My Favorite Words Worldwide!
All my life I’ve been a word-geek (much like Rebel Red, who can’t seem to get over correct pronunciation). My first word as a tiny little girl was “Cookie,” and the word that followed shortly was “Pocketbook” – if that gives you any idea of the person I’ve grown up to be! But my point is not that I was a ridiculously adorable child (I was), but that I was one of those kids who spoke like an adult, with crisp, clean speech. I still get made fun of for pronouncing my consonants with unusual fervor, but what can I say? I like words!
I recently came upon a book by George Lipton (Yes, the ever-mocked host of Inside The Actor’s Studio). He’s a pretty smart dude, and apparently he is a word-geek too! His coffee table book is entitled “An Exaltation of Larks” and simply lists the different words used to describe groups of things. Think “gaggle of geese” and “pod of dolphins.” I haven’t made my purchase yet so I don’t know if Lipton reaches beyond groupings of animals, but either way I thought it was pretty cool.
Which brings me to my next point! Exaltation has got to be one of my favorite words. It is beautiful to say out loud – try it! Right now. Say it. See? It’s friggin’ awesome! And the meaning is beautiful, too.
Exaltation: n. 1. a feeling or state of extreme happiness, She beams with exaltation; 2. A grouping of larks (classification of songbirds), He saw an exaltation of larks inhabiting the trees above.
This led me to explore what my favorite words are in other languages. I’d love to say that all of my favorites are as deep and lofty as “exaltation” but mostly I’ve chosen them because they are just plain fun to say. I get a kick out of the fact that one word in English could sound so ridiculous in another language. Ok. Enough blabber. Here goes:
Spanish – it’s a tie between:
“Gua Gua” – (GWA-gwa) - Mexican vernacular for “Truck.” The real word is “Camión” (kam-YOWN)
“Sacapuntas” – (saka-POON-tas) - it means pencil sharpener. But it sounds like a Native American tribe.
“Pamplemousse” – (pomp-lay-MOOSE) - Grapefruit!
“Krankenschwester” – (KRANK-en-shves-ter) - a Nurse, or more literally “sick sister.” Haha! AND it implies being cranky (kranky?), at least as far as I’m concerned.
“Uisce beatha” - (ISH-ka BA-ha) WHISKEY!
Anymore fun ones to throw at me??
Smarty Pants ;)
Posted on 10/20/2009 12:56 AM by Smarty Pants