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Isn’t the English language a wonderful thing? I am convinced that the reason English is rapidly becoming language of choice around the world is because of of it’s wonderful mutability. We invent and reinvent words as needed and steal and assimilate others when appropriate. Need a word to desribe an action very precisely? No problem! Just “verb” a noun!
I would really like people to stop dumping on the process of changing language and adding new words–SURE–it’s easy to mock when people start using the verb laptop-“I sat on the couch and went laptoping for a bit last night.” But it is so much more concise and descriptive than any of the verbose alternatives. Remember if you want to stay “old school” you also can’t use “surf” or “web” or internet” (or “old school!) etc. Keep in mind that words like sledding have been around for a long time and started out as nouns also. I like to think of some Pilgrim child being firmly corrected by his father when he announced he was going “sledding” instead of the more proper “sliding on thee ice” 😀
The verbing of nouns is only the tip of the iceburg in this, our fickle language mistress…we can (and DO) mix parts of words together to create all new words that everyone instinctively knows the meaning of! A fav of mine in our house is “smothecate” SO much more poetic donchathink? Also-you know those little booklets with assembly directions that come with Legos? CONSTRUCTIONS! I’d like to see German try that! Don’t get all het up about our new words either! Shakespeare invented “upstairs” and I bet you use it a lot!
I love listening to kids apply “rules” that don’t apply in that instance too-without all our irregularity and odd rules how would we ever find amusement in, say, “amn’t” or Anner’s fav word: willn’t? As in “I willn’t drop my apple core under the couch again.” 😆 And watching their little minds try to wrap around why neither “foot” or “feet” has an S on the end when you obviously need one to express that you mean both of your feets (foots?)
The endless possibilities for diminutives is soooo much fun as well! Was anyone else ever frustrated reading Tolstoy for the first time? All those Russian diminutives (each character had at least 6 names)–I needed a cheat sheet when I read Anna Karenina my Jr year! I hated it then but live it now! The names for my baby alone …LeAnder, Anner, Bo, Bobo, Annerbo, Nerbo, Littleguy, Potty boy, Buddy….
I love the way English lends itself to wordplay as well-I think that kind of play captures a child’s imagination AND encourages a strong desire to read and write. Read Suess to see why–read it outloud to a child and watch their face if you don’t get it the first time. Still don’t get it? Read faster! Want to play more with it? Rap it! (I mean the “real” Suess-not the beginner ones which have their place as well-but for real wordplay and language love read the longer ones!) Now that you have played with Suessian verbage-go read some of Tozer’s poetry! Yup! The same language gives each poet the tools he needs to express himself. Descriptive prose? Try the frogs in “Perelandra” or the head in “That Hideous Strength” if you want to see the full power of mere words to put an image in your mind.
That being said I need to point out that there a couple of things you will ever hear from me–ever. If I ever refer to “my peeps” you can betcher Webster’s unabridged that I am referring to my sugar-coated, bright yellow, fluffy marshmallow guys-or maybe baby chickens-but then I would say YOUR peeps to the child who should feed them. There is also only one way I will ever use the word “frenemy” even under the torture of watching the Barney theme song in a continuous loop (SHUDDER)…that is to refer to this:
I DO have a post in mind–I will finish up school and then…one girl can do dinner and one can do a general house pick-up while 2 boys pick up toys behind 3 boys and one does a quickie vaccuuuuuum zooooom. I will slip into my hazmat suit and do the bathrooms quick–THEN I think I will have a few minutes to play!!
Now I need to scoot-gummy bears and unattended preschoolers do not a peaceful situation make.
This is actually our SECOND snowfall! We had about this much Friday night and it mercifully melted off by yesterday. Last night our yard was once again turned into a winter wonderland-a FRIGID wonderland-a sticky WET soggy wonderland-a muddy under the white wonderland–a whiney dogs and cats bringing the wonderland indoors wonderland. A pile of winter gear and mittens and hats with boots and dog-tracks on top right inside the door wonderland. Rosey cheeks…frosted leaves…hot chocolate with marshmallows…thrum mittens…cozy blankies…books…knitting….OK—I think I am ready now…sure woulda been nice to have some autumn first though.