POWERHOUSE: a person, group, team, or the like, having great energy, strength, or potential for success.


Powerhouse is a word that we hear most commonly in the arena of sports.  It’s no secret that this past year’s Red Sox baseball team was known as a powerhouse.  The Seattle Seahawks are now known as the powerhouse of the football world.   Right now the Syracuse Orange are the powerhouse team 0f the NCAA […]

CONTROVERSIAL: a matter about which there is strong disagreement


The World Series of baseball provides any number of opportunities to observe disputed decisions.   Monday-morning quarterbacks (that’s a mixed metaphor, being a football term) love to hash over and rehash coaching decisions with which they disagree. The Manager should/should not have removed a certain pitcher when he did. So-and-so was not a good choice as […]

HEAT WAVE: three successive days or more with temps above 90 degrees

heat wave

It’s really, really hot out there in New England (and across most of the nation.) The meteorologists keep reminding us that it takes 3 days in a row of temps above 90 degrees to qualify as a heat wave.   This is an elderly heat wave by those standards.  It has been a week of blistering […]

APROPOS [ap-ruh-POH]: fitting, appropropriate, related to


The word apropos has a special meaning.   It refers to something as being fitting (unlike the suit in the picture to the right!) and appropriate.  It is a 17th century French word meaning “to the purpose.”  That is to say, it identifies some object, thought, or image as being designed or articulated in a way […]

RIBALD [RIB-uhld] : to use coarse language, foul-mouthed


The internet is ablaze with the video of the first-day-on-the-job (and last!) news anchor at a Dakota tv station who didn’t know the mike was on yet and let loose with a pretty graphic comment.  Yes, he was fired after his first day. David (Papi)  Ortiz, beloved Designated Hitter for the Red Sox, added an […]

MARCH: the third month of the year; the end of winter; the beginning of early spring


This morning I pulled the pin from the wall, flipped the calendar page from February to March, and settled back into my chair to celebrate the beginning of “early spring” in Providence.   Last Sunday we stopped outside the entrance to our parish church where there had been two feet of snow just two weeks ago.  […]