There was a time when every brief saying one heard was regarded as a ‘Torah’ (teaching, guidance), and everything one saw was perceived as an instruction in his Avoda (worship, service) and conduct.”
–Daily Hayom Yom newsletter

365 Names: “Love”

LOVE is defined here in its Divine sense as “That which attracts and unifies.” Similar in principle to the Great Magnet, but different in its connotation of intimacy. The Greeks have specified this Name’s essential qualities as “eros,” or sexuality, and “agape,” a more selfless emotion and one better suited for our analytic purposes. (The latter sense is Christian in origin, but why should we let only one religion have all the fun?)

Words to Bring Back: “Parvenu”

– Definition: n. a person of obscure origin who has gained wealth, influence, or celebrity.

– Used in a sentence: I like to think the electorate smiles unkindly on parvenus, but evidence indicates otherwise.

– Why: Because, in the early 21st Century, there’s so damned many of them.

A Prosatio Silban Amuse-Bouche: Writing Lesson

“THOSE MARKS ON YOUR CUTTING board look like words in an ancient language,” observed Prosatio Silban’s customer.

“They are, actually,” the cook explained. “The story it tells has been written by me almost every day for all my professional life, not in Uulian but in the older and more universal language of meat and green and root and knife. If you listen closely, you can hear a swallow echoing from every cut; often enjoyable but always nourishing.”

Who’s “Prosatio Silban,” you may ask? Here’s a partial answer:

Pithyism #9

PEOPLE WHO LIVE WITH CATS are the only people who understand people who live with cats.

Metaphoraging Roundup: 2019

AND SO THE CIRCLE TURNS again, one more orbit of the Earth ’round the Sun; meaning it’s time for the media’s year-end lookbacks — a conceit from which The Metaphorager is not immune. As of this writing (two weeks ago), and according to WordPress’ built-in stats counter, here are our Top Posts of 2019 (with year of composition and page views):

Letter To A Dead Friend (2010) – 62 Views
Googling “letter to a dead friend” brings up many, many, MANY links. Must be a universal impulse. Mine was addressed to my dearly departed chaver, James “Sputnik” Gjerde: mystic, clown, psychic twin.

Endurance Test (2019) – 52 Views
Post-Poway, the roommate was concerned for my safety. This was my answer.

Confessions of an Earnest High School Dropout

IT ENDED LIKE THIS: “MRS. J—–,” I said evenly, “you should work for the city sewer department instead of teaching English — because you know more about scat than you do about good writing.”

Except I didn’t say “scat.”

And that’s why I didn’t graduate from high school.

Some background is in order: Mrs. J—– co-taught senior AP English at my Walnut Creek high school. She was a bitter, vindictive, tenured old woman who terrorized the other teachers, to say nothing of her students, and she had it in for me from day one.