Thursday, April 07, 2005

Wordwise

It doesn’t piss me off, really, when the weatherman says, “It’s gonna be a very nasty weekend, weatherwise”, but it does seem kinda lazy. At our house, we sometimes put “wise” on the end of all kinds of words, for example, “it’s gonna be a really great meal, dinnerwise”, or “ we will have to make some other plans now, travelwise”, just for chucks. I have explained this to my 19 year old nephew, Max, and since he also has words in his genes, he has embraced the concept wholeheartedly. “Uncle, where are you and Aunt Marie gonna go in the trailer next, Airstreamwise?,” has been among his many attempts. It cracks me up.

Another of the many directions folks tend to stray, wordwise, is to put “ness” on the end of words, to help them in their descriptions. Once, when traipsing through Seattle with a former partner, we spent some time on the waterfront at The Seattle Aquarium. Moving through the displays, we came upon a large freestanding aquarium, beautifully lit, and full of Pufferfish. For those of you who don’t recall, Pufferfish are unusually broad, cartoonish, wide, not sleek like most fish. Standing there, I noticed a Dad and son beside me, son hoisted upon his Dad’s shoulders. Suddenly, without reservation, and excitedly, the Dad exclaimed to his son, “Well looky there, Jeremy! That fish ain’t got no aerodynamicness.” I regret not having hit the floor at that moment, to bow in thanks to Dad and son, for all the pleasure that sentence has given me over the years.