Saturday, July 31, 2021

Names

It gets hard to keep up.


These names were accurate at the time I wrote this comic, but they’ve probably changed by now.

Thursday, July 29, 2021

Language Of Confusion: Vegetables, Part III

Ready for more of this?
 
Celery
Celery showed up in the mid seventeenth century as sellery, which in my opinion is the superior spelling and we should go back to it. And yes, there was a word for before then—two in fact, the Middle English ache and selinum. It comes from the French céleri, which is thought to be from a particular Italian dialect, where it is seleri. That’s from the Late Latin selinon, which is from the Greek selinon, an old word for parsley. I guess this one makes sense. Except for why the French had to ruin it by spelling it with a C.
 
Asparagus
Asparagus showed up in the late fourteenth century as aspergy, and I just find that word hilarious. It comes from the Old English sparage, which is from the classical Latin asparagus, which yes, means that this word actually became more like its origin word over the years. I guess there’s a first time for everything. Fun fact, aspartame comes from asparagus. I mean the word, although the chemical is found in asparagus, too.
 
Bean
Bean comes from the Old English bean, which means… bean. That’s from the Proto Germanic bauno, and its origin before that is unknown, although it might be related to the Proto Indo European bha-bha-, which means broad bean. But you know etymology rarely makes sense.
 
Turnip
Turnip showed up in the sixteenth century as turnepe. Its origin is kind of weird. First of all, it’s related to turn. It’s actually a combination of turn and the Middle English nepe, so turn + nepe = turnip. Nepe is from the Old English naep and classical Latin napus, which means turnip. As to why they decided to throw turn in there, I have no idea.
 
Cucumber
This one showed up all the way back in the late fourteenth century as cucomer, coming from the Old French cocombre and classical Latin cucumerem, which just means cucumber. Fun fact of this one, cucumber replaced the word eorðaeppel, which literally means earth-apple.
 
Radish
One more today because these have been pretty short. Radish comes from the Middle English radich and Old English raedic, which just means radish. It’s from the classical Latin radicem, which meant radish, but also more generally root, and is from the Proto Indo European wrad-, branch or root. Always weird when the etymology is logical.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
University of Texas at Arlington
Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English
Old English-English Dictionary
Orbis Latinus

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

From The Spamfiles

Spam!

Is… this really a thing? Copper infused socks? What the hell are they supposed to do???

Boy, they really want me to unsubscribe. I suppose their harassment is slightly less intrusive than visiting a blog and immediately getting a popup to sign up for their newsletter.

The Network is still after me! It’s apparently the network professional network. You must know them.

Using different fonts makes it much more legitimate.

I get a lot of spam from casinos these days. Not sure what I signed up for that sold my email address to these online casinos I have to assume are completely fake, but there you go.

As you can see here, I’m apparently sending these to myself. First it says I’m going to receive 250 emails a day (oof), from “all catagorie” (ooooof), and then it tells me not replying is considered a yes. These spammers threaten hard.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Sick

More actual conversations I’ve had with my mom. She… provides a lot of fodder for these stories.
Seriously, her argument for him being sick was that the usually hyperactive cat was walking around at the pace of a normal cat. And for the record, he’s fine.

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Language Of Confusion: Vegetables, Part II

There are still a lot more vegetables to look at. Seriously, this particular series could go on for weeks.
 
Corn
Don’t know if you’re aware of this or not, but what’s called corn in America isn’t called corn anywhere else. Wheat, oats, and other grains are corn, and American corn is called maize, which is what indigenous Americans called it. There’s no real reason why we Americans insist on calling it corn, especially when you look at the history of the word. In Old English, corn means wheat, from the Proto Germanic kurnam, which means small seed and comes from the Proto Indo European gre-no-, grain, which is unsurprisingly the origin of grain. And for the record, the corn that has to do with the horns of animals, like as part of unicorn? Not related at all. But you know what that word is related to?
 
Carrot
Carrot showed up sometime in the sixteenth century, coming from the French carrotte and classical Latin carota. They got that from the Greek karoton, carrot, and that’s thought to come from the above mentioned ker-, which also gave us carat and its variant karat. Because carrots are shaped like horns, and that’s basically what that kind of corn is.
 
