Postaday: Serendipity-favourite words

Serendipity – the faculty of making happy and unexpected discoveries by accident [Oxford Concise Dictionary] I think this has to be near the top of my list of favourite words. I mean, I know the topic for today is ‘my favourite word’ but this is me and I cannot possibly just have one favourite word, can I?

I like serendipity because it sounds important, it’s also not that easy to include it into everyday conversation. Now that’s a great challenge – not for blogging, but to take a less used word and see how many times in a day you can drop it into conversation. Not only that but find out how many people question you on that word or just carry on as if they hadn’t noticed it. When they then respond in a different context you just know they haven’t a clue what it means. I know I have often made a mental note to remember a word I wasn’t sure of with the intention of looking it up when I get home, only to find I couldn’t remember it despite having repeated it out loud to myself several times.

Serendipity sounds nice, intriguing almost and I just love the thought of that discovery. I can imagine being totally oblivious to a series of events that have taken me on a journey. How wonderful is that moment, that epiphanic experience of wonder as you realise something that you knew all along has brought you to a really happy ending. All very romantic I guess but I also like the shape of the word and that nice little five syllable rhythm that rolls off the tongue.

Another word I like is ‘clandestine’. I remember being caught talking to someone while I was at work. The headmaster walked round the corner and said, ‘Ah, a clandestine meeting!’ I had no idea what he was on about but that word stuck and I did look it up. It is so much more interesting than ‘secret’. ‘Ah, a secret meeting.’ would never have captured my imagination as much. I love large and obscure words and, ok I would never use them regularly, but how much fun would it be to say ‘I harbour an affection for brobdingnagian and incomprehensible lexemes.’ Hang on a minute, I think I might just check the dictionary on those!

I wonder if I like serendipity and clandestine because of the images they conjure up in my mind. They both have that something good and special and maybe a little naughty that triggers a romantic feeling in me. Then would I still like them if they had nasty connotations? What if instead of a pleasant discovery, serendipity meant a discovery that would lead to some evil monster being revealed while on a rendezvous that was being recorded to trap someone, rather like a spider traps a fly? Would I still find the words attractive. Maybe not.

My third word would be synchronicity. Yet another attractive sounding five syllable word. This time it is more of the meaning that appeals to me. I imagine the flocks of starlings that flock in the evening sky just before dusk. Thousands upon thousands of birds whose perfect synchrony prevents them from colliding  suddenly and without any indication, they form into a diving arrow and disappear to wherever they are roosting. I know synchrony isn’t the same as synchronicity but that is how I understand it. The difference being its connection to serendipity. A connection, an appliance of something beyond our knowledge to bring two things or events to a point they connect but until that point these events are like a dance. A dance of perfect timing and understanding, yet completely unconscious connections until the final completeness. Maybe synchronicity is the favourite of these three words, then maybe, it needs the other two to make is something even more special. I guess I just love words, all words, any words. The important thing is not the words but the way you use them and the love and thought that goes behind them when you use them….


7 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Now this is something a little different! LOL 🙂 Dare I say I only knew the meaning of ‘clandestine’ which I would use confidently in a conversation. I will have to check out the other 2 🙂

  2. 2

    wordangell said,

    Haha I hope my thoughts and meanings are accurate but I love the words anyway. So many gorgeous words out there. xx

  3. 3

    Patti said,

    I like serendipity and clandestine because they’re fun to say and they’re almost onomatopoeic – it’s tough to say “serendipity” without actually starting to smile; clandestine has the hiss of a whisper in it and ends in a near murmur. Fun.

    • 4

      wordangell said,

      So they are, I never thought of that. I love playing with words but tend to concentrate on the meanings or something close to it and apply an image. I shall think on serendipity and clandestine with new ideas now. Thank you Patti. M

  4. 5

    literaryescape said,

    Hi – I just discovered your blog thanks to the link on takearideonthereading. I loved your post – it caught my attention and made me smile. Great word choices. All of them, especially serendipity and synchronicity, sound poetic when you say them and are beautiful words. Another one I like is epiphany. Who knew it could be such fun just saying words!

    – Michelle

    • 6

      wordangell said,

      Epiphany is great! I don’t look at words enough , writing and reading the blogs really opens the world of words and makes me think. Thank you for commenting. Marie

  5. 7

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