Week 1- plethora Week 2- shame Week 3- tower Week 4- vigilant
“In today’s presidential race, there seems to be a plethora of political concerns.” This week’s word ‘plethora’ is a high sounding word that simply means plenty. As with our example sentence, there are many political worries in this year’s race. To start, there were too many republican candidates and too much mud-slinging rather than solving existing issues. At times ‘plethora’ is good and sometimes it is bad if nothing important really gets done. Sometimes plethora needs a little cautious approach!
“A plethora of books have been written on that subject.” The definition of plethora is “a very large amount or number.” It also means “an amount that is much greater than what is necessary.” Plethora also has a medical meaning of “a bodily condition characterized by an excess of blood and marked by turgescence (bloating) and a florid complexion.” This is not a common medical condition, but it may occur more frequently in politicians. The saying “feast or famine” gives us a sense of how ‘plethora’ can be used to tell us a positive condition of excess. For instance, Donald Trump has a ‘plethora’ of wealth!
“There has been a plethora of good plays in this new baseball season.” Two more words that can help us understand how to use ‘plethora’ are profusion and abundance. They give a good sense about what is an amount that is much greater than necessary. Excess is another word that will help us to understand what is more than necessary. If you have a plethora of financial gain, you are in good shape!
“Joan was a math whiz in that she always had a plethora of solutions.” Being able to solve sticky issues is always a plus. “Plethora was first used in English in the 16th century to describe a supposed medical condition marked by an excess volume of blood causing swelling and a reddish complexion. Later, the medical use of “plethora” was extended to indicate related medical conditions (such as an excess volume of bodily fluid or the red-skinned appearance of some newborns).”MW These days, however, “plethora” is more often used in a general, non-medical sense, with the meaning “excess” or “abundance.” Today plethora is most often used as an indicator of good things!
“Jackson was fortunate because he had a plethora of friends.” He had the kind of personality that attracted people. Jackson was a magnet that easily drew friends. Most of us have to work on trying to draw people to us. In relationships, those like Jackson, may have many friends, however, those associations are not normally deep and long-lasting. Good relationships require time and energy to make them deep and long-lasting. Work on creating relationship staying power!
Return to 2016 Index
“Her crimes will bring shame upon our nation.” It is sad when a person has no moral values and takes no responsibility for actions that bring harm and disgrace to this nation. The Democratic front-runner has become so hardened in character and focused upon the office of POTUS that she will do anything to achieve that goal. More to the point, she is so focused upon fulfilling personal ambition that she does not recognize that her filling that office could bring death to our nation as we know it. She knows no shame!
“He was shamed by his behavior at the party.” The most often used meaning for shame is that of “a painful emotion caused by consciousness of guilt, shortcoming, or impropriety.” Another definition is “a condition of humiliating disgrace or disrepute.” Shame is also “something that brings censure or reproach.” This negative emotional state is often experienced by a person when their actions are allowed to run without control. Be aware that shame is a consequence for unbridled bad actions!
“He had to endure the shame of being fired.” Every human being must live with the fact that there are consequences to bad choices. Irrational behavior is not an excuse for making wrong decisions. We have a brain, and have the ability to analyze available information and make choices. Failing to analyze or refusing to seek counseling can put us into a state where events happen and the results are shame because of the lack of rational and reasonable action. Don’t wait to be the victim of shame because of inaction!
“It is a shame that you are so misunderstood.” Another way in which shame is used is that of regret as in this example sentence. Shame can also be thought of as reproach or sorrow about a condition or event. With an event, we can ‘bemoan’ the fact that it happened and experience a sense of shame. Being shameless is the negative side of this word and means a ‘lack of’ shame. Think before you act so that you will not bring shame upon yourself!
“He felt shame because he had lied about their relationship.” A relationship based on lies is a farce. Without a foundation of truth, it will crumble. Trust is the key to a good relationship and must be protected. Lack of trust will always cause problems and a lie is normally the root issue behind a lack of trust. Lying in a relationship is one sure way of creating problems and usually ends in mistrust and shame!
