Monthly Archives: November 2012

Politically correct holiday greeting?

Political correctness seems to be the way this world is going.

If you have spent any times around public schools. you see it all the time.  We had Christmas vacation (now Holiday vacation) and Easter break (now Spring break.)

Don’t get me started on undocumented workers, etc, verse illegal aliens.

Now we are nearing Christmas. Oops, I said it.  While gong to the bank drive-up window, I was confronted with this the sign show on this post.

If you can’t read it well, it says:

Peace and Joy    Our kindest wishes for you this holiday season

Ephemera What is it?

Ephemera is a word that came up as I was watching television the other night.  The show was about four antique dealers who compete to buy items at large flea markets.  They then resell them at an auction, and the person with the biggest profit wins.

Usually, they are given a certain type of item, era or category to shop for.  In this show, they contestants were supposed to shop for ephemera.

I had heard the term ephemera but was not sure of the meaning.  Through the show and via an only search, here is what I found.

Basically, the term means anything short-lived that is written or printed.   These items are not meant to be retained or preserved. They are useful or important just for a short while.

Ephemera includes stamps, pamphlets, tickets stock certificates, posters, postcards catalogs and greeting cards.

The word is from a Greek words meaning something that lasts no more than a day.

There is even an Ephemera Society of America.

Arcane words by guest blogger Jerry Eckert

One of the joys of being a writer and a member of Northern Colorado Writers (NCW) is that I get to know lots of people who share a love of words.  Some write fiction, some non-fiction, some are into memoirs and others do middle grade or YA.

I saw this post on Facebook from one of those people mentioned above.  I see Jerry Eckert when he is in town at the NCW monthly coffee meetings and at the groups social events.

With Jerry’s permission here is what he wrote recently:

Continue reading

Illegal contraband — a redundancy

Redundant words and phrases interest me.  In the past, I did a blog post on redundant words and more redundant words.

Well, here is another one that bothers me.  On the news I have heard them talk about doing an arrest and finding illegal contraband.  Hmmm.   Isn’t all contraband illegal?   Is there such a thing as legal contraband?

Digging in the dictionary for definitions of contraband, I found this:

Contraband is  anything prohibited by law from being imported or exported.  The term also means illegal or prohibited trade such as smuggling.

Sooo, in my mind saying illegal contraband is a redundancy.