Pea
As a word, pea showed up in the seventeenth century from the Middle English pease, and apparently people dropped the S because they thought it sounded plural, even though pease is actually singular. Yeah, language is stupid like that sometimes. It’s from the Old English pise/poise, which is from the Late Latin pisa, and that’s from the classical Latin pisum, peas, which might be from the Greek pison, pea—makes sense, what didn’t the Romans steal from the Greeks? And that’s the earliest we can trace it.
 
Broccoli
Broccoli is relatively recent, having shown up in the late seventeenth century from the Italian broccoli. Funnily enough, that’s actually a plural of the word broccolo, which is from brocco, meaning a shoot or something protruding. It’s from the classical Latin broccus, the origin word for broach of all things.
 
Cabbage
Okay, one more. Cabbage showed up in the mid fifteenth century as caboge, from the Old North French caboche and Old French caboce, which both mean head, like a head of cabbage. Those words are actually form the classical Latin caput, head, and Proto Indo European kaput-, which I mentioned not long ago as being the origin word for chapter. Basically, cabbages look like heads, so that’s what we named them.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
University of Texas at Arlington
Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English
Old English-English Dictionary
Orbis Latinus

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

From The Spamfiles

There’s always more spam.

I 100% support the LGBTQA+ community, but no, I do not want Gay Porn or “Gay Dating News” (make up your mind which one of those things it is, because they are very different things).

Oh, I love this. You might not be able to read this, but it says “Diplomatic agent” (capitalization left intact) James Philip is conveying my “consignment box”, whatever the hell that is. It makes me laugh, until I realize there must be someone out there falling for these, and then it just makes me sad.

She’s writing me this message “with tears and sorrow”. Don’t even need to read further. It’s a cancer widow. Or possibly a girl who has been cut off from her family’s money by an evil stepmother. Either way, the exclamation point indicates she’s excited about it.

This one says I can eliminate the appearance of wrinkles in under two “minliites”. Did they… did they replace the U in minutes with an LII? Why? It doesn’t even make a U! It makes a UI!

Rest assured, this is not spam. It says so in the message.

Not just A professional network has chosen me, THE professional network. It’s okay to be jealous.

Saturday, July 17, 2021

The Key Point

This always seems to happen.
Still haven’t found those suckers. I pawed through literal garbage looking for them.

Thursday, July 15, 2021

Language Of Confusion: Vegetables, Part I

It’s getting to be vegetable season, so why not look at the etymology of some? Plus this will be at least another three weeks of posts, so I don’t have to come up with any ideas! I love that.

Vegetable
Vegetable itself showed up in the fifteenth century, as an adjective before it was a verb, Obviously, they had to have a word for vegetable before that, since it’s a pretty common thing; back in Old English, a vegetable was called a wyrt, the origin for wort. Vegetable also originally meant any non-animal life—so basically, vegetation—but then it changed to specifically mean a plant grown for food. It comes from the Medieval/Late Latin vegetabilis, from the classical Latin vegetare, vegetate. That’s from the Proto Indo European root weg-, to be strong or lively, the origin for words like vigor for example.

Lettuce
Next, let’s look at some actual vegetables. Lettuce showed up in the late thirteenth century as letuse, but its origins from there are a bit murky, though it’s pretty certain that it’s related to the Old French laitues and classical Latin lactuca, which means lettuce. Then you start looking at that lactuca and things get freaky. See, it’s from lac, which means… milk. Yeah. It’s from the Proto Indo European galag-, milk. Apparently, the juice of lettuce is kind of milky, so they named the plant after milk.
 
Potato
Potato is surprisingly recent. It showed up in the mid sixteenth century from the Spanish patata, and that’s from the Haitian word batata, sweet potato, because as it turns out, potatoes weren’t even introduced to Europe before colonization. Of all the words, I did not expect potato to be so recent—and from the Caribbean!

Pepper
Let’s see what surprises pepper has in store. It’s date of origin is unknown, though the vegetable didn’t start being referred to as such until the sixteenth century. Before that, it only referred to the spice, which comes from the Middle English peper and Old English pipor, which just means pepper. That’s from the classical Latin piper, again, just pepper, and they took that from the Greek piperi. Piperi is very likely from the Middle Indic pippari and Sanskrit pippali, because pepper was a very important trade item a thousand years ago.

