If I could have one superpower, it would be the ability to melt into my surroundings. I’d be able to rearrange the empty spaces between the atoms that make up my body and shuffle them into the atoms that make up any other surface; the wall at the back of the bar, or the cushion of this armchair. If I closed my eyes and leaned back lightly, I’d just sink through. I’d be so good at melting that I’d be able to do it instantly. I could use it for eavesdropping or just for getting away. I’d hide in my alley and spy on the mystery-trysters. Or, I’d hide in my alley just to not walk all the way back to school.
CUE: An action or event that is a signal for somebody to do something.
QUEUE: A line of people, vehicles or other objects, in which one at the front end is dealt with first, the one behind is dealt with next, and so on, and which newcomers join at the opposite end
DISCREET: marked by prudence or modesty and wise self-restraint
DISCRETE: constituting a separate entity or part
Drives me crazy.
OMG-D ME TOO
AFFLICT: to distress someone with mental or bodily pain; trouble greatly or grievously.
EFFLICT: to bring about mental or bodily pain; to make effliction happen.
1. To supply an organ or muscle with nerves.
2. To stimulate (a nerve, muscle or body part) to action.
1. To weaken or destroy the strength or vitality of.
2. To remove a nerve or a part of a nerve.
This may only be a distinction that bothers people who have to know about nerves. But man, does it drive me crazy when a teacher has “enervate” on a slide when they mean “innervate”, as in “The cochlea is eneverated (sic) by Cranial Nerve VII.”
I really wanted these words to be somehow connected way-back etymologically. I was hoping they shared a common root, meaning something like “utter garbage” and that they had been twisted around by the Great Vowel Shift and Grimm’s Law-type sound changes.
But that’s not the case at all. And if I could ever remember what changes Grimm’s law and the Great Vowel Shift actually wrought, I could probably have figured it out. Oh well, a girl can always hope. And when hope runs out, the girl checks the OED.
Shit (in the sense of “cow excrement”) is an old word from either Middle Low German or Old Norse. There’s tokens of shit dated back as far as the year 1000 (also- that last sentence is ridiculous and I refuse to change it). I was surprised, however, to find shitty not attested until the mid 1970s. Shoddy meaning “cheap and dilapidated” goes back to the mid 19th century and originally referred to a crappy variety of wool, but the etymology is uncertain. The origin of shabby comes from Late German schabbig, meaning ”scabby”. Imagine my chagrin at discovering that scabby isn’t even related to scabies. Scabies is the older word (c. 1400), probably coming from the Old English word meaning “to shave or scrape”.
The bad news is: my lab fuck-up was as bad as I thought it might be. Maybe worse. The past 40 hours I’ve spent in the lab were for nothing, because every second that I was working I was doing the wrong thing. So I need to go back and redo it, all. Even though my advisor’s taking it pretty well, I’m sure she thinks I’m a complete nitwit and is kicking herself for agreeing to write a thesis with me.
The good news is: I do care about teaching my client to read. As shitty as my day/week/semester/year is shaping up- I can put that aside and focus on helping people with language. For the hour I was in clinic, I didn’t think about how terribly I’d fucked up my lab work, or how my dad is rapidly losing his mind, or how things are not going to work out with the boy I like. For that hour, I was on. I conscientiously applied the techniques I’ve learned about, and I was good at what I did.