Epanodos

Epanodos (e-pan’-o-dos): 1. Repeating the main terms of an argument in the course of presenting it. 2. Returning to the main theme after a digression. 3. Returning to and providing additional detail for items mentioned previously (often using parallelism).


We have just enough money to pay for the pond—yes the pond —the one we agreed to make 2 weeks ago: fresh catfish, lotuses—white, pink, yellow, even red and blue, with a sweet smell; and big bullfrogs to “ribbit” and take care of mosquitos. And, of course, in winter we’ll have our own private hockey rink where Junior can practice his goalie moves.

I think we should call the backhoe guy and get moving: catfish, lotuses, bullfrogs, and a practice hockey rink. These are my reasons, that’s our pond. When Junior makes it to the NHL, he’ll thank us. We’ll have a catfish dinner by the pond to celebrate while we listen to the bullfrogs and smell the lotuses.

I’m dialing the phone.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epanorthosis

Epanorthosis (ep-an-or-tho’-sis): Amending a first thought by altering it to make it stronger or more vehement.


Every time I look at you I see shining doves flying toward the future—no no—what I see are golden butterflies fluttering through a purple haze toward Buddha’s third eye: the all-seeing eye that gazes inwardly contemplating Samsara and the non-beginning of all that is endless.

I hope my vision of you is not too heavy to bear. I see myself as a garden tool, destined by our entwined Karma to cultivate your awakening and facilitate your flourishing as you follow the Noble Eightfold Path and become a vegetarian pacifist like Stephen Colbert or Dolly Parton. Laughter and music are keys to the door of Enlightenment. Ha ha. Jolene.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

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Epenthesis

Epenthesis (e-pen’-thes-is): The addition of a letter, sound, or syllable to the middle of a word. A kind of metaplasm. Note: Epenthesis is sometimes employed in order to accommodate meter in verse; sometimes, to facilitate easier articulation of a word’s sound. It can, of course, be accidental, and a vice of speech.


I’m on a roll. Everything’s-a-goin my way. I would say “zippity do-dah, zippity-ay, my-oh-my what a wonderful day,” but that might be some kind of plagiarism.

It’s great the way ice cream and my daily meds make everything beautiful in it’s own way, like a starry night over the Netherlands or a Heineken on tap followed by a shot of jenever on a cold and stormy winter day.

Here I am in Van-f’in-Gogh land. Up to my knees in palette knives and mixing turpentine with my tea. I want the total experience. I want to see swirling halos around stars and death-knell crows flapping across hayfields, flying toward eternity in handgun-shaped formations.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epergesis

Epergesis (e-per-gee’-sis): Interposing an apposition, often in order to clarify what has just been stated.


Stop singing “goat milk kefir in in the sky.” It’s “ghost riders in the sky.” Your mind is like an cosmic merry-go-round—orbiting around inside your head, decorated with shiny silver meteorites and painted plastic space creatures blurting gibberish as they go up and down, up and down, around and around.

That’s you, or I should say, that’s what I envision as your mind, which is pretty complimentary if you think about it.

Please stop singing “grackles keep falling on my head”—it’s “raindrops keep falling on my head” from the movie Midnight Cowboy’s instrumental theme with the lyrics added later for a Johnny Mathis album. Jeez! Oh come on: “Hey Moe, where you goin’ with Curly’s comb in your hand?” Really? It’s actually “Hey Joe, where you goin’ with that gun in your hand?”

Mama and I named you Alfred after your grandfather, but everybody calls you Weird Al, even your grandfather! It’s because of your nearly constant public lyric twisting: at the mall, at school, at the bowling alley—everywhere! We know you can’t help it. Maybe you can make a career of it somehow.

Our weird son Al, the musical genius!

Stop that! It isn’t “You ain’t nothin’ but a peat bog.” It’s “You ain’t nothin’ but a hound dog.” But you know that, don’t you, Weird Al?


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epexegesis

Epexegesis (ep-ex-e-ge’-sis): When one interprets what one has just said. A kind of redefinition or self-interpretation (often signaled by constructions such as “that is to say. . .”).


