Lynne Kiesling Sitting here at O’Hare, 6 AM … today’s A Word A Day word is encaustic: encaustic (en-KO-stik) adjective A method of painting using pigments with wax fixed onto the surface by heat. [From Latin encausticus, from Greek enkaustikos, from enkaiein (to burn in), from en- + (kaiein) to burn. Some distant cousins of … More ENCAUSTIC TILEMore ENCAUSTIC TILE


Lynne Kiesling Today’s word from A Word A Day is reprobate, a great word: reprobate (REP-ruh-bayt) adjective Depraved. noun A wicked person. verb tr. To disapprove or condemn. [From Middle English, from Late Latin reprobatus, from reprobare (to disapprove), from re- + probare (to test, approve), from probus (good).] AWAD is also good for the … More REPROBATEMore REPROBATE


I subscribe to the wonderful A Word A Day list operated by Anu Gang. It’s a superb little treat for anyone who loves language and etymology. Monday’s word was eudemonia (yoo-di-MO-nee-uh) noun, also eudaemonia 1. A state of happiness and well-being. 2. In Aristotelian philosophy, happiness in a life of activity governed by reason. [From … More MY GOAL IS A STATE OF EUDEMONIAMore MY GOAL IS A STATE OF EUDEMONIA

John McCrae and World War I poets

The poem on Megan’s website, “In Flanders Fields”, is by John McCrae, one of the group of WWI poets that wrote so poignantly about the waste and destruction of war. Siegfried Sassoon, Rupert Brooke and Wilfred Owen are three of the other most renowned WWI poets.


Tonight, on the Wall Street Journal Editorial Board show on CNBC, Tunku Varadarajan used the phrase “curate’s egg.” We could tell in context what he meant, but my husband and I were sufficiently curious to check it out afterward. Here’s a translation from British English to ROW English. The essence is “parts of it are … More CURATE’S EGGMore CURATE’S EGG