This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Spot the frippet: goose.

For many of us an encounter with a goose will be as a wing-clipped ornament of a park.

That must tell us something about our sense of beauty. 

I mean, I love birds, but geese, ornamental? Flying through a cloud-torn sky, yes:

 but sitting in a pond, not very.

I mean, look at this:

Egyptian Goose

That's an Egyptian Goose. Okay it's technically a duck, not a goose, but it makes my point, I think.

In any case, seeing a wing-clipped bird always makes me wince. It condemns the poor bird to panic-stricken circles of flapping that hardly get the poor thing off the ground.

Yes. I think we can all empathise with that.

Anyway, if you haven't got a goose anywhere near you, not even in a park, then there's always the patchwork pattern called flying geese; or a tailor has a curved pressing-iron called a goose, though of course tailors are much harder to find than a member of the genera Anser or Branta.

If desperate, you can probably grow you own goose flesh or goose pimples by sticking your leg in a fridge for a little while.

But you'd be a goose to do it.

Spot the frippet: goose. This word  comes from the Old English gōs. The word has relations all over the place, including the Old Norse gās, the Old Irish gēiss, which means swan, the Czech husa, and the Sanskrit hainsas.

1 comment:

  1. Most interesting...but I do think the Egyptian geese who are ducks are very pretty. Is it just me? Wing clipping though sounds awful...poor birds.