WARNING:  I am about to pick at another grammatical nit that is driving me crazy.   If you really don’t care about that…shame on you!

The word is “HEALTHY”  As in:

I am about to eat a healthy lunch.

Now it is possible that you feel virtuous when you plan something that, in some minds, qualifies as “Healthy.’  If so, you have been led down the slippery slope of bad grammar.  You are at least guilty of imprecise usage.

For some reason, salads always seem to be described as “Healthy.”  But just stop and think about it.  The carrots you have carefully pealed and over which you have so lovingly drizzled the best Virgin Olive Oil offered at your local grocer’s, and the tomatoes that are frequently the product of your own vines are not healthy.

They are dead.

They have been dead since you plucked them from their snug little grip on life and sliced them in to attractive – but no longer healthy – pieces.

Your lunch is not healthy.  It is HEALTHFUL!   You, on the other hand, can expect to receive all kinds of wonderful nutrients from that healthful lunch that will lead YOU to a healthy future.

Are we all now on the same page?  You can look forward to a HEALTHY life with an assist from a HEALTHFUL lunch.

It’s all about nuances.  The world today seems dedicated to wiping out nuances and that is a shame.

I admit, that when people restrict their opinions to twitter-sized reactions, it is difficult to create a mood.   Think about it.


When you type in LOL, are you really sitting alone at your computer laughing out loud?  Or are you maybe just grinning, or chortling or even chuckling?  Those are sort of gradations of LOL and most likely they are exactly what you do while reading little joke jewels from friends on Facebook.

I  hesitate here because there ARE a couple of LOLs  out there that offer a more complete, but monumentally inaccurate, description of your reaction to what is usually a pretty lame bit of humor.  You exercise your independence from LOL by LOLing while ROTF.  And while you are at it, you can occasionally add LMAO.

Do you really think that tells the story of your current activity?  Are you, after reading a joke, likely to find yourself Laughing Out Loud, While Rolling On the Floor AND Laughing Your Ass Off?  That is not only inaccurate, it sounds most uncomfortable.


On the other hand, while dealing with the proper use of words, I am brought to a halt by “Winter’s Tale.”

This book – now film – is 760 pages of the most beautiful descriptive language I have ever read.  And yet…and yet I am not happy because, despite my determined attempts to love the book…I cannot.

I love the language. The emotion, the cities, the entire universes Mark Helprin manages to bring to life are so perfectly drawn, so brilliantly painted with the EXACT word needed to complete every picture.  I am fascinated by each character he introduces.

And still – YET?

According to my Kindle I am only about 33 1/3% through the book – which, by the way, I am determined to finish – if only to make sure I am correct about my thus far diminishing expectations.  But even a third of 760 should be enough to give you a fuller idea of – WHAT THIS BOOK IS ABOUT.

A plot.  My kingdom for a plot.  I know it’s in there somewhere.  But thus far, I haven’t found it.  All of my training and experience makes me believe that if you have to search for a plot, the author has somehow missed the point of a book.

I have read reviews of the book and found that a large percentage of the readers agree with this plaint.

Let me give you an example of the way Mr. Helprin creates a mood.  He talking about the main character who is walking around a well remembered city from long ago.

“…he found for himself a string of holy places (only one of which was a church) to which he could and did return time after time.  He sensed there what seemed to him to be the remnants of the truth and he returned to certain rooftops and alleys the way the lightning repeatedly strikes high steel towers is an argument between tenacity and speed.”

If you HAVE read “Winter’s Tale” and you loved it, will you please tell me why?  If you didn’t love it…tell me about that too.  Or just meet me at the theater and we’ll see what the film folk think it’s about.


See you next month



  1. …never ceasing to be amazed and informed regarding things, I, for one, haven’t given thought to at all. Thanks for the ‘ful’ and ‘y’ clarification. I intend to be more aware of it’s usage. As far as ‘Winter’s Tale’-doesn’t appear to be my cup of tea, therefore I’ll leave it at that. btw, I did COL
    (chuckle out loud) a number of times, so if I ever make use of the ever-popular abbreviations, it’s truthful. 😉

  2. My person peeve is with “10 items or less” which is as prevalent these days as “healthy lunch” – although I DID just see a “10 Items or fewer” sign recently and almost kissed the manager.

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