Word of the Week 6-27-2018


[sen-ahyt, -it]



Archaic. a week.


It had taken them only a sennight to travel from Sentarshadeen … into the heart of the lost Lands to face the power of Shadow Mountain.

Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory,To Light a Candle, 2004

She that I spake of, our great captain’s captain, / Left in the conduct of the boldIago, / Whose footing here anticipates our thoughts / A sennight ‘s speed.

William Shakespeare, Othello, 1622


The archaic English noun sennight means literally “seven nights,” i.e. a week.

The Old English form was seofan nihta.

Middle English had many forms,including soveniht, sevenight, seven nyght, sennyght.




Sunday Photo Fiction 6-17-2018

Sunday Photo Fiction

DSCF5305Photo Credit: Susan Spaulding


He sat quiet, watching the coming and going in the park, Alfred standing to the side, staring off towards the pond.

“After we eat, don’t worry,” he said, taking a bite of his biscuit. Sipping coffee. Tossing half of another to his friend. Alfred ignored the sharing.

He shrugged. It was early. Alfred wasn’t a morning bird.

Neither of them were young. Maybe that was why they were such good friends. Both of them looking at the world from the wrong end of the telescope.

He hope Alfred went first. Who’d take care of him if he passed first? Alfred was a quiet bird, a reflective bird, set in his ways.

Taking his last bite of biscuit, he crumbled the bag and tossed it into the trash bin. Two points. He still had it.

Glancing down, he saw Alfred eating his biscuit, settled back to wait. Friends waited for each other. Friends accepted each other. Friends were friends.

Besides, he enjoyed the quiet. The pond would wait.


Word of the Week 6-14-2018





A person whose official duty it is to examine or investigate something.

Historical A university official responsible for examining votes at university elections and announcing the result.



  • As usual in such cases, ‘Scrutator‘ proceeded to make short work of him.

  • Sharps and Flats

    John Nevil Maskelyne

  • Scrutator tells us that in the time of Mr. Meynell “it was not the fashion to have second horses in the field.”

  • The Horsewoman

    Alice M. Hayes

  • ‘Messrs. M. S. Giuseppi and W. A. Littledale were appointed scrutators of the ballot.’


1570–80; < Latin scrūtātor searcher, examiner, equivalent to scrūtā(rī) to examine (see scrutiny) + -tor -tor


Sunday Photo Fiction 6-12-2018

Sunday Photo Fiction


Photo Credit: Susan Spaulding

“Metal flamingos?”

“Would you rather have real birds, feet buried in the sand?”

Susan sighed, watching the man buying lunch at the trailer beyond.


“Are you trying to distract me?”

“If I was trying to distract you, I’ll be heading you towards the bedroom.”

“If I wanted real flamingos, would you get them?”

“For you, darling, anything.”

She turned in her chair and looked at him. So handsome with his chiseled features and beach blonde hair. And his hands. She’d never known such magical hands.

“Anything in the world?”

Leaning over, he kissed her gently. “Anything.”

“Okay, then I want flamingos. A pair to keep in my garden.”

For a moment, he considered, pretty sure hijacking real flamingos was against the law. Besides, he’d never heard of captive flamingo except in zoos and he wasn’t much of a zoo fan.

He pulled her into his lap, lips caressing the soft skin of her neck. “How about a little before lunch fun?” His hands moved up her sides.

She wiggled. “You are trying to distract me!”

“Guilty as charged.”

She snuggled for a moment then rose, grabbing his hand and pulling him inside.




































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Sunday Photo Fiction 6-8-2018

Sunday Photo Fiction

SPF June 3 2018 (1 of 1)Photo Credit: C.E. Ayr

The two men stood in front of what used to be a home, neither quite sure what to say.

“It was a nice house,” one said finally.


“Real nice inside.”


“Bill put in a nice new bar.”


“Real shame.”


“Wonder if he’d of rebuilt?”


“You don’t think so?”


“Why not?” He scratched under his ball-cap.

The other man just shrugged.

“He loved that house.”


“I’d hate to see it burn again.”


“You think it will?”


“Well, he ain’t the best kind to have in the neighborhood.”


“I guess we’d be better off if he moved.”


“Don’t need nobody poking their nose into things.”


“Think he’ll talk about things?”


“Why not?”

“Kinda hard.” Uttering his first two words of the morning.


“Dead men don’t tell no tales.”

They stood looking at the ruins of the house.

“Yeah,” they both agreed. “Dead men don’t.”


































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Word of the Week 6-7-2018




A small stream or creek; small often dry tributary stream in southern Africa


The descent to the spruit, which is often a short, steep pitch and is then called a donga, needs careful driving, and the ascent up the opposite bank is for a heavy waggon a matter of great difficulty.
Impressions of South Africa

By the side of every “spruit” or brook one sees clumps of tall arum lilies filling every little water-washed hollow in the brook, and the ferns which make each ditch and water-course green and plumy have a separate shady beauty of their own.
Lippincott’s Magazine of Popular Literature and Science Volume 17, No. 100, April, 1876

The lack of health facilities presented an immediate risk to life, as did the possibility of contracting water-borne diseases from the spruit that flowed through the property.
ANC Daily News Briefing


From Dutch spruit. Cognate with English sprite, sprout.


Word of the Week 5-31-2018



necrological  – <!–

necrologist – <!–
\nə-ˈkrä-lə-jist, ne-\


A list of people who have died, especially in the recent past or during a specific period.

An obituary.


The first half begins with a necrology and calendar for the nuns, prioresses, and confessors of Maria Magdalena, as well as the General Masters of the Order based upon the Humbert prototype. –Sensual Encounters: Monastic Women and Spirituality in Medieval Germany 

Oh, and if I can include one other figure in this necrology, it was reported from London that the world’s oldest man, Henry Allingham, the last surviving World War I veteran, died at the very ripe age of 113. –Every Death Diminishes Me

This prompted Ted, who’s made necrology a specialty, to note that two prominent same-day deaths are rare. –David Finkle: The Breakfast Club Takes on Jackson, Fawcett, Sanford, Mrs. Madoff



New Latin necrologium, from necr- + -logium (as in Medieval Latin eulogium eulogy)

NEW! Time Traveler

First Known Use: 1799