\ BAH-mee \  , adjective;

  1. mild and refreshing; soft; soothing: balmy weather .


On and off and on and off until he was laughing at the magic of the running water and the chicken and bread that lay balmy  in his stomach.

– Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Half of a Yellow Sun , 2006


Imagine now, while the curtain’s falling, that it’s a fine balmy  day and the smell of clams coming in from the bay.

– Henry Miller, Black Spring , 1936



Balmy  is the adjectival form of balm , which originally referred to an aromatic resin and came to mean anything that heals. Balmy  entered English in the late 1400s.


\ AHR-der \  , noun;

  1. great warmth of feeling; fervor; passion: She spoke persuasively and with ardor .
  2. intense devotion, eagerness, or enthusiasm; zeal: his well-known ardor for Chinese art .
  3. burning heat.


How could that not speak to a million moviegoers? If they embraced Hoffman with ardor , it was in part because he looked so uncool, and so unbeautiful, and because he so obviously hailed from the same tribe as they did, and because there was a kind of beauty, after all, in the flame of feeling that got stoked inside that sweaty heft and pallor.

– Anthony Lane, “The Master,” The New Yorker , Feb. 17, 2014


Although I had a gift for self-pity, I knew her case would then be worse than mine; for it would be worse to see, as she would see, the ardor  in his eyes give place to kindliness than never to have ardor  there.

– Rebecca West, The Return of the Soldier , 1918



Ardor  comes from the Latin ārd(ēre)  meaning “to burn” and the suffix -or , which often occurs in loanwords from Latin and denotes a condition or property of things. In Middle English, this word was often spelled ardure .


\ LAM-buhnt \  , adjective;

  1. dealing lightly and gracefully with a subject; brilliantly playful: lambent wit .
  2. running or moving lightly over a surface: lambent tongues of flame .
  3. softly bright or radiant: a lambent light .


American Literature would surely be the poorer if the great Boston Brahmin had not enlivened it with his rich humor, his lambent  wit and his sincere pathos…

– William Lyon Phelps (1865–1943), edited by Harold Bloom, “Mark Twain,” Mark Twain , 2009


The sea that night gleamed with the moon’s lambent  silver and drew to its surface many squids dazed and fascinated by the light.

– Rachel Carson, “The Edge of the Sea,” Life , Vol. 32, No. 15, 1952



Lambent  comes from the Latin term lambere  meaning “to lick.” It entered English in the mid-1600s.


\ in-DEL-uh-buhl \  , adjective;

  1. that cannot be eliminated, forgotten, changed, or the like: the indelible memories of war; the indelible influence of a great teacher .
  2. making marks that cannot be erased, removed, or the like: indelible ink .


Alone among the celebrity journalists of the sixties… he has both given us indelible  portraits of living people and brought ideas to vivid, eccentric life.

– Rhoda Koenig, “Tom Wolfe Rattles the Foundations of Modern Architecture,” New York , 1981


How had she remembered it all? She hadn’t made an effort–how had every dish remained so indelible  after all conversations and glances had faded?

– Andrew Sean Greer, How It Was for Me: Stories , 2000



Indelible  can be traced to the Latin indēlēbilis  meaning “indestructible.” It entered English in the mid-1500s.

mot juste

\ moh ZHYST \  , noun;

  1. French . the exact, appropriate word


I felt very bad because here was the man I liked and trusted the most as a critic then, the man who believed in the mot juste —the one and only correct word to use—the man who had taught me to distrust adjectives as I would later learn to distrust certain people in certain given situations…

– Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast , 1964


I felt that something might be learned of what I wanted from Flaubert and the mot juste  so admired by Ford and Pound.

– A. S. Byatt, “Still Life/nature morte,” Passions of the Mind , 1991



Mot juste  is a borrowing from the French word of the same spelling and meaning. It entered English in the late 1800s.


\ SLIP-shod \  , adjective;

  1. careless, untidy, or slovenly: slipshod work .
  2. down-at-heel; seedy; shabby.


… Buck saw a slipshod  and slovenly affiar, tent half stretched, dishes unwashed, everything in disorder…

– Jack London, The Call of the Wild , 1903


At intervals were heard the tread of slipshod  feet, and the chilly cry of the poor sweep as he crept, shivering, to his early toil…

– Charles Dickens, Nicholas Nickleby , 1839



Slipshod  is formed with the verb sense of slip  “to move, flow, or go smoothly or easily” and shod , an adjective meaning “wearing shoes.” Slipshod  entered English in the late 1500s.


\ KATS-paw \  , noun;

  1. a person used to serve the purposes of another; tool.


Intrigue followed her wherever she went, because more powerful personalities wanted her for a cat’s-paw . Once queen she might have proven a difficult cat’s-paw , however.

– Jonathan Schneer, The Thames , 2005


I found out later what he’d done — used me for a cat’s-paw  to keep this company I’d bought from selling out to someone else and spoiling another deal he had on the fire.


– Cameron Hawley, “Fast Millions from East Deals” (excerpt from Cash McCall ), Life , Vol. 39, No.1, 1955



Cat’s-paw  finds its origin in a fable called “The Monkey and the Cat” in which a monkey uses a cat’s paw to draw chestnuts out of a fire. The term entered English in the mid-1600s.


\ bruhsk \  , adjective;

  1. abrupt in manner; blunt; rough: A brusque welcome greeted his unexpected return .

Her voice is soft and low, at odds with her bigness and her brusque  movement.

– Katherine Dunn, Geek Love , 1989

Rachel understood only that Uncle Pono was sick in the hospital, but when she asked if they could go see him, her mother snapped out a brusque  ” No ” and changed the subject.

– Alan Brennert, Moloka’i , 2003


Brusque  is borrowed from French and adapted from the Italian word brusco  meaning “tart.” It entered English in the early 1600s.


\ des-i-DEER-ee-uhm \  , noun;

  1. an ardent longing, as for something lost.

I think as seldom as I can of what I loved or esteemed in it, to avoid the desiderium  which of all things makes life most uneasy.

– Jonathan Swift (1667–1745), Letter to Alexander Pope  on June 28, 1715, The Works of Jonathan Swift , 1859

Whoever should study the mood of desiderium  in England during the eighteenth century might find corroboration for the sense of restrained poignancy which often underlies the good poetry of the age…

– Arthur Raleigh Humphreys, William Shenstone: An Eighteenth-Century Portrait , 1937


Desiderium  comes from the Latin verb dēsīderāre  meaning “to long for; require.” It entered English in the early 1700s.


\ VOH-tiv \  , adjective;

  1. offered, given, dedicated, etc., in accordance with a vow: a votive offering .
  2. performed, undertaken, etc., in consequence of a vow.
  3. of the nature of or expressive of a wish or desire.

Behind the barricades–made of paving stones, or chairs, or the carcasses of cars–people had built makeshift altars, with votive  candles, incense, and framed pictures, to commemorate killed protesters where they had fallen.

– Jon Lee Anderson, “Revolutionary Relics,” The New Yorker , May 1, 2014

“I have promised a votive  offering to Poseidon,” I said to one of the sailors as we marched downward again. “But he’s not one of my favourite gods, I have to say.”

– Margaret Doody, Aristotle and the Secrets of Life , 2002


Votive  shares a root with the word vote  in the Latin term vōtum  meaning “vow.” Votive  entered English around 1600.


\ EE-thos, EE-thohs, ETH-os, -ohs \  , noun;

  1. Sociology . the fundamental character or spirit of a culture; the underlying sentiment that informs the beliefs, customs, or practices of a group or society; dominant assumptions of a people or period: In the Greek ethos the individual was highly valued .
  1. the character or disposition of a community, group, person, etc.
  2. the moral element in dramatic literature that determines a character’s action rather than his or her thought or emotion.

