13 June 2009

The Dictionary Game... revisited

One of my favorite memories of my days (years) in Spain was dinners with friends, and one of my favorite memories of those dinners was playing The Dictionary Game, always played at the home of a dear Argentinian friend. When the gossip and the wine
dried up, but the coffee and the dry wit were still going strong, the dinner table became a lively battlefield of outwitting each other. The guests were generally an eclectic mix of other Argentinians, Spaniards and... "non-native" speakers. We in the non-native group had to scramble to keep up with the rest. My goal was not so much writing a convincing definition for a fake word that everyone would vote for, so much as writing something that would not be laughed at for its language errors.

Lately I have been intrigued by the word verfication words in the comment section of blogs. They used to be hopeless mixes of mostly consonants that were annoying to key in, such as gxlzzyrkj, but recently blogspot has started using verification words that... kind of look as if they could be real words. So here is your challenge: One of the words below and its definition is real. The rest are "word verfication" words with my fake definitions. Which one is the real word?

doremitt: silicone oven mitt named after French chef Jean Doré

calrattan: original and/or alternate name of rattan furniture made from the tough stems of climbing palms from the genus calamus

conaling: rapid conoid movement employed in glass blowing to produce perfect cone-shaped vessels for wine and champagne glasses

sfumato: the subtle gradation of color used to blur the contours of a form in painting

sunshe: Chinese beach parasol consisting of a double-mounted umbrella with expandable widths, its name being taken from the English "sun shade."

Spoiler Alert: The answer is now in the comment section.


Nance said...

Great idea for a post, O'tizz. My guess for the real word is "conaling." Although, the "sunshe" just sounds made-up. FYI, my word-ver right now is "slurst". Is it:
A. a now-archaic past-tense verb meaning "should have slain"?
B. a meteorological term for the mess created when it rained upon the dust of the Oklahoma plains?
C. the catchall ranking created by the 1980s Self-Esteem Movement for parents to use when their slow, non-winning kids asked, "How did our soccer team do in the tournament, Mummie?" or "What place did I come in for the race, Popsy?"

Ortizzle said...

NANCE: Love all of your definitions for slurst, although I am partial to "coming in slurst place." There should be a ribbon for that, lol.

I am going to wait a few days for the "reveal"... just in case anyone else pops in for a comment. (Not holding my breath, either, lol.)

Ortizzle said...

NANCE: The real word is "sfumato"!

Nance said...

Incredible. You did a great job in coming up with definitions.

PS--I like your layout and colors. I want to do something different at my blogs, but it's just so much WORK. I have tons of time, but zero inclination right now.

Ortizzle said...

NANCE: I know just enough html to fiddle a bit with the code to change a few colors, etc., but... I would like to know how to customize the widgets (gadgets) in the sidebar like yours. Or how to make the text area for posting wider (I know it's in the html code, but I haven't exactly located it, and I am thinking this template may not allow for it.) The main problem I am having with this blog is getting used to using blogspot again. I have been using Wordpress for quite a while for school/univ. blogs, and the dashboard for blogspot doesn't seem as user-friendly. All of it very "worky" as you say...

Anyway... back to sfumato... The real challenge is finding a real word in the dictionary that looks more made up than the word-ver words, lol.