Saturday, April 29, 2017


Not kidding. This is 100% what happened. My mom is still taking online classes and won’t leave me alone about it.

I don’t know why she thought I would say yes when that never worked when I asked for help with my homework.

I cannot describe how delicious it was to say no.

Like a cake from the good bakery.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

Language of Confusion: Nearly Next

What’s next? Next, of course.

Next comes from the Old English niehsta/nyhsta/nesta (it’s different depending on which dialect you choose) which means nearest or closest and comes from their word for nigh, neah/neh. I assume you pronounce that like you live in New England.

So it comes from their word for nigh. Gee, I wonder if that’s related? Of course it is. Nigh comes from the Old English neah/neh (it depends on the dialect), which just means nigh or near. And speaking of near, it used to be the Old English…near. See as it turns out, all these words used to be different versions of the same word: nigh. They were like good/better/best, the regular word, its comparative, and its superlative, in this case nigh, nigher (near), and nighest (next). Can’t you hear it? But at some point near and next split off and became their own words that we actually use way more than nigh these days.

Pretty cool one this week. Don’t you agree? No? Just me then?

Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Getting From Middle To End

I think the middle must be the toughest part of the story. You know, except for the rest of it.

My book is going very slowly (as I’m writing this, my word count is ~45K). It’s kind of frustrating. I used to be able to churn out a rough draft in under two months. Of course, none of those books are even remotely readable, so maybe that isn’t such a bad thing. It’s just hard to keep thinking that way when you live in a world where you’re supposed to do things both quickly and perfectly.

It’s coming along. So I keep telling myself. I really like how this story is shaping up. Sometimes I worry that the main character doesn’t have enough of a personality, that it’s only the things that happen to her that make her interesting, but that’s probably a problem for editing. And I still like her. With all the crap going on her life, she deals with everything as practically as she can. Including the fact that someone almost killed her. She’s definitely someone I’m rooting for. But maybe I’m biased.

Still, there are so many things that I wonder about. Is the story interesting enough? Am I handling it right? Will I ever actually finish? Still having figured that one out. I have an ending in my. It’s getting to it that need to figure out. Yeah, I know this is why people outline but I was afraid if I stopped to do that I’d never actually get to writing. You got to keep up the momentum, you know?

Anyway, that’s what I’m up to. How’s your writing going?

Saturday, April 22, 2017


This is real. The conversation is made up because it was by text, but this actually happened.

Not kidding. A World War II grenade. It was with things belonging to my uncle who died in December, but he may have gotten it from another uncle who died twenty five years ago and just shoved it in the attic without telling anyone. If my grandparents knew about it, they didn’t tell my aunt when she and her husband bought the house from them, which seems really unlikely.

Oh, and the answer to the above question is that you call the police and they call in the bomb squad to get rid of it.

Quite a Wednesday.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Secret Origins: 4

More symbols!  Also kind of a short one. I guess that’s fitting considering how long last weeks was.

The word four comes from the Old English feower, which means four of course. Before that it was the Proto Germanic fedwor and Proto Indo European kwetwer. Yes, originally there was no f in four. One theory is that it’s because of the next number (you know, five). I don’t know how. Maybe people looked at the F in five and were like, whoa. I like that.

The symbol’s history is a lot weirder. Even more so than 3! The Medieval version of it looks like a ribbon, while the Arabic version is more like a backwards 3, or sometimes what looks like a bobby pin. Then the Hindu version is an upside down ribbon. And the Brahmi had a plus symbol. When it wasn’t a kind of loop, which at least might be where the upside down ribbon came from.

There’s…not really much else? Sorry. But I would like to point out that for a while there was this post going around that said that the symbols were all based on the number of corners they had (look at this picture for a better idea). It’s total nonsense, especially since most of the symbols aren’t how we really write the numbers. Especially nine. Come on, who puts a spiral at the end of 9 just so it has more angles to it? Who writes them all blocky ever?

Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English
Origin of the numerals Zero Concept by Ahmed Boucenna, Laboratoire DAC, Department of Physics, Faculty of Sciences, Ferhat Abbas University

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

From The Spamfiles

Yay! Spam time again! I don’t have to write a real post!

Wow. I did not know this was what Christianity researched. I was way off.

I’m…a little worried about the tasty thing. Please don’t be hiding outside my house with a knife and fork.

I’m insulted that this spam is so lazy that they didn’t either bother to fill in the badly worded template! They could at least put some effort into spamming me!

I MAY have won a Sam’s Club Reward Card! Stop the frigging presses.

It’s almost Christmas! Show off your body! That’s prime body showing off time! Actually it probably is for people in the southern hemisphere. But not here! Cold! Snow!

I have standards, mike. I only date guys who capitalize their first names. And aren’t an awkward amount older than me.

Saturday, April 15, 2017


You know how dangerous magnets are for computers, right?
Okay, maybe they weren’t that high. But you should know by now that I like to be dramatic.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Language of Confusion: Question Words

You know, like who, what, where, when, why, which, and how. Maybe we’ll get an explanation as to why how is the only one not beginning with W. Why don’t we change that?

