Thursday, November 6, 2008

I think I have misplaced my dictionary

It’s a simple concept. Evolving circumstances brings newness into our lives.

When we’re in the midst of a change, we get to experience things like new choices we’ve never had before. New perspectives. New friends. New responsibilities. New knowledge. Lots of newness.

A bit of the newness that I gained through the campaign process for a new commander in chief included a couple of new words.

Maybe they are old words with new meanings. Or maybe I’m behind in learning the contemporary terms for 2008.

And if you didn’t know already, I get much of the humor in my life from words people use. Or misuse, if you will.

I heard these words numerous times from broadcasters on national news channels. I read them in articles in prominent news publications. My ears perked up each time I heard these words because they just sounded so odd given the serious campaign context.

The first word that made me listen up was ‘slimed.’ Apparently, that’s what it is called now when someone talks trash about someone else, like a political candidate. Apparently, it doesn’t have to be factual or based on truth.

I don’t think I had ever used the word ‘slimed’ before except maybe when I was watching Nickelodeon.

Is ‘slimed’ on the list of top 100 words you use every day?

Now that I’ve heard serious news reporters use it, I think I’m going to enjoy increasing my word power with ‘slimed.’ I know I will have an opportunity to use it soon because people talk bad about other people all the time. I must be careful, however, or I will be the one slimed.

The second word that perked my ears up like a good guard dog’s is ‘vetted.’ Yes, the dog analogy was intentional. ‘Vetted’ sounds like the past tense of the tasks a veterinarian performs. Doesn’t it? I think the origin of the word ‘vetted’ has something to do with checking out a horse before the big race to see if it was fit. Anyway, it was in the animal section of my vocabulary.

When is the last time you used the word ‘vetted?’

The popular definition of ‘vetted’ now relates to extensive fact-checking. That is, scrutinizing someone’s financial records, associations, conduct, arrest record, medical history, legal status, elementary school permanent records, etc. It goes beyond your basic background check.

I’m not really sure if vetting involves a search for something good or something bad.

But watch out. If you find yourself in a position to be vetted, you will most likely end up being slimed.

Whatever exists has already been named; and what man is has been known; no man can contend with one who is stronger than he. The more the words, the less the meaning, and how does that profit anyone? Ecclesiastes 6:10-1

1 comment:

Jules from "The Roost" said...

I don't use either one and after you explained them to me I am not sure I still know how!:)