Tuesday, February 1, 2011

What an Insinuous Day!


In the ongoing saga of odd words one has in mind upon awakening, I awoke yesterday with a word that isn’t even a word, but it should be: Insinuous.

Insinuous is the serpentine manner of something making its way into your consciousness. Unlike insidious, insinuous is not sinister, and unlike insinuative, cunning is not implied. There’s nothing pejorative about insinuous. A budding love affair can be insinuous, and a poem in its infancy can be insinuous. Alternatively, the dawning realization that your credit card company gives you nothing for free can be insinuous.

I ran into insinuous first thing in the morning at physical therapy when Jason told me to do an exercise and to remember not to….(as he poked my trapezius) and aha! I had remembered subconsciously not to do that. Then I stumbled onto it again at the orthopedist’s office as Dr. Dreamboat explained that my spine did not require surgical intervention and aha! I understood that my active participation was the preferred means of treating my malady (continue physical therapy; revamp my work environment; lose weight; strengthen my “core”).

Then came a credit card bill, from a new promotional account that advertised zero interest “if paid in full by the end of the promotional period.” The bill included a “maintenance fee” of $0.99. Righteously indignant, I supposed that a “maintenance fee” was a ripoff. So I called and asked. The nice girl said the fee is what it sounds like it is. I looked up my customer agreement, the thing with thousands of words in five-point type that you get with your credit card. Certain I would not find the fee there, I found the fee there. The credit company insinuates a price for everything. My discovery of it was insinuous.

Insinuous often runs into epiphany downstream. The word jelled in the afternoon at an AA meeting, where I realized that the tendency to blame “he/she/they/it” for my troubles dovetails nicely into “the deliberate manufacture of misery” as described in the AA Big Book. My pain was the fault of my dilapidated spine, which someone else (Dr. Dreamboat) could fix, and then I would be fine. Aha! The victim mentality is hard at work in that idea.

Work, naturally, is what I prefer to avoid. I’d much rather hunch over my keyboard, subsist on stress, make no effort to exercise, and feed my pain sugar and poetry. That’s much, much easier to do than to engage my backbone in its metaphorical sense.

All in all, the day followed an insinuous path to enlightenment. C’est la vie.

10 comments:

Brian Miller said...

ha. thanks for the new word and showing us how it became your day...the blame game...hmmm...i might have needed that...smiles.

Shadow said...

heee heee heeee, i love how you would like to live. doesn't everyone?????

Elisabeth said...

Insinous - a great word, for a great post. Thanks.

Anonymous said...
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Titus said...

Beautiful exploration of a word that certainly should exist, and I particularly admired the insight of its running into epiphany.

Secondly, this is undoubtedly the best-written paragraph I'm going to read all day:
Work, naturally, is what I prefer to avoid. I’d much rather hunch over my keyboard, subsist on stress, make no effort to exercise, and feed my pain sugar and poetry. That’s much, much easier to do than to engage my backbone in its metaphorical sense.

Andrew said...

This post is insinuous!

Thank you.

Enchanted Oak said...

Hmm. I the blog administrator wonder how an "aDult" piece of junk insinuated itself into my comments. And I the blog administrator moderate my comments! It was an insidious piece of crappola, I guess.

Magpie said...

Keep promoting that word. Get it out there - it could be the next new word added to the dictionary. I like yours much better than spam and app.

Syd said...

Good post. I like how you used the word in different situations. Very clever.

Teri and the cats of Furrydance said...

It's insidious how something gets insinuated into our day, isn't it?

Albert Einstein Quotes