Puns and Other Linguistic Shenanigans
I have a cold. This is cold number three of Cold-Season, which doesn't seem to be taking a break in spite of the fact that Winter is apparently vacationing in Aspen this year. It's not a bad cold this time--as in, it's an actual cold, limited to sniffling, sneezing, and not being able to breathe properly, as opposed to a multitasking cold which takes on the responsibilities of the flu and bronchitis, too.
This morning, after a violent sneeze (which I issued into my shoulder and not, since you were probably wondering, into anyone's drinks), I announced to Starbucks Erika and the morning customers who were present, that today we would not be calling our staple beverage "coffee," but "sneezy." (You might have to say that out loud to yourself to get the joke.) Please somebody laugh at that. At least a chuckle? Or a derisive snort? (Be careful with that last one, though, if you have a cold, too.)
Here is another word-game I was playing with myself this afternoon while driving home:
Why do we say, "infinity" and "finiteness"? Is "finiteness" even right? Did some late-twentieth century North American make that up and, like "orientated," it stuck? On the other hand, I'm pretty sure the word has never been "finity," though it seems like it should be (in spite of the fact that it looks sort of like "finicky."). "Finitude" would be okay. It sounds smarter than "finiteness." Who decided on the endings for all these latinate words anyway? And why did they decide what they did? We could talk about finitude and infinitude and it would be a lot more consistent. And attitude, for the matter of that.