Looking at Onomatopoeia and Metaphor, Simile, Collective Nouns, and my Delusional Dictionary. For definitions of those, click here to read the introductory post to the series.
This week’s words:Plonk, Pale, Pontification, Peer.
Plonk does what an onomatopoeia is supposed to do. It says the sound. Not exactly poetic, it has its uses in humour and some emotional contexts. And it spawns a noun; the popular ‘plonker’, a euphemism for a prat, fool, or idiot, as made famous by Delboy in the UK sitcom ‘Only Fools and Horses’. ‘Rodney, you’re such a plonker!’ A more apposite suggestion for the UK today, however, might be, ‘The UK has, by a process of neglect, indifference and voter ignorance, suddenly found itself landed with a proper plonker for a Prime Minister. We now have our own leader who’s a perfect equivalent of the plonker the USA has elected to govern their country.’
One can, of course, plonk into, or onto, a chair. An item may be plonked onto a hard surface. Or you may plonk down on the sofa to rest after exertion.
Simile: As pale as death
Is death necessarily pale? It’s true that those who are seriously ill often tend to become pale. But death itself is such a varied incident that colour’s rarely a primary concern. Is there something more reliable as an indicator of pallor? We should be careful to avoid confusion with similes for ‘white’ here, so snow isn’t really an option. Pale as a polar bear, perhaps? Pale as alabaster? Pale as an albino? See what you can come up with.
A few other ‘P’ similes for you:
Plain as day, as poor as a church mouse, as poor as dirt, as proud as a peacock, as pure as the driven snow.
Collective Nouns: Pontification of preachers, pontification of priests
We all know that to pontificate is to act or speak in a pompous or dogmatic manner. The collective noun, pontification, applied to preachers and priests, is therefore wonderfully appropriate: by and large clerics of all religions tend to pontificate; dogma being more appealing to them than evidence based factual accounts.
Delusional Dictionary: Peer: a member of the self-appointed elite considered to be above the common man entirely due to an accident of birth; a member of the upper UK house of government, unelected, unrepresentative, anachronistic, and increasingly pointless.
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