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: adj. full of strong emotion; impassioned
- Meatloaf vents her anger in fervent yowls when another cat invades
- our yard. The fervor of Meatloaf’s
- response to feline trespassers seems much louder at night, when we fervently wish she’d shut up.
adj. fitting and appropriate; relevant; pertinent
- Mark Twain quotes I like best aren’t germane to my talk, so I can’t use them.
- Our speech teacher always says, “Omit the extras and concentrate on the germane material when giving a brief
adj. happening by chance; accidental
- Meatloaf stalks mice
- deliberately, but she also has her share of fortuitous
- meetings. Happening upon a mouse is fortuitous
- not only for Meatloaf but also for the mouse who would never have planned to
- meet a cat.
adj. demanding and exhausting; punishing, tiring
- In one grueling day, the newspaper staff washed over 400 cars to raise
- money for a new computer. At home later, exhausted but proud, I told the folks
- just how grueling a task it had been.
adj. generous to a fault; lenient, not critical.
- We’ve been too indulgent with Dude, and so he’s badly
- spoiled. We’ve agreed to stop indulging
- him right now. As Shakespeare warned us, an indulgent
- person loves “not wisely but too well.”
adj. open to physical or mental damage or hurt.
- Unaware of the word vulnerable as a kid, I still knew the feeling of being open to
- attack from mean guys on the playground at recess. When you’re vulnerable, you know you’re without a
- good defense
adj. in great abundance; bountiful; lavish; lush.
- The phrase “profuse apologies” describes a gushing flood of “I’m sorrys.”
- During a tough wrestling match, my profuse
- perspiration is another kind of flood. Unfortunately, our county has a profusion of great high school
- : adj. on the surface, shallow; not deep, serious, or important;
- cursory, not thorough.
- I got some superficial
- cuts from cleats in the last soccer game; fortunately, superficial wounds normally heal without causing trouble. In
- contrast, a superficial judgment is
- apt to cause lots of trouble.
adj. consistent (as opposed to varied); the same.
- I think uniformity
- of design, as in a row of identical houses or apartments, is boring. But at
- school I want consistency and fairness—uniform
- attendance policies and uniform grading
adj. lacking energy or enthusiasm; indifferent or languid; uncaring.
- When we found Meatloaf staring
- at her food with dull, listless eyes,
- we knew she was sick. Any listlessness toward
- dinner on that cat’s part is serious. When I had the flu, I remember feeling listless toward everything.
adj. going on without interruption; unceasing; continuous.
- En route to the vet’s office,
- Meatloaf’s incessant yowling drove us
- bats. Like many cats in a car, she cries continuously and pitifully—an incessant reminder that she never asked
- to go for a ride.
adj. not noticeable; inconspicuous; or, not aggressive.
- Our pets Dude and Meatloaf don’t
- know the word unobtrusive. Meatloaf
- thinks, why utter a dainty, unobtrusive mew
- when you can yowl? And Dude has spent his entire aggressive life seeking fights
- instead of being unobtrusive.