You are a toad. That is, you pee on the hand that holds you—holds you close like a brother, who listens to your pain, who wants to take you out to dinner, and drive you around in his convertible—top down—on a warm August night. But, you are a toad. You’re like a Cane Toad—invasive, toxic: when I see you, I sweat and shake and my heart beats way too fast. When we first met I thought these were symptoms of love. Since you hopped away to Florida, I’ve come to realize they were symptoms of something like mild bufotoxin poisoning: the only thing I missed out on were paralysis and death.

Nevertheless, I love you. Please come home. Together, we can work with a therapist to help you shed your toad-like ways and become like a parrot, a puppy, or a person. Do you want a plane ticket or an Uber ride to bring you home? Or, I can pick you up in Palm Beach at the place where you’re staying: Mar O Lugo, or something like that. I will text you tonight.


 Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epicrisis

Epicrisis (e-pi-cri’-sis): When a speaker quotes a certain passage and makes comment upon it.

Related figures: anamenesis–calling to memory past matters. More specifically, citing a past author from memory–and chreia (from the Greek chreiodes, “useful”) . . . “a brief reminiscence referring to some person in a pithy form for the purpose of edification.” It takes the form of an anecdote that reports either a saying, an edifying action, or both.


I hate to do this, but the current political climate invites it, no, demands it.

“It is not truth that matters, but victory.” This quotation from Hitler seems to be expressive of a basic ultra-conservative Republican tenet. Lying, blatant lying, is a key strategy.

“Stop the steal” is a case in point. Clearly, by every credible measure, the Presidential election was not stolen. True believers have a desire, the desire is supported by the lie, hence it must be acted on as if it were true. Wresting the election away from Biden is more important than than the truth. Apart from being grounded in a lie, the statement itself sounds noble. If it were true, “stopping the steal” would be a good thing. True believers can’t be faulted for acting on a command uttered by the President of the US—a President whom they worship (for unknown reasons). Acting without considering the baselessness of the slogan gives true believers grounds for righteous indignation, anger and violence. After all, a stolen election is a big deal and President Trump said it was stolen from him.

Lying for victory’s sake is depraved, for it puts falsehood above truth, will lead to disaster, and will ultimately corrupt one’s character, and lead to defeat, as it did for the fascist cited above.


Definitions courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

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Epilogus

Epilogus (e-pi-lo’-gus): Providing an inference of what is likely to follow.


I thought it would be a one-night stand at Hotel 48, next to the train station, next to the bus station in Gallup, New Mexico. I was traveling from New York to LA on a Greyhound with a one-way ticket. LA was the end for me—if I didn’t get caught. I’d melt into the city of raucous weirdos, like butter on a hot piece of toast.

Gallup was a rest stop. We’d been going flat out since we left NYC, rolling along at 65 MPH through some the most boring scenery in the world.

She was half asleep, sitting there, nodding off & then looking up, about every 10 seconds. At some point she looked at me, smiled, opened her eyes wider, and slowly rubbed the inside of her thigh.

Upon seeing that, my first thought was, “No LA tomorrow morning.” That was my second thought too. The next thing I knew it was morning and we were walking hand-in-hand through Hotel 48’s lobby dragging our bags. We had become lovebirds. Our bus for Vegas was leaving in 15 minutes—we had to hurry. We had plans.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epimone

Epimone (e-pi’-mo-nee): Persistent repetition of the same plea in much the same words.


Get vaccinated. Wear a mask. You don’t want to kill your wife and elderly neighbors. You don’t want to commit suicide. You don’t want a ventilator jammed down your throat.

Get the shots. Cover your mouth and nose. Listen to your doctor. Listen to the CDC. Don’t be a victim of misinformation. The lies being told that have influenced you are tantamount to manslaughter. Believe them, and your chances of surviving the pandemic are reduced.

Get vaccinated. Wear a mask. Don’t kill yourself and don’t kill the people you love. Do it.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu)

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Epiplexis

Epiplexis (e-pi-plex’-is): Asking questions in order to chide, to express grief, or to inveigh. A kind of rhetorical question [–the speaker does not expect an answer].