Spinach
How about one more? Spinach showed up in the fifteenth century, though it actually did appear as early as the thirteenth century as a last name. It comes from the Anglo French spinache and Old French espinache, from the Old Provençal espinarc, but before that is uncertain. One theory is it comes from the Arabic isbanakh, their word for spinach, but spinach is such a weirdly prolific word and people aren’t sure whether the Arabic is the origin or if they took it from another language that has since vanished.
 
Man, even for etymology, these are some weird ones.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
University of Texas at Arlington
Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English
Old English-English Dictionary
Dictionary of Medieval Latin
Encyclopaedia Britannica
Fordham University
Orbis Latinus

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

From The Spamfiles

Yay! No more introspection! Just stupid spam!

They… didn’t even get my name right. I have to admit, “Dragomirescu” is a pretty badass name, though.

No. I will not link to your math page. I am morally opposed to math.

So is it six thousand or 3.7 million they’re sending me, the Estimate Customer?

True, printer ink is ridiculously expensive. But I’m more amused by that sixty seven digit number they threw in there. What the hell is the purpose of that?

The lesbians really want me to confirm my subscriptions. I guess if I do confirm them all, I’m five different lesbians.

…Okay, so many questions. How can an IRS loophole convert a retirement account to gold? Why would the IRS want to do that for anyone when they’re a tax agency? And really, why would anyone want to do that? You can’t go to a store and plunk down a bar of gold and expect them to accept that. Nor can you electronically transfer some gold to an online store to pay for your goods. So again, why would you ever want gold?

Saturday, July 10, 2021

Thursday, July 8, 2021

Language Of Confusion: -Cept, Redux, Part III

Time to finish off the -cept words! Again! We’ll probably be looking at it again in another ten years or so.
 
Accept first showed up in the late fourteenth century, coming from the Old French accepter and classical Latin acceptare, accept and its verb form accipere, to take or receive. Now, as I’m sure you remember from the previous weeks, the cipere is from capere, to take, catch, or seize, from the Proto Indo European kap-, to grasp. The prefix comes from ad-, to, meaning accept means to take to. Makes sense, right?
 
Except also showed up in the late fourteenth century, except (ha!) back then it was spelled excepten and it meant to receive. It comes from the Old French excepter, from the classical Latin exceptus, with the verb form excipere, which basically meant except in the sense to take something out (as in, to make an exception). That ex- means out, and with capare, the word is to take out. When you take something out, it’s an exception.
 
Next we’re looking at susceptible, as while suscept is technically a word, I don’t think I’ve ever seen it used (and it doesn’t have a post on the etymology website). Susceptible showed up in the seventeenth century, coming from the Late Latin susceptibilis, which could mean capable or sustainable as well as susceptible. It’s from the classical Latin suscipere, which could mean accept as well as to take or receive. The sub- prefix means up from under, and with capere, to take, this word becomes to take from under. So susceptible is… to take from under-able? It’s weird how that almost makes sense.
 
Precept is another one that showed up in the late fourteenth century, coming from the Old French percept/percet and classical Latin praeceptum, command. That’s from the verb praecipere, which is to command, from prae, before and capere. So this word is to take before. Not really sure how you get command from that, but whatever.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
Orbis Latinus

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

July Goals

That’s it, half the year is gone. That happened way too fast. What was I up to last month?
 
June Goals
1. Finish the latest WIP. It’s turned out a bit longer than I expected, but this should be easy.
Hey, I did this! Who knows when I’ll get around to editing it, but the first draft is done.
 
2. Get to work on the beta reading notes for the old WIP. This one needs a lot more work!
Did not do this. Was too busy with the other stuff. Not sure when I’ll get to this one either, but it might not be worth it at this point.
 
3. Sigh. Actually work on the editing notes for my other WIP. Maybe it’ll be possible with the other one done.
Miracle of miracles, I actually did this! I got through almost all the notes. There’s just a few pages left. I added almost five thousand words just describing things I skimmed over.
 
Next, what’s up for July…
 
July Goals
1. Finish the notes on my WIP and start a new editing pass focused on improving descriptions and reactions, because I’m really bad at this.
 
