Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Word of the Day: imbroglio

imbroglio (n)

A confusing, complex, or embarrassing situation, a painful misunderstanding, or a scandal.

"He wanted to be an Untouchable, Paul did. That was his idea of a contemporary career. But then a girl walked up and touched him (slapped him, actually; it's a complicated story). And he joined us, here in the imbroglio."
--Donald Barthelme, "See the Moon?"

Oh, this is a pretty easy word, compared to most of the ones I foist upon you. I more or less knew what it meant without looking it up. But it's a word I like (I like the sound of it), and I came across it in the book I'm currently reading (with my eyes, not my ears): Sixty Stories, by the late Mr. Barthelme. It's a very amusing collection of off-the-wall literary pieces, most of which don't seem like stories at all, at least not in the sense of having a beginning, a middle, and nice little New Yorker-type wrap-it-up-with-a-tasteful-bow epiphany at the end. That's okay. I've laughed out loud more than once while reading this witty tome -- a rare pleasure.

No comments:

Post a Comment

What's on your mind?