Wondrous Words Wednesday
Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where we share new (to us) words that we’ve encountered in our reading. If you want to play along, grab the button, and join the fun! (Don’t forget to leave a link in the comments if you’re participating.)
All of my words this week are from The Ocean Between Us by Susan Wiggs.
1. gouge – “’The Navy loves to brief people,” he admitted, hearing echoes of the endless droning of Navy gouge he’d endured over the years, litanies of instruction and advisories.”
I knew what gouge means as a verb, but this use puzzled me. I had to turn to Wikipedia to find its meaning. According to that source, gouge means:
In U.S. Navy/U.S. Coast Guard jargon, gouge is —
- the essential piece of information, the heart of the matter;
- a crib sheet or other condensed summary of useful information;
- outstanding test-preparation material such as an old test copy.
A person who is tired of hearing all the extraneous information surrounding a problem might exclaim “Just give me the gouge!”
Originated at the U.S. Naval Academy and introduced from there into the wider navy, it is most often used in Naval Aviation. Its use has migrated to be found extensively in the professional pilot ranks regarding airline interviews and aircraft familiarization information.
2. pennon – “A single small cloud clung to the peak like a pennon from a castle.”
A pennon is a long, usually triangular or swallow-tailed, streamer typically attached to the head of a lance as an ensign.
A towhee is a common finch.
What new words have you encountered lately?