These stories and countless others attest to the democratic ethos  of social mobility and fluidity, heavily inflected by the Romantic ethos  of “rugged individualism” and, however reductivist, Emersonian “self-reliance.”

– Ann Lauterbach, The Night Sky: Writings on the Poetics of Experience , 2005

Irony is not dead–it’s (ahem) a useful rhetorical tool–but it’s certainly not the ethos  of our age.

– Jonathan D. Fitzgerald, “Sincerity, Not Irony, Is Our Age’s Ethos,” The Atlantic , Nov. 20, 2012


Ethos  comes from the Greek term meaning “custom; habit; character,” and provides the root for the term ethics . It entered English in the 1600s.


\ puhl-kri-TOOD-n-uhs, -TYOOD- \  , adjective;

  1. physically beautiful; comely.

Jazz buffs with glorious vocabularies wrote long and often boring tributes to the pulchritudinous  Lady Day, her phrasing and incredibly intricate harmonics.

– Maya Angelou, The Heart of a Woman , 1981

The years have not appreciably dimmed his pulchritudinous  luster.

– Evans Peck, “The Many-Sided McLean,” Cosmopolitan , 1910–1911


Pulchritudinous  is built on the Latin word for “beautiful,” pulcher . The noun pulchritude  entered English in the mid-1400s; pulchritudinous  did not gain traction in the US until the late 1800s.


\ puh-RIK-uh-pee \  , noun;

  1. a selection or extract from a book.
  2. a portion of sacred writing read in a divine service; lesson; lection.


\ trawth, trohth \  , noun;

  1. one’s word or promise, especially in engaging oneself to marry.
  2. faithfulness, fidelity, or loyalty: by my troth .
  3. truth or verity: in troth .


\ OS-kyuh-leyt \  , verb;

  1. to kiss.
  2. to bring into close contact or union.


And the Marquis, whose rough, red beard was trembling with emotion, effusively osculated  the ducal paw.

– P. W. Wilson, “The Three Young Citizens,” Boy’s Life , December 1924


A person should be particular whom they osculate  with.

– “Miscellaneous Matter,” The Critique , 1909



Osculate  is formed with the Latin word for “mouth,” ōs , and a suffix used to create English verbs from Latin, -ate . It entered English in the mid-1600s.




1. a medicine that relieves or allays pain.

2. anything that relieves distress or pain:

The music was an anodyne to his grief.


[in-ter-reg-nuh m]

noun, plural interregnums, interregna 


1. an interval of time between the close of a sovereign’s reign and the accession of his or her normal or legitimate successor.

2. any period during which a state has no ruler or only a temporary executive.

3. any period of freedom from the usual authority.

4. any pause or interruption in continuity.

Postwar interregnum as conflicting plans for central intelligence are shakendown into a presidential directive.

There was an interregnum, a period of diffuse groping and stumbling.

The college, ultimately, was seized by parliament during the interregnum.



noun, plural oeuvres 

[œ-vruh] (Show IPA). French.

  1. the works of a writer, painter, or the like, taken as a whole.
  2. any one of the works of a writer, painter, or the like.

And his oeuvre didn’t exactly get less sensational or surreal from there.

And, by the way, the oeuvre exists outside our own interpretations.

Slight as his oeuvre had been, it proved impossible to forget.



verb (used with object), concatenated, concatenating.

  1. to link together; unite in a series or chain.


  1. linked together, as in a chain.

An immoderate fondness for dress, for pleasure, and for sway, are the passions of savages; the passions that occupy those uncivili zed beings who have not yet extended the dominion of the mind, or even learned to think with the energy necessary to concatenate that abstract train of thought which produces principles…. that women from their education and the present state of civilized life, are in the same condition, cannot … be controverted.

- Mary Wollstonecraft




verb (used with object), vetted, vetting.

to appraise, verify, or check for accuracy, authenticity, validity, etc.:

An expert vetted the manuscript before publication.



verb (used with object)

  1. to understand thoroughly and intuitively.

verb (used without object)

  1. to communicate sympathetically.

coined by Robert A. Heinlein in the science-fiction novel Stranger in a Strange Land (1961)

So here’s my list of stuff you may not grok about our nearest star.

Again, that’s the only true way to understand this concept, to grok it.

“to understand empathically,” 1961, arbitrary formation by U.S. sciencefiction writer Robert A. Heinlein (1907-1988) in his book “Stranger in aStrange Land.” In popular use 1960s; perhaps obsolete now except ininternet technology circles.


[sahr-tawr-ee-uh l, -tohr-]


  1. of or pertaining to tailors or their trade:

sartorial workmanship.

  1. of or pertaining to clothing or style or manner of dress:

sartorial splendor.

 They even share a sartorial tie: the devout in both faiths wear special undergarments.

But the sartorial façade of sophistication was a flimsy one.

We scavenged our search results for reports on the screenings,implications of sartorial missteps, and expressions of sisterhood.



\ PROOD-ns \  , noun; 

  1. caution with regard to practical matters; discretion.
  2. the quality or fact of being prudent.
  3. regard for one’s own interests.
  4. provident care in the management of resources; economy; frugality.


\ uh-NON \  , adverb; 

  1. in a short time; soon.
  2. at another time.
  3. Archaic. at once; immediately.

And anon  when his breathing had become deep and regular, we may creep into his bedroom and catch him at his dreams.

– H. G. Wells, The Wheels of Chance , 1896

He waved good-bye and told me he’d call anon . Thattime, I didn’t fall for the anon  thing.

– Patricia A. Marx, Him Her Him Again the End of Him, 2007


Anon  comes from the Old English phrase on āne meaning “in one (course)” or “straightaway.”


\ pri-VAHYZ \  , verb; 

  1. to foresee.
  2. to forewarn.

‘Tis the novelty of the experiment which makes impressions on their conceptive, cogitative faculties;that do not previse  the facility of the operation adequately, with a subact and sedate intellection, associated with diligent and congruous study.

– François Rabelais, translated by J. M. Cohen,Gargantua and Pantagruel , 1693, translationpublished in 1955

In Blanche Yurka’s road company of “The Wild Duck,”Miss Davis played the role of Hedvig, after nearly missing the part because of an attack of measles which Mrs. Davis had failed to previse .

– Janet Flanner (1892-1978), edited by IrvingDrutman, Janet Flanner’s World , 1981


Previse  is derived from the Latin word praevidēre  which means “to foresee.”


\ pan-i-JIR-ik, -JAHY-rik \  , noun; 

  1. a lofty oration or writing in praise of a person or thing; eulogy.
  2. formal or elaborate praise.

And I hope this little panegyric  will not be offensive to their ears, since it has the advantage of being only designed for themselves.

– Jonathan Swift, A Tale of a Tub , 1704

Then had come Lord Henry Wotton with his strange panegyric  on youth, his terrible warning of its brevity.

– Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray , 1891


Panegyric  comes from the Greek word panḗgyr (is) meaning “solemn assembly.” It entered English at the end of the 1500s.


\ AM-byuh-luhnt \  , adjective; 

  1. moving from place to place; itinerant; shifting.
  2. Medicine/Medical. not confined to bed; able or strong enough to walk. b. serving patients who are able to walk.

…rolling, ambulant  streets where nothing stands still, nothing is fixed, nothing is comprehensible except through the eyes and mind of a dreamer.

– Henry Miller, Sexus , 1949

The encounter with these ambulant  highnesses had been fatal — Lansing now perceived it — to Mrs. Hick’s principles.

