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Strictly Speaking

Mastication During Dinner


Not what you might think. Don’t chew on this one too long, because all is it means is to chew, even if, as with cows, it doesn’t lead to quick swallowing. Mutual mastication would require the presence of an extensive appetizer during osculation, as the latter word does not mean shopping for the right dress for the Oscars.

In order to create an impression of erudition, sports announcers try to stretch their expression using words they think fulfill their intentions. Often they don't. During the Sochi Olympics we were treated to one open mic that gave us, "Wow. The French relay went from austerity to fame!" I think he meant "obscurity." Austerity is a discipline he experienced in vocabulary. Later the same guy said, of the men's bobsled. "Here he makes a mistake, then tries to compound it." I have to wonder if he shouldn't have just stuck with "correct." And in the waning days of the Games, one commentator on (yes) NPR asked if the Russians intended to "dissemble" the venues after the Olympics. Here I'm guessing, "disassemble." At the UN they have simultaneous translation, one language to another. I wonder if there shouldn't be this service for sports events.  Read More 
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Fashion vs. Style

FASHION (vs. style)

A person chasing fashion is always at the mercy of continual change, and fearful that he or she will be a step behind the latest trend. Their rapidly discarded choices in self decoration and clothing will accumulate at the back of the closet like zoot suits, flappers, Nehru jackets and leisure suits. From pictures of the fashionable dresser you will always know the approximate year when the shutter snapped.

Fashion is a discipline driven by fear and restrained by budget. By contrast, a stylish person’s closet is neatly provided with a range of attire that is nearly timeless. In pictures taken of fashionable people, you must look for other markers to reckon the year of the photo. The point is that one may be currently fashionable without being remotely stylish. Like any overly intrusive gesture, passing fashion calls attention to itself, ironically directing the desired attention away from the wearer.  Read More 
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