Tag Archives: Zoom

A New Word and Old Word

A year ago, I don’t think I had ever heard of Covid-19.  When I did hear of it, I knew it sounded nasty.  Why 19?  I looked it up.  It’s an acronym that stands for coronavirus disease of 2019. 

Now, suddenly, everyone’s heard of Covid-19!  Should it be Covid 19-20? I hope not Covid 21!

It looks like this:

According to a report on my computer’s last update, October 21, there were 41,104,946 confirmed cases and 1,128,325 deaths in the world.  Astounding!

When I was a child, we heard about the bubonic plaque.  Horror stories were passed about in school and I remember one story about a woman in France, who knocked on a door, went inside when the door opened, and WAS NEVER SEEN AGAIN. There were sayings, “He avoided me as if I had the bubonic plaque!

(It’s still around, apparently but can be cured.  It’s not the Black Death of old.)

And then there’s that new old word Zoom!  I have always thought that Zoom was something that the road runner did – beep, beep, and then he’d zoom far out of Wiley Coyote’s reach!”

Well, I looked it up!  The word means whizz along, which is certainly what the road runner does.

1886, of echoic origin. Gained popularity c. 1917 as aviators began to use it. As a noun from 1917. The photographer’s zoom lens is from 1936, from the specific aviation sense of zoom as “to quickly move closer.”

Then, of course, I had to look up “echoic” –  adjective – of or like an echo.

I have a very old motheaten Oxford dictionary which I’ve kept for sentimental reasons. I haven’t looked at it yet to see what it has to say about zoom.

It’s such fun to work on a computer because you can zoom!  And learn things so fast!

However, I still like to find a good book and curl up in a chair and read.  When I was young, we had a big floral living room chair that I loved and I could sit there for hours with my nose in a book.  My brother loved to see me sitting there and when all was quiet, he would creep up and suddenly shout, “Boo.”  And I, of course, would shout, “Mother!!!!”  And someone would say, “Leave your sister alone.”

I no longer have a big floral chair but I still like to curl up and read.  Today, my husband and I went for a walk and came across one of the delightful kiosks of free books.  And had a look, of course.  We found Famous Father Girl, A Memoir of Growing Up Bernstein, by Leonard Bernstein’s daughter, Jamie.  Joy!

So, I’m off to read!

Sending love and wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Diane