04 August 2011

Not The Bed For Me

It happened again.  That thing, with the word.  You know, a word that just pops up in your head, maybe you don't know what it means, maybe you do, but the point is, it won't leave you alone until you do something with it.  My most famous example to date is lachrymose, meaning "given to tears or weeping" or "tending to cause tears".  That humdinger seized hold of my brain in the depths of an all-nighter I pulled in my college days.  It looped and looped until I had to go look it up, and say it out loud.

Well, a similar thing happened today.  This time the word was catafalque.  It means "an ornamental structure sometimes used in funerals for the lying in state of the body" or "a pall-covered coffin-shaped structure used at requiem masses celebrated after burial".

Whew.  That is a big one.  This one came to me as I was working through my lunch hour, sandwich in one hand and the other shuffling papers and pecking at the keyboard.  It had nothing to do with the tasks at hand, nor was it a descriptor for any projects I was working on.  In my career as an architect, I have never once designed a catafalque.  Probably never will.  I have no frickin' clue why I thought of the word.  I was unsure if it was even a real word, until I arrived home and looked it up.  It was then I realized I had more than likely read it somewhere, possibly years ago, and it decided to come back. Now I have to do something with it.  Write a poem or a story.

Because if I don't, it will nag me until I do.  


Why is my brain so weird?


  1. sounds normal to me...maybe I'm weird too?

  2. You may be amused to hear that I knew the word "catafalque".

    When I was in law school, I had a weekend job in an undertaker's office. Apart from being a great job (no, really) it was full of arcane vocabulary. "Bier", "pall", "cortege" and "landau coachwork". The difference between a casket and a coffin. The difference between a wreath, a garland, and a spray.

    Make your story cheerful, Iggy!

  3. it happens because our brains get rick rolled by more than just the song, sugar! ;) xoxoxoxo

    (i know the feeling, there's a description rolling around in my brain right now that i'm trying to find/remember the word that fits it!)

  4. I'm not surprised...there are just so many words rolling around in there...one or two are bound to fall out every now and again.

  5. Sounds like a good challenge to me...design a poem that fits the structure of the meaning, and comes back...

  6. Prolly someone will call you tomorrow and ask you to design one?

    Hope all is well with you, Gumby.

  7. Okay, that's it. The last time I get to get on my soapbox, it'll be a catafalque. Holy crap.

    You gave me susurrus, remember? My brain works like yours. Geez. Could Captain Dumbass be right? For a change?

  8. Well, I think that's where I'm gonna be if I don't live through all this soreness from working out.



"Let your laws come undone
Don't suffer your crimes
Let the love in your heart take control..."

-'The Hair Song', by Black Mountain

Tell me what is in your heart...