Saturday, February 11, 2006


You know what word I absolutely hate? Food. It's just an ugly-sounding word. Say it out loud. "Food." Say it slowly. "Fooooood."

This is the word we give to the stuff that we need to live. Food. Rhymes with rude. And lewd. And crude. Nasty words, all. Food, yuck.

The Spanish-speaking world has a cool word for food. It's called comida. That's a cool word. I can't think of anything that it rhymes with right away, but it's got spunk. There are three syllables, which means it has some meat to it, something you can really sink your teeth into. At the same time, that "ee" sound in the middle makes the word almost playful, something that tempts you, something that you desire.

I think I'm going to have to give up the word food. I just don't like saying it.

"Hey, you want some food?"

"No, thanks."

"Why, not hungry?"

"No, I'm starving, but it just sounds nasty."

I've been thinking of what word I can use instead of food for food. Sustenance. Too hoity-toity. That's like calling your dad Father. Something that only Rockefellers and Vanderbilts use. Hmmm. Grub. No, that's even worse than food. I don't like the idea of calling the stuff I eat the same word that means a small worm. How about chow? Not bad, not bad.

Wait, I've got it. Vittles. It's perfect! Playful and colorful, and as a bonus, it's a word that reflects my Southern heritage. It rhymes with little and middle. Hey, little middle, it even conveys a sense of heath and fitness.

"Hey, you want some food?"

"No, thanks, but I could sure go for some vittles!"

Help me out, folks, let's get the vittles ball rolling. After that, maybe we can do something about the word gum.