Saturday, December 13, 2008

What Reeks?

I'm putting this in the "That's News?" category, but really I am indebted to the Washington Post for this little piece of investigative journalism. Finally, an answer to what the heck is that stench coming from those things that fall off the trees. How the government managed to apparently make it worse is a mystery of science.


Anonymous said...

As I was strolling along one day last month, I overheard two coeds walking and talking right behind me. One was bemoaning the fact that she hated "spellcheck" in her word processor because she felt it had prevented her from making an effort to learn how to spell. And worse, it was affecting her grades negatively.

Her companion agreed and countered with her experience of mixing up the usage of two words sounding the same but spelled differently and with different meanings.

Of course, one could say that ginkos, like certain politicians, reek and wreak!

Main Entry: (2)reek
intransitive senses
1 : to emit smoke or vapor
2 a : to give off or become permeated with a strong or offensive odor b : to give a strong impression of some constituent quality or feature [a neighborhood that reeks of poverty]
transitive senses
1 : to subject to the action of smoke or vapor
2 : EXUDE , GIVE OFF [a politician who reeks charm]
- reek·er noun
- reeky/'re-ke/ adjective
Main Entry: wreak
Function: transitive verb
Pronunciation: 'rek also 'rek
Etymology: Middle English wreken, from Old English wrecan to drive, punish, avenge; akin to Old High German rehhan to avenge and perhaps to Latin urgere to drive on, urge
1 a archaic : AVENGE b : to cause the infliction of (vengeance or punishment)
2 : to give free play or course to (malevolent feeling)
3 : BRING ABOUT , CAUSE [wreak havoc]

Anonymous said...

The great irony is that after putting all that effort into the post, the previous commentator couldn't spell Ginkgo.

Cary Silverman said...

Thanks for the spelling lesson. I've edited the title for your reading pleasure.

And please don't confuse Ginkgo with Gecko (a small tropical lizard) or, of course, Geico, and insurance company with a Gecko spokesperson.