Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wednesday Word: Acquaintance

acquaintance |əˈkwāntns|nouna person's knowledge or experience of something the students had little acquaintance with the language.• one's slight knowledge of or friendship with someone I renewed my acquaintance with Herbert |most men of her acquaintance were in uniform now.a person one knows slightly, but who is not a close friend a wide circle of friends and acquaintances.• such people considered collectively his extensive acquaintance included Oscar Wilde and Yeats.PHRASESmake the acquaintance of (or make someone's acquaintance) meet someone for the first time and become only slightly familiar they are anxious to make your acquaintance.DERIVATIVESacquaintanceship |-ˌ sh ip| nounORIGIN Middle English (in the sense [mutual knowledge, being acquainted] ): from Old Frenchacointancefrom acointier ‘make known’ (seeacquaint ).

I hate, hate, HATE this word. I can never spell it right. Pox on your syllables, acquaintance!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Happy Lunar New Year!


Today is the first day of the Year of the Goat. Some say sheep, but I prefer goat. Goats are awesome; check youtube if you don't believe me.

Last year mostly sucked hairy donkey balls for me, and picked up only towards the very end. But I have high hopes for this new one. Yes, I have a smidgenly [sic] superstitious tendencies. I've been doing a lot of cover designs lately, and a bunch of different genres, and they are a source both for stress and pleasure. The thing is, I need them and not just because of the money. I crave the challenge and working in a visual media, and they provide a much more immediate gratification than writing.

Writing is a slow-burn creative endeavor, with different challenges and rewards. It's nice to have a bit of both.

I woke up this morning muzzy, trying to fix in my memory the bizarrely awesome dreams I had about magical worlds, strange and scary creatures, and general and utter weirdness that exists only in dreams. The imagery they came with was so very rich and "real," part contemporary, part fantasy. I wrote down the scraps I'd managed to rescue from the sandman. I might be able to use them in a story or two one day.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Wednesday Word: Pulchritude


pulchritude |ˈpəlkrəˌt(y)oōd|noun poetic/literarybeauty.DERIVATIVESpulchritudinous |ˌpəlkrəˈt(y)oōdn-əs| adjectiveORIGIN late Middle English : from Latin pulchritudo, from pulcher, pulchr- ‘beautiful.’

Today's word is curtesy of Charlie Cochrane, who is an even biggest word nerd than I am.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Vintage Monday: Romace


I don't watch a whole lot of television but Sunday nights are for the boob tube. Many, many years ago there was a perfect summer with 3-4 great shows in a row, including Carnivale. It was a perfect way to cap up the weekend and took the sting out of the impending Monday.

These days I have a more muted line-up, with lots of relationship stuff. Looking on HBO is all about gay men in San Francisco finding and losing love. I enjoy the leisurely pacing and the cast is excellent. And there's of course Downton Abbey, but honestly this season is leaving me cold. Am I the only one thinking Tom and Edith should just get married and adopt Marigold? Third in line is Grantchaster. Cosy mysteries with a handsome, ginger (!) vicar solving crime and having lady troubles. Honestly, I just watch it for the eye-candy.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Wednesday Word: Sedulous

sedulous |ˈsejələs|adjective(of a person or action) showing dedication and diligencehe watched himself with the most sedulous care.DERIVATIVESsedulity |səˈjoōlitē| nounsedulously adverbsedulousness nounORIGIN mid 16th cent.: from Latin sedulus ‘zealous’-ous .

I came across this word re-listening to The Scottish Prisoner. I've been very busy lately with cover designs, and those long hours in the company of Photoshop are great for audiobooks. I've been listening to the Lord John Grey series out of order, The Custom of the Army last, and since the events within lead to those of the other book, a re-listen seemed in order.

I had a serious reading problem when young. I often took a book from my mother's shelf, open it in the middle, just to see it was any good, and was unable to put it down. Thus, I rushed through the book first from middle to end, then again right away from beginning to end, then about a  week later again, this time slowly, savoring every word. I guess, you could've called me a sedulous reader.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wednesday Word: Juvenescence


juvenescence |ˌjoōvəˈnesəns|noun formalthe state or period of being young.DERIVATIVESjuvenescent adjectiveORIGIN early 19th cent.: from Latin juvenescent-‘reaching the age of youth,’ from the verbjuvenescere, from juvenis ‘young.’

I came across this gem mining the dictionary for another way to say young. Juvenescence is a bubbly, fizzy word for a period of life that passes way too fast.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Vintage Monday: Baking Bread


I love freshly bread but baking my own has always seemed a daunting task. Bread machines were out of the question--been there, done that, didn't care for it. In my world bread has to have a hard crust and a nice, chewy body. So of course, when I found a super-easy no-kneed recipe on Pinterest I had to try it out. I'm glad I did.


Isn't it beautiful? Oh, and that crunchy crust... The dough needs 12-18 hours to rise but it's not an issue. I can start it in the evening and it's ready to bake sometime in the next day. The other big thing is that you need a Dutch oven to bake it in, but I had one already. I'll be baking more bread in the future.