Thursday, June 18, 2009

Listen could learn something

I love words, learning new ones, using them in unexpected ways, mixing up my personal lexicon. I learned a new phrase yesterday. I was speaking with a friend and this was the conversation:
My friend: "We have to be at the pool for the swim meet at 6:45."
Me: "That is early for a Saturday."
My friend: "To wit!"
Me: (In my head, not out loud)"Huh?"
I had never heard that phrase before and frankly at that moment I wasn't even sure if it was an actual colloquialism or merely a sound "toowhit" as in "woowee" or "yeehaw." Uneventfully, the conversation continued and I was able to follow the rest with no problem.

Skip forward to my bedtime reading. I picked up a book that has been on my shelf for a few years, given to me by another friend. This book never drew me to read it until last night. I picked it up out of desperation for something interesting to read. Three pages into the book what do I read but "To wit..." Huh? Twice in one day? Synchronicity wouldn't you say? That is what my friend said earlier, now I was sure.

So I looked to my favorite secret resource, to clear up this unknown term. Here's what I found:
To wit (Adverb) - as follows, namely, that is to say, videlicet, viz.

You can look up those new words above that you don't know on your own time. Until then, don't you love it? A new way to voice agreement with a statement, a new way to say "obviously." A new way to say "Puh!"

Huh? Wait, you won't find "puh" in the freedictionary. That was a term frequently used by my brothers and me when we were young. It meant "Yeah, right!" "Obviously!" "Don't be a dolt!" Now I don't think my friend was calling me a dolt. But regardless, I am so thrilled to have this new, much more intelligent avenue for expressing myself. To wit!

1 comment:

  1. very cool! i love stuff like that. i remember the first time i heard the phrase "to be sure" years ago and wondering about it and liking it. now i use it.

    i love etymology and learning about how phrases began. i've looked at books at the library about this sort of thing, but never knew there were resources on the web. thanks for the tip!

    by the way, i can not even remember how i discovered your blog, but i have had it bookmarked for a while. i was going through and organizing my bookmarks and saw yours. i thought i would stop by. i'm sure i must have liked what i saw last time, and that is why i bookmarked it. and i still do like what i see. it's an enjoyable read and your photos are very good.


Whaddaya think about that?