'I have not been at a prior meeting,' said the American economist Larry Summers recently, 'at which matters have had more gravity.'
Well, at least we all know what he means.
I, personally, though, would have been feeling a lot less inclined to hope that someone would push a custard pie in his face if he'd said: 'I've never been to a more important meeting.'
The trouble with this sort of pomposity is that it attracts attention away from the message and focuses it on the speaker.
But then that's often the intention all along.
Word To Use Today: gravity. This word comes to us from the Latin word gravitās, which means weight, and before that from gravis, which means heavy.