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A word to the wise

by Gerald Waite Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient Last month in this column, we looked at the origins of Upper Peninsula place names, particularly those named after people, and this month I hope you’ll enjoy more of that light summer fare. We’ll look at places named after landmarks or geography, but […]

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a word to the wise

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite Passing through Bruce Crossing out west in Ontonagan County, I recalled a native of the town often referring to it as “Bruce’s.” Shorthand of course, but was an apostrophe once part of the name, as the gods of grammar intended? And who […]

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a word to the wise – June 2015

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient A fellow I know—much older than I—recently turned sixty-seven. In congratulating him on his longevity, I remarked his hair wasn’t too gray, what there was of it, and he looked to have a few years left. “You don’t look a day over sixty-six,” I told […]

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A word to the wise – March 2015

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite February and March can be hard to endure for some folks. We have to look for reasons to break the routine, leave the snowbound cabin and celebrate. February has Mardi Gras and St. Valentine’s Day. What about March? There’s the first day […]

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A word to the wise – January 2015

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite I was preparing for surgery this past month at about the same time I needed to put this column together. Feeling even more wan, weak and wimpy than usual, I asked my kids and their spouses to help me put together a […]

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A word to the wise – December 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite Nobody’s been making much fuss about it, but this column has some long unfinished business to wrap up. Broadly, it concerns everybody’s favorite topic — grammar — and more specifically, a part of speech that has to be the most acrobatic in […]

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A word to the wise – November 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite Late once more submitting this column to my long-suffering editor, I reported (a day after deadline) I was getting right at it. “After all, better late than never.” Her retort was prompt as usual: “Well, the road to hell is paved with […]

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A word to the wise – October 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite Remember when—as a kid, maybe five years old—you came running home with wide eyes to offer this or some other nonsense to Mom? “Jim’s brother said the moon was made out of cheese! Blue cheese!” Mom stepped back from the sink or […]

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A word to the wise – September 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient by Gerald Waite As the boys and girls head back to school, teachers like to review what they have remembered—or forgotten—from last year’s lessons. Great idea, eh? Let’s find out what we recall from this past year’s columns. From the list on the left, choose […]

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A word to the wise – March 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient A spelling conundrum surfaced recently as I was talking with an alert reader who knows her way around a library. “What’s a good way to distinguish between complement with an ‘e’ and compliment with an ‘i’”? The wisdom of spellcheck won’t help us with this […]

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A word to the wise – March 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient A spelling conundrum surfaced recently as I was talking with an alert reader who knows her way around a library. “What’s a good way to distinguish between complement with an ‘e’ and compliment with an ‘i’”? The wisdom of spellcheck won’t help us with this […]

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A word to the wise – February 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient While my editors always take pains to scrub away any scurrilous scribblings in my columns, I dare to venture a quick survey this month of a vast, if dark, lexicon of our English idiom––cuss words. For the censor, we’ll call this a scholarly pursuit, but […]

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A word to the wise – January 2014

Verbum satis sapientibus: A word to the wise is sufficient “As we start the New Year, let’s get down on our knees to thank God we’re still on our feet.” So goes yet another Irish toast, this one just right for the dawn of 2014. Our column for this January offers a New Year stew, […]

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Word to the Wise

Verbum satis sapientibus:    A word to the wise is sufficient. Our word ounce is from the Latin uncia, meaning one-twelfth, so how is it that we measure sixteen ounces in our standard pound?  And does anything make sense to you about “lb.,” our abbreviation for pound? On the first weekend of this month, we […]

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“April prepares her green traffic light / and the world thinks GO.”

That worthy sentiment about this lusty season was penned a few generations ago by Christopher Morley. Waking up from winter, nature wants to grow green and fat, we and all God’s creatures want to fall in love, and poetry wants to spring to the lips. And so let’s let poetry have her way in this […]

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