jason christoper hartley

January 6, 2007

Word of the Day – castigate

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 11:22 pm
tr.v. cas·ti·gat·ed, cas·ti·gat·ing, cas·ti·gates

  1. To inflict severe punishment on. See Synonyms at punish.
  2. To criticize severely.

From American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.

From Mr. Ford Gets the Last Laugh, New York Times Op-Ed, Jan. 6, 2007, written by Chevy Chase about his relationship to the late President Ford.

I’ve often thought how odd it was that we became linked together. It’s not like we had a lot in common. After all, Mr. Ford had never been helped for any problems with “self-medication” in a facility that has helped so many throughout these past decades. And he had never been castigated by the press for such atrocities as “Oh! Heavenly Dog” or “Cops and Robbersons,” among other slightly awful films I had made in Hollywood.

November 30, 2006

Word of the Day – perfidy

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 6:39 pm
n. pl. per·fi·dies

  1. Deliberate breach of faith; calculated violation of trust; treachery: “the fink, whose perfidy was equaled only by his gall” (Gilbert Millstein).
  2. The act or an instance of treachery.

From American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.

…the legend of the Communist Party perfidy remained widespread until long after 1959.

From Cuba – A New History, by Richard Gott

November 27, 2006

Word of the Day – available

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 6:32 pm

It just occured to me that when there is something you can “avail yourself of”, it is “avail-able”, or “available”. I just now figured this out.

November 26, 2006

Word of the Day – trencherman

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 3:40 pm

Today’s word is in honor of another wonderfully gluttonous Thanksgiving. This word is courtesy of the Dictionary.com Word of the Day.


  1. A hearty eater.
  2. Archaic. One who frequents another’s table; a hanger-on or parasite.

From American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.

Quietly, almost stealthily, Livingstone has transformed himself . . . into a knowing gourmand-about-town, whose commitment to lunch is only rivalled by that other fabulous trencherman, Fatty Soames.
— Catherine Bennett, “Vote Ken, vote polenta”, The Guardian, March 9, 2000

Expecting that the experience would be too exciting for him to find time to eat, we were amazed to watch him consume a trencherman’s breakfast, scarfing down French toast like it was going out of style.
— Sheila Rothenberg, “Disney Bridges the Generation Gap”, USA Today, March, 2001

In the space of the last five years, he fearlessly gained 40 pounds, displaying a trencherman’s appetite for life and an admirable disdain for cardiologists and Surgeon Generals whining about moderation.
— Martin Lewis, “Comb Back, Big Hair – All Is Forgiven”, Time, December 23, 2000

November 25, 2006

Words My Sister Dayna Can’t Stand The Sound Of

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 12:48 pm
  1. moist
  2. nouget
  3. morsel
  4. pouch
  5. module

Bonus: Words My Sister Dayna Likes The Sound Of

  1. rigormortus
  2. autoban
  3. junction

November 16, 2006

Word of the Day – inanition

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 11:03 pm

  1. Exhaustion, as from lack of nourishment or vitality.
  2. The condition or quality of being empty.

From American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.

From commentary on the poem Nuptial Sleep by Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

The post-coital inanition described in the poem is employed as a figure of the lovers (as it were) “laid asleep in body” and become souls living in a world beyond “the tide of dreams”.

May 22, 2006

Word of the Day – bathetic

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 9:29 pm


  1. Characterized by bathos. See Synonyms at sentimental.

[Probably blend of bathos, and pathetic.]

From American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.

From Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation:

My hopes for Eats, Shoots & Leaves were bold but bathetic; chirpy but feet-on-the-ground; presumptuous yet significantly parenthetical.

But the word we really want to define is…


    1. An abrupt, unintended transition in style from the exalted to the commonplace, producing a ludicrous effect.
    2. An anticlimax.
    1. Insincere or grossly sentimental pathos: “a richly textured man who… can be… sentimental to the brink of bathos” (Kenneth L. Woodward).
    2. Banality; triteness.

[Greek, depth, from bathus, deep.]

From American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.

Eats, Shoots & Leaves

May 21, 2006

Word of the Day – attribution

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 8:00 am

There are times when I read a word that from its root and context I know what it means, but maybe it’s a conjugation I’ve not see before or a usuge I want details on. This is why I love to look up words. It’s easy to know when to use a word simply by mimicing the context in which we’ve heard it used, but it takes a much better understanding of a word to define it if someone were to ever ask you to. That’s why I believe it’s good to look up words you already know just to be sure of their denotated and connotated meanings, and common usage.


  1. The act of attributing, especially the act of establishing a particular person as the creator of a work of art.
  2. Something, such as a quality or characteristic, that is related to a particular possessor; an attribute.

From “Why Haven’t We Cleaned Up Iraq?” by Nathaniel Fick, Men’s Journal, May 2006

The office of the U.S. government’s Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, Stuart Bowen Jr., reports that, as of last December, the average Baghdad resident now has four hours of power per day, compared with 16 or more before the invasion. Fewer than a third of the people in Iraq have access to clean water, as opposed to half before the war. Availability of sewage systems has also declined. When I asked an American official working on Iraq reconstruction how this could possibly be, he noted that the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is only now hiring an environmental advisor for Iraq. “It’s ironic, or perhaps instructive,” he says, “that this position is only being filled three years into the reconstruction process.” (The official could not speak on the record. He is currently serving in Iraq and is not cleared for attribution.)

And a bonus word, more from Nate Fick, this time from “General Dissent: When Less Isn’t More“, USA Today, April


  1. Having the ring of truth or plausibility but actually fallacious: a specious argument.
  2. Deceptively attractive.

Military service is not a prerequisite for individual expertise in foreign affairs. Two of America’s greatest wartime presidents — Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt — never served in uniform (although Lincoln spent three months in an Illinois militia). In the aggregate, however, we benefit from having veterans in every corner of our society: as presidential advisers, members of Congress and active citizens. Their experience enables them to ask the right questions, explode specious arguments, and strike a balance between reaffirming civilian leadership and evaluating military advice.

American Heritage Dictionary, Fourth Edition

May 20, 2006

Word of the Day – revetment

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 3:37 am


  1. A facing, as of masonry, used to support an embankment.
  2. A barricade against explosives.

From One Bullet Away, but Nathaniel Fick:

Jacobabad was a spook fest. A different team of scruffy-looking commandos lived in each revetment. “Lockheed and Boeing contractors” — masquerading CIA and Delta Force operators — mingled with Royal Marines, Special Air Service troopers, Air Force pilots, SEALs, and others. A mantainence crew patched bullet holes in a helicopter, while another group played touch football on the taxiway next to them.

One Bullet Away

The American Heritage Dictionary, Fourth Edition

May 19, 2006

Word of the Day – ratiocinate

Filed under: Word of the Day — Jason Christopher Hartley @ 11:47 pm


  1. To reason methodically and logically.

From Death By Double Cheeseburger:

I am coming to appreciate and love the interconnectedness of everything, and the advent of this appreciation has been momentous in my life. The world as I once saw it was clearly dichotomized. On one side of things was ratiocination which held the position of priority, and on the inferior and negligible side were all spiritual and intangible things. But the levee which once perfectly divided my world in half has all but completely eroded. I don’t know why it’s happening, or whether I could stop this process even if I wanted to, something tells me the answer is no.

The American Heritage Dictionary, Fourth Edition

Next Page »