– Edith Wharton, The Glimpses of the Moon , 1922


Ambulant  comes from the Latin ambulāre  meaning “to walk.” It entered English in the mid-1600s.\


\ KLEM-uhnt \  , adjective; 

  1. mild or merciful in disposition or character; lenient; compassionate: A clement judge reduced his sentence .
  2. (of the weather) mild or temperate; pleasant.

Truly men say of Titus that he is clement  and merciful, and therein differs much from Vespasian his father, and the clemency which he showed to the people of Gischala and other places which he has taken proves that is so…

– G. A. Henty, For the Temple: A Tale of the Fall ofJerusalem , 1888

“Yet I am a clement  man, Francesco, and sorely though that dog has wronged me by his silence, I thank Heaven for the grace to say—God rest his vile soul!”

– Rafael Sabatini, Love-At-Arms , 1907


Clement  came to English in the mid-1400s from the Latin word meaning “gentle, merciful.”


\ RAHYD-nt \  , adjective; 

  1. laughing; smiling;
  2. He flashed her a smile, but she didn’t miss the fact that this rident expression did nothing to alter the bleakness in his eyes.
  3. – Elizabeth George, Deception on His Mind , 1997
  4. Hetty was radiant and rident . It was quite like an evening at home at Oakhurst. Never for months past, never since that fatal cruel day, that no one spoke of, had they spent an evening so delightful.
  5. – William Makepeace Thackeray, The Virginians ,1857–1859
  6. Origin:
  7. Rident came to English in the early 1600s from the Latin rīdēre  meaning “to laugh.”


\ ES-tuh-veyt \  , verb; 

  1. to spend the summer, as at a specific place or in a certain activity.
  2. Zoology. to spend a hot, dry season in an inactive, dormant state, as certain reptiles, snails, insects,and small mammals.

So as the people we knew back East die, or are institutionalized, or take themselves off to Tucson or Sarasota or Santa Barbara to estivate  their last years away as we are doing here, our contacts here shrink,too.

– Wallace Stegner, The Spectator Bird , 1976

Hibernate. Or estivate . Depends on whether I do so inthe winter or the summer.

– Ian Watson, Lucky’s Harvest , 1993


Estivate  derives from the Latin aestīvāre , with aestīvus meaning “relating to the summer.”


\ KRAP-yuh-luhs \  , adjective; 

  1. given to or characterized by gross excess in drinking or eating.
  2. suffering from or due to such excess.

They asked what she did in London and she explained how she helped run an arts festival, and it sounded feyand crapulous . So she told the story of the drunken newsreader they’d booked the previous year…

– Mark Haddon, A Spot of Bother , 2006


\ preyt \  , verb; 

  1. to talk excessively and pointlessly; babble: They prated on until I was ready to scream .
  2. to utter in empty or foolish talk: to prate absurdities with the greatest seriousness .


  1. act of prating.
  2. empty or foolish talk.

“…What is prudence but avarice? What is generositybut a deceit? And yet men prate of themselves as ifthey were deities.”

– Anonymous, Herbert Wendall: A Tale of the Revolution , 1835

The stones of Cambridge no longer prate of thywhereabout! Death hath removed thee,—may it not be to that bourne where alone thy oaths can be outdone!

– Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Pelham: or, Adventures of a Gentleman , 1828


Prate  finds its roots in the Middle Dutch praeten meaning “to speak.” It came to English during the time when Middle English was spoken.


\ pri-VAR-i-key-ter \  , noun; 

  1. a person who speaks falsely; liar.
  2. a person who speaks so as to avoid the precise truth; quibbler; equivocator.

“Whose words are now false? You twist-tongued prevaricator, did I not see with these very eyes that man you speak of save you from those three peasants—”

– Rebecca Reisert, The Third Witch , 2001


Prevaricator  came to English in the mid-1500s from the Latin praevāricātor  meaning “unfaithful advocate.”


\ too-MUHL-choo-er-ee, tyoo- \  , adjective; 

  1. confused; disorderly; haphazard: tumultuary habits of studying .
  2. tumultuous; turbulent.

…she chiefly possessed by solicitude about any reopening of his wound, he struggling with a tumultuary  crowd of thoughts that were an offence against his better will.

– George Eliot, Daniel Deronda , 1876

Those who were less interested, rushed into a tumultuary discussion of chances and possibilities. Each gave his opinion, and each was alternately swayed by that of the others.

– Sir Walter Scott, Guy Mannering , 1815


Tumultuary  comes from the Latin tumultuārius meaning “pertaining to bustle or hurry.”


\ hahy-POK-uh-riz-uhm, hi- \  , noun; 

  1. a pet name.
  2. the practice of using a pet name.
  3. the use of forms of speech imitative of baby talk, especially by an adult.

This must be an offshoot of my brother’s enthusiasm for hypocorism . He was always inventing idiotic nicknames for people.

– Adam Davies, Goodbye Lemon , 2006

Powsoddy, a now obsolete name for a pudding, was also used as a hypocorism  in the late sixteenth century, paralleling the affectionate use of the word pudding itself in our own century, though lovers usually alter the pronunciation to puddin.

– Mark Morton, The Lover’s Tongue , 2003


Hypocorism  entered English in the 1840s from theGreek word hypokórisma  meaning “pet name.” It camefrom the verb hypokor(ízesthai)  meaning “to play thechild, call by endearing names.”


MEEL-yuh-riz-uhm, MEE-lee-uh- \ , noun;

  1. the doctrine that the world tends to become better or may be made better by human effort.

For a life worthy to be lived is one that is full of active aspiration, for something higher and better; and such a contemplation of the world we call meliorism .

– Paul Carus, Monism and Meliorism , 1885

The leaders rejected the soft meliorism of more secular activists, the idea that significant progress could be made through consciousness-raising and education campaigns, through consensus and gradual reform.

– David Brooks, “The Ideas Behind the March,” The New York Times , 2013


Meliorism entered English in the late 1800s. It comes from the Latin word melior meaning “better.”


em-BROIL \ , verb;

  1. to bring into discord or conflict; involve in contention or strife.
  2. to throw into confusion; complicate.

Did he wish to embroil himself in the troubles of Miss Lemon’s sister and the passions and grievances of a polyglot hostel?

– Agatha Christie, Hickory Dickory Dock , 1955

I determined not to be stirred by your presence or by the passing through of those who, like you, would embroil me.

– Rebecca Stott, Ghostwalk , 2007


Embroil entered English at the turn of the 17th century and comes from the Middle French embrouiller .


PER-i-grin, -green, -grahyn \ , noun;

  1. foreign; alien; coming from abroad.
  2. wandering, traveling, or migrating.

…an unmeasurable Profundity of Knowledge in the most peregrine and sublime Disciples…

– Translated by Sir Thomas Urquhart and Peter Motteux, The Works of Mr. Francis Rabelais, Vol. 2 , 1864

“Salisbury Cathedral really is the ancestral home of the ‘urban’ peregrine , with records dating from the mid 1800s,” he said.

– “Salisbury Cathedral spire peregrine falcon chicks hatch,” BBC , 2014


Peregrine entered English in the late 1300s from the Latin peregrē literally meaning “beyond the borders of the field.”


taw-TOL-uh-jee \ , noun;

  1. needless repetition of an idea, especially in words other than those of the immediate context, without imparting additional force or clearness, as in “widow woman.”
  2. an instance of such repetition.
  3. Logic . a. a compound propositional form all of whose instances are true, as “A or not A.” b. an instance of such a form, as “This candidate will win or will not win.”

