hodge-podge day

hotchpotch (N. Amer.hodgepodge) noun: 1 [ in sing. ] a confused mixture: a hotchpotch of uncoordinated services. 2 a mutton stew with mixed vegetables.— [I never knew this] ORIGIN late Middle English: variant of hotchpot.

Okay, no hyphen.

Today is April 8 and my cast was removed, as promised, to be replaced by a brace accompanying a warning not to lift, pull, or strain my wrist. No fear. It still hurts.

As if.

It still hurts.

But the word is, I can swim. Just don’t use a ladder to get out of the pool.

The skin of my arm looks like the covering of a very old lizard. it hurts, too.

This is not a blog, Sorry. Here we go:

kylix noun (pl.kylikes or kylixes): an ancient Greek cup with a shallow bowl and a tall stem. ORIGIN from Greek kulix .[I like words like this. I’ll never use them but I like them.]

gamete noun, Biology: a mature haploid male or female germ cell which is able to unite with another of the opposite sex in sexual reproduction to form a zygote. DERIVATIVES gametic| adjective. ORIGIN late 9-10th cent.: from modern Latin gameta, from Greek gametē ‘wife’, gametēs ‘husband’, from gamos ‘marriage’.

Now, a bunch of scientific words from an article about stuff in products we use that is doing serious harm to our bodies: phhthalate(s); bisphenol(s); styrene; perfluoralky (PFC, for short); perchlorate(s).

Now, more in my field:

anaphora noun [ mass noun ]: 1 Grammar the use of a word referring back to a word used earlier in a text or conversation, to avoid repetition, for example the pronouns he, she, it, and they and the verb do in I like it and so do they. Compare with cataphora. 2 Rhetoric the repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of successive clauses. 3 Christian Church: the part of the Eucharist which contains the consecration, anamnesis, and communion. DERIVATIVES: anaphoric adjective, anaphorically adverb, ORIGIN late 16th cent.: sense 1, sense 2 via Latin from Greek, ‘repetition’, from ana- ‘back’ + pherein ‘to bear’; sense 3 from late Greek.

cataphora noun [ mass noun ] Grammar: the use of a word or phrase that refers to or stands for a later word or phrase (e.g. the pronoun he in he may be approaching 37, but Jeff has no plans to retire from the sport yet). Compare with anaphora. DERIVATIVES cataphoric adjective, cataphorically adverb, ORIGIN 1970s: from cata- on the pattern of anaphora.

Here is one we should all know:

phatic adjective: denoting or relating to language used for general purposes of social interaction, rather than to convey information or ask questions. Utterances such as hello, how are you? and nice morning, isn't it? are phatic. ORIGIN 1920s: from Greek phatos ‘spoken’ or phatikos ‘affirming’.

Apparently this has no relation to

emphatic adjective: 1 expressing something forcibly and clearly: the children were emphatic that they would like to repeat the experience | an emphatic movement of his hand. • (of an action or its result) definite and clear: an emphatic World Cup win. 2 (of a word or syllable) bearing the stress. • Linguistics (of certain Arabic consonants) pronounced with both dental articulation and constriction of the pharynx. noun, Linguistics an emphatic consonant. ORIGIN early 18th cent.: via late Latin from Greek emphatikos, from emphasis (see emphasis).

Back to food:

Larb (Lao: ລາບ; Thai: ลาบ, RTGS: lap, pronounced [lâːp], also spelled laap, larp, lahb or laab) is a type of Lao meat salad that is regarded as the "unofficial" national dish of Laos. [Not in the oline dictiionary, but Google offers recipes.] Maybe next time.

That’s all for today.


Today my brother would have been 92 years old. He would never have lived this long. As it was, he outlived his father and grandfather by 20 years, thanks to his Viking ancestry. The maternal side of my family lives longer. I’m one of them, with few role models, older now than most of them lived. Uncharted territory. Stay with me. We still have a lot to learn.

I remember a writer-acquaintance - years ago now but much younger than I so I think she’s still alive - who made a new year’s resolution to do something different/something new every day that year. It could be as simple as to go down a street she had never walked on before, or to try a food new to her taste buds, or something more adventurous, like to try sky-diving.

That’s when I learned of her resolve. She wrote an article for a magazine we both contributed to, with an account of her experiences so far that year, chief among them being the sky-dive, accompanied by a photograph of her taken moments after she landed. She never looked more beautiful: vital, alive, exhilarated, and what today we would call mindful. Events like that remain with us all our lives, but other moments, less memorable, make up our final product, and they all count.

My brother and I were friends when we were at university. I was two years ahead and caught up with him because he had been in the army (WWII - too late for overseas duty). i cherish that time for we had not enjoyed each other before then. We had very different outlooks on life. I was a glass-half-full and he a glass-half-empty. His favourite comment on anything that happened, for good or ill, was, “It couldn’t matter less.”

I thought of him when I saw the effect of a sky-dive, and again now when I remembered it. It did matter and it still does.