Saturday, May 14, 2005

Nifty Quote and Word of the Week - May 14

Back in an earlier iteration, this weblog was actually a weekly email that I sent to all my family and friends. I called it “The Nifty Quote and Word of the Week” – I would give bite sized summaries of the events of the week, books I was reading, movies I liked, and then I would conclude with a word and a quote that caught my attention. I kept this up until about four years ago, when I became pastor at Covenant-First.

Now I’ve begun blogging, in part as a laboratory for processing all the cultural input that comes my way, in part as a means to expand our Church’s ministry, and in part as a means of reconnecting with all my friends and family from across the globe. In that spirit. I resuscitate the custom of the Nifty Quote and Word of the Week (sans so much personal news – this is the internet after all)

This week’s word: harridan (a modification of the French haridelle – old horse, gaunt woman): a shrewish woman. Two weeks in a row, I’ve seen harridan used in Time magazine. This week it was Joel Kline’s article on Hillary Clinton. Last week, it was the story on Ann Coulter (I believe describing her as a “pulchritudinous harridan” – I had always thought pulchritudinous meant “fat” from it’s use in the film Dumbo where the ringmaster describes the elephants as “pulchritudinous pachyderms”. When I actually looked it up in my Webster’s collegiate dicationary, the real definition is “physical comliness” ie pretty good lookin’ – but I digress). Harridan is a fine word – use it in conversation this week and baffle your friends.

And the quote of the week. From Robert Kaplan’s Warrior Politics “conflict and community are both inherent in the human condition.”