2. Update my etymology page. It’s that time again!
 
3. Start the editing notes for the new WIP. Not sure I’ll have time to get to this, but it’s on the list now so I won’t forget.
 
That’s what I want to get done this month. What are your plans for July? Is it sweltering for you too?

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Background Music

Anyone else have this problem?
I’m just trying to watch a show, and I can either understand what they’re saying or not get deafened by the background music. Not both.
 
And do NOT suggest subtitles. I’m trying to watch, not read.

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Language Of Confusion: -Cept, Redux, Part II

Back to doing this. Aren’t you excited?
 
There are a lot more of these words to look at, so let’s start with the last one to actually have -ceive in it. Perceive showed up in the fourteenth century, while perception showed up in the late fourteenth century—percept is also a word, if one we don’t use much, and it showed up in 1837. Perceive came to us through the Anglo French parceif and Old North French perceivre, which are from the classical Latin percipere, to perceive, and perception comes straight from the Latin perceptionem, which is the noun version of the word. As we learned last week, the -cipere part comes from capere, to grasp or take (from the Proto Indo European kap-, to grasp), and with per-, thoroughly, to perceive is to grasp thoroughly.
 
Next, contraception showed up in 1886, making it quite a recent word. Contra means against, and the -ception is actually short for conception, meaning it’s against conception. Makes sense, right? People just didn’t want to say contraconception.
 
Inception showed up in the early fifteenth century from the Old French inception and classical Latin inceptionem, to begin. Incept showed up in the mid sixteenth century from the classical Latin inceptus, beginning, and both of those words are from incipere, to begin. The in- prefix means in or on, meaning this word is… what? To take on? I guess I can see that being a beginning.
 
Finally today, intercept showed up sometime during the fifteenth century, while interception showed up in the early fifteenth century. Interception is from the classical Latin interceptionem (interception, big shocker), and intercept is from interceptus (intercept, duh), and both are from intercipere, to intercept. Inter- means between, and with capere meaning to take or seize, the word is to take between. You know, like taking something between when it’s thrown and when it’s caught. Intercepting.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
University of Texas at Arlington
Fordham University

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Mid Year Check In

In a move I’m pretty sure I cribbed from MJ, I’m going to look at the goals I made for the year and see how I’m doing on them. Considering I don’t even remember them, probably not good.
 
Resolutions 2021
1. Finish the book I’m working on and get it edited.
Hey, this is underway! Look at me actually doing something.
 
2. Work on the other WIP idea I have and maybe even write it.
I may have actually already done this.
 
3. Actually query last year’s WIP. Yes, I am terrified.
Probably not going to do this. Unfortunately, I’m more than ever convinced it’s just not good enough to stand out.
 
4. Possibly work on the sequel WIP I said I’d do last year.
This one’s also likely not going to happen, for basically the same reason as above. Unfortunately, I’m just not able to figure out how to improve it. Sigh…
 
5. Not die from the illness that’s killing hundreds of thousands of people in my country because people are dumbasses who refuse to wear masks or accept that it’s a dangerous disease.
Well, I’m not dead yet. I even got my first vaccine shot, so I’m doing pretty well on this one. Really hoping none of those variants pop up around here.
 
6. Try to engage more with social media. I know, that seems crazy. Who would want to? I certainly have no idea how to do it.
Wait, I made this a goal? What the hell was I thinking! Social media is terrible!
 
7. Not let 2021 be anything like 2020. Shudder.
Not doing too badly so far.
 
I can’t believe I’m actually making progress. How suspicious. Somebody must be up to no good. What were you hoping to accomplish this year? How is 2021 working out for you?

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Side Effects

I finally got the first dose of the vaccine. And…
Everyone I know was telling me about how sick it made them feel. But nope, nothing happened to me.

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Language Of Confusion: -Cept, Redux, Part I

This is definitely going to be a multi-parter, since we’re not only looking at words that have -cept in them, but also words that end in -ceive, because they are related. How it got from a pt to a v I don’t know, and I’m sure there won’t be a satisfying answer.
 
