Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Language: It's a Little Fishy

Oh, how I love the way language constantly evolves. It's a fantastic excuse for why my spelling is such crap. (Why did we remove the "e" in judgment? What did it do to Mssrs Merriam or Webster?)  Or why my floundering with homonyms and homophones sends my editors snickering up their sleeves. (Grisly and Grizzly, I'm looking at you.)

No? Not buying it as an excuse? 

Believe it or not one of my favorite ways to bond with my father is over a delightful little card game known as Quiddler. It's a variant of Scrabble in which every card is a letter with a different point value that you must use to make a word. You start with three cards and add a card with each round you play. Simple enough. The catch, that is not an official rule, is we can only use words from our unabridged 1969 dictionary that we hauled around the world and that weighs more than the family dog.

That's right 1969, when terms like Byte and Gigahertz didn't exist. Email? No. Internet? No. Dear Reader, there are words in that dictionary that are not defined but used as definitions. I present to you:


What a spectacular word, right? Brings to mind faeries and sprites and journeys through moon gates.

It's a fish.
(I had to look it up on the internet. Oh, the irony.)

So, while Zoomers are having a ball dragging Millenials for passe terms like Adulting and Doggos on TikTok, I'm rummaging through the past for fascinating names to bestow upon fantasy races of...fish?