Just Jazzy 190

The first word on my word-a-day calendar is autodidact (someone who is self-taught) followed by inchoate, fop and pecuniary.  Frankly I was expecting way more weirdness with words that are much more enigmatic and obscure and infinitely harder to spell.  The autodidact in me has been passed on to Jazzy, who needs a challenge and a reason to go on making strange remarks.  She also has a new wardrobe and a lot of wine to consume, as well as an email subscription to Wordnik where the words are often arcane, abstruse and about as clear as mud.  Exactly her kind of thing.

Welcome to Jazzy Words.  Because it’s never too late to learn something new.



A drink made of molasses and water, and sometimes a little vinegar and ginger; also, rum and water sweetened with molasses, formerly a common beverage among American sailors; hence, in sailors’ use, any strong drink, sweetened and flavored.

Water, thickened with oatmeal, or made spicy with vinegar and ginger, ‘switchel,’ as it is called, served to quench the thirst.

jazzy 190 001

Salute, sailor! Save me the swizzle stick from your switchel. I’m going to need it to untie the knots in my tongue from saying that.

Jazzy Words

Subnivean Meltdown

subnivean zone entrance

Welcome to our subnivean world

Where the sun will never shine.

I sense your uneasiness with the gloom.

You wonder why we choose to exist

In this silent and cheerless place.

I will play the morosoph to answer;

The decision was ultroneous,

Simply because we had no other choice.

And now there is nowhere else to go.

Perhaps this is also true for you.

See how our refuge keeps us sheltered and warm?

Here we are safe from the rasorial creatures,

Far from the predators in their bosky copse

And the bitter cold above us.

Here there is little to fear.

Stay with us and let your anger soften,

Your fighting spirit and your bitterness melt.

Bear us no ill will and you will be protected.

You will be one with us.

We will play cockal in the darkness

To while away the winter hours,

Nights and days passing in a fog of promnesia.

I think you will get used to it, this somnolent existence.

If not, the alternative is to leave.

Perhaps to die.

Ah, I see you have made up your mind.

A wise decision.

Welcome to our subnivean world.


trifecta button


No excuses for missing a Trifecta Challenge since now there will be just one a week instead of two. This weeks word is the 3rd definition of “melt” – to make tender or gentle, soften.

I have never written a blog post with footnotes (and I’m not about to start) but I am including some definitions of weird words of the day from Wordnik so that the above will make some small modicum of sense. I love learning new words.  If you don’t need these definitions – wow, you have a very impressive vocabulary. If you do need them, you’re welcome.  Make these words your own and impress your nerdy friends.

subnivean  – Situated or carried on under the snow, an insulated area between packed snow and the ground where small animals take refuge

morosoph –  A philosophical or learned fool, jester This word comes from a Greek phrase meaning ‘foolishly wise.’

promnesia  –  The illusory consciousness that an event, now happening for the first time, has been experienced before.  Also paramnesia, deja vu

ultroneous – Spontaneous; voluntary, from the Latin ‘ultro,’ of one’s own accord.

rasorial  – Given to scratching the ground for food, as poultry;

cockal  – A game played with the anklebones of a sheep in the place of dice.

bosky – Woody; consisting of or covered with bushes; full of thickets.

Dear Breathing Space



My Dear Breathing Space, Blog of My Life, Disturber of my Good Nights Sleep:

So sorry for blatantly ignoring you lately and being a bad blogging friend so that no one wants to read you because you have nothing to say.  I have lots of great reasons and excuses, but you’ve heard them all before so we’ll just skip that tedious part of this letter and get right to the point, which is my ingenious Plan To Do Better.

1.  Every Monday I will write a poem, giving all of us just one more good reason to hate Mondays.  I will incorporate whatever the Wordnik word of the day happens to be.  I apologize in advance, and will find nice pictures that may or may not be relevant to take your mind off the fact that it’s poetry.

2.  I will do a Just Jazzy 24 Day Advent Calendar from the first of December to Christmas Eve.  It will involve more creativity than putting the numbers from one to twenty-four on twenty-four bottles of red wine.  Although that might also be fun, involving a Christmas I wouldn’t be able to remember…..

3.  I will answer at least one Daily Prompt a week, no matter how hard the topic makes me roll my eyes.  It’s time to stop being such a critic and just answer the damned questions.

4.  Trifecta is brilliant, the writers are brilliant, and it would be brilliant of me to take every one of their challenges.  I will try.  I cannot promise brilliance, but it would be brilliant to have that aim.

5.  I will also try to respond to comments because I love getting them and it’s horrible bad manners not to.  I’m basically a really nice person, albeit a ridiculously lazy one, but being rude is never acceptable.  Why do I keep forgetting that?  It’s not okay.  Smarten up, you inconsiderate moron.

Okay, that’s it.  It’s worth a try.  November was a write-off for a post a day for me.  There was too much to read.  On line and off.  Here’s to a better December 2013 book of days.

Love from your Omnipotent Creator

(who will sleep better tonight, unless she starts worrying about breaking these promises, in which case we can both disregard all of the above nonsense.)

Just kidding.  I love you.

Round Prompt

Round Prompt (Photo credit: creativelenna)


Adventitious Halations in a Sizzard

We’re a little short-staffed at work for the next couple of weeks and yesterday we had one of those manic days where I couldn’t get one thing finished before I had to start something else.  The hurrieder I went the behinder I got.  OMG I miss you Laura!!  Waaaaaah!!

There – that made me feel MUCH better.

A drop of 4 degrees in temperature inside my house and a day off to enjoy it is also contributing to my mood up-swing.  I’m not sure when the thunderstorm started last night, but it didn’t grumble away off into the distance until around 5 a.m.  I watched the sheet lightning for awhile through my eyelids and then gave up the fight to go back to sleep and watched it with my eyes open from my living room couch instead.