If “When they’re gone they’re gone” is just a straight tautology then nobody finds it in the least bit informative. It isn’t, because it is tautology . But if it’s really not a tautology then that is to say it’s metaphorical.

– Edited by Theodore G. Ammon, Conversations with William H. Gass , 2003

Tautology . Yes, I know, it’s an ugly word. But so is the thing. Tautology is this verbal device which consists in defining like by like (“Drama is drama”).

– Roland Barthes, translated by Annette Lavers, Myth Today , 1972


Tautology comes from the Greek tautología , and is formed with tauto- meaning “same” and -logy meaning “writing” or “discourses.”


NET-l \ , verb;

  1. to irritate, annoy, or provoke.
  2. to sting as a nettle does.


  1. any plant of the genus Urtica, covered with stinging hairs. Compare nettle family.
  2. any of various allied or similar plants.

The high and lofty airs of these patricians always nettled him.

– Hopkinson Smith, “The Fortunes of Oliver Horn,” Scribner’s Magazine , 1902

Kennedy was so nettled by Halberstam’s dispatches… that the president was still seeking, just a week before the November 1963 coup, to have Halberstam transferred away from Saigon.

– Francis X. Winters, The Year of the Hare: America in Vietnam , 1999


Nettle may share a base with the word net , a connection that can be traced to the use of the fiber of the nettle plant for weaving.


ey-bee-see-DAIR-ee-uhn \ , noun;

  1. a person who is learning the letters of the alphabet.
  2. a beginner in any field of learning.


  1. of or pertaining to the alphabet.
  2. arranged in alphabetical order.
  3. rudimentary; elementary; primary.

Instead, Hirsch breathes new life into the abecedarian by pointing out its relationship to prayer and how poets as varied as Gertrude Stein and Harryette Mullen have stretched — and been stretched by — the form.

– Elizabeth Lund, “‘A Poet’s Glossary,’ by Edward Hirsch,” The Washington Post , 2014

Henry Barnard, commenting on the work of the abecedarian , in the early nineteenth century, says: “If a child be bright, the time which passes during this lesson is the only part of the day when he does not think. Not a single faculty of the mind is occupied except that of imitating sounds; and even the number of these imitations amounts to only twenty-six.”

– Edited by Paul Monroe, A Cyclopedia of Education , 1911


Abecedarian entered English in the early 1600s. It can be traced to the Latin abecedarium meaning “alphabet” or “primer.”


MET-uh \ , adjective;

  1. pertaining to or noting a story, conversation, character, etc., that consciously references or comments upon its own subject or features, often in the form of parody: A movie about making movie is just so meta—especially when the actors criticize the acting .
  2. pertaining to or noting an abstract, high-level analysis or commentary, especially one that consciously references something of its own type.


  1. a consciously and playfully self-referential story, conversation, etc.: That dialogue was an example meta at its best .
  2. an abstract, high-level analysis or commentary: writing a meta to explain the character’s motivation .


  1. to analyze or comment on something in a meta way: I spend more time metaing about the show than actually watching it .

This is all meant to be very meta . In one arc, the Doom Patrol is able to stop an imaginary world from taking over the real world when the team finds a black book that tells the story of a black book about an imaginary world taking over the real world.

– Noah Berlatsky, “Grant Morrison’s Doom Patrol: The Craziest Superhero Story Ever Told,” The Atlantic , 2014

The meta craze in criticism soon reached a point of parody about self-conscious parody.

– William Safire, “What’s the Meta?” The New York Times Magazine , 2005


Meta can be traced to the Greek preposition of the same spelling meaning “with,” “after,” “between.” It entered English in the late 1800s in the context of chemistry.



\ KOH-tuh-ree \  , noun; 


  1. a group of people who associate closely.
  2. an exclusive group; clique.
  3. a group of prairie dogs occupying a communal burrow.


The coterie  world of Bloomsbury or the Strand isvicarious, but all reading provides vicarious participation in a social group.

– Robert DeMaria Jr., Samuel Johnson and the Life ofReading , 1997

Sturges also had a brilliant eye for finding unconventional talent, and often cast from the same coterie of quirky actors to makes his films feel textured, like a world of their own.

– Hampton Stevens, “‘It’s like a Hollywood Ending’: When Judd Apatow Met Graham Parker,” The Atlantic, 2012


Coterie is French in origin, originally used to refer to an association of tenant farmers. It entered English in the mid-1700s.



\ DIK-shuhn \  , noun; 


  1. style of speaking or writing as dependent upon choice of words: good diction .
  2. the accent, inflection, intonation, and speech-sound quality manifested by an individual speaker, usually judged in terms of prevailing standards of acceptability; enunciation.

But the main characters themselves are not credible, with their mythic passions, expressed in diction  more formal and flowery than would ever issue from a boy of the slums and a girl from the world of pampered inanity.

– Rhoda Koenig, “Rio Is Rich,” New York , 1994

But wise men pierce this rotten diction and fasten words again to visible things; so that picturesque language is at once a commanding certificate that he who employs it is a man in alliance with truth and God.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Nature,” 1836


Diction  stems from the Latin dīcere  meaning “to say.”The term entered English in the early 1400s.


\ VUR-buh-sahyd \  , noun; 


  1. the willful distortion or depreciation of the original meaning of a word.
  2. a person who willfully distorts the meaning of a word.

Life and language are alike sacred. Homicide and verbicide –that is, violent treatment of a word with fatal results to its legitimate meaning, which is its life–are alike forbidden.

– Oliver Wendell Holmes, “The Autocrat of theBreakfast-Table,” The Atlantic Monthly , 1857

Men often commit verbicide  because they want to snatch a word as a party banner, to appropriate its ‘selling quality’.

– C.S. Lewis, Studies in Words , 1960


Verbicide joins a variant of the Latin verbum , meaning”word,” with -cide , a suffix used in the formation ofcompound words that means “killer” or “act of killing.”


\ bel-es-PREE \  , noun; 

  1. a person of great wit or intellect.

She was the most hospitable and jovial of old vestals, and had been a beauty in her day, she said… She was a bel esprit , and a dreadful Radical for those days.

– William Makepeace Thackeray, Vanity Fair: A NovelWithout a Hero , 1847-1848

A man of genius will only write a history, or aromance; moral, or poetical essays; but his performances remain with the language, while the reputation of a bel esprit , like some artificial fires, become suddenly extinct.

– Isaac D’Israeli, An Essay on the Manners andGenius of the Literary Character , 1795


Bel-esprit  entered English from French in the mid-1600s. Esprit  can be traced back to the Latin spiritus  meaning “spirit.”


Monday, September 1:

Monthly Horoscope: Sagittarius

The Sun

Until September 22nd:

The Sun continues to put a spotlight on your solar tenth house. Satisfaction and fulfillment during this cycle come from doing your professional best, shining as a responsible and capable person, and contributing to the world in practical ways. You might have a chance to receive acknowledgement or praise for your work or good character now. Landing support from authority figures is easier at this time. Avoid the pitfalls of pride or arrogance standing in your way of success.

From September 22nd forward:

The Sun lights your solar eleventh house. The Sun illuminates your sector of friends, groups, and dreams coming true this month. It’s a sociable sector of your chart, and that’s exactly how you are feeling–happy, light-hearted, cosmopolitan, and social. Group affiliations capture your attention. Connections can be made now and networking pays off, or at least satisfies. Being part of a community or circle of friends and building your social network is important to you at this time. This is a rather happy, goal-oriented cycle. A lively agenda is promised, you’re attracting quite a bit of interest, and your energy for making contact with others is high. A stronger sense of community is with you during this cycle. Relationships take on a fun, if impersonal, tone now. Activities with children (especially others’ children) may increase. You are more stimulated by all that is unconventional during this cycle, and your ideas are original and progressive now. This is a time to follow your dreams and ideals, and to plant a seed in the form of a wish for the future.


