2016年9月30日 星期五

measly, poltergeist, heebie-jeebies, tut-tutting, plaza, piazza, innards, Joy of English, tacky, wonky, gummy

A university educated pensioner under the age of 70 is more likely to be in the labour force than a 16- to 24-year-old with no qualifications

Oldies are spending more and more on theatre and cinema tickets

The Bookshop is a postwar tragicomedy of manners, set in an isolated seaside town where an enterprising woman opens a bookstore only to find it beset by poltergeists, weather, and hostile townsfolk.

In a lecture at Oxford University economist Paul Krugman implied that the British government—perhaps deliberately—engineered measly growth at the beginning of its term, thus making it easier for the economy to roar back as the election approached. That would seem to ascribe to the coalition an unrealistic level of strategic wizardry and general deviousness, beyond even that possessed by the chancellor of the exchequer, George Osborne. Though interesting, it may say more about Mr Krugman than the British governmenthttp://econ.st/1K9291J

China to Philippines: Here, Have a Measly $100,000 in Aid
The world's second largest economy off-loads insultingly small change on a storm-battered Philippines

Google reacts to PRISM-induced heebie jeebies; the week in cloud GigaOM
Google acknowledges new data encryption plan to mitigate ... news in The Washington Post that Google is encrypting user data flowing between its data centers ...

Policy and the Personal

There's a lot of tut-tutting about the focus on Mitt Romney's personal history. But it's not a diversion; it's a way to bring real policy issues to the forefront.

Winn-Dixie Voluntarily Recalls Gummy Bears

Posted in: Grocery Recalls
A major grocery chain, Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc., in the US is implementing a voluntary recall of a specific brand of bulk gummy bears sold in its stores. The recalled gummy bears are sold under the brand Sunrise.
The affected bulk gummy bears are being recalled because of possible metal contamination. Consumption of food containing small amounts of metal might be harmful to a person’s health.
These gummy bears were sold in the self-serve bulk areas of select Winn-Dixie stores’ produce departments. The recalled gummy bears were sold in the stores from November 14 until December 13.
The following Winn-Dixie stores in different areas of Louisiana and Florida were selling recalled “Sunrise Assorted Flavor Gummy Bears:”
St. John Commons in W. Jacksonville,Florida
Concord Shopping Mall inMiami,Florida
Main StreetSquare inFern Park,Florida
Pepper Tree Plaza in Margate,Florida
Store in 70431 Hi-way 21,Covington,Los Angeles
The grocery chain is implementing a voluntary recall out of caution, in order to prevent any possible medical emergencies resulting from consumption of the affected product. To date, there have been no reports of illnesses that are related to the recalled gummy bears.
Mary Kellmanson, group vice president for marketing of Winn-Dixie, is encouraging guests and consumers that have concerns (about the product or recall) to return the gummy bears in order to be given full refund. Winn-Dixie will refund the recalled product without any questions asked. Consumers who have questions about the recall, or the gummy bears, can contact Winn-Dixie’sGuestServiceCenter. The center’s toll-free number is 1-866-WINN-DIXIE, or 1-866-946-6349.

我的這blog 目標是希望大家讀得懂這樣難的英文

joy (HAPPINESS) Show phonetics
1 [U] great happiness:
They were filled with joy when their first child was born.
She wept for joy when she was told that her husband was still alive.

2 [C] a person or thing which causes happiness:
Listening to music is one of his greatest joys.
the joys of parenthood
[+ to infinitive] Her singing is a joy to listen to.

joyful Show phonetics
very happy:
Christmas is such a joyful time of year.
I don't have very much to feel joyful about/over at the moment.

joyfully Show phonetics

joyfulness Show phonetics
noun [U]

joyless Show phonetics
Jane is trapped in a joyless marriage.

