Archive for October, 2018

Happy Halloween, 2018!

October 31, 2018

Happy Halloween!  Halloween, a day dedicated to remembering the dead, has become the day associated with horror movies.  Movies full of demoniacs  or demoniacal  behavior.  And, boy, have there been a few!  Here’s the list.

demoniac, demoniacal

\ dih-moh-nee-ak, dee-muhnahy-ak \, adjective;

  1. of, relating to, or like a demon; demonic.
  2. possessed by or as by an evil spirit; raging; frantic.
Source: The Highly Selective Dictionary for the Extraordinarily Literate by Eugene Ehrlich, and


October 30, 2018


Allow me to share some more “pearls of wisdom” (or perphaps more accurately, seeds of cynacism?) in the form of this demotivator (courtesy of www-dot-despair-dot-com).  In my many years in the workforce I have discovered a few different types of people: there are the idea people (great ideas, but no action), there are the planners (again, great at putting together a plan, but not so good at the implementation phase), and there are the worker bees (those that will actually get the work done).  I’m sure that there are probably more types out there, but these three fit the narrative displayed by this demotivator!


Commonly Misspelled and Confused – Letter B!

October 29, 2018

Happy Mondayt!  Here is a list of some of the more commonly misspelled/misused words (courtesy of the Internet Accuracy Project) beginning with the letter “B.”  Enjoy!

Commonly misspelled words

B – balloon, barbecue, barbiturate, bargain, basically, beggar, beginning, believable, believe, biscuit, bouillon, boundary, Britain, broccoli, Buddha, business.

Commonly Confused Words

BARE – exposed; naked; stripped
Once the carpeting was removed, the room looked bare.

BEAR – to endure; to tolerate; a large, heavy mammal
The lone hiker had to bear the burden alone when the bear attacked him in the woods.

BOARDER – paying guest in a house
He plans to take in additional boarders to help cover his rising expenses.

BORDER – boundary or edge, particularly of a geographical region
The bank robber tried to cross the border to avoid pursuing police.

BRAKE – a mechanical device that causes a vehicle to slow or stop
The driver had to brake to avoid hitting a dog that had wandered onto the road.

BREAK – to shatter; destroy
He would have to break all the rules to get elected after he was caught lying again.

BREATH – noun, air inhaled or exhaled
His honesty was a breath of fresh air.

BREATHE – verb, to inhale or exhale
I will breathe a sigh of relief when errors in reference books are eliminated.

Source: Internet Accuracy Project’s commonly misspelled, confused and misused words is a helpful collection of some of the most commonly misspelled, confused and misused words.

College Football 2018, Week Nine!

October 28, 2018

The Spartans were at home this week to face the Purdue Boilermakers (who positively decimated the Ohio State Buckeyes last week).  But the Spartan defense stepped up (three interceptions) and Michigan State was able to get the win. The Big Ten continues to have five (5) teams ranked in the AP top-25 poll: Wisconsin [#20], Iowa [#18], Penn State [#17], Ohio State [#11], and Michigan [#5]).  And, as we near November and the final weeks of the season, there are only four (4) remaining undefeated teams in the top-25 (Alabama [#1], Clemson [#2], Notre Dame [#3], and UCF[#10]).

Next up for the Spartans, on the road to face the Terrapins of the University of Maryland.  Go Green!

The upsets this week included:
Texas (#6) losing to unranked Oklahoma State by three (3) points.
Washington (#15) losing to unranked Cal by two (2) points.
Texas A&M (#16) losing to unranked Mississippi State.
Oregon (#19) losing to unranked Arizona.
Wisconsin (#20) losing to unranked Northwestern.
South Florida (#21) losing to unranked Houston.
NC State (#22) losing to unranked Syracuse.
Appalachian State (#25) losing to unranked Georgia Southern.

The close calls this week (games that were won by a touchdown or less) included:
Washington State (#14) defeating Stanford (#24) by three (3) points.
Penn State (#17) defeating Iowa (#18) by six (6) points.
Kentucky (#15) defeating unranked Missouri by one (1) point.

Top-25 match-ups won by the higher-ranked team included:
Georgia (#7) defeating Florida (#9).
Washington State (#14) defeating Stanford (#24) by three (3) points.
Penn State (#17) defeating Iowa (#18) by six (6) points.

Ancient History, Number Three!

October 27, 2018

By “ancient history,” I will be referencing events from October 27th, that occurred pre-1492 (i.e., before “Columbus sailed the ocean blue”).  Note: most of these will be from the medieval world (476 AD – 1492 AD) as many earlier events don’t always have specific dates.