Until September 5th:

Venus continues to grace your solar ninth house. During this cycle, your ideals in love are set high. You might become inspired by a loved one now, or someone might awaken a new perspective or way of thinking in you. You could also enjoy a trip, or a new adventure of sorts. In fact, you are attracted to anything that is non-routine and fare best when you are reaching out beyond your usual bounds. You might be attracted to people or even objects that are exotic or different in some way during this cycle. It’s a good period for personal charm and attractiveness in general.

From September 5-29th:Venus graces your solar tenth house now. During this cycle, you are most charming and well-received on the job. Your responsibility and authority are likeable qualities now, making this a favorable period overall for schmoozing with those in a higher position than you, as well as for negotiations or social activities related to business. Venus is charming, friendly, and affectionate, and her presence in your career and reputation sector brings social opportunities to your career. You are coming across well at work now, and romantic opportunities, or simply more chances to socialize and network, are likely. You are socially ambitious right now, and success may come though your good managerial qualities or some form of artistic talent, or, indirectly through your marriage partner. People who turn your head during this cycle are those who come across as especially competent.

From September 29th forward:

Venus graces your solar eleventh house now. Forming harmonious, warm social friendships, possibly related to group activities within a club, can figure now. You may meet someone through such group activities; consequently, your interests will be shared. Whether or not you do, the bottom line is that sharing interests with someone is what makes you happy during this cycle. Venus here enlivens your friendships and group associations with charm and grace. You are more peace-loving than usual and slightly detached on a personal level. If a romance were to begin during this time frame, it would be characterized by a strong feeling of camaraderie, but it could also be rather impersonal and perhaps lacking in depth and intimacy.


From September 2-27:

Mercury is transiting your solar eleventh house. Your mind is bright, alert, and active during this cycle, and you have the ability to come up with unusual and inventive ideas. Sharing your thoughts with others is a prime interest. Others tend to particularly enjoy your conversations during this transit–you are willing to listen as well as add your own thoughts. As well, your ability to grasp unusual subject matter and to intuitively understand what others are trying to say win you some brownie points! You could also do a lot of thinking and musing about your own happiness and long-term goals.

From September 27th forward:

Your mind is focused on private matters and past issues while Mercury transits the twelfth house of your solar chart. This is a time when you are least likely to speak out of turn or to express yourself freely. You’re searching behind the curtain, and examining the past for answers. This is a good time for research, quiet contemplation, and meditation; but do avoid getting dragged down by issues that have outgrown their worth and purpose. Examining the past in order to improve the future is certainly worthwhile, as long as you don’t waste your energy on guilt. Creative endeavors could prosper now, particularly those that draw upon the emotions or that require creative visualization skills, such as poetry, art, acting, and other such activities. You are likely to require a certain amount of solitude in order to get your thoughts together or to be mentally productive. You are less likely to chat indiscriminately during this transit, and tend to be a little secretive or tight-lipped for the time being. This may be important, in fact, because this position of Mercury is sometimes associated with the uncovering of secrets, so discretion may be in order.


Until September 13th:

Mars continues to energize your solar twelfth house now. While Mars occupies the twelfth house, asserting yourself in a direct and straightforward manner can be difficult. This is largely due to a feeling of not being in touch with what it is you want or desire just for the time being as you reassess your goals and needs. This lack of direction and self-knowledge should prompt you to look within to learn about your desires. It is likely that you will be much clearer when Mars reaches your first house. For the time being, take some time for rest and give your ego a break.

From September 13th forward:

You are able to stand your ground and assert yourself more than usual during this transit. You have energy at your disposal to move your plans forward, and you are more enterprising. You want to leave your mark on the world in some way–however big or small–and you are more able to make an impression than usual. If circumstances are such, you are able to easily fight back. In fact, you may be somewhat combative under this influence, and you may have a short temper. Avoid being pushy. Take charge of your life, but don’t bulldoze over others in the process! This is an excellent transit for assertiveness and physical vitality. Love affairs may also be stepped up during this period. On the rare occasion when an accident occurs, it is more likely to involve the head or face.


This is a strong period for career and reputation, dear Sagittarius.

The first week of September requires some adjustments, however, and this is especially the case if you’ve been spending too much time away from your daily responsibilities. Do what you can to balance things out, as you’ll be all the stronger by the time doors open for you in the last week of the month. Energy has been low recently, and you’ve had a hard time knowing how or where to focus your attention. With Mars entering your sign on the 13th, clarity comes. You are in take-charge mode, ready to take on a challenge, and willing to put yourself out in order to get where you want to go.

From the 22nd forward, there may be an unexpected source of income coming into your life or a new way to make use of a resource you already have. The key now is to work on paring down and letting go – it seems counterproductive, when in fact you’ll end up with more of what you truly need. Some of you could meet a fun friend or a romantic interest through travel or other activity that involves breaking the regular routine. Educational opportunities can open up. Publishing or promotion can be in focus, and communications thrive. You are especially free and open when it comes to expressing yourself, communicating, creating, and sharing your experiences with others in the last week of September. Watch for a situation of overdrive, however, with Mars in your sign and out of bounds from the 28th. It’s important to think outside of the box and stretch your imagination, but try not to go so far as to crash and burn.

Monthly Horoscope: Libra


Until September 13th:

The Sun continues to put a spotlight on your solar eleventh house. During this cycle, you are planting seeds for the future, dreaming up plans that you might begin to develop two months down the road, if they still seem viable then. You are more aware of the benefits of networking, and you might find some great ideas through others now. You might be working in a team now. You could be questioning some of the rules you have been living by and you could be ready to try something totally new. You are more attracted to that which is progressive or unconventional during this cycle.

From September 13th forward:

The Sun travels through your twelfth house now, marking a time of retreat and regeneration. Think about the attachments you have–to things, people, and routines–and consider which ones are dragging you down. This is a time when competitive energies and the ego are on a bit of a break. It’s not the time to push ahead with brand new projects. Rather, it’s a time of reflection, dreaming, and recharging your batteries. Situations that have naturally outgrown their usefulness in your life can now be put behind you. Endings of natural cycles may be part of the picture at this time of year. Your energy is largely applied to personal and private affairs now. Your disposition is introspective. Rest and reflect, and prepare for a more outgoing cycle when the Sun moves into your first house.


Until September 21st:

Venus continues to move through your solar eleventh house. This is a strong time for putting your ego aside and lowering your defenses and simply enjoying people. It’s a good time for networking and settling disputes if there are differences to iron out with friends. Cooperation comes easily, and warm friendships can be made during this cycle. Personal freedom is especially important to you right now, and you won’t enjoy any associations that limit you. It can also be a good time for earnings from business.

From September 21st forward:

Venus is spending some time in “hibernation” in your privacy sector. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean that your love life is stagnant, but that your affection is expressed behind closed doors. Attraction to secrets and whispers characterize this period, although for some, it can also be a time of endings, relationship concerns, and wistfulness. Personal and social contacts may be secretive, and there can be secret love affairs, or at least very private love feelings and longings. Shyness can lead to some loneliness or romantic frustration. However, this can also be a deliciously private and intimate time.


Until September 17th:

Mercury continues to transit your solar twelfth house. This is a cycle in which clear decision-making does not come easily. You are paying more attention to unspoken or hidden elements of any circumstance. You are seeing all sides to any given story, and forming a definite opinion does not seem “right” for the time being. Thoughts turn to the past. It’s a strong period for gaining different perspectives on problems or issues in your life, as well as for reflection and research, but not the easiest time for presenting your ideas.

