Article by Lisa Steyn
While I was in a state of zwodder, I ran to the kitchen to get my Coke Light(I know it’s bad for me, but that’s my poison!) as I had xerostomia. My next morning ritual was to turn on the computer and trawl through my emails.
There in my inbox was an email from Karen asking me to guest blog as she had enjoyed my posts about weird and wonderful words. I felt very honoured – thank you, Karen!
So here – in all its glory – is my list of weird and wonderful words. The first 25 are from the book The Horologicon, by Mark Forsyth. The rest, I sniffed around and found them in various places. Enjoy.
1. Horologicon – means a book of hours.
2. Uhtceare – means anxiety experienced just before dawn.
3. Aristologist – means you are a person who devotes your life to the study of breakfast. Not sure as this about my next career move!
4. Hypnopompic – means half dreamful, half conscious delusions and illusions. Yes, I experience this often.
5. Oneirocritical – of or pertaining to the interpretation of dreams.
6. Expergefactor – means anything that wakes you up – your alarm clock, your children, the neighbour drilling at 6am (Just for the record I am not a fan of expergefactors!)
7. Snollygoster – one of my personal favourites this means a dishonest politician (well kind of…the technical definition is similar). The actual definition is a shrewd, unprincipled person.
8. Aubade – means a song sung at dawn by your lover beneath your bedroom window. I am not sure that this is going to happen to me.
9. Reveille – means the drum roll or bugle-blast meant to awaken a barracks of soldiers.
10. Matutinal – people who are breezy and bright in the morning.
11. Zwodder – a drowsy and stupid state of mind. As seen in my introduction, I do experience this fairly often.
12. Philogrobilized – this should be used the morning after the night before and conveys a hangover, but you don’t admit to actually having been drinking (this might be my new favourite word).
13. Xerostomia – the technical term for having dryness of mouth (obviously after philogrobilized!)
14. Obdormition – the term used for your arm falling asleep from lying on it.
15. Lucifugous – means light-fleeing creatures that avoid sunlight like vampires or badgers. It is normally referred to in the context of sins and demons…but feel free to use it when you really need those curtains to be closed in your zwodder state.
16. Cunctation – like procrastination which is avoiding the inevitable.
17. Grufeling – to lie close, wrapped up, and in a comfortable looking manner; used in ridicule.
18. Dysania – extreme difficulty in waking up (this definitely describes me…)
19. Clinomania – an obsessive need to lie down.
20. Oscitancy – yawning or unusual sleepiness…(think about that mind numbingly boring conference).
21. Pandiculation – stretching of the arms or body when you’re is oscitancy.
22. Egrote – to pretend you’re sick in order to avoid work.
23. Whindle – once your boss picks up the phone, start whindling. This is essentially when you are pretending to groan.
24. Floccilating – means feverishly plucking at the bed clothes. You must of course tell your boss this.
25. Jactating – means you are tossing around feverishly.
26. Risorial – something that causes you to laugh. Yes, I do want a risorial moment.
27. Misopedia – you hate children, but worse even is that this specifically means to hate your own! I do hope I never experience misopedia.
28. Zatetic – to question or ponder upon something.
29. Wheeple – to try and whistle loudly, but monumentally failing! I definitely wheeple a lot…I just cannot whistle!
30. Antinganting – a lucky charm.
31. Aposiopesis – stopping an idea in mid-sentence. Um, yes, I can definitely relate to this!
32. Aeolistic – a person who is very long-winded and boring. I have come across many in my time…
33. Limosis – a strong urge to eat chalk. Can’t say this is for me, but perhaps chocolate?
34. Discalceate – to take your shoes off.
35. Carwitchet – a funny pun.
36. Novercaphobia – an abnormal fear of your step-mother. Is this not normal?
37. Thibble – a stick for stirring porridge.
38. Acclumsid – clumsy, numbed or paralysed.
39. Abligurition – spending an abnormally high amount of money on food. I suspect I might have this problem…don’t we all?
40. Calamistrate – to curl your hair.
41. Dactylonomy – counting on your fingers.
42. Fludgs – hurry up! I would love to confuse the morning chaos with “Come, fludgs”. Do you think that might stop them?
43. Gangrel – when a child is just starting to walk. Perhaps toddler is a bit more user-friendly?
44. Hautain – to be proud or arrogant. I will definitely throw this word into my next meeting with an arrogant person – that could put them off.
45. Infucate – to use make-up. “Hold on darling, I’m just infucating.”
Plain and simply…I am a proofreader, editor and copywriter with an absolute passion for the written word and creating words that work. I have over 20 years experience in marketing, which allows me to look at each project from a strategic perspective. Quite by chance, I was asked to work on a number of content management, proofreading and copywriting jobs. I loved it and the clients loved it.
Take a look at Cape Town Proofreader to get an idea of my experience over the years.