Welcome to our blog, where we comment on a wide variety of topics. Some of them relate to our line of work. Others are more far ranging.
By Jim Rhodes
The OED Word of the Day in my email one morning this week was “verbarian,” which according to the editors of that esteemed work means “of or relating to words.”
What a disappointment. I rather thought it would be related to vegetarian, a person who only eats vegetables.
I imagined a conversation going something like this:
Male speaker #1: I’ll make you eat those words you dirty skunk.
Male speaker #2: Fine with me, I’m a verbarian.
I brought this to the attention of one of my word friends, who responded: “If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?”
I pondered his question, then started composing alternative definitions for words ending in -arian. I will share the list with you.
Librarian: noun, a voracious consumer of books. (“Oh, that new mystery was just yummy!”)
Barbarian: noun, a hair eater (“You want that hair sandwich with or without pomade?”)
Ovarian: noun, an eater of eggs. (“Scrambled or poached?”)
Parliamentarian: noun, a partisan political figure who enjoys roasting and dining on his fellows. (“My esteemed friend on the other side of the aisle is a mouthful of you-know-what.”)
Sectarian: noun, a Methodist who feasts on Seventh Day Adventists. (Note: this is not to be confused with a Sexagenarian, a subject on which decency forbids further comment.)
Unitarian: noun, a diner who makes a meal out of a single bite.
And finally …
Authoritarian: noun, a member of a certain tribe of literary critics who chews his food thoroughly, discovers it to be tasteless, then spits it out.