From September 17th forward:

With Mercury in your solar first house, you are most inclined to speak up about matters that you previously were only mulling over. Your disposition is more intellectual than usual now, and self-expression comes easily. You are sharper than usual–more observant, and more inclined to “live in the head”. Relationships with siblings, neighbors, classmates, and casual friends may become more prominent in your life now. It is likely that you will initiate discussions during this period, evaluate your appearance and the impact you have on those around you, and make contact with others rather than stay chained to any one place or activity. This is the time to be direct and to communicate your needs and interests. You are more inclined to talk about yourself and your personal past now. This may also be a restless time when it is difficult to turn the thinking process off when it would be better to relax! It is an especially fruitful time for any endeavor that requires dealing with words, ideas, and facts and figures. Your demeanor is more youthful, perhaps mischievous, light-hearted, and non-threatening so that others may be more inclined to turn to you for advice or pleasant conversation. Using the power of words to attract what you want or to further your interests works best for you now.


All month:

Mars continues to energize your solar second house. You tend to put more effort into making money or making your life more comfortable and secure during this cycle. Your strong desire to be financially independent could lead to positive things, such as paying off debts or increased enterprise. The opposite side of the coin is asserting your independence by making impulsive purchases or taking risks with your money. You are more protective of the way you earn or spend money, as well as with the values you live your life by, and if others question you about these things, there could be arguments.


A lot is going on in your heart for much of September, dear Libra. You’re less inclined to take action in your day-to-day life until the last week of the month.

You’re quite talkative, however. You may not be revealing much, but you’re inclined to speak up, make connections, and move about.

While your mind is active, it’s important to recognize that it’s time for a spiritual and emotional check-up. If there are loose ends in your life to take care of, this is the time to do so, as your solar year winds down.

In the first week of the month, adjustments should be made if you have been overdoing activities that take you away from family, or for some of you, there can be conflicts with family if you’ve been pouring a lot of energy into friendships and causes. There is a stronger need to tend to your personal life now. Love is quiet or especially private.

The Full Moon on the 8th can remind you of work responsibilities and health matters, and good energy is with you for tending to these things.

From the 13th, you have considerable energy for learning, pet projects, and speaking up about matters that are important to you.

In the last ten days of September, finances and domestic matters really begin to move forward. Family roles are changing, and your determination to resolve challenges is building.

In the last week of the month, your life really picks up pace. Gears are set into motion for new plans and goals, friendships form, partnerships expand, and doors open for positive change. A close partnership could be a strong source of intellectual companionship.

This is a time for exploring, taking healthy risks on a social level, and letting go of pre-conceived ideas of what friendships and relationships “should” be.

Your personal New Moon occurs on the 24th, and you are holding the power to push forward with your personal plans. If you need to update your image, this is the time. From the 29th, Venus enters your sign and boosts your personal appeal, continuing for much of October as well.

Source: Cafe Astrology.

Tuesday, September 2:

Catch up.

Wednesday, September 3:

Productive. The New Moon in Virgo in full effect! All the Virgo things, such as details, organization, and health initiatives, have been attended to. Catching up on school; I will be where I need to be (slightly ahead of the next lesson) by the end of next week at the latest, and preferably by the beginning of next week (Tuesday).

Biking to school is fun! Takes less time than the bus and about twice as much time as driving, yet it is easily more than twice as much fun as driving (I do not like driving! That said, I do not dislike it either. =P).

Caitlin is inspiring! I have never been more focused to get things in order before I actually need them to be in order. This affords me the freedom of quality time with my love without feeling harried about things left undone.

The goals I gave myself at the beginning of the year are well within reach. Watch me!

Finished The Wave, Vol. 1 and Disconnect:  The  Truth About Cell Phone Radiation… Three more library books to read by the end of the month. Which reminds me, I need to renew them. I also need to pay for I Don’t Believe in Atheists by the 24th. I swear, that book disappeared into mid-air! It belongs to the Los Angeles County Library! You’d think if someone found it they would just turn it in! Turn it into any LA County library, it doesn’t matter which!

This is a great month! I can feel it. Learning to manage stress is the overarching theme.

Books to read this month:

Zapped: Why Your Cell Phone Shouldn’t Be Your Alarm Clock… (Ann Louise Gettleman)

UFOs and the National Security State (Richard M. Dolan)

Dream Interpretation (Jung)

I will finish Zapped within a week. Then on to Jung. I began reading it but it was challenging. Jung doesn’t mess around. I thought I had a great grip on his writing, as I’ve read four or five Jung books, but I have not been prepared for the past two (I bought his work on Archetypes a while back). I will attack Dream Interpretation with renewed vigor!

Dolan’s magnum opus is what I am most looking forward to, however. An incredible tome! Can’t wait!

And then I will buy The Wave, Vol. 2. Very excited!

Thursday, September 4:

Not so excited today, largely due to the Sun being hidden by clouds. Grrr, I hate overcast days. But Fall is right around the corner (the 21st, a.k.a.  Fall Equinox!). Better get used to it.

Practicing yoga early in the morning in this weather reminded me of two years ago, when I did it with such regularity (although there wasn’t even overcast — it was pitch black!). I vow to do the same this Fall/Winter.

Up at 5:30. Practice by 5:45. I’m excited! Did it once… do it again!


El oh el.

I am constantly reminded of Patrice Malidoma’s comments on power. When talking about American buildings, he notes how they are a symbol of power, and talks about how in his tribal community, power is internalized, as power expressed is power lost.

I have increasingly great personal power, and I feel tempted to exercise it. To explore the boundaries and limitations of it.

But with great power comes great responsibility…

It will be very challenging for me to create and maintain platonic friendships with the opposite sex. Maintaining less so than creating.

But I tire of male friendships. I look around my male friends and lament at how uninterested in spirituality they are. Yet the females I run into are so receptive about spirituality! Kiyoko is, Caitlin is, Jocelyn is (although it’s complicated), Cheri is, Michelle is…

But men? They may pay lip service to it but they really aren’t.

Why have doubts, Adam? Love conquers all. You’re right. I don’t have doubts. It’s more fear of the unknown. Well, feel the fear and do it anyway!

Zapped is crazy. Caitlin, you need to read this book. At the least I will share it with you. I am becoming increasingly confident that significant EMF exposure is a significant cause of your ills.

But I have to pick my battles. It’s crazy how similar Caitlin is to my Mom. And how similarly I behave towards her as I do my Mom.

One of the biggest issues I had with my Mom was being too critical. Somehow I have since lulled myself to sleep re my critical tendencies. Now, with Caitlin, they come back to the forefront.

I am worried about hurting her. Now that I have awareness towards the issue, I see just how uncontrolled I have allowed it to become. Sigh.

Yoga. Love. I’ll be fine. Why doubt? Doubt is the robber.

I’m bored. I want to work out. Too bad I’m at school. Math, what fun…. Not.

Sunday, September 7:

Yoga, work, biking.

Spent most of the past two days with C. Enjoyable as always, but I’d now like to focus my energies on celibacy for a couple weeks.

And Cassiopaea.

Cheri isn’t spiritual. Me and C experienced a paranormal event at my house the other day, and an epiphany quickly followed, reaffirming my insight about not wanting to be friends with non-spiritual folk. That could mean a lot of friends on the chopping block. Damn near all of them, in fact.

I’m indifferent. I love them but if it’s time to move on, it’s time to move on. I deleted Kiyoko, Gildardo, Cheri and Robert from my phone.

Aside from spirituality, I value communication the most. This includes honesty, attentivenes and thoughtfulness.

