Dancing with words . . . Fog stole the mountain this morning, and left its breath on every berry and twig of our May tree; actually, its breath was…

Dancing with words . . .

Fog stole the mountain this morning, and left its breath on every berry and twig of our May tree; actually, its breath was like a master’s brush stroke on every little thing. Not a twig, nor blade of grass, lamp posts, stop signs, stones, fences … you name it, the master’s frosty brush missed nothing.

No image on a movie, television or computer screen can match such wonder. Proof that the seasonal “scrooge” of our snowbirds, feathered and T-shirted Old Man Winter, can match the other seasons’ “pretty-as-a-picture-moments,” with its own splendour!

Like the moon, come out from behind the clouds! Shine. (The Buddha)

A word a day …

It was during the two-year-election ramble of our neighbours when my daily wordsmith was, I was sure, putting me on.

Obambulate was the word of a day in October (pronounced 0-BAM-byuh-layt). It means to walk about. Etymology, from Latin ob-(towards, against) + ambulate (to walk), ultimately from the Indo-European root ambhi-(around) that is also the source of ambulance, alley, preamble and bivouac. It was first used in 1614.

And then along came Mrs. Norris telling her husband their son Junior was awfully lazy because “he persuades little brother Freddy to do all his work.”

“Lazy? That’s not lazy, that’s executive ability,” replied Mr. Norris.

I wonder, was that some of the ‘executive ability’ that brought on all the financial chaos president-elect Obama inherits in February?

Nonstick, sticks!

Talking clock.

After closing time at the bar, a drunk took his friends to see his new apartment.

In the bedroom there was a big brass gong and a mallet. “What’s that big brass gong for?” asked one.

“It’s not a gong. It’s a talking clock,” he replied.

“A talking clock? How’s it work?” the friend asked, squinting at it.

“Watch,” the drunk replied. He picked up the mallet, gave the gong an ear-shattering pound and stepped back.

There was a moment’s silence, then someone on the other side of the wall screamed, “You idiot, it’s 3:15 in the morning!”

Don’t drink and drive. You might hit something, and drop your cellphone.


I was having trouble with my computer one day, so I called Richard, the 11-year-old next door. His bedroom looks like Mission Control, and he knows how it all works. Richard clicked a couple of buttons and solved the problem.

As he was leaving, I asked him what was wrong.

He replied, “It was an ID ten T error.”

I had to ask what that meant.

“Haven’t you heard of an ID ten T error?” he replied with a smirk. “Write it down, and I think you’ll figure it out.” So I wrote down: I D 1 0 T!

To think I used to like the kid. We have enough youth. What about a fountain of ‘smart’? (Financial smart especially, with a big dash of political thrown in, eh?)

Here’s another one, much like the other one…

Olny srmat poelpe can raed this. I cdnuolt blveiee that I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd what I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid. Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in what oredr the ltteers in a word are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is that the first and last ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can still raed it wouthit a porbelm. This is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the word as a wlohe. Amzanig, huh? Yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!

See, it’s not that important to know how to spell properly. So what’s all the fuss about?

A tip of the hat to Old Man Winter, the visiting season. Well, it once was!