Sunday, January 11, 2009

Words, Grammar and Redundancies

At the outset, I think I should tell you that this is going to be one of the weirdest postings I’ve ever done on this “blog”.

You might say, “Why do something weird that no one will want to read?”

Good thought.

However, “getting down to basics”, a “gabby” person like me
(gab·by [gábbee]
(comparative gab·bi·er, superlative gab·bi·est)
talking incessantly: talking or inclined to talk to an excessive and irritating degree (informal)

Encarta ® World English Dictionary © & (P) 1998-2005 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.)


doesn’t have to make sense, or impress anyone with “material” or “pertinent” stuff. He just has to get something off his (or her) mind. If someone is interested enough to read it, it’s a “plus”, but not a requirement for the “gabby” person to feel fulfilled. Got it?

(By the way, ALL of the definitions of words that I print here in this posting, are from the Encarta World English Dictionary quoted above. I mention this so I won’t have to list all of the copyright data after each word.)

I say, this is going to be weird because it will consist, mainly, of definitions or grammar rules.

Forgive me, but I woke up this morning at 5 AM, and here at 6:11 AM, I’m STILL awake, thinking about this subject and posting. I’ll be here (stopping for breakfast. “Gabby persons eat also.”), off and on, until I get this subject off my mind.

An interesting thing is, though other persons have always known I was a “gabber”, I never thought much about it, until this “blog” kinda revealed it to me. You know, like the alcoholic finally realizes that he is “hooked”. Although, I should have picked up on it, after Mr. Little suggested that I should concentrate more on getting something into the minds of others, rather than just “getting something off my own mind.”

Oh, well!

Back to “Words, Grammar and Redundancies”.

(Excuse me - my BlackBerry alarm just sounded, at 6:30. I have to turn it off.)

I’m going to try to look through these postings (there are 24 in just a little more than 2 months), looking for some of the unusual words, or grammar rules I’ve listed, and try to explain. Remember, this is a “hobby” with me. In other words, I’m NOT an expert or authority on these subjects.

I had intended to start with the first posting, and then follow them back to this one, trying to explain my usage of a word, phrase or “grammar rule”. But I think it would be helpful to describe the word that “kicked off” these explanations: it’s the word posit.

I used this word in my posting about “Ham Radio”. I said, “I don’t mean to imply that Ken thereby now endorses all the facts I posit.” Unusual word, right? Right. I don’t even know where I got it. It just “came into my mind”, while thinking about what I had written. It means, “to put something forward”.

(Oh………it’s 7:15, and Tonya just called John and me to breakfast.)


I should explain what I DO when I come up with these words, phrases or grammatical expressions, that are unusual. I go ahead and use the word or phrase in my original writing on the Word Processor. (I write it down so I won’t forget it.) Then, I save the writing, and go to the Encarta English Dictionary on my computer to check out the meaning. If the proper meaning coincides with my usage of it, I leave it in the post. If not, I drop it, and choose another word. (What’s weird is that I STILL make mistakes.)

Here's how “posit” triggered THIS posting. Some thought that it was just a “typo”. Makes sense, right? Maybe I meant to say “post”, rather than “posit”. ( I should add that I DO make typos - on these postings. In fact, I’ve corrected some “typos” on previous postings that I had missed before.) But, this WASN’T a typo. I MEANT to use that word.

Thus, the explanation just given.

In going back to the first posting, right off, I see that I’m going to have to admit to, what I NOW feel is a “redundancy”. (“Superfluous, or no longer needed.”)

In my first posting, entitled “Introduction”, I see that I said, “This is my FIRST introduction to blogs.”


I ask myself now, “Isn’t an ‘introduction’ a ‘first’? Why USE the word 'FIRST' at all?" See what I mean?

On the second one, I quoted Phil. 2:3, “Let each esteem other better than themselves.” Esteem - “Value something or somebody highly.” And, I have to add, the King James Version I just quoted is, in this present day, grammatically incorrect, in that “each” implies “one”, so it should be “better than himself”, today.

In my next posting, I used the word “Excellence”. (“Superiority, or an outstanding feature.”) I used it as a term for “perfection”.

I said I thought we should strive for excellence. “Try hard.”

In several of these postings, I refer to my grand-children. Or, grandchildren. Or, great-grandchildren. Or, great-grand-children. Obviously, I don’t know what is right.

Dummy me! I just now looked up this phrase, and the Dictionary says, “ grandchildren” and “great-grandchildren”. Why didn’t I look up this phrase long ago? Dummy! (I heard a Christian Psychologist one time say that we shouldn’t “put ourselves down”, by calling ourselves “dumb” or some such. (Actually, it helps to keep me humble.)

“Humble? Mike?” Really!

Other difficult grammatical terms are: nouns; adjectives; verbs; and adverbs. I gotta tell ya, in spite of my “hobby” concerning these things, I often err - as do MANY authors of books I read (many of them Mysteries).

For example, right off, in my posting entitled “Toledo Fiasco”, I used the word “intrepid” - meaning, “fearless - courageous and bold”. I said, “So, intrepid Senior Citizen that I am,….”. Though there is a serious question about me being “courageous and bold”, I am certainly “fearless”. The word “intrepid” is an adjective, (modifying a noun - “Senior Citizen”). So, the grammar was correct.

However, later in the same posting, (Notice I said “posting”, rather than “blog”. There is only one “blog”. It is this whole “Grandpa Mike” thing. I “post” on the “blog“. Got it?), after mentioning my GPS, I initially said, “After all, I AM intrepid”. Wrong! “Intrepid” is an adjective, not a noun. I am actually, “an intrepid kind of guy”. I left out the whole last sentence. Seemed rather “grandiose”. (“Oh, what does that mean?”) “Pretentious and pompous”. Right! But, what do those two words mean? “Grandiose!”


(If I still have readers now, it would be a miracle!)

But, moving along - In referring to a lay minister who came to Jean’s Nursing Home for Church services, I called him “gregarious” - means “friendly”. “Well, Mike. Why didn’t you just use the word ‘friendly’ instead?” I suppose, because “gregarious” seemed more “pompous”.

“Superannuated”. In “Home For A Week-End”, I defined that term. It means, “Retired, worn out or out-of-date”.

In “Blabbermouth, Confession and Quotations” I used the word “embellish”, describing a telephone call-in guy telling of one of his experiences. I also added, “I STILL have a tendency to ‘embellish’ what I’m saying, supposedly for effect.” I later looked up the word “embellish”, and I’m not sure I like what it implies that I do. The definition: “1. Beautify something. 2. Add false details to something.” Wow! I sure hope I don’t “add false details” to anything. Maybe a bad choice of words.

Well, I’ve overstayed my welcome again. I’ll have to finish this in a future “blog” -er “posting”.

What verse may I use for this post? How about, “Let all things be done decently and in order.” I Cor. 14:40


Molly Sabourin said...

Now I know where Bobby got his passion for grammar! I, too, am fascinated by the meaning and proper uasage of all kinds of words! It must be a family thing. :)

Anonymous said...

Yes, Molly, But WHERE did you get YOUR gift of forming words into thoughts?

Grandpa Mike

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