  • King Athelstan of England dies and is succeeded by his brother, Edmund.  (939 AD)
  • Alexander II is declared  to be the true pope in a synod held in Augsburg, defeating his challenger, Honorius II. (1062 AD)
  • Muhammed ad-Damiri, Muslim theologian and mystic, author of a noted encyclopedia of animals, dies in Cairo.  (1405 AD)
  • Grand Duke Vitold of Lithuania dies.  Svidrigello, brother of King Wladyslaw Jagiello of Poland, is elected as his successor.  (1430 AD)

Source: Volume 1 of the Chronology of World History: Prehistory — AD 1491: The Ancient and Medieval World.

Fun Fact Friday, Number Ninety-Eight!

October 26, 2018

Today’s real facts (courtesy of are all about things illegal.  Did you know that . . .

  • illegal to run out of gas in Youngstown, Ohio?  (Real Fact #797)
  • in Texas, it is illegal to graffiti someone’s cow?  (Real Fact #909)
  • it is illegal in the United Kingdom to handle salmon in suspicious circumstances?  (Real Fact #964)
  • it is illegal to play annoying games in the street in the United Kingdom?  (Real Fact #965)
  • in Switzerland, it is illegal to own only one guinea pig because they are prone to loneliness?  (Real Fact #986)
  • in the state of Arizona, it is illegal for donkeys to sleep in bathtubs? (Real Fact #1008)
  • it is illegal to sing off-key in North Carolina?  (Real Fact #1013)
  • in New Zealand, it is illegal to name your twins “Fish” and “Chips”?  (Real Fact #1309)
  • it is illegal in many countries to perform surgery on an octopus without anesthesia because of its intelligence?  (Real Fact #1386)
  • in Alabama, it is illegal to carry an ice cream cone in your back pocket at any time?  (Real Fact #1400)
  • in France, it is illegal for employers to send emails after work hours?  (Real Fact #1402)


An International Vocabulary!

October 25, 2018

We have had a book titled The Meaning of Tingo: and Other Extraordinary Words from Around the World in our reference collection for a handful of years now (the original copyright was in 2005) and I just recently cracked the cover to get a glimpse of the contents.  What a treasure trove of information on a variety of topics.  So, let’s start with the word “tingo.”  This word originates from the Pascuense (Easter Island; eastern Polynesian language) and it means “to take all the objects one desires from the house of a friend, one at a time, by borrowing them.”  Hmm, I’m not so sure that I can support any form of tingoing.  I would definitely want to get back the first item before lending out the next . . . but that might just be me.

Source: The Meaning of Tingo: and Other Extraordinary Words from Around the World by Adam Jacot de Boinod.

You Don’t Say?!

October 24, 2018

There is nothing worse for an art collector than to be faced with the spurious claim that their recent purchase was not the original work it was reported to be.


\ spyoor-ee-uh s \, adjective;

  1. not genuine, authentic, or true; not from the claimed, pretended, or proper source; counterfeit.
  2. Biology(of two or more parts, plants, etc.) having a similar appearance but a  different  structure.
  3. of illegitimate birth; bastard.

Other words you may consider using (depending on your context/usage, of course):

Source: The Highly Selective Thesaurus for the Extraordinarily Literate by Eugene Ehrlich. Definitions courtesy of

Marriage Advice, Number Three!

October 23, 2018

Here is the third installment of advice on How to be Happy Though Married.  Enjoy!

The Pleasures of Marriage
“Against love there is no remedy, neither a potion, nor powder, nor song; nothing except kissing, fondling, and lying together naked are of assistance.”  (Longus of Lesbos, Daphne and Chloe, 2nd Century)

The Pains of Marriage
“Marriage is the tomb of love.”  (Giacomo Casanova, 1725-1798)

Hints for Husbands
“One shouldn’t be too inquisitive in life — either about God’s secrets or one’s wife.”   (Geoffrey Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales, 14th Century)

Hints for Wives
“I consider it every girl’s duty to marry £80,000 a year.”  (Alice Catherine Miles, Debutante, c. 1868)

The Marital Bed
“And she who gluts more than her fill of food and wine, soon finds a taste for bold excess below the waist!  No worthy man will pay his court to lady of such lowly sort.”  (Robert de Bois, Advice to Ladies, 13th Century)

Source: How to Be Happy Though Married: Matrimonial Strife Through the Ages, compiled by Emily Brand.

The Widower!

October 22, 2018

Here is a wonderful poem by Rudyard Kipling . . . thinking of Dad on his birthday.

The Widower

For a season there must be pain
For a little, little space
I shall lose the sight of her face,
Take back the old life again
While She is at rest in her place.

For a season this pain must endure,
For a little, little while
I shall sigh more often than smile
Till time shall work me a cure,
And the pitiful days beguile.

For that season we must be apart,
For a little length of years,
Till my life’s last hour nears,
And, above the beat of my heart,
I hear Her voice in my ears.

But I shall not understand
Being set on some later love,
Shall not know her for whom I strove,
Till she reach me forth her hand,
Saying, “Who but I have the right?”
And out of a troubled night
Shall draw me safe to the land.