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.
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
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 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 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 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?
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?
Online Etymology Dictionary
Google Translate
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.
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


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?