joylessly Show phonetics

joylessness Show phonetics
noun [U]

joyous Show phonetics
adjective LITERARY
full of joy; very happy:
a joyous hymn/event/voice

joyously Show phonetics

joyousness Show phonetics

The Joy of English

Illustration by Matt Dorfman

Published: November 14, 2008

Roy Blount Jr. has returned from the fields where the American lingo grows wild to write “Alphabet Juice,” his personal lexicon, usage manual, writers’ guidebook, etymological investigation and literary junk drawer. This alphabetically arranged book reads like a big bag of salty snacks: nibble five or six of its 500-plus entries and you’ll have to wolf the whole thing.
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The Energies, Gists, and Spirits of Letters, Words, and Combinations Thereof; Their Roots, Bones, Innards, Piths, Pips, and Secret Parts, Tinctures, Tonics, and Essences; With Examples of Their Usage Foul and Savory.
By Roy Blount Jr
364 pp. Sarah Crichton Books/ Farrar, Straus & Giroux. $25
Who before Blount thought to construct a complete conversation using only English vowels? Give a listen:
“ ’ey!”
“I. . . . ”
“Oh, you.”
Who before Blount admired “it” as “the skinniest of all two-letter words”? Who thought to bust Buckminster Fuller for writing, “I seem to be a verb”? Because “verb” is a noun, Blount points out, Fuller was really saying, “I seem to be a noun,” when he made his famous declaration.
A self-diagnosed hyperlexic since first grade, Blount hangs out in dictionaries the way other writers hang out in bars. It’s easy to picture him making a pub crawl of the Oxford English Dictionary, Webster’s Third New International Dictionary (unabridged), the Random House unabridged dictionary and especially the American Heritage Dictionary, where he helps tend bar as a member of its official usage panel. Both giddy and sober, as if ripped on Old Crow fortified with Adderall, Blount chases letters, words and phrases to their origins, and when stumped he ­hypothesizes.
Take “quirky,” for example. Origin unknown, but Blount speculates that “quirk” was born following “the union of ‘quick’ and something more pejorative, perhaps ‘jerk.’ ” Why, he asks, do so many re­duplicative expressions or near-­reduplicative expressions start with “h” (“hill­billy,” “hippy-dippy,” “handy-dandy,” ­“hanky-panky,” “hocus-pocus,” “hoity-toity,” “hoodoo,” “hotsy-totsy,” “hully gully,” “humdrum,” “hurdy-gurdy”), beating out the runner-up, “w”? His answer:
“You will note that many of those ‘h’ expressions refer to disorder and jumblement. Most are of unknown origin. (No matter what you may have learned at your mother’s knee, ‘hunky-dory’ probably does not come from a street in Yokohama where sailors could find a bit of all right.) They’re the sort of expressions that people pull out of the air to convey something otherwise indefinable, like ‘whatchamajig.’ ”
From there he redirects his inquiry to the entry for the letter “h” — which does not contain the “h” sound, having “lost one of its aitches when it came into English from the French hache” — and wonders if the ease of forming the “h” sound with just a breath explains its ubiquity.
There’s no aspect of our language, written, spoken or grunted, that escapes Blount appraisal. Like that other lay linguist H. L. Mencken, who beat the pros at their own game with “The American Language,” he figures that if amateurs are qualified to create language and authorized to mutate it, why leave the fun of tasting, dissecting and quarreling over it to the professoriate?
Marginalized as a humorist (like Mencken) because he knows how to write funny, Blount is also a superb reporter who possesses an imaginative intellect (also like Mencken). Disdaining those scholars who think the relation between words and their meanings is arbitrary, he argues that “all language, at some level, is body language.” Beyond the clearly imitative words, like the onomatopoeic “boom,” “poof” and “gong,” Blount zeroes in on the expressive words that “somehow sensuously evoke the essence of the word: ‘queasy’ or ‘rickety’ or ‘zest’ or ‘sluggish’ or ‘vim,’ ”he writes. “If you were a cave person earnestly trying to communicate how you felt digestively, you might without benefit of any verbal tradition come up with something close to ‘nausea.’ ”
Blount has coined a term to describe words like these that are “kinesthetically evocative of, or appropriate to, their meaning”: it’s “sonicky,” and it appears so frequently in “Alphabet Juice” that it deserves billing in the subtitle. Other sonicky words Blount traps and releases: “lick,” “heebie-jeebies,” “ka-ching,” “chunky,” “blink,” “squeeze,” “foist,” “weird,” “wonky,” “finicky” and “wobbly.” “ ‘Sphincter’ is tight; ‘goulash’ is lusciously hodgepodgy,” he writes. “ ‘Swoon’ emerged from the Old English swogan, to suffocate, because the mind and the mouth conspired to replace ‘og’ with ‘oo’ in order to register a different motion-feeling.” To Blount’s sonicky list, allow me to add “snot.”
The mind-mouth conspiracy to which Blount refers leads him to meditate on the pleasure of saying “polyurethane foam.” The surplus of vowels, the “fluidity” of its meter and “the conjunction of that ‘y’ pronounced like a long ‘e’ and that ‘ur’ like ‘yoor’ ” get primary credit for bliss. Feeling “ ‘polyurethane foam’ . . . running around in my mind’s ear and mouth is like watching otters play in the water,” he says. The scientist in him holds and measures words; the poet tickles them and begs to be tickled back. At one moment he has you beholding the most exquisitely balanced word in English (“level”), and at an­other he’s schooling you in the frequency with which “t” evokes disapproval, as in “tut-tut,” “too-too,” “tittle-tattle,” “tacky tacky tacky,” “fat,” “rat,” “catty,” “tatty,” “twit” and “all hat and no cattle.”
Like many writers, I keep a few books on a shelf to unclog my brain for those times when the right combination of words refuses to muster for service (currently in rotation are “Blood Meridian,” “Beneath the Underdog,” “Mumbo Jumbo” and “1001 Afternoons in Chicago”). To that pantheon I add “Alphabet Juice” for its erudition, its grand fun and its contrary view on what constitutes good writing. Real writers are supposed to “murder their darlings” — that is, purge any vivid phrase that calls excessive attention to the author. This advice has been variously attributed to Twain, Faulkner, Hemingway, Orwell, Auden and others, but Blount traces it to Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch’s 1916 book, “On the Art of Writing.” “Whenever you feel an impulse to perpetrate a piece of exceptionally fine writing, obey it — wholeheartedly — and delete it before sending your manuscript to press: Murder your darlings,” Quiller-Couch wrote.
As one who labored for 15 years as an editor urging writers to birth their darlings and nurture them so that we would have something interesting to publish, I cheered after reading Blount’s critique of this maxim. What is “murder your darlings” but a giant, throbbing, attention-grabbing darling itself? Quiller-Couch could have written “kill your pets” or “eliminate your sweeties” if he was so keen on scrubbing his copy of brilliant phrases, Blount writes, demolishing the famous directive by quoting passages in its vicinity. They swarm with darlings!
Not that Blount counsels self-­indulgence. Writing “needs to be quick, so it’s readable at first glance and also worth lingering over.” This book is both, and danced in Blount’s arms, English swings smartly. My admiration for “Alphabet Juice” only swelled when it proposed a conclusion for this review. Reviewers like to apply the word “uneven” to books they’re fond of, he suggests, but have a few reservations about. “Would you want to read a book that was even?” he asks.
Yes, very much so. And I just did.

