Monday, November 17, 2008


I was very happy to receive a great new dictionary for my birthday (thanks e) and have just tonight started reading it.

The narrative seems a little disconnected (we have jumped from 'imbroglio' to 'imminent' when I would have thought it would make more sense if it was an 'imminent imbroglio', unless of course it's 'Imbroglio? Imminent!'), but I'm sure it all comes together when Messieurs Zeingli and Zworykin eat the zwiebacks at the end. I've heard it's a real 'zut alors!' ending.

Anyhoo, while it's entirely possible you've already fallen off your chair with intense boredom and / or sudden onset sleep I choose instead to cajole myself into believing you're intensely interested in transitive verbs and that this post is, indeed, making your day.

I've been deeply enamoured with the rules of possession for many years (be still my beating apostrophe-stick), but tonight I have discovered a new love: plurals. Look at these little rosebuds of loveliness:

1. You're a dodgy-arsed police chief and you've only got one agent provocateur currently infiltrating a heavily tattooed, drug-dealing hit squad. You need more: send in several agents provocateurs.

2. You're having high tea with a poet laureate and another several walk in so you're having high tea with poets laureate (or, equally, poet laureates).

3. One mountain goat trots along next to you on your morning highland stroll and you've got one ibex with you. The rest of the herd joins you and you're surrounded by ibexes.

4. Found a lonely 'g' behind the couch? Throw it into 'larynx' for a whole bunch of 'larynges'.

If you're still with me, thank you. Tomorrow as a special treat: words without vowels! Ooh goody, let's get started: 'cwmtwrch'...


Anonymous said...

While I too, like to read dictionaries (but only when I'm doing crosswords), I find my Thesaurus a much better read. Much more context to it!

The Dangerous Kettle said...

That's gold, Anon! It's good to have a laugh during the 3pm blackhole, cheers.

Laura Jayne said...

I am still with you and that was too funny for words!! (Irony intended, but only one... more than one irony and you might be ironing and that isn't allowed at my house.)

The Dangerous Kettle said...

Hey Laura Jayne! I too have banned ironing (unless I do it ironically); who's got time to iron when there are dictionaries to read? :)

PS, love your blog.