Friday, November 10, 2006

To be read while humming “Taps”

I am sorry to announce that at 12:55 pm on November 9, 2006, my well-worn and much beloved copy of Roget’s College Thesaurus fell upon the tile floor and split in two. Please join me in a moment of silence.

I have known for some time that my Roget’s days were numbered on this earth (as it has been shedding random pages), but I was still emotionally unprepared for the loss. The fatal split occurred between pages 300 and 301, forever exposing the words: irate, irksome and irreparable as well as ironically and invincible. Coincidence? I think not.

I purchased the paperback thesaurus along with a big stack of textbooks my very first semester of college. It has been with me ever since – through countless term papers, a 125-page thesis and most recently a slew of blog entries. A truer writing companion I could not hope to find. Never once did it criticize my verbosity or mock my fear of redundancy – a fear so great I could not write an essay without searching several times through its nuanced pages.

Oh sure, I’ve tried other thesauruses (thesauri?...thesaurae?). I even once bought a deluxe hardbound edition. But they were always organized according to some foreign code known only to the secret society of thesaurus editors. I always returned – contrite and apologetic – to my little red Roget. Online versions leave me wanting. And the built-in synonyms feature in MS Word is just plain pitiful, a word which – according to what is now the Volume II half of my old Roget’s Thesaurus – is akin to deplorable, wretched, lamentable, piteous, and paltry.

Bear with me as I may be inconsolable for a few days while I work through the grieving process. In the meantime, I will end with a few words of farewell to my loyal friend: goodbye, so long, Godspeed, shalom, adios, till we meet again, sayonara, and adieu.


meno said...

In your time of loss and pain, just remember that there are those who understand what you are going through.

scribbit said...

I need a new Websters, my 1988 edition is severely out of date, but we've been together so long I can't imagine being with another. All those words I've looked up the past 28 years circled in red . . . that's irreplaceable.

Bernita said...

We understand.
My Merriam-Webster has no covers, the "A's" are detached and back pages shed frequently.

Susan (5 Minutes For Mom) said...

How very tragic.

The Lazy Organizer said...

See, I’m such a pitiable, inexpert writer that I thought Word was doing a tremendous, obliging job.

Julie said...

Thank you all for you kind words. This could all be for the best. I even just resisted the urge to look up "kind" for other alternatives.

owlhaven said...

Two words for you: duct tape.

It has gracelessly but effectively extended the life of many an old book at our house.


Lani from The Wooden Porch said...

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