This blog is for everyone who uses words.

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

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Thing Not To Be Today: inofficious.

Being officious means poking your bossy nose in where it's not wanted, yes? So surely to be inofficious must be a good thing.

Inofficious must mean minding your own business; it must mean being sensitive to other people's need for privacy; it must mean allowing others to settle their owd destinies.

Being inofficious must mean not insisting that complete strangers buy your favourite brand of musli or sit on your picnic rug; it must mean not telling random parents their children should be wearing shoes; it must mean not stating an adverse opinion of the state or style of other people's gardens.

It must mean keeping private the thought that the neighbours' new extension looks like a drive-through car wash.

But, actually, no, not as a rule.

Inofficious can mean uncivil or inattentive, but it's mostly a legal term that means contrary to moral obligation or natural affection, as in, for instance, unfairly disinheriting a child.

And obviously you don't want to do that.

Not when the blighters are going to be choosing your care home.

File:Happy family (1).jpg
Photo by Catherine Scott

Thing Not To Do Today: be inofficious. This word comes from the Latin officiƍsus, kindly, from officium, service.

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