First we’ll look at deceive, and all the words related to it. It showed up in the fourteenth century, as did deceit, while deception didn’t actually show up until the early fifteenth century. Deceive is from the Old French decevoir, while deceit is from deceite, which is of course from decevoir. The words are from the classical Latin decipere, which is just to deceive, which is also where we get deception, big shock. That word is a mix of de-, from, and capere, to catch or take, from the Proto Indo European kap-, to grasp. Deceiving is to take from someone’s grasp, in a metaphorical sense.
 
Conceive showed up in the late thirteenth century, conception in the early fourteenth century, then conceit in the late fourteenth century, and concept not until the mid sixteenth century. Not sure why we needed three different nouns for one verb, but there you go. Conceit comes from conceive, which comes from the Old French conceveir, while conception comes from concepcion, and concept skipped Old French all together. It’s actually from the Latin conceptum, concept, while conception is from conceptionem, and conceive is from the verb concipere, to conceive, and that’s the origin of the other versions of the word. The con- prefix means with, and combined with capere, conceive is to take with. Which… really doesn’t make sense for this word.
 
Next, receive. It showed up in the fourteenth century and reception showed up sometime after, in the late fourteenth century. All those words can be traced back to the classical Latin recipere, to receive, a mix of re-, which is thought to mean back here (but they aren’t sure) and capere, making receive “to take back”. As for why receipt has a p in it that we for some reason don’t pronounce, there’s no real reason for it. People just started spelling it with a p, probably influenced by Latin, but no one felt like actually pronouncing it. Oh, and recipe is also from this word. It actually showed up in the late sixteenth century meaning a formula for a medical remedy written by a physician. It didn’t mean a recipe for food until the early eighteenth century, and then it was dropped from medical usage. Though the reason “Rx” is used with prescription is because it really stands for recipe.
 
And… this one’s getting pretty long. I guess I’ll save the next bunch for next week.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

From The Spamfiles

The spam just keeps on coming. I don’t think they realize how much I’m making fun of them.

Apparently I’m a “straight forward fellow” and “reliable to do business with”. She’s lucky I’m not trying to scam her into sending me money.

You might not be able to read it, but they say they’re going to pay me my “Winning Prize/inheritance fund”. Can something be both of those things? Like I won a lottery to get an inheritance? Or did I inherit a Winning Prize (must be capitalized)?
 
Send me a truck full, because I need them.

Ah, yes, I remember entering the Eighth Annual iTunes Festival/Lottery in London. It’s a pretty big deal.

I honestly can’t imagine a Major would call themselves a soldier and not an officer. Or that he’d be emailing me about an investment portfolio manager. That just seems like an inefficient way to do it.

Okay, can anyone figure out what this one is saying? Because I’m thinking someone just threw this into Google Translate and said “That’ll do”.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Language Of Confusion: Feeling Funny

I haven’t done humor related words before, so here we go.
 
Fun/Funny
Fun is relatively new, having shown up in the late seventeenth century meaning to cheat or hoax, and not meaning amusement until 1727—though it did mean foolish or silly as early as the fifteenth century. Its origin is uncertain, though it might be from the Middle English fonnen, befool, which is the origin word for fond. Fun actually wasn’t used much because it was judged to be a lower class word. Basically, if you hear someone complain about vernacular used by a minority, that’s what they used to do with fun. As for funny, it didn’t show up until 1756, where it meant humorous, and then meaning odd by 1806.
 
Joke
Joke showed up in the mid seventeenth century, where it was spelled joque. It comes from the classical Latin iocus, which just means joke, which is from the Proto Italic joko- and Proto Indo European iok-o-, word or utterance. So fun, weirdly recent, joke, weirdly old.
 
Amuse
Amuse showed up in the late fifteenth century from the Old French amuser. That’s a mix of the prefix a-, at or to, and muse, to ponder or think. Muse is actually a bit weirder than you might think. It showed up in the mid fourteenth century from the Old French muser, but the origin of that is unknown. You’re probably going, well isn’t from the Greek word Muse? I don’t know, maybe? I mean, there are some people who think that muse is from the Gallo Roman musa, which means snout, and muse means something like scenting the air. While muse might not be from the Greek Muse, honestly, it really would make sense that it was, because Muse is from the Proto Indo European men-, to think. But this whole word is crazy, so who knows?
 