Did you actually read my texts and demonstrate understanding of what I said through your response? Are you thoughtful about simple, but meaningful, gestures of politeness re: ETA, responsiveness, planning, suggesting free time or plans if you bail or flake or are otherwise unable to make it, and so on?

It’s 2014. I use my phone significantly less than most people and yet I still have no problem living up to these standards the vast majority of the time. You didn’t get back to me in a timely manner? It’s likely not because you didn’t see it. It’s more likely because you were distracted, lazy and/or dismissive. In which case I don’t want to be bothered with you.

I have had far too many one-sided friendships where I am giving significantly more energy, respect and knowledge than I gain. No more.

Me and C balance and address each other’s needs so well that I realize how little I need from friends, anyway. I am sociable, attractive, personable, thoughtful, and interesting. I can make friends virtually any time I walk out of the door. If you do drugs, are uncommunicative, moody, materialistic, impolite, and otherwise don’t have your shit together, I am no longer keeping you in my phone or otherwise giving you priority in my life.

Monday, September 8:

Full Moon.

Tuesday, September 9:

Yesterday was tough. Fast was aborted. Realized I was quite stressed and needed to ease back (c) Ultramagnetic MC’s.

Let food be thy medicine. Still perfect so far re food intake, “perfect” essentially meaning not eating out. Had the first strong urge to yesterday. Chipotle. But I noted it, almost gave in to it, and then it abated. Have a lot of fat to lose anyway.

Today is much better. Financial stress easing.

Dream Interpretation Ancient & Modern is fairly boring so far, but it’s less than 50 pages in. We’re finally up to Modern — 1900s. The ancien stuff is boring to me, but I understand it’s important anyway. So I just force myself to read it and familiarize myself with it.

It’s a much easier read than I imagined, however. Should be done by the end of the week. Maybe Thursday.

“Gave in” and consumed sports media last evening. It was pretty boring. Didn’t watch football or anything, though. I’m still pretty adamant about that. The goal is a perfectionist’s pursuit, I must admit, but it is thus: to go the entire year without watching sports of any kind. I mean, if I catch a glance in a bar or something, whatever; I mean of my own volition, sitting down and physically choosing to watch a game. Not gonna happen.

Had a neat idea the other day: wear the same thing to school every day. Like Doug. Jeans, wife-beater or V-neck. Actually, I’m just gonna wear V-necks everywhere. They work for me. Don’t care about being fancy. V-necks and sports gear, with a small handful of “nice” outfits. One or two dressier outfits. That’s it. Give the rest away. I am embracing being a minimalist.

It’s like something turned within me soul. I have renewed energy at avoiding cell phone usage, oogling guys and gals, or otherwise being distracted. Even when I looked at sports media, I felt substantially less invested than just eight or nine days ago. I recognized it for what it was: killing time.

Not proud of that, feeling like I had to kill time. My energetic resources felt low and the brain craved old patterns of behavior that were easy. So be it. My energy is back so I’ve just been reading Jung all day.

Wednesday, September 10:

Tough day.

Well, it got a whole lot better. Tough morning/early afternoon. Great from them on.

Thursday, September 11:

Almost done with Jung.

Sunday, September 14:

Spent past two days with Caitlin, per usual.

Energy still low. Withdrawal blows. Smash dreams every night. What an insidious addiction video games are. Yikes. What took me so long to finally say enough is enough?

Will finish Jung today.

Tuesday, September 16:

Have not finished Jung. Finished something more important, however. Weeee!

Energy is picking up. Discipline paying off.

Wednesday, September 17:

Bit sore.

Caitlin and I have a lot of work to do on our relationship. But sexually it couldn’t be better.

The last 12-week cycle ended unceremoniously. September 1 is the start of a new 12-week cycle.

Low on energy at the moment so will be as expedient as possible.

Goals for this cycle, in order of priority:

Yoga: Complete Primary Series (2 hours), 6x/wk

Lifting: 5×5, 1.5x/wk (may be reduced to 1x/wk):

Squats: 200 lb
Deadlift: 200 lb
Bench: 175 lb
Barbell Row: 140 lb
Overhead: 125 lb

Those are the only two forms of physical fitness I am regimenting myself to. The next two are optional and leisurely:

Biking: However much I want. Just riding for errands, to and from school, to relieve stress, etc.

Running: However much I want. Maybe 2 times a week for 2 miles, if we want to be ambitious. If we don’t want to be ambitious, 2-3 times a week for 1.5 miles. That said I will not resume running at all until the middle of the month.

Until I reach and master the goal of yoga, master in the sense that I meet and stick to it for six months or so, I do not particularly care about making significant advances in lifting, biking or running.

I am tired of burning out. Yoga is all that matters. Everything else is secondary. I strongly suspect that pushing myself too hard with regards to running and lifting has been the primary reason behind the burnout. They are extremely tough on your body over prolonged periods of time. They are also largely counteract with yoga.

I am a yogi. Have the confidence to be and remain a yogi.

But, as is always the case whenever I burn out, I start from the beginning with yoga once again.

Everything that follows is in order of how I actually worked out that particular day.

Monday, Sep 1:

Short hike with Caitlin

StrongLifts 5×5:

Squats: 185 x 5

Bench: 165 x 5

Deadlift: 185 x 1

Squats were tough. Thought about quitting around the third set.

Bench was flat-out fun!

Deadlift was tough.

We’re staying at one time a week for the entire month. No plans to add weight, but maybe I will if I feel particularly strong. Working on getting the form back.


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Felt tight since I practiced after lifting. Quads tight. Still out of shape. Good progress relative to the past few days.

Tuesday, Sep 2:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Sore from lifting. Strong practice nonetheless.

Wednesday, Sep 3:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Not quite first thing in the morning, but it was within a few hours after waking (9:30 or so). Yesterday’s was at night (9:30 PM).

Was even more sore than yesterday. Shouldn’t be sore at all tomorrow, however.


To Sprouts (six miles) and college (10 miles), 16 total. (Edit: Actually biked about halfway home. Let’s say 20 miles total.)

Thursday, Sep 4:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Almost first thing. Was simply pressed for time, but it was fun. Woke up around 7:30, practiced around 7:30.

Friday, Sep 5:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Practice by 8 AM.

Biked ~15 miles around noon.

Saturday, Sep 6:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:


Lazy morning; C slept over. Yoga within 90 minutes of waking, methinks. May have been earlier.

Sunday, Sep 7:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:


Within 20 minutes of waking. 7:30 AM.

Biked ~15 miles.

SL later today. Full Moon tomorrow.


Squats: 185 x 5

Overhead Press: 110 x 5

Barbell Row: 135 x 5

95-plus degrees outside. (I always lift outside; that’s where the garage is.) Dripping with sweat. Strong workout.

A significant amount of fat to burn and muscle to build. But I’m still at the amount of force I was six weeks ago. In other words, I didn’t lose much strength at all. Yes, it’s tougher. But I’m also going easy. I could do the weight I was at before but I am going slowly as not to tax myself.

Ride this out for the month. Then add a little more next month. Fun!

Monday, Sep 8:

Full Moon

Tuesday, Sep 9:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:


First thing in the AM. 6:35 AM or so. So far so good on the first thing bit. It’s been a bit easier than expected.

Still pretty tight from lifting Sunday. And just tight in general. Practice feels far from limber. Whatever. One day at a time.

Wednesday, Sep 10:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:


11:20 AM.


Thursday, Sep 11:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

7:35 AM.

Two flats in one day re biking. So no biking today. -.-

Friday, September 12:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

Utthita Trikonasana

11 AM or so.

Saturday, September 13:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

Utthita Trikonasana

11 AM or so.

Sunday, September 14:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

Utthita Trikonasana

7:40 AM.