Who comes from the Old English hwa, which could also mean someone or anyone as well as who. It’s from the Proto Germanic hwas and earlier, the Proto Indo European kwo-, which was the source of a lot of interrogative pronouns, as we’re about to see. No explanation as to why it switched from K to H, but it does seem like the H to W thing is just because the former has softened over the years. And whom is from the same place, just via hwam, which is another version of hwa.

What is from the Old English hwaet, where it could mean what but also who, something...and hark. It’s from the Proto Germanic hwat, which you may recognize as what with the first two letters switched, and the Proto Endo European kwod, which is a form of kwos. Another form for who.

Why comes from the Old English (again) hwi, which was a form of hwaet called the instrumental case. Instrumental is an old grammar form that appeared in Old English (Russian actually still has it) that indicates indirect receivers of action, objects of prepositions, or that a thing is being used. Basically why comes from a form of what that isn’t used anymore and as we all know it comes from the word for who. Although Proto Indo European also had a version of why, kwi, again, another version of kwo.

Okay, you can probably guess at least some of this one. Where comes from the Old English hwaer, which means where. No surprises here. It’s from the Proto Germanic hwar, which is from, all together now, kwo. Are you beginning to see a pattern?

I probably don’t even need to look this one up to guess, but here we go. When is from the Old English whaenne, which means when as a direct question. It’s from the Proto Germanic hwan-/hwa- which… looks very familiar. Dammit, it’s the same one as before and it’s from kwo-.

I’m no longer expecting anything new. Which was hwilc/hwaelc in Old English, and was actually short for hwi-lic, “of what form”. So yeah. Hwi again. And the lic means body (body/form) and is where like comes from. Hwi-lic comes from the Proto Germanic hwa-lik-, and we all should know by now that hwa/hwi comes kwo-.

How comes from the Old English hu, just how. Before that, it’s the Proto Germanic hwo and of course Proto Indo European kwo. No clue as to why this one stuck with H while none of the other ones did. Just weird I guess.

tl;dr: All question words go back to kwo-. It is the one true question.

Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

293 Keys

I found a game. In it, all you do is search through a pile of keys and try them in a lock until one fits. Then you leave and see how many tries it took you.

That’s it. Seriously.

It’s the stupidest, most pointless game ever. The controls are wonky (don’t knock a key off the cliff before you’ve tried it), it’s not a particularly attractive game, and there’s literally nothing to do except put keys in the lock.

So why can’t I stop playing it??

Have you ever been unable to stop doing anything pointless? What’s the most addictive dumb game you’ve ever found?

Saturday, April 8, 2017


I swear, they weren’t on there until the second the package containing my new comforter arrived.

No, of course I can’t move them myself. I’m not a monster.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Language of Confusion: Reluctantly

Just a short one today, as I’m super busy.

Neither reluctance nor reluctant are very old, both having showed up in the mid seventeenth century. Now reluctant used to mean unwilling, pretty close to what we use it for, but reluctance specifically meant the “act of struggling against” when it first came into being and it wasn’t until a couple of decades later that it meant unwillingness to do something. And also it comes from an awesome word that we don’t use anymore, reluct, which means struggle or rebel against.

Reluct (why don’t we have it anymore??) comes from the classical Latin reluctari, which means to resist, not a huge leap. It’s a combination of the prefix re-, against, and luctari, struggle, so it actually makes sense. And hey, if you’re reluctant to do something you’re definitely going to struggle against it, right? Luctari can actually be traced all the way back to the Proto Indo European lug-to, bent. Okay, that one I can’t figure. Bending something is a struggle? I guess if it’s not very bendable. I don’t know what it could be referring to, though. Not metal, as Proto Indo European is like fifty five hundred years old and that’s way before metalwork was used.

I’m reading too much into this. It went from bent to unwilling. Let’s leave it at that.


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

April Goals

Ugh, this month is going to be busy, isn’t it? Expect posts to get a lot more succinct. Like this.

March Goals
1. Actually write 10K this time. Or, at the very least, finish last month’s 10K.
I did finish the 10K from the last one, but because I got so busy with other stuff I didn’t press it any further.

2. See if I can by that book I want to read for research. And, you know, read it.
Did not get to this, unfortunately. I don’t know when I’m ever going to get time to read again.

3. Try to think up something fun to do. Because we could all use a little fun right now.
…More like the opposite of this.

Okay, this month.

April Goals
1. Get at least 5000 words done. I know that’s not a lot, but I’m so busy!

2. Get to work on my side-blog project. I’m going to need to work super hard to get all this done. Thankfully this might be doable since I have some awesome people helping me.

3. Update my etymology page. I don’t want to put it off too long!

What are you up to this month?

Saturday, April 1, 2017


I hate hate hate this holiday. I am really not one for practical jokes.
Some things you just don’t joke about.