Sunday, July 22, 2012

AWAD serial - part 8: misoneism, magna carta, king's ransom

A.Word.A.Day serial – 7/10:  misoneism, 7/14/08:  magna carta, 7/17/08:  king’s ransom.




MEANING:  noun: A hatred or fear of change or innovation.
ETYMOLOGY:  From Italian misoneismo, from Greek miso- (hate) + neos (new). Ultimately from Indo-European root newo- (new) that also gave us new, neo-, neon, novice, novel, novelty, innovate, and renovate.

magna carta

MEANING:  noun: A document or a law recognizing basic rights and privileges.
ETYMOLOGY:  From Latin magna carta (great charter). After Magna Carta, a charter of political and civil liberties that King John of England was forced to sign on June 15, 1215. It was revised several times over the years, and it became an important symbol, establishing for future generations that there were limits to the royal powers.

king's ransom

PRONUNCIATION:  (kingz RAN-suhm)
MEANING:  noun: A very large sum of money.
ETYMOLOGY:  From the reference to the large sum required to secure the release of a king from captivity. 
Eric wanted to stay home, sprawled on the sofa, watching ESPN for the next week, or the next month, or the rest of his life, but HR had left him two voicemails on Friday, asking when he’d be back at work, so he figured he’d better get his ass to the office.  And he’d better start letting people know that Trudi had left him, otherwise they might start calling the police to look into where she’d gone.

But god, he knew what was coming:  the pathetic, pitying looks, the trite words of sympathy, and then the offers to set him up with any and all available women.  He’d have to get it over with so he could move on to the next stage of his life where things would be settled, where he could have his comfortable routine again.  It wasn’t misoneism to have things the way you liked them and not in constant upheaval.

He wasn’t even looking forward to fucking his way through all those women that would come flocking to a newly divorced man.  He’d had his share of pussy when Trudi first left him, because, hell, why not take advantage of  his new-found freedom?  He was a man, after all, and straight, and that’s what straight, unattached men did.  But now he’d started thinking that all those women would just cause more upheaval in his life.  They'd want his time, his money, promises of love, everything he didn’t want to give just then.  Wasn’t there some “Divorced Man’s Magna Carta” that he could use as a shield to stave off the ravening hordes of unmarried spin class instructors and co-workers’ wives’ divorced second cousins?

He just wanted to be left alone for awhile, or maybe to hang out with the guys, but all of the men he knew were half of couples, friends of “Trudi and Eric”, not “Eric’s buddies”.  He thought about Armand and his offer of a drink and a willing ear, but he pushed that option away.  Far, far away.  He would give a king’s ransom to never have met the guy, so he sure as hell wasn’t going to seek him out.  That would be as good as admitting that he really was gay.  Which he wasn’t.

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