Humor
Now, we all know that humor has some varying definitions. It can mean amusement, or it can mean a mood, or it can mean the “fluid or juice of an animal or plant.” Which… kind of not like the other two. Those can’t be related, can they? Ha ha, you fool, you absolute naïve fool. Humor showed up in the mid fourteenth century as the fluid/juice one, coming from the Old North French humour, from the classical Latin umor, moisture. And guess what, that’s the origin word for humid, not making that up. See, what happened is, humors was also a medical term for body fluids (blood, phlegm, et al.), and people used to believe that a person’s mood was affected by those fluids, so a humor became a state of mind. From there, it came to mean an amusing state of mind. And that’s why humor went from moist to that.
 
Wow. That was certainly a trip. Who would have guessed humor words were so crazy?
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
Omniglot
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
University of Texas at Arlington

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

From The Spamfiles

My lottery award inheritance! That’s totally a real thing that people say! And it’s from a doctor to boot!

So close to sounding like the real company! But that question mark is superfluous, and repeating “We noticed a new login” is suspicious. Of course, the biggest red flag is the fact that the sender is “?I-nstagram”. I mean, it would be kind of stupid to open this message with that there.

Well, at least they used a real person this time, even though she is not currently the chairman of the Federal Reserve. I also can’t imagine she’d ever in a million years go by “Mrs.” in any official capacity. And, you know, forget to capitalize her name.

The “son” of someone arrested (though acquitted) for crimes against humanity wants to talk to me! Nothing strange or suspicious about this.

Account Alert! Sex Dating!

I should forward this to Paul. I bet he’d be willing to help.

Compliment of the day, everyone!

Thursday, June 10, 2021

The Language Of Confusion: The Giggles

You know I’ve never looked at laughter related words before? Clearly I have to do something about that.
 
To laugh showed up in the late fourteenth century, though weirdly enough, it wasn’t a noun until the late seventeenth century. The word comes from the Old English hlaehhan, to laugh, which could also be spelled hlehhan and hlihhan. And just to make things confusing, that double H was pronounced like a hard ch that people started saying as an F even if they didn’t update the spelling. It’s from the Proto Germanic klakhjan, which, come on, now they’re throwing a K in there? And before that, the Proto Indo European kleg-, which is imitative—that means the word comes from what it sounds like doing. So I guess a laugh sounded like “kleg”.
 
Giggle showed up in the sixteenth century. No one knows where it came from. It’s thought to be another imitative word, although that sounds less like laughter than kleg- does. Similarly, titter showed up in the early seventeenth century, and again, probably imitative. Snicker showed up a little bit later than that, like in the 1690s as opposed to the 1670s. And again, thought to be imitative. These words seem to be unique to English for the most part, so I guess English isn’t entirely other languages stacked on top of each other in a trench coat.
 
Guffaw is even newer, showing up in the early eighteenth century (there was also gawf in the early sixteenth century). This one is actually derived from Scottish, although it’s again thought to be imitative. Weirdly, guff doesn’t seem to be related to that, having shown up in 1825 meaning a puff of air, although it is also imitative. Guff sounds like different things, I guess.
 
Cackle is actually pretty old, showing up in the thirteenth century, but back then it only meant the sound a hen made (and it was imitative!). It didn’t mean to laugh until 1712. But yeah, from the sound a hen makes. Then there’s chuckle, which showed up in the late sixteenth century meaning… to laugh loudly. It didn’t mean to laugh softly until the early nineteenth century! Chuckle is from the Middle English chukken, to make a clucking noise, and once again, that is imitative. It’s also not related to chuck at all, if you were wondering.
 
Tl;dr: laughter words are imitative. All of them, apparently.
 
Sources
Online Etymology Dictionary
University of Texas at Austin Linguistic Research Center
University of Texas at San Antonio’s page on Proto Indo European language
University of Texas at Arlington
Tony Jebson’s page on the Origins of Old English
Old English-English Dictionary

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

From The Spamfiles

Yay! Spam! Much better than introspection.

For those who can’t read the tiny wording, it says “Hi Dear How are you today I hope that everything is OK with you as it is my great pleasure to contact you in having communication with you starting from today…”. Just like that. All one sentence, because punctuation is for chumps.

