By | Wednesday, July 02, 2008 Leave a Comment

"Hezbollah". Its too bad that such a fun word is the name for such a, shall we say, "problematic," group. I like the word "Hezbollah." I mean I like saying it. There's a very pleasing wind-up to the "hez," followed by the lip-flopping release "bollah." Try it with me - "Hez---bollah." Try saying it three times without any associations between the word and its meaning. It's just fun to say.

There are a lot of fun sounds in the world of words. "Alabaster," "caribou," and "chutzpah," come to mind. Its not that they're euphonic (neither "Hezbollah" nor "chutzpah" fit in that category,) they're eu-speak-ic.

I like to say "salamander" with a mock English accent. I was quite happy when I went to cooking school and discovered that in commercial kitchens the device used for broiling is called a "salamander." It gave me a lot more opportunities to use the word. "Put the croutons under the salamander." Ahhhhhh, how nice. While we're in the kitchen we mustn't forget "ratatouille," a word equally entertaining for the listener and the speaker. I also like "quinoa," but only when spoken with a fake falsetto Asian accent.

But of all these words, I like "Hezbollah" the best. I wish that it meant "happiness and peace be on you," or "small twittering bird in tree," or even "the little bit of plastic at the end of your shoelace," so that I could cheerfully blurt out "Hezbollah!" whenever I felt the need. Instead I can only utter it in the privacy of my own home, enjoying the movement of air, lips and tongue, and ignoring the organization for whom it stands.
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