serve_restaurantQuick serve restaurant

This term has cropped up on some of the reality restaurant shows I have been watching.

The quick serve restaurant is known for fast, efficient, take-out-ready foods at affordable prices. Some people use the term in place of the older term of fast food. Quick-service restaurants are often chains.

To confuse the issue, there is also a category of restaurant called fast, casual dining.  Here are some distinctions of the fast casual eating experience.

  • The prices are little higher. (from $7-$15 for a meal, depending on the location)
  • The food is perceived to be higher quality–steak may be on the menu.
  • The food is sometimes perceived to be healthier—and may include organic food.
  • The food is sometimes made fresh, sometimes right in front of you.
  • The ambiance and decor are nicer.
  • Some even use  non-plastic utensils and plates.
  • Alcohol may be served.
  • You still purchase your food at the counter and then seat yourself.



Freemiums Do you use them?


Freeiums  Are they really free?


Freemium has to be a fairly new word to the English language.   Freemium is a portmanteau, combining the words free and premium.

It is a pricing strategy where a product or service is provided free of charge. The free items usually are digital in nature.  In many cases, it is possible to upgrade to add more than is offered by the basic free product.

A free trial is not a freemium.  With a trial, you get to try something for free but only for a limited time.

A good example of a freemium is Linkedin.   This site allows anyone (for free) to add their profile, picture and bio.  If you want more features, you must pay Linkedin.

Another example—I have downloaded some digital books recently.  Yes, they are really free.  Sometimes the site offering them will show  you additional products or services for purchase. In many cases, it seems they also want to capture your email in hopes of selling you something in the future.

What good freemiums have you encountered?



Jail vs. prison


Jail vs. prison

I read a blogs about words, follow Facebook groups that deal with words and I listen to word-related podcasts.

This topic came up recently a about two words that are similar.  The words are jail and prison.  In the U.S., it is fairly common that a jail is used for lesser offenses and less serious crimes.  Prisons are for felons and those who will be incarcerated for many years, if not for life.

Anyway, someone online pointed out that by adding an “er” to each of the words, jail and prison, the results are quite different.

A jailer is someone who watches over those who are locked up.   A prisoner is some who is locked up.

Do you know of any other words that change completely when you add a prefix or suffix?


Puns for the educated mind

Puns for Educated Minds

  1. 1. The fattest knight at King Arthur’s round table was Sir Cumference. He acquired his size from too   much pi.
  2. I thought I saw an eye-doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian.
  3. She was only a whisky puns_bad_jokesmaker,but he loved her still.
  1. . A rubber-band pistol was confiscated from an algebra class, because it was a weapon of math disruption.
  2. No matter how much you push the envelope, it’ll still be stationery.
  3. A dog gave birth to puppies near the road and was cited for littering.
  4.  A grenade thrown into a kitchen in France would result in Linoleum Blownapart.
  5. Two silk worms had a race. They ended up in a tie.
  6.  A hole has been found in the nudist-camp wall. The police are looking  into it.
  7. Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
  8. Atheism is a non-prophet organization.
  9. Two hats were hanging on a hat rack in the hallway. One hat said to the other:  ‘You stay here; I’ll go on a head.’
  10. I wondered why the baseball kept getting bigger. Then it hit me.
  11. A sign on the lawn at a drug rehab center said: ‘Keep off the Grass.’
  12. The midget fortune-teller who escaped from prison was a small medium at large.
  13. The soldier who survived mustard gas and pepper spray is now a seasoned veteran.
  14. A backward poet writes inverse.
  15. In a democracy it’s your vote that counts. In feudalism it’s your count that votes.
  16. When cannibals ate a missionary, they got a taste of religion.
  17. If you jumped off the bridge in Paris, you’d be in Seine.
  18. A vulture carrying two dead raccoons boards an airplane. The flight attendant looks at him and says, ‘I’m sorry, only one carrion allowed per passenger.’
  19. Two fish swim into a concrete wall. One turns to the other and says, ‘Dam!’
  20.  Two Eskimos sitting in a kayak were chilly, so they lit a fire in the craft. Unsurprisingly it sank, proving once again that you can’t have your kayak and heat it too.
  21. Two hydrogen atoms meet. One says, ‘I’ve lost my electron.’ The other says, ‘Are you sure?’ The first replies, ‘Yes, I’m positive.’
  22. Did you hear about the Buddhist who refused Novocain during a root canal? His goal: transcend dental medication.
  23. There was the person who sent ten puns to friends, with the hope that at least one of the puns would make them laugh. No pun in ten did.




Word play — funny definitions

Word play comes in many forms.

Here are some examples of funny definitions for everyday words.    (Thanks to a friend and reader of this blog, Don Reilly, for this contribution.  Check out some of his photos at DJR Imaging)


1.  ARBITRATOR:  A cook that leaves Arby’s to work at McDonald’s

2.  AVOIDABLE:  What a bullfighter tries to do

  1. BERNADETTE:  The act of torching a mortgage
  1. BURGLARIZE:  What a crook sees with
  1. CONTROL:  A short, ugly inmate
  1. COUNTERFEITERS:  Workers who put together kitchen cabinets
  1. ECLIPSE: What an Cockney barber does for a living
  1. EYEDROPPER:  A clumsy Ophthalmologist
  1. HEROES:  What a guy in a boat does
  1. LEFT BANK:  What the robber did when his bag was full of money
  1. MISTY: How golfers create divots
  1. PARADOX:  Two physicians
  1. PARASITES:  What you see from the top of the Eiffel Tower
  1. PHARMACIST:  A helper on the farm
  1. POLARIZE:  What penguins see with
  1. PRIMATE:  Removing your spouse from in front of the TV
  1. RELIEF:  What trees do in the spring
  1. RUBBERNECK: What you do to relax your wife
  1. SELFISH: What the owner of a seafood store does
  1. SUDAFED: Brought litigation against a government official