The Dumbbell's Dictionary
Lancelot, n. Knight of the Round Table who, having a fair amount of intimacy with
Queen Guinivere, had more prestige than did Lancelittle.
Land of Nod, n. Genesis tells us that after Cain slew Abel, he exited Eden to the Land of
Nod and took himself a wife. Question: If Cain and Abel were the world’s first children,
whence came a wife from the Land of Nod. I understand that Genesis also tells us that
there were giants in those times. So, was Cain’s wife perhaps a giantess?
Landslide Lyndon, n. Moniker attached to Lyndon Johnson after his first senate run in
1948 which, after having stolen a number of ballot boxes, enabled him to defeat his
opponent in the Democrat primary, Coke Stevenson, by a total of 48 votes,, thus ensuring
Jessica Lange, n. A grade B actress I totally fell out of love with when, at an international
film festival in Spain, she reported that she was glad to have escaped the poison that is
America. Seems to me that she had allowed America to do quite a bit for her.
Language, n. If it’s true per Steven Pinker and lesser lights in his profession, that
language is hard-wired into our brains, there are more than a few people out there running
around with defective wiring.
Language, Misuse of, n. How often in a given day at the workplace do we encounter
some variant of the following? „Would you like to go to lunch with Sally and I? Take
Sally out of the question, and you’re left with: „Would you like to go to lunch with I? Or
how about this: „Please call John or myself.’ Take John out of there, and what are you left
with? Please call myself. These are indeed manifestations of the semi-literate who simply
do not understand the concept of the reflexive pronoun, who shy away from the word
„me,’ in the always frustrated hope of sounding sophisticated.
Lap, n. Interesting part of the female anatomy. Not to be confused with Lapland, which is
a bit further north.
Laptop, n. I continue to be puzzled by this term. After all, the portable computer has its
bottom on your lap, not the top.
Lares and Penates, n. The twin guards of the ancient Roman hearth. Facing both east and
west, they were the ancient protectors of the household.
Latin, the Study of, n. This is to advise that, had you once upon a time immersed yourself
in that most important of languages, you may not have so much thought of yourself as a
Stranger with the entries in this dictionary. Latin, as I can attest, will expand your
vocabulary exponentially. Trust me on this.
Latitudinarian, n. I don’t understand it. Do you, oh Reader?
Laughter, n. May not actually be the best medicine, but if not, it would undoubtedly beat
out any other activity for second place. A friend told me recently that if you can’t laugh,
you can’t live. (Courtesy of Michael Miller.) In addition, it is not solely a social
phenomenon, as would agree anyone who has ever laughed out loud immediately after
having read a humorous passage while sitting alone.
Lava, n. Brand of hand soap belched from the mouth of an active volcano.
Lavatory, n. Place where experiments are conducted.