Tuesday, September 09, 2008

A Corpulence of Challenges

Many years ago I was writing a book, I'm embarassed to say I don't remember which one but I think it was Just Say Know, and I wanted to use a list of 'group' words. I searched around and found a book that fit the bill. That book has been in our bathroom, through three different houses, ever since. Without question it is Joe's favourite book.

Almost every day Joe pulls different things out of the book and reads them to me. I know that after all these years I've heard them all ... twice. So as my enthusiasm was lessening I found that he's tried to addict his niece Shannon to his quirky interest in word families.

I came across an email from him to her (we share our emails, I wasn't snooping) which had the word Venery in the subject line and read thusly:


Did that subject line catch your eye? I've been meaning to write to you about one of my favourite reference books. Can one have a favourite reference book you might rightly ask? Beyond the OED is there such a thing? There is I reply heartily! (note exclamation point)

One Mr. James Lipton wrote a book on venery (couldn't find a definition on line) however, people have been making lists of things since the 12th Century and even before. What am I prattling on about? You know "a pride of lions", "a murder of crows". Well in his book "An Exaltation of Larks" (ain't that grand) under the heading of Home and Family (and I thought of you), Mr Lipton suggests the following:

a persistence of parents,

an ingratitutde of children,

a consternation of mothers,

a distraction of fathers,

a suffocation of aunts,

a bluster of uncles, and my fave

a mutter of mothers-in-law.

I've been driving Dave batty with these as I make a daily pronouncement: a flush of plumbers, a sesame of locksmiths, an ostentation of peacocks, a twaddle of public speakers. Anyway back to work. Beware, more may come your way.

I smiled at the mere idea that Joe had someone new to 'fascinate' with his hobby. It struck me, after getting an email asking if I was ever going to do another Chewing the Fat contest ... that this might be just the perfect little game.

The rules, simple, take a disability experience and give it a group name ... like a token of behaviourists; a report of professionals; an avalanche of advice; a frustration of stairs; an embarrassment of stares; a hop of crutches ... well, you get the idea.

What's the prize?

1st prize 100 'You all laugh because we are different, we all laugh becuase you are the same' post cards.

They look like this ... I am a terrible photographer and couldn't get the flash out, but they are very cool post cards ... take a look.

We will announce the winner one week from today.


Anonymous said...

Probably because of the day I've had, an asswipe of paperwork.


Anonymous said...

I like "a suffocation of aunts". It kind of says it all, really...

wendy said...

It doesn't fit with your disability related theme but what leapt to my mind was "An exuberance of puppies"

Amy said...

How about an "ignorance of IEPs" ?? Heaven knows that's what it feels like when I'm in the middle of one of those meetings.

Jodi said...

How about an assessment of psychologists?

Sarah Heacox said...

I'm going with 'a flurry of mono-skiers!'

Ashley's Mom said...

You will probably be able to tell from my offerings that I am having a less than stellar day dealing with my children's school district:

An aegis of educators

A stratification of special ed students

A sycophancy of special educators

Shan said...

I have no disability experience but I'll read the comments with interest...

And I LOVED Uncle Joe's words!

Anonymous said...

This is fun!

A passion of DSW faculty

An indignity of medical professionals

A potency of parents

Unknown said...

A choking of
childless caseworkers

Anonymous said...

an insanity of psychologists


RusW said...

I wish I had said it first ... "Nattering nabobs of negativism"
- Spiro T. Agnew

Here are my attempts.

a persistence of parents
a pride of children
a swarm of advocates
a brace of therapists
an ambush of administrators

Anonymous said...

Here are mine:

1. A glump of gimps
2. A slobber of kisses
3. A crunch of crips
4. An echo of echolalia
5. A deity of doctors
6. A muddle of mothers
7. A tantrum of teens

I could go on and on...Joe sounds like my kind of guy.

Anonymous said...

1) a grope of blindos
(I am visually impaired myself before anyone takes offence, these are all from my life experiences)
2) a sdrawkcab (backwards backwards!) of dyslexics
3) a textile of SIDers (sensory integration dysfunction)

that's all I got right now lol! Words are not my friend! (see #2!) but I love books! :)
4) a eclectic of me's!!

Glee said...

An oligarchy of occupational terrorists

A superiority of social workers

A pain of physiotherapists

A basketcase of bureaucrats

A minginess of politicians

A privilege of politicians

An arrogance of abloids

I will not go on. Am pissed off with the lot of em!!


Anonymous said...

A cacaphony of caseworkers

A fiduciary of financial advisers

The silence of simplicity

Cindy B

Anonymous said...

An absence of person centred practitioners?

Anonymous said...

A pulchritudinous of passionate people!!!

RusW said...

May I add another one I thought of during my commute this evening ...

a cornucopia of care-workers

Anonymous said...

My five-year-old son came up with this tonight: "a jam of berries." :) He didn't even know it was a game, he just pointed to the picture of berries and said, "a JAM of berries! a JAM of berries! Jam! a JAM of berries!" and laughed.

Hey mister, your story about the kid who said "sorry" had me weepy all day yesterday. Yay for the kids. Well, and for anybody open to new ideas and being respectful.

Marie Stamer

an exactitude of engineers

a precision of aspies

a persnicketiness of proofreaders

an oeuvre of artists

a calculation of accountants

a multitude of mathematicians

Anonymous said...

a dread of geneticists
a paucity of informed individuals
a dossier of diagnosticians

that's one of my favorite books. and a fun game. I'll be thinking of more all night...

dlw920 said...

Ooooh oooh I wanna play

a persistent plague of politicians

a babble of board members

a calcification of caseworkers

Ettina said...

A rainbow of disabled people.

Every disabled person is unique, even more so than non-disabled people because there's the same factors that vary between everyone as well as differences in areas most people are alike in.

Alia said...

A conclave of disability activists (or a raucous of disability activists)

A convoy of wheelchairs

A bevy of unique individuals

Not related to disability particularly, though my daughter is LD: A shrill of teenagers.

Anonymous said...

a delusion of policy makers


Anonymous said...

hey who won? did I miss it? lol

janet said...

I know it's too late, but I couldn't resist...

A convulsion of neurologists