Series Two Words

Two Words Series

This web site is all about writing and writing well.  To accomplish this, we need a command of the English language and the ability to distinguish between real and fake words.

Fake words, whether colloquialisms or slang, have a way of creeping into our vernacular.  Some become recognized in time as real words and others fade from use.  Social media and the Internet have a way of spreading fake words at lightning speed, so we need to be vigilant to protect the language.

Each week we present a short article with one real and one questionable word.  These are always family friendly and can be shared with the younger crowd to help them build word power over time.

Two Words: Lackadaisical & Frenemies

Two Words: Lackadaisical & Frenemies

Lackadaisical is a real word and refers to people who lack enthusiasm or zeal.  When a teacher or a boss refers to someone who is

Old Grumpy Woman and words pejorative and sagacity

Two Words: Pejorative & Sagacity

The word pejorative (pe-jor-a-tiv) is used conversationally every day, and many of us know the meaning, and many of us nod as if we know

Two Words: Pluviophile & WingDings

Two Words: Pluviophile & Wingdings

A pluviophile (ploo-vee-uh-file) is a person who loves rain.  They can be fascinated by the sights, sounds, and feel of rainy days.  The word is

Two Words - Invidious and Hidebound

Two Words: Invidious & Hidebound

Many believe the word “invidious” is a close cousin of envy, and it is in some contexts.  But invidious in modern use has come closer

Opprobrium & Floofy

Two Words: Opprobrium & Floofy

Opprobrium is not a word in everyday use because so many are unfamiliar with it or its usage.  But opprobrium is a word that should

Sequestration Capitol

Two Words: Sequestration & Bupkis

Sequestration is a word that has come into everyday use because it describes everything from Congressional actions to many other actions like climate change.  I

Meritocracy and Toofers

Two Words: Meritocracy & Toofers

Meritocracy is a real word that hopefully will always apply in free nations and societies because it is the fairest way to reward hard work. 

Cromulent and Firstly

Two Words: Cromulent & Firstly

Cromulent is, well, a perfectly cromulent word.  Cromulent means acceptable, fine, or typical in use.  However, this one has probably escaped you unless you are

Two Words: Crapulous & Burglarize

Two Words: Crapulous & Burglarize

Crapulous (cra-pu-lus) is a real word and means someone who is showing the effect of drinking too much alcohol.  Unfortunately, social media is full of


Two Words: Facetious & Literally

Facetious is a word you hear often in everyday use, but I doubt that many know the exact meaning.  When used to its full extent


Two Words: Malaprop & Phonesia

In our list of two words each week we often have words that are malaprops.  A malaprop is the mistaken use of a word in

Boy sleeping clinomania and anyways

Two Words: Clinomania & Anyways

If you have a teenager in the house, then you probably know someone who mimics those suffering with clinomania.  Teens often require excessive amounts of

Two Words: Grimoire and Hagiography

Two Words: Grimoire & Hagiography

Usually, we try to find one real and one fake word to discuss, but this week we have two real words that just go together

Waiter with congratulations card and cupcake

Two Words: Obsequious & Fauxmotion

A person who is obsequious is one who is obedient or attentive to an extreme.  When we have someone who gives us excellent, attentive service

Horse Rolling in the Grass

Two Words: Acnestis & Textpectation

If you have ever had that little place between your shoulder blades begin to itch and just cannot contort into the right position to scratch

Two Words Luthier and Learnt

Two Words: Luthier and Learnt

I am not a musician, nor is anyone in my family a musician.  When someone passed along the word “Luthier,” I drew a blank.  It

Two Words Pseudonymous & Impactful

Two Words: Pseudonymous & Impactful

Pseudonymous is a great word and just the longer version of pseudonym.  The Internet has given rise to pseudonyms in the form of avatars and

Vexillophile Alright

Two Words: Vexillophile & Alright

A person who is a vexillophile is a hobbyist who studies flags, or vexillology.  This is a new designation and only dates to 1959 when

Jentacular Ad-nauseum

Two Words: Jentacular & Atnauseum

Jentacular is rarely used today as it just fell out of favor over the years.  The meaning of jentacular is breakfast and it is easy

Brand and Defenestration

Two Words: Defenestration & Brang

To use the word “defenestration” you probably need to be a student of history or just a lexicographer.  Defenestration is defined as the act of

Lewis and Clark Stamp

Two Words: Mononymous & Orientate

If you were asked to explain what Cher, Prince, Bono, Adele, Washington, Voltaire, Plato, Jefferson, Franklin, Socrates, Confucius, Avicii, Homer, Sacagawea, and Sting all have

Two Words - Darkle and Maddish

Two Words: Darkle & Maddish

Darkle is one of those good words that once you know what it means it just sticks with you.  Darkle is the opposite of sparkle. 