Return to 2016 Index
“The tower stood complete in every part.” How often do we use this word and not fully understand its full meaning? It has a physical object definition as well as a non-physical implication. As we run the gamut of use and understanding of ‘tower’ we will see other ways in which it can be understood. Tower creates the image of positive strength!
“She’s been his tower of strength during his illness.” Many times ‘tower’ is used to portray a metaphorical meaning instead of a literal definition. The most used definition is “a tall, narrow building or structure that may stand apart from or be attached to another building or structure.” Another meaning is “a tall piece of furniture used to store something.” Sometimes tower is used to mean “one that provides strength or support.” Tower also can designate “a personal computer that stands in an upright position.” In whatever way ‘tower’ is used, it gives the impression of “upwardness.” Be the tower for someone in need!
“In the distance was a dark swath of park leading up to the lit-up Eiffel Tower, which was larger than she’d imagined.” This first time visitor to Paris is impressed with this majestic structure. This monument named after its designing engineer, Gustav Eiffel, was built for the 1889 Paris Exhibition and was originally built to be a temporary structure. The tower stands 984 feet in height and was the tallest structure in the world when it was built. There are 1,665 steps to climb to reach its top platform and it has 20,000 light bulbs burning when the tower is fully lit. This tower is a “must see” attraction if you visit Paris!
“The worst part was the fact that his desktop computer tower went down at a bad time.” There are many physical forms of tower that include buildings, cell towers, furniture and clock towers. Even when tower is not used in a physical sense, it means a pillar of strength and protection. Be that emotionally strong person that someone really needs today!
“She has been my tower of strength many times during our relationship.” During difficult times, it is a good thing for a relationship to be based upon a strong personality that helps to reassure both sides. The trust that a couple has that together both can make good decisions and depend on good results is of vital importance to a long term relationship. Hesitation and lack of trust can be issues that cause a relationship to crumble. To have one person in the relationship that can be that “tower of strength” is very encouraging!
Return to 2016 Index
“Always be vigilant to look for and follow good political leaders.” As a citizen of the U.S., it is our duty to support leaders with high integrity and sound actions. Failure to do this will allow bad leaders to prevail and pass underhanded legislation that causes national disintegration. It is our job as voters and citizens to support those who want and work for a strong nation. To do this, we must be constantly vigilant to avoid dangerous leadership!
“When traveling through a foreign city, tourists should be extra vigilant.” The meaning of vigilant is simple, “be alertly watchful especially to avoid danger.” It is an adverb that is used to modify a verb. This is a middle English word that comes from the Latin vigilans. The first known use of ‘vigilant’ was in the 15th century. Several synonyms help us to better understand its meaning: attentive, awake, observant and open-eyed are used in the same sense as vigilant. Watchfulness is the key thought in vigilant!
“As a shrewd trader, he was vigilant and anticipated the stock market’s slide.” To be vigilant also means to be watchful for symptoms of danger. The purpose of being vigilant is to see signs of danger and avoid unwanted results. This stock market trader knew what he was doing and watched for signs that told him what to do and when to do it. He was rewarded for his watchful eye and saw the symptoms of what the market was going to do. Being vigilant reaped rewards for him!
“The Queen was vigilant about protecting her children.” There is nothing more intense than the eyes of a mother caring for her young ones. Her focus is to see any danger and keep her children from harm. Being vigilant and inactive are polar opposites. The Queen will take any action she deems appropriate to see that her offspring are fully protected. That is the inner sense of a mother to care for and remove anything that might threaten the safety of her babies. She will probably be vigilant to a fault!
“A good relationship requires that you be vigilant to avoid destructive flashpoints.” One wrong word at the right time can inject dissention into the closest of friendships. It requires a sensitivity and alertness to avoid such potential areas of danger. In any relationship, it requires that one always be aware of words or events that can cause a friend or loved one to be upset. A right attitude about what can upset the other party goes a long way to maintain a cordial atmosphere in a relationship. Be vigilant to avoid verbal landmines!
Return to 2016 Index