I know all those words, but that sentence makes no sense to me.
Happy birthday, Matt Groening! The Simpsons creator did not find success overnight. After moving to Los Angeles to make it as a writer, he instead found himself washing dishes at a nursing home, bussing tables, and landscaping at a sewage treatment plant. The experience led him to create his self-published comic book, Life in Hell.
1. a list or collection of proper names.
2. a list or collection of specialized terms, as those used in a particular field or subject area.
A quick look at any onomasticon shows how many more Greek names begin with alpha than with any other letter.
— Edited by Benjamin Acosta-Hughes, Elizabeth Kosmetatou and Manuel Baumbach , Labored in Papyrus Leaves: Perspectives on an Epigram Collection Attributed to Posidippus , 2004
We bring this up because today happens to be the 162nd birthday of Mr. Roget’s compendium of synonyms. Yes, on this date in 1852, the first edition of Peter Roget’s onomasticon was published.
— Greg Mandel , “Tuesday’s Edge: Have you seen today’s Butt?” The Oregonian , 2014
Onomasticon entered English in the early 1700s from the Greek onomastikòn meaning “vocabulary arranged by subjects.”
Perhaps the rare and simple pleasure of being seen for what one is compensates for the misery of being it.
Happy 75th birthday, Margaret Drabble! The British novelist is involved in well-known literary feud with her sister, the writer A.S. Byatt. It seems that Byatt took offense when Drabble wrote about a family tea set—as a result, the two do not read each other’s books.
to do work of little or no practical value merely to keep or look busy.
to deceive or attempt to deceive: to boondoggle investors into a low-interest scheme.
a product of simple manual skill, as a plaited leather cord for the neck or a knife sheath, made typically by a camper or a scout.
work of little or no value done merely to keep or look busy.
a project funded by the federal government out of political favoritism that is of no real value to the community or the nation.
To the cowboy it meant the making of saddle trappings out of odds and ends of leather, and they boondoggled when there was nothing else to do on the ranch.
— , The Chicago Tribune , 1935
Against this backdrop, what happens next in California has broad import. Will the Monterey Shale be a boon, a boondoggle or, worse, an environmental mess?
— Alex Prud’homme , “‘Fracking’ the Monterey Shale — boon or boondoggle?” Los Angeles Times , 2013
Boondoggle is an Americanism that dates to the 1930s. The term’s origin is obscure, but it was popularized during the New Deal as a pejorative word for government projects for the unemployed.