I love words; written, spoken, any way they can be served up. Life offers a veritable smorgasbord of words and I want to sample them all.
I’ve mentioned before that I talk to myself. These are not always full-fledged conversations. Sometimes I merely blurt out random words. It’s not Tourette’s – I’m trying them on for size. Lots of words are boring, but some beg to be rolled around on the tongue and savored like fine wine.
Signs are especially tempting. I sampled these interesting specimens on a recent road trip:
The bee-buzz in the middle of Favazolah, the squeaky-crisp delivery of Sprinkle: playing with accents and intonations is music to my ears.
A few years ago, my teeny-tiny niece was really into teeny-tiny toys called Squinkies. As much as she loved playing with them, she also loved saying it. “Squinkies, SQUINKies,” she would sing-song in her teeny-tiny voice as she played. It made me smile just to listen.
The Phantom Tollbooth was one of my favorite books when I was about 10. Our hero, Milo, traveled to a magical land and found himself at the Word Market. Vendors sold words, phrases or individual letters à la carte. Milo sampled tangy Qs, crispy, crunchy Ks, and a dry and dusty F. I used to dream of hopping into Milo’s little car and going with him to the Word Market.
In a way, I guess that’s what I’m doing.
It is possible, however, to get carried away with word-tasting and veer off the path from eccentric into annoying territory. If I think I might be heading in that direction, I remember this scene from “Forget Paris” and scale back.