Monday, September 15:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

Utthita Trikonasana, Parivrtta Trikonasana

10:35 AM.


Squats: 185 lb x 5

Bench: 165 lb x 4; 160 lb x 1

Deadlift: 185 lb x 1

No words. Hard work. That’s it.

Tuesday, September 16:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

Utthita Trikonasana, Parivrtta Trikonasana

9:30 AM.

Biked 20 miles. 100 degree heat. Good times.

Wednesday, September 17:


Surya Namaskara A & B, 5x (each)

Standing Sequence:

Padangusthasana, Padahastasana

Utthita Trikonasana, Parivrtta Trikonasana

Utthita Parsvakonasana

New pose, same great taste. 9:30-40 AM.

Daily or near-daily supplements consumed:


Organic Chlorella SL

Organic Spirulina

Organic Morgina Powder

Rhodiola (cycle: 3 weeks on, 1 week off; currently off, will cycle on beginning Sep 8)

Apple cider vinegar (1-3 tbsp)

Bread consumed is always Ezekiel (and never the cinnamon style; that has superfluous amounts of sugar). Eggs are always farm fresh from Billy’s Egg Farm. Vegetables are increasingly organic. Coconut milk is always organic, usually unsweetened (the only time it’s sweetened is when Sprouts is out of stock -.-).

Monday, Sep 1:


~38 oz fresh juice

~3 farm fresh egg omelette w/ avocado, veggies, chia seeds


coconut almond granola (6g sugar per serving) w/ non-sweetened coconut milk, black & raspberries, kiwi, cinnamon, chia seeds, freshly grounded peanut butter, pecans, walnuts, pepitas, sunflower seeds

PB & banana (two slices slice) on Ezekiel sesame seed bread

small-medium serving of Manhattan clam chowder w/ 1/2 avocado

protein shake w/ hemp & whey powder, unsweetened coconut milk, cinnamon

Tuesday, Sep 2:


PB & banana, two slices


PB & banana, one slice

large bowl of coconut almond granola with strawberries, banana, 1/2 kiwi, chia seeds, pepitas, sunflower seeds, peanut butter, walnuts, pecans and cinnamon ensconced in unsweetened coconut milk

~40 oz fresh fruit/veggie juice

Wednesday, Sep 3:


~48 oz fresh fruit/veggie juice

I’m going overtime on the juice! I went three or four weeks without it, so I’m playing catch-up. Yes, I am an OCD perfectionist, why do you ask?

4-egg veggie “omelette” w/ small avocado, chia seeds, celery, tomato, potato


peanut butter & banana, two slices

protein shake w/ coconut milk, whey & hemp protein

granola cereal

Time to stop eating this. Gave me a stomach ache imo. Wheat Belly.

small amount of fried wasabi peas

Thursday, Sep 4:


~40 (actually forgot to look at how much) oz fresh fruit/veggie juice

Dat organic, yo!

4-egg veggie omelette

I could get used to this routine:

Yoga –> juice –> shower –> “omelette” + supplemental drink –> whatever needs to be done

PB & banana, one slice


Writing this Sunday, so…

Granola, I think.

Then probably PB & banana.

Friday, Sep 5:


4-egg veggie “omelette”


Hmm, I dunno. 40 ounces of juice. Granola. PB & banana. No, actually it was tuna. I’ve been having too much PB & banana. I put mango in the tuna and it was amazing.

Saturday, Sep 6:


steel-cut oatmeal. No more granola for a couple months.


b rice, b beans, Sprouts chicken w/ veggies. Bomb. Had a lot. Was starving.

Tuna sandwich. One slice of PB & banana.

Sunday, Sep 7:


PB & banana, one slice

steel-cut oatmeal (right around noon)

mixed nuts w/ dried cranberries


mixed nuts w/ dried cranberries

Writing this Tuesday and don’t particularly care if this is accurate or not; I just know I’ve maintained “perfection”:

~40 oz of juice. I remember this well because it was the last thing I consumed for the night. I also added onion and forgot to add apple. As a result it was extraordinarily bitter. Yuck.

I ate a lot this PM, I think, because I was preparing to fast Monday. So 4-egg veggie omelette. Probably two more PB & bananas. Definitely one slice of tuna, because it was the last of it. Oh yeah, chicken, b rice, b beans.

Monday, Sep 8:




Fast ceased. PB & banana, two slices. Steel-cut oatmeal. Veggie omelette (3 eggs). Two more slices of PB & banana. Yeah, I definitely tend to eat the same things each day. Simple, simple, simple.

No juice, however. :(

Tuesday, Sep 9:


veggie omelette (3 eggs), oatmeal.

1/2 mixed nuts w/ dried cranberries


PB & banana, two or three slices

Maybe four. Don’t think I ate anything else.

Wednesday, Sep 10:


PB & banana, one slice


~48 oz juice

Large serving of b rice, b beans and p beans, Sprouts chicken

PB & banana, one slice

Thursday, September 11:


3-egg omelette, medium serving steel-cut oatmeal

PB & banana, two slices


b rice, b beans & p beans, Sprouts chicken

Dunno what else (writing this Sunday). Maybe steel-cut oatmeal. Something typical and homemade. Oh, probably juice. Almost certainly juice.

Friday, September 12:


Some combination of PB & banana, omelette, steel-cut oatmeal… Actually, I didn’t have omelette. Chicken, rice, beans.

Late night (Saturday morning, really) had Mix Bowl. Spicy coconut soup with chicken, lemongrass, cilantro, mushrooms. Sweet and sour white rice with chicken, pineapple, cucumber, tomato. Light on the sauce.

Saturday, September 13:


~25 oz juice

Leftover Mix Bowl. Small servings.

Peanut butter & banana.


Peanut butter and banana. Ran out of banana. Peanut butter and mango. Do not repeat.  Wasn’t bad, wasn’t good.

Split-pea and sweet potato soup.


Sunday, September 14:


Potato soup.


split-pea & sweet potato soup

Blah blah what else did I have? Like 3-4 slices of PB & banana. And that’s it. No juice. No oatmeal. And an omelette.

Monday, September 15:


~30 oz juice. Mostly organic nowadays.

4-egg omelette.


One slice PB & banana. Swai fillet, sweet potatoes, veggies.

Chicken, b rice, b beans.

Tuesday, Septmeber 16:


~35-40 oz juice

two slices PB & banana


Protein shake

PB & banana (one slice)

steel-cut oatmeal

Wednesday, September 17:


~30-35 oz juice

PB & banana (one slice)

1/2 cantaloupe (had a half of one a few days ago, organic; forgot to write it down)




The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power.

What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from all the oligarchies of the past, in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just round the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal.

We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means; it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship.

The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power.

- George Orwell, 1984

  • discontent that affects nearly all social classes
  • widespread feelings of entrapment and despair
  • unfulfilled expectations
  • a unified solidarity in opposition to a tiny power elite
  • a refusal by scholars and thinkers to continue to defend the actions of the ruling class
  • an inability of government to respond to the basic needs of citizens
  • a steady loss of will within the power elite itself, together with defections from the inner circle
  • a financial crisis

But it is Crane Brinton’s next observation that is most worth remembering. Revolutions always begin, he wrote, by making impossible demands that, if met, would mean the end of the old power configurations.

The whole history of the progress of human liberty shows that all concessions yet made to her august claims, have been born of earnest struggle. If there is no struggle there is no progress. T hose who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters.

The struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, or it may be both moral and physical, but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.

- Frederick Douglass


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