River Confluence

Two Words: Confluence & Funner

The first time we heard the word “confluence” was years ago and it was used to describe the merging of the Blue Nile and White

Two Words: Howbeit and Etcetera

Two Words: Howbeit & Excetera

Etc. is used in writing so often that the meaning and spelling are often confused.  The correct full spelling of etc. is Et cetera not

Scurrilous Anyways

Two Words: Scurrilous & Anyways

Scurrilous is a great word and just has the feel of something bad, which is true.  The word is usually used to define someone spreading

Attenuate and Turnt X-Ray Feet

Two Words: Attenuate & Turnt

When anything is described as attenuated it means that it has been reduced in effectiveness, force, or value.  A good example would be the safety

Deliquesce and Discertain

Two Words: Deliquesce & Discertain

Any fan of Dean Koontz, might look at this picture and say something like: “As she stood there thinking about her existence, she became more

Gazillionaire and Nevermind

Two Words: Gazillionaire & Nevermind

Before we wrote this article, we would have sworn that the word “gazillionaire” was nothing more than slang and not in the dictionary with anything

Pandemonium and Pandelerium

Two Words: Pandemonium & Pandelerium

Pandemonium is a real word and used to describe a state of confusion, disorder, often paired with loud noise.  A good synonym is the word

Girl in front of graffitied wall

Two Words: Hoi Polloi & Prolly

Okay, Hoi Polloi is actually two words, but they go together so tightly that you need both to make sense of the phrase.  This is

Two Words: Malarkey & Hisself

“Don’t give me any of that malarkey!” would be a proper use of the word malarkey, and how we often hear it in conversation.  Malarkey

Two Words Hangdog and twiced

Two Words: Hangdog & Twiced

At first, hangdog does not sound like it could be anything but a slang term.  But if someone said you had a hangdog appearance, or

Graffiti Girl

Two Words: Axiomatic & Thusly

We would put the word “axiomatic” in that never-never-land of embarrassment where you have heard the word, know it is real, and probably do not

Two Words: Synesthesia & Gazintas

Synesthesia is not a word that will be on everyone’s short list of words to know, but it is helpful to understand.  Synesthesia is a

Kerfuffle and Non-defunct

Two Words: Kerfuffle & Non-Defunct

Kerfuffle probably originates in Scotland and started out simply as “Fuffle” meaning “to muss” or to throw something into confusion.  It is often associated with

Fewer and Less

Two Words: Fewer & Less

It is obvious that both fewer and lesser are real words.  It is the improper use of the two that we want to discuss.  For

Nickname Conversate

Two Words: Nickname & Conversate

A nickname is defined as a humorous or familiar name given to a person either by others or one a person gives themselves.  Often the

Insecure and Unsecure

Two Words: Insecure & Unsecure

We never seem to run out of examples of seemingly well-educated people on television butchering the English language.  Our latest revelation came on a morning

Gerrymandering and Unthaw

Two Words: Unthaw & Gerrymandering

If you ever hear someone use the word or term “unthaw” you know they are either speaking in haste or out of ignorance.  At best

Kidult and Transmogrified

Two Words: Kidult & Transmogrified

In our last post we explained what a portmanteau (port-man-toe) is, a mashed-up pair of words to make a new, sometimes fake word or colloquialism. 

Portmanteau and Snuck

Two Words: Portmanteau & Snuck

Likely you know what a portmanteau (port-man-toe) is, you just do not have any idea that you should call it a portmanteau.  It is French

bumfuzzled and expresso

Two Words: Bumfuzzled & Expresso

From time-to-time I have used the word bumfuzzled with our grandchildren in a humorous way assuming it was a colloquialism and not a real word. 

Tradwife and Nonplussed

Two Words: Tradwife & Nonplussed

We seem to live in a world now where novel words appear from thin air.  Some of these words stay around and eventually make the

Barndominium and Skullery

Two Words: Barndominium & Scullery

We had the opportunity to tour a new, and almost unique, structure right down the road from our home.  The building represents a new trend

Doohickey and Contiguous

Two Words: Doohickey & Contiguous

Having lived in the South all our lives we have to confess that we do not know the ubiquity of the non-word doohickey.  This is