arteejee

A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Friday, April 08, 2016

Egbert Souse’s Compendium of Rare, Archaic, and Little Used Verbiage



During one of my commutes this week, I was stricken with an ailment which I will call fluric. I define fluric as a moment of anxiety (or panic) felt at the sight of snow flurries falling on a date well after the official arrival of spring. The attack is alleviated only upon the realization that the “flurries” are actually blossoms falling from trees and blown about by a nice, stiff spring breeze.

This word will be my contribution to western culture whose residents are compelled to create innovations to language, the arts, and sciences. It is my hope that my humble contribution will be added to the word registry listed at the top of this blog entry. Mr. Souse’s (a breve over the “e”) dictionary is an exhaustive listing of unique and interesting terms (at which many people may sniff) and are nothing more than fifty cent words.   

Usage of these terms does pose a danger of abuse by overuse.  Wisely dispersed, the words could be a sign of class. Once abused, they can become the legendary half dollar words which would have prompted our blue collar ancestors to snort in contempt.

All of this contemplation on linguistics comes to mind in the form of a challenge directed at Warrior Queen a few months ago. My dear spouse’s blog (From My Brain to My Mouth) is, as the title suggests, brief and to the point. She writes with short bursts of vernacular that can dip below the level of the gutter, but that is her style, and I respect that. My blog, I must confess, tends to be more garrulous.

In contrast, we daily read another blog, Spo Reflections, a collection of thoughtful essays on living in this modern western culture we refer to as civilization. Seriously, our knowledge of the English language is greatly enriched whenever the Spo Board of Directors allows the author to employ little used words. We race to Google the words and once again enjoy the experience of acquiring knowledge, which is something we may not have always appreciated in our youth. 

We at arteejee suspect that the Board has an original copy of Mr. Souse’s compendium. By the way, don’t look for it on Amazon. It is long out of print - the fourth and last edition was published in 1940 - and I guarantee that it will not be found in any rare book stores; if merchants of said product even still exist in the brick and mortar sense.

The challenge laid down in front of Warrior Queen was for her to write a blog entry in the style of Spo Reflections and for Spo to write an entry in her style. At last report, Warrior Queen was still mulling her options. We don’t know what the Spo Board of Directors thinks of the idea: they haven’t returned our phone calls.

In any event, I surmise that we will be plumbing the depths of Mr. Souse’s volume of language enhancement for Warrior Queen to do the work any sort of justice. We do so to be genuine, not artificial. We will not be accused of being frauds, pecksniffs or tartuffes! Nor will we stand for such cognomen labels as luddy-duddies, mooncalves, or jabbernows. We will defy all attempts to demean our efforts to acquire an adscitious excrescence to our understanding of the English communication...

(EDITOR’S NOTE: We are ending this entry here as it has gotten too silly. You’ll thank us later.)

(Thank you for reading. We hope we did Mr. Souse proud!)

6 Comments:

Blogger anne marie in philly said...

"Warrior Queen was still mulling her options" - eh, fuck it, it's too hard.

April 8, 2016 at 6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

heh heh
heh heh heh
hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

~ Freckles

April 9, 2016 at 12:46 AM  
Anonymous Professor Janey said...

Just last week, in the spirit of Sarah Palin (the unofficial sex symbol of RTG's blog; I know, he's fucked up in the head), I coined a new word! While drinking wine and smoking pot (which led to me being fucked up in the head), I was having a rambling phone conversation with a dear colleague who was all fucked up on her new pain relievers for her second knee replacement. I meant to say either "babbled" or "jabbered", but it came out as "jurbled", as she and I both recall. It bears mentioning that my colleague and I have both been professors of Speech and English for 30 years.

Here is an example of the correct usage of this new verb in a sentence: "Janey was so fucked up he jurbled his words to Sue." You're welcome.

April 9, 2016 at 11:14 AM  
Blogger Ur-spo said...

Quite agree, quite agree, too silly too silly.
However I am all for fustian and fascinating verbiage.

April 9, 2016 at 4:15 PM  
Blogger todd gunther said...

Typical, Warrior Queen.

Thank you, Freckles. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Thank you,Janey. Now just to clarify would that be pronounced "ger-billed" or "jur-billed".

Thank you, Spo for your comment and once again expanding my humble vocabulary.

April 12, 2016 at 7:40 AM  
Anonymous Professor Janey said...

Pronounced "jur-billed."

Practice at home.

April 12, 2016 at 12:39 PM  

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