Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Pileous – Wordplay Wednesday™ 02/21/18

Quick and Quirky Wordplay 

In a hurry? It seems I always am … so for those of us who desire to learn, but eagerly rushing toward “five o’clock somewhere,” enjoy your quirky word of the week!

PILEOUS (pīʹlē ɘs,) adj. – hairy or furry. [WW #152]

A fine word for a cute little animal. But describing a person in conversation or descriptive writings ... when hairy or furry is a little indelicate and unpleasant … pileous is so much more subtle and likeable. Choose your words wisely!

Word Challenge: PILEOUS. Sometimes it’s worth the extra time to root out a word that describes, without naked bluntness. Think kindly as you fit pileous into your week of humane writings.

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle) 



Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Caldarium – Wordplay Wednesday™ 02/14/18

Love: Never Allow It to Be Banal or Boring 

Ah yes, Valentine’s Day … love, amour, romance … all those banal words for an emotion that is far from boring.

Since the 14th century, St. Valentine’s Day has embodied the intricacies of romantic love. With the commercialism of every holiday, though, many of us have become cynical and unfeeling. Most especially for Valentine’s Day.

I listen to the comments of longtime couples and married folks—so often hearing, “Oh, we don’t do Valentine’s Day.” It’s a good bet they did, once upon a romantic time in their relationship. At least a cursory acknowledgment with token chocolates.
 While most of us agree, spending lavishly on Valentine’s Day—a day that for most has lost its religious meaning—is waste of good dollars. It no longer holds the fun and mystique of hidden presents and spontaneous declarations of love.

‘Tis true—IF—you strive throughout the year to show your loved one(s) how much they’re appreciated. But if you need a reminder, or simply like to give an extra twinkle to the eye of your beloved, without breaking the bank, here’s a fun, very affordable suggestion: create a Roman Bath for the two of you …
CALDARIUM (kal derʹē ɘm) n. – in ancient Roman baths, a room for taking hot baths. [WW #151]

So what does a hot bath have to do with Valentine’s Day? Although a true caldarium is more like a sweat-box with super-hot water, we can re-invent it to accommodate a hot, steamy Valentine’s Day bath, a modified caldarium, complete with scented oils for your bodies and aromatic candles for ambiance. Um, oh, don’t forget the deep red wine, or sparkling cider. Scrub-a-dub-dub to your heart’s content!

However, some time ago it became clear to me that I loved the romance of love … but I was terrible at the reality of it. That makes caldarium the perfect Valentine’s Day action word for us singles. Remember, you need to love yourself before you can love others. So …

Take your champagne to the new-and-improved caldarium, close your eyes, and enjoy the day’s quixotic aura. A “romantic” bath with candles and a book, or simply your thoughts … is a great start to the rest of your life.

Your future begins now. Does it include love? Never say never.

A little wistful imagination can convert the most boring bath into a dreamy form of caldarium. What are you waiting for?

Word Challenge: CALDARIUM. Declare your love to all of the special people in your life, including yourself, as you fit caldarium into your week of love-kissed writings.

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle) 



Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Vitric – Wordplay Wednesday™ 02/07/18

Eyes – Joyful, Wise, Tired, or Glassy – Windows to the Soul

With our eyes we express the weight of our souls … at least, as the saying goes. So much burden lies within such a small part of our bodies.

Do your eyes bounce around as you speak? Do they fill with emotion? What happens to your eyes when you’re tired or shocked? Do they glaze over …?

VITRIC (viʹtrik) adj. – of, having the nature of, or like glass. (Also, vitreous [viʹ’trē ɘs; glassy].) [WW #150]

While vitric is most often applied to surfaces—the countertop’s vitric mosaic tile was smooth and cool—it would also add an interesting concept to a story description:
“Charmayne’s vitric eyes revealed no emotion as she stared at the horrific scene in front of her.” Something to think about in the way words are used.

Whether you love it or abhor it, grammar-grappling in the annals of social media and technology is rampant. It’s now common to twist a perfectly good adjective or noun into a trendy verb which often confuses the context and the reader. Technology has spearheaded modern trends by taking away our “access” as a thing we have, and giving it back to us to access. Just one example from a truckload.

Using an adjective in its proper form, but applying its context in a unique visual, like “Charmayne’s vitric eyes,” enhances its definition, rather than warping it.

Staring at a horrific scene, it isn’t a stretch to think of Charmayne’s cool, smooth, glassy eyes as holding little to no emotion. Vitric provides an interesting alternative to “glassy.”

And just maybe, it will urge your reader to research a word they’ve not seen in that context before. Success! Your writing is enhancing a life.

As we all know, the eyes can express a multitude of adjectives beyond color. From vitric to love-bombs by Valentine’s day!

Word Challenge: VITRIC. Consider new ways to use common words, or unique twists to integrate the uncommon, as you fit vitric into your week of smooth writings.

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle)