vegas kidsWe are spending Thanksgiving in Las Vegas with my grandkids and their parents at the Wyndham Grand Desert.   I am not a fan of Vegas but it turns out that it is close to halfway between Herrimann, UT, where they live and Socal, where we live.  So, here we are.  This morning, while my wife, daughter and granddaughter were off picking up dinner, the boys were getting restless, so I decided to see if they’d like to take a walk.  I turned to them and said, Why don’t you put on your shoes and we’ll go explore the rest of the property. My grandson, Maddux looked at me with a funny grin and said, You mean you want to walk around the hotel? And there you have it.  Even my ten years old grandson thinks I’m pedantic.  Of course, I am putting words in his mouth … he would never call his Papa a pedant.  In fact I don’t ever recall being called pedantic directly but the word does materialize in my consciousness whenever I get that look after using a sesquipedalion word in common discourse.  Several times I’ve asked, Do you think I’m pedantic?  Sometimes, was sometimes the answer.

I do admit to having an affliction.    I love words and having exactly the right word to express what I’m thinking.  As a result I’ve retained every vocabulary word I learned from Miss Miller and Mr. Tierney in high school English, no matter how arcane.  When I encounter an unfamiliar word, I rarely skip overlogophile it or fill in its meaning based on its context.  I look it up and tuck it away to use when it’s shade of meaning is exactly what I need.   And so, I think in what my Dad might have called fifty-dollar words and when I have something to say … or write … out come words like obsequiousEgalitarian.   Circumlocution.   Perfectly good words, just not, apparently, in common enough usage to pass unnoticed.  So, let’s review the evidence.  I’m certainly not showing off my linguistic acumen or being intentionally picayune about my choice of words.   And, to the best of my knowledge, I use the words correctly and I use them to add depth to what I’m saying, not just to sound important.

So.   You can call me a logophile but don’t call me a pedant or a malapropist.   You can say I’m eloquent but not grandiloquent or magniloquent.    You can call me articulate or loquacious but don’t call me sesquipedalion.

Of course, this post would be a notable … and intentional … exception.

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