August 17, 2009

I’ve nearly finished the 4th draft of my novel ‘Railroaded’, in it a character has a touch of the runs or ‘diarrhea’.  Now my middle school spelling tests have deserted me and I spelt it so badly that the Word spell check had no idea what word I was trying to spell so couldn’t offer me the correct version.

I went online to search out the correct spelling and found it here at Dictionary.com.

diarrhea

–noun Pathology. an intestinal disorder characterized by abnormal frequency and fluidity of fecal evacuations.

I just love the explanation, especially the last bit; fecal evacuations.

Usually dictionary definitions offer such plain, logical descriptions without evoking any emotion or human connection to the word in hand.

This definition not only gives you the meaning but brings you back to a time when you gripped the porcelain throne, straining for one last evacuation hoping it was the last as your ringer couldn’t take anymore.

I’m sure Samuel Johnson would be satisfied with this great definition for an English word.  I know I am.

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