Tuesday, December 13, 2011

How do you like them apples?

I have been using the word “ambivalent” incorrectly for so many years that I’m not sure how to live without it, except now I know it doesn’t mean what I want it to mean.

I’ve even known this for several years, but I cannot find a satisfying replacement word.

I thought it meant indifferent.

It doesn’t. Well, it ALMOST does. It’s complicated. It’s like indifferent with a vengeance.

It’s actually kind of an awesome word when used correctly, it can mean having two opposing opinions about one thing at the same time. Not knowing what to do, but with angst.

But I am very attached to it as a PASSIVE word. Like, a step below indifferent.

“I can’t believe that pageant mom is so devoted to making her 4 year old the Grand Supreme of the Diva Town Hollywood Pageant (this weekend only, down at the Double Tree in the Grand Ballroom, slash dining room, where you can enjoy tomorrows free continental breakfast), but ambivalent about her child's nutrition while she pours pixie sticks and soda down her gullet.” 

See, I mean it almost like lazy. But like mean lazy. Eyes shut tight.

Indifferent would be the guy checking into the same hotel who see’s the pint size 40 year olds running by to change for the talent competition, and turns to ask the hotel clerk what the code is for the Wi-Fi.

A more correct use would be to say;

“The mother was clearly ambivalent about whether she should have allowed the camera’s to follow her all day, since what her shining star really needs right now is a spanking if they are going to get that crown, but she can’t because it’s on camera.”

What I’m really saying is, I can’t tell you guys how many times I’ve had to pause the reality tv show we are watching to tell Jon, “I need another word that means ambivalent, dammit!”

I am open to suggestions.


Andrea said...

Lacidasical or appathetic? I like them :) Or just use epic since everyone uses it for everything and no one knows what it means anyway. (But please don't.)

Alissa Rae King said...

Comments From Facebook (too good to be lost to the wall of facebook streaming :)

Diana Baldessari Jamison
I have been using the word incorrectly as well!!! Can we say apathetic instead? By the way... I LOVE reading your thoughts!!!!
December 13, 2011 at 10:11pm · Like

Oc BellaMama
How about a lack of conscientiousness? Or unconscientiousness? Am I using the words correctly?
December 13, 2011 at 10:21pm · Like

Alissa King
Those are good! I like that apathetic starts with an A, too. Sometimes it's just about how a word feels in your mouth that makes it satisfying! My little sister always uses satisfying words, and she talks with her hands (read whole body) so conversations with her are like eating at a gourmet restaurant. And OC BellaMama, I don't know, becuase I usually order the Mac and cheese. :)