Lightning #2

Lightning #2 (Photo credit: dmolsen)





This was not one of those storms where there’s a bolt of lightning followed by silent counting (one one-thousand, two one-thousand three one-thou…) and then a crazy crack of thunder that scares the shit out of you.  Lightning lit up the entire sky in rapid flashes – like some kind of demented strobe light show, and the thunder rumbled and roared and rolled across the heavens non stop.  And beautiful beautiful rain poured down on my scorched and crispy lawn.

I knew there was a good reason to ignore the suggestion from the weed people to water my grass.  If you wait long enough a good reason always turns up for everything.  Like my title today.

The word of the day at Wordnik  is halation – In photography, the effect of excess of light, or of adventitious (casual, chance random – I looked it up)  reflected light, on some part of a negative……from ‘halo,’ which comes from the Greek ‘halos,’ disk or ring of light around the sun or moon.

A couple of days ago the word of choice was sizzard – A very uncomfortably hot, moist atmosphere in which one ‘sizzles’ – a blend of the words  ‘sizzle’ and ‘blizzard.’

And that of course brings us to hatchetation – a violent protest against the drinking of alcohol in which the protester attacks the bar with a hatchet – proving that you can make up a word for just about anything that pops into your little thunder addled brain.

See, this is why I never get anything done.  One thing leads to another until I reach some adventitious spot where I just stop what I’m doing and hit “publish” even though there’s SO much more to say about so many fascinating and yet totally unrelated things.

I need more coffee.  It was a long night.

A Case of Anamnesis

Have I ever mentioned how crazy this place is for sirens, night and day?  Ambulances, firetrucks, emergency vehicles, police cars, and sea nymphs for all I know.  There was even a siren in the middle of the fireworks last night, but if something blew up or burned down I slept through the aftermath.  I imagine some siren-happy crew took care of it.  There’s also helicopters flying around now and again but they don’t have alarm bells and whistles.  Not yet, anyway.

Today Siren City is relatively quiet for a change (except for the mad magpies who can never be mute – they would explode).  And the buzz of a lawnmower.  The sun is shining, there is a warm breeze, the coffee is hot and sweet.  Normally I don’t like it so sugary, but I poured in some vanilla/toffee/caramel cream before I was completely awake, from what was supposed to be a small container of French Vanilla for a change from Hazelnut.  But wasn’t.  This is what happens when I think I’m too smart to bother reading labels.  Something weird ends up in my fridge and there’s no one around but me to blame for it.

I should go back to drinking my coffee black.  Life would be so much simpler.  And maybe I’d have a simpler time keeping focused on one topic at a time.  That was a big huge gigantic maybe.

The Wordnik word of the day is anamnestic.

  • n. (noun) The art of recollection or reminiscence.
  • (adj) Aiding the memory.

‘Anamnestic’ comes from the Greek ‘anamnesis,’ a calling to mind, remembrance.


1.  the recollection or remembrance of the past; reminiscence.
2.  Platonism . recollection of the Ideas, which the soul had known in a previous existence, especially by means of reasoning.
3.  the medical history of a patient.

4.  Immunology . a prompt immune response to a previously encountered antigen, characterized by more rapid onset and greater effectiveness of antibody and T cell reaction than during the first encounter, as after a booster shot in a previously immunized person.

Anamnesis is a condition, then, and it follows that there must be degrees of it.  The art of recollection is not a clear-cut science or a faultless method.  Memories are often less than exact.
We all suffer from anamnesis, or delight in it, putting our own spin on the past.
Sometimes something is remembered so differently by someone else that we don’t recognize it as being the same moment in time.
I remember posing for this picture after church, holding my baby sister gently by the shoulders so she wouldn’t run away, smiling for our mom, ready to take off running as soon as she said okay because my brother was holding a long thin stick in his hand and I didn’t want to feel it on the backs of my bare legs.
Maybe he would only flick it around in the air and threaten and tease, but why take chances.
What do they remember about that day?
My life had no sirens in it then, when we lived there.  I wore my hair in a pony tail.  My sweater was brilliant red.
I loved my siblings.  (Some things don’t change.)

For The Love of Words

It’s ‘learn a new word day’ today, and yes, I did just make that up.  I have no idea what day it really is.  Although tomorrow is the longest day of the year, and that’s pretty exciting for us people who love summer.

At Wordnik the word of the day is ESTIVATION – the act of passing the summer.  It’s a new one to me.  The opposite of HIBERNATION.  Both these activities greatly appeal to me.

The first random word that came up (also clickable under Et Cetera, bottom right) is AMBULANT – moving or walking about.  So let’s all get out there and be ambulant during our estivation.  Or not, depending on the temperature and the humidity.

Great site, hey?  Can’t believe I missed yesterday’s word – PHANSIGAR which means thug.  Although I’m not sure how I might have worked that one into casual conversation.

I’ve also just subscribed to Chorus –  (because also under Et Cetera I clicked on “have a word press blog?”) –

Be inspired while you blog and help your readers discover great content.

Chorus is a new tool for bloggers that helps make your awesome content even more relevant, interesting, and serendipitous.

I’d settle for relevant, interesting and serendipitous without the “even more” bit. 

All I was doing was looking for a great F word for the Alphabet Soup category and all this garble is the result because I didn’t find one any better than the one I’d already thought of, which is what I’ll be going on about tomorrow.  Or not, depending on the temperature and the humidity, how long the day ends up being, and the number of phansigars I encounter ambulating their way through their own personal estivation.

I think I’m a word-aholic, with no great desire to recover.