This one’s from the “Department of Blacklist Removal office, USA”. I guess I’m to take it that I’ve been blacklisted? And they can remove it?

Look at my new follower. An eighteen year old. Named Mary, because that’s not a “How do you do, fellow kids” name if I ever heard one. I also love how her handle is “@BestDatingSit11”.

My $2 millions! This guy is the secretary to Dr. Timothy Hanson, so you know he’s legit.

Fun fact, Wikipedia actually has a page listing all the ambassadors to Benin. Guess who’s not on them?

Oh, this is another good one. He says he’s “Agent Dr. Wilfred Elton”. Apparently he’s flying in with an ATM card loaded with my “cash consignment”. You better show Agent Doctor Elton some respect.

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Temporary

After my aunt passed away, we had to figure out what to do with her beloved cats.


Look at them. Wouldn’t you just love these cute little babies?




Thursday, June 3, 2021

Language Of Confusion: Writing Terms

Wow, I can’t believe I haven’t done some of these. Most of them I use every day!
 
First, let’s look at the most basic of what we use to make words: a letter. As a word, it first showed up in the thirteenth century, coming from the Old French letre. That’s then from the classical Latin littera, letter, and before that… no one knows. But its meaning really hasn’t changed much over the years. It meant a character that makes up words in Latin as well as a document. It really hasn’t changed at all.
 
Word comes from the Old English word, which means… word. No surprise there. It comes from the Proto Germanic wurda-, from the Proto Indo European were-, speak or say, which also happens to be the origin of verb. Kind of makes sense, right?
 
What do words make up? Phrases, of course. Also sentences, but we’ll get to that in a minute. Phrase is relatively recent, having shown up in the early sixteenth century. It comes from the Late Latin phrasis, diction, which is from the Greek phrasis, which is also just phrase. No one’s sure where that one came from, so I guess we can chalk this one up to the Greeks.
 
Now, sentence showed up in the thirteenth century, but then it meant either a judgment or a doctrine. It wasn’t until the late thirteenth century it meant understanding or wisdom, and from there it became the subject or content of a letter/book/speech. Then in the mid fifteenth century, it finally became what we generally use sentence to mean. The word comes from the Old French sentence and classical Latin sententia, sentence, from the verb sentire, which actually means to feel or sense. That’s actually the origin word for sense, meaning a sentence is really a sensation!
 
Next we’re looking at chapter. It showed up in the thirteenth century from the Old French chapitre. That’s from the Late Latin capitulum, which meant a chapter of a book or a synod (which is where we get the group division sense of the word). It’s a diminutive of the classical Latin caput, head, meaning the word means “little head”, and somehow we got a chapter from that. That word is also from the Proto Indo European kaput-, which means head, and is where we get kaput (as in dead or broken) from. As well as a bunch of other words, most of which with “cap” in them.
 
Finally today, book. It comes from the Old English boc, which was pronounced “book” and meant book. Stop me if I’m going too fast for you. Anyway, it’s thought to be from the Proto Germanic boko, from their word bokiz, beech. Yes, beech. It’s thought that book comes from the tree, beech. Possibly because runes were once inscribed on beechwood. I don’t even know what to make of that one.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

June Goals

Oh man. It’s June already? I can’t believe that happened. Just a few more weeks until summer here. What am I supposed to be doing?
 
May Goals
1. Add another 40K to the WIP.
This was the easy part, of course.
 
2. Go back to work on one of my old projects, which still needs to be beta read. If you’re interested, let me know.
It’s in progress! Although I wish I had more time to go over the beta reads!!!
 
3. Work on the notes. I know I’m not going to do it, but I can at least not forget about it.
If you’ve been paying attention these last few months, you should know how this went.
 
Not a bad month. I really wish I had more time, though. If someone could make the month twice as long, I’d get a lot more writing done. Anyway, June…
 
June Goals
1. Finish the latest WIP. It’s turned out a bit longer than I expected, but this should be easy.
 
2. Get to work on the beta reading notes for the old WIP. This one needs a lot more work!
 
3. Sigh. Actually work on the editing notes for my other WIP. Maybe it’ll be possible with the other one done.
 
That’s what I’ll have no time to do this month. What do you want to accomplish this June?