Jack Shafer writes about the press for Slate.

It is certainly brilliant value. Which is just what Serge Trigano, son of Club Med founder Gilbert Trigano, wanted to achieve when he discovered the car park back in 2001 - a place that was comfortable, affordable and 'in the Paris known to locals'. Prices start at an impressively low €79 (even tacky hotels on the Left Bank aren't this cheap) and each room not only has a fridge, microwave, excellent beds with top-quality linen,

of cheap quality or in bad style:
The shop sold tacky souvenirs and ornaments.

noun [U]《中英對照讀新聞》Mourning means brisk business after Polish leader’s death 波蘭總統去世舉國哀悼,小販大發利市 ◎俞智敏From flags to candles and tulips to tacky badges, business is brisk for those looking to make a fast buck in the wake of the air-crash death in Russia of Polish president Lech Kaczynski. 從國旗到蠟燭、鬱金香和俗氣的徽章,對那些想趁波蘭總統卡辛斯基在俄羅斯空難中喪生而大發橫財的人來說,生意可是興隆得很。

adj., -i·er, -i·est.
Slightly adhesive or gummy to the touch; sticky.

[From TACK1.]
tackiness tack'i·ness n.

tack·y2 (tăk'ē
adj. Informal, -i·er, -i·est.
  1. Neglected and in a state of disrepair: a tacky old cabin in the woods.
    1. Lacking style or good taste; tawdry: tacky clothes.
    2. Distasteful or offensive; tasteless: a tacky remark.
[From tackey, an inferior horse.]
tackily tack'i·ly adv.
tackiness tack'i·ness n.

William: Yes, my chair is wonky.
Jean: William 坐的椅子整个倒了,现在他已经坐在地上了。
William: That’s right Jean; my chair has collapsed because it was wonky.
Jean: OK. 看来 wonky 这个词的意思就是 shaky 或者是 uneven. Shaky 摇摇晃晃的,uneven 歪的。
William: Yeah let’s listen to these people using the word wonky.

A: I like your new glasses but they don’t look straight.
B: Oh, that’s because my ears are wonky.

A: The wheel on my bike is wonky.
B: Oh… that explains why you looked so wobbly when you were cycling.

Jean: Ah so the first person said his ears were wonky. 那他的耳朵不会掉下来吗?
Steven Fry
Much-loved actor Stephen Fry has an endearingly wonky nose
William: No, he used wonky to mean uneven.
Jean: 噢,谢天谢地。
William: And the second person said the wheel on his bike is wonky.
Jean: Yes, 他自行车的轮子是 wonky 的,就是说是没有安好,是歪的。
William: And his friend said he looked wobbly.
Jean: 就是说,如果他的自行车轮子是 wonky 的,那么他看上去也是 wobbly 也就不奇怪了。Wobbly 就是抖动的或者是摇摇摆摆的,平衡掌握得不好的样子。
William: Ok Jean, I think that we’re going to have to end the show here.
Jean: Yes, and you’d better go and find a new chair.
William: Yep and I’ll be sure to check that my new chair is not wonky.
Jean: Ok and I’ll remind everyone that they can visit our website www.bbcchina.com.cn for more Authentic Real English programmes.

adj., -mi·er, -mi·est.
  1. Consisting of or containing gum.
  2. Covered or clogged with or as if with gum.
  3. Having the texture or properties of gum; sticky and viscid.
gumminess gum'mi·ness n.

[名]1 (特にスペインの町・都市の)広場;市場.2 (高速道路沿いの)サービスエリア.3 ((主に米・カナダ))=shopping center.[スペイン語. △PLACE]


  • 発音記号[piǽzə | piǽtsə]
  • [名](複〜s, piaz・ze 〔pjttse〕)
1 (特にイタリアの都市の)広場.
2 ((主にニューイング・米南部))ポーチ, ベランダ;((英))屋根つき回廊.


Syllabification: (hee·bie-jee·bies)
Pronunciation: /ˌhēbē ˈjēbēz/

(the heebie-jeebies) informal
  • a state of nervous fear or anxiety:it takes a lot more than a measly poltergeist to give me the heebie-jeebies


1920s: coined by W. B. DeBeck (1890–1942), American cartoonist, in his comic strip Barney Google
[イタリア語「広場」. △PLACE
In folklore and parapsychology, a poltergeist (German for "noisy ghost") is a type ofghost or other supernatural being supposedly responsible for physical disturbances, such as loud noises and objects being moved or destroyed. Most accounts of poltergeists describe movement or levitation of objects, such as furniture and cutlery, or noises such as knocking on doors. Poltergeists are purportedly capable of pinchingbitinghitting and tripping people.

 ( t tŭt'tŭt')
intr.v., -tut·ted, -tut·ting, -tuts.
To express annoyance, impatience, or mild reproof: "those fussy fellows at the State Department tut-tutting about lack of reform in the political system" (John Hughes).


Pronunciation: /ˈmiːzli/
adjective (measlier, measliest)

  • ridiculously small or few:three measly votes


late 16th century (describing a pig or pork infected with measles): from measles + -y1. The current sense dates from the mid 19th century