Never Heard Such Nonsense!

I flunked my first “reading readiness” test, despite being the only kid in class who could read well. I missed a statistically improbable 29 out of 30 questions on the test–probably because the title of the test was “Reading Readiness Test” and I could not figure out what triangles, squares, spheres, and pattern matching had to do Read More …

Jabberwocky

Jabberwocky, for anyone unfamiliar with Lewis Carroll’s poem, has come to mean “a playful imitation of language consisting of invented, meaningless words; nonsense; gibberish” or speech or writing consisting of such words.  Have you ever coined a term? Made up a word out of thin air? Carroll certainly did! As you slowly, carefully read his poem, Jabberwocky, Read More …

Thoughtless vs Offensive: The Writer’s Job is Not to be “PC”

We wouldn’t need political correctness, or “PC,” if people were simply kinder, more compassionate, and more polite. Political correctness is slapping a crumbling veneer of gentility on a snarling hyena. It doesn’t make you want to invite the hyena over for dinner, but if you’re fooled into doing so, it’s still a hyena and it’s Read More …

Language is Power

My husband and I have a running debate: He is in favor of simplifying the English language in order to ensure clear, unambiguous communication. Me? Every time he suggests it, I feel the color draining from my world; it is as if someone has suggested doing away with the 64-color box of Crayola Crayons and Read More …