Words for a day
“That does it!” a Westlake woman willfully exclaimed. “After recently reading the word ‘wonky’ in a newspaper not once but twice, I thought it proper to look up its meaning rather than to guess at it. Heaven forbid that I would choose to use the term myself someday, I’d want to get it right!”
Upon feeling chuffed for being so conscientious, this Westlake word wonderer admitted that despite having at least half a dozen English dictionaries around the house and countless more in foreign languages, she couldn’t recall the last time she had picked one up.
She instead opted to hop onto the internet and “Google” wonky.
“After seeing the results, I wish I had tried a dictionary. The answers online were all over the place. On second thought, why am I surprised? Many words have multiple definitions which requires you to be patient, and to go with the flow.”
As it turns out, wonky is of British origin.
“Should we be surprised?” she asked. “Bay Village and Westlake baby boomers should remember where ‘bonkers’ came from. The British Invasion is obviously alive and well! I wonder if the U.K. has a penchant for 'k' sounds in their vernacular. Let me tell you why!
“Search results revealed that wonky can refer to anything that’s unsteady, shaky, awry, haywire, messed up or defective. It can mean off-centre or askew. No wonder the word has jumped out at me twice in short order. I fancy it a great fit for so many current events!”
She went on to explain that wonky can also refer to malfunctioning technological devices. “Consider the issues with certain smart phone batteries. That’s wonky to the nth degree!"
With barely a chance for this wonky adjective to be absorbed, she cited "knackered" as another U.K. import. According to her search, knackered refers to “a great word and phrase used by Britons to describe their tiredness and exhaustion in any given situation.”
“It’s entirely possible to find oneself knackered after watching hours upon hours of the 2016 presidential campaigns' news coverage,” she related. But as important as it is to be well informed and objective, by the time you try to separate the truth from the slant, you’re knackered if not bonkers, as well.
On a separate note the Westlake wordsmith shared that "skive" refers to a person who feigns an illness in order to skip work or dodge an obligation. Who among us hasn’t been a skive, even if just once?
She did share her about finding another "w" word that she deemed because of its vulgarity was "better left across the pond," but she was pleased to report that "it also had a 'k' in its midst – proving a pattern if there ever was one!"
On a cheerier – and tastier – note, "scrummy" is like our "yummy." Okay, no actual "k," but it has the "k" sound!
Well, isn’t that just hunky-dory? (Another U.K. import!)