Thursday, March 26, 2009

Word Nerd Alert

I may have a profoundly dirty mouth, but rest assured, I'm a total word nerd at heart. A grammar goddess. A lexicon lady. A worldly wordster. Er. Yeah.

So, you can imagine the audible screech o' glee I emitted today when I the interwebs lead me to the OED's "Ask Oxford" section. I was on a mission to find out the longest monosyllabic word. (The boss lady brainstormed "twelve." I drew a blank.)

OED says:
"the one most commonly cited is screeched (nine letters). However, one ought to mention also scratched, scrounged, scrunched, stretched, and the plural nouns straights and strengths (all with nine letters)."

Then I found more questions and answers:

_ Want to know what comes after "thrice"? Nothing.
_ The antonym for misogynist? Misandris.
_ The collective term for a group of cats? A clowder.


Meanwhile, a lovely former co-worker tweeted about Schott's Vocab blog over at the New York Times. Among my current favorite entries: bossnapping; econocide; twitturgy.

Schott's has great fun phrases, which I live to make up. And OED has great trivia info as well as, well, just about everything else.

Outside of my job, words and language are important to me. And they're an important part of how I see and interact with people. True story: I once went out on a date with a guy simply because his e-mail questioned why "bling" was being added to the OED. I was smitten. Meanwhile, I have rejected dudes who can't use the correct it's/its they're/their/there or you're/your. (I know, I'm sometimes a bitch. It's just part of my charm.)

What's your favorite word nerd thing? Or do you have a pet peeve?


Noodles said...

An astute reader points out that there are two spaces after periods. I use one. I'm weird, but it's how I was taught and is the preferred format for my pays-the-bills-career. It probably also explains my penchant for one-sentence paragraphs.

Thanks AP Style.

KateKwiltz said...

I was told at some point that the "two spaces" rule was a function of the typewritten word, and word processing has rendered it unnecessary. So I'm in your camp.

I can't stand it when people use "myself" instead of "me." It's a total dealbreaker.