Three things and a survey

Here I sit about to scrawl my weekly column. It's grey and damp, around 52 degrees. A lit candle idles on my desk while on the floor, to my rear, I hear the cat licking her behind. What the gad could beat all that? Nothin'.

Three things now come to mind:

•First thing: The small paragraph you just read has nothing to do with the topic I had planned to write about, but is, instead, a line included in a note I sent to a friend earlier today. I reread the note and took a liking to how I used the word idle to describe the manner in which my candle burned. Not knowing when the opportunity would again arise to use the word idle to describe a candle as it burns-in the body of some future story-I thought I'd just up and write it for little good reason.

So, there you have it. The word idle can, in my humble, un-educated opinion, be used effectively for little good reason- to describe a candle as it burns.

•Second thing: You see I used the word gad? When you write, if you write-sometimes, when you're coming up to needing a word-do you reach into the pickle barrel that is your mind and extract a word that sounds good, but that you think might not mean anything near what you think it might mean? I do this much of the time; the word I chose ends up being the absolute perfect word for the space. Didn't happen that way with gad. I can't tell you what I thought gad meant exactly, because I had no clue; I just thought it sounded like the right word to use in the space.

After I sent the note, I looked gad up and it doesn't work in the space at all-or maybe it does. Or rather maybe it doesn't, but because I wrote it with purpose and conviction-and it sounds like it means what I want it to mean-it actually works fine.

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