10 words everyone should know (down from 100)  

PillsburyCodeBoy 60M
479 posts
8/18/2005 6:32 am

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

10 words everyone should know (down from 100)

The editors of The American Heritage Dictionary have written a book called 100 Words Every High School Graduate Should Know. In the article I read about it, ten words were listed. I think they were just intended to serve as an example of what's in the book; I've seen the full list, and these ten don't strike me as any easier or harder than the others. Anyway, the ten are:

1. abstemious
2. bellicose
3. chromosome
4. filibuster
5. gauche
6. gerrymander
7. interpolate
8. irony
9. plagiarize
10. suffragist

I consider myself a word junkie, yet there was one word here (abstemious) I did not know. I'd heard it before, but I didn't know what it meant. Not even a clue. I took a stab at another one (interpolate) and guessed right. But it was a guess.

Quite an epiphany (another word on the full list).

I've seen the full list, and while I've run across all of them before, there were at least 15 words there that I can't define. I stopped counting after 15, so there may be more.

You don't have to tell me how you did, but of course, I'm curious. Don't worry, no one's getting graded here.


rm_jayR63 59F
1884 posts
8/18/2005 7:18 pm

Not sure about #'s 1 and 7 myself but here goes-

My granny was a suffragist, one of the first women in town to wear pants. She was so bellicose even the neighbors could hear her and they lived half a mile away. After some shrewd gerrymandering by her double x chromosomed cronies, she was elected to the U.S. Senate. One time, after a three day filibuster, she got enough votes to make it legal to plagarize dead authors. The irony of this was that Oscar Wilde was the only dead author she knew. As oscar would say, that bag with those shoes? How gauche.
Try to interpolate that*
I'll remain abstemious*
Speaking of plagarism, I may/may I plagarize your profile. Well written, and I believe I am of the same mindset.


PillsburyCodeBoy 60M

8/19/2005 7:03 am

I'm very impressed, jayR. It boggles my mind to think what you could do with the full list.

As for my profile, help yourself to whatever you find useful. I'd be flattered.


PillsburyCodeBoy 60M

8/19/2005 7:40 am

I'm very impressed, jayR. It boggles my mind to think what you could do with the full list.

As for my profile, help yourself to whatever you find useful. I'm flattered.


rm_pootle47 58F

8/22/2005 9:42 am

I had to read the list aloud and, I must admit, it rather turned me on. Don't worry, I know I'm weird but I'm a long way away, you're safe!

I'm familiar with all these ten but I can't say I've ever used gerrymander in conversation. It's such an outdated English sort of word! US politics doesn't work like ours so what possible use would a teenager have for gerrymandering? Do you even have constituencies to fiddle with?


PillsburyCodeBoy 60M

8/22/2005 10:05 am

pootle, gerrymandering pops up every now and then in newspapers over here when congressional districts have to be redrawn due to population shifts. I'm not sure how much you know about our political system, so I won't bore you with the details; and besides, lots of other people can explain it better than I can. (I'm not quite the most apolitical person you'll ever meet, but I'm close.) Anyway, when it shows up in print, the newspapers usually have to do a sidebar explaining where the word comes from. I agree that if the list is aimed at high schoolers, it's an odd choice.

That list really turned you on? Oh, be still, my heart!


Become a member to create a blog