Why am I such a shitty father? I wake up on the floor and you’re already up pouring milk on the kitchen counter, cereal bowl overflowing—what a mess. Just like our lives. When your mother left with her “work out” instructor, you were 2, and it’s been downhill ever since. Why can’t I pull it together? It’s just a matter of time before Child Protection Services comes banging on our door. I’m not crying, but I’m close—close to running out the door wailing and disappearing over the horizon. I didn’t mean that, but I’m heartbroken.

Why can’t I stop sobbing and do something? Why can’t I do the right thing for once? Mama’s still paying for my health insurance. Although it probably won’t work, I am going to try counseling.

First order of business: dump the vodka down the drain and give you a bath. I am so sorry Rusty. I’ll make it up to you, I promise.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu). Bracketed text added by Gorgias.

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Epistrophe

Epistrophe (e-pis’-tro-fee): Ending a series of lines, phrases, clauses, or sentences with the same word or words.


The onus that has been placed on you is not a burden. Bearing it, you may display your well-known wisdom. The walls, and even the vaults of the cathedral, will ring with your wisdom. The congregants will stand and applaud your wisdom.

This wisdom centers on decisions you’ve made that are freighted with charity, prudence, and frugality and your ability to bridge our divisions with faith. You have wound the delicate thread of community around us, gently, without anger or outbursts of righteous indignation.

We are awed by your wisdom.

We are comforted by your wisdom.

We are grateful for your wisdom.

May God bless you for the rest of your days, and bless us too with your continuing presence in our lives.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epitasis

Epitasis (e-pit’-a-sis): The addition of a concluding sentence that merely emphasizes what has already been stated. A kind of amplification. [The opposite of anesis.]


Will they behave? Can they behave? Saturday’s “Pro-Trump Rally” will tell the tale. Not only that, we may find out what “Pro-Trump” means. My sense is that it means a truck load of shit: anger inducing assertions about what is wrong with government that are based in misinformation and lies, and the worst lies: the conspiracy theories that frame too many Americans as gullible dupes with no critical reasoning skills. Or maybe the Trump supporters are serial adulators who’re too old for idolizing Rock Stars and have targeted Trump for his Rock ‘n Roll bad boy demeanor. He can’t sing, but Trump’s incoherent yelling verges on Meatloaf, or even some kind of fry, or death metal, screaming.

I hate to say it, but I will probably tune in on the rally to be better informed about what’s going on in Trump world, for the entertainment value, and to find relief by laughing and yelling at the TV.

Informed. Entertained. Relieved. Good reasons to watch.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu). Bracketed text added by Gorgias.

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Epitheton

Epitheton (e-pith’-e-ton): Attributing to a person or thing a quality or description-sometimes by the simple addition of a descriptive adjective; sometimes through a descriptive or metaphorical apposition. (Note: If the description is given in place of the name, instead of in addition to it, it becomes antonomasia or periphrasis.)


Your face is long. It’s so long you can touch your belly button with your nose. It’s so long you don’t have to bow your head to eat your soup. It’s so long it looks like a flat-top football. It’s so long, if you nod your head enthusiastically you could bruise your septum. Ha! Ha! Ha!

You know this is BS.

You’re clearly down in the dumps—hence the “long face.” You need to do something about your lingering broken heart. Silky did a number on you—faithful, and by your side, until you maxed your credit card. It must’ve been painful when she stood up, grabbed her purse, and stalked out of Meaters when the waiter came back to your table and gave you the bad news about your card. She hasn’t called, emailed, or texted since.

She’s still streaming though, at Buzz-Cakes, where you met her and started your affair at $75.00 a pop plus tip.

You know, you should focus on rebuilding your credit rating, instead of further destroying your life pining over Silky. She’s nothing more than a kind of high tech hooker—she probably has six or seven other men on the hook. There’s no love here. Right now, you’re a total loser. Snap out of it. Try to forget her.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epitrope

Epitrope (e-pi’-tro-pe): A figure in which one turns things over to one’s hearers, either pathetically, ironically, or in such a way as to suggest a proof of something without having to state it. Epitrope often takes the form of granting permission (hence its Latin name, permissio), submitting something for consideration, or simply referring to the abilities of the audience to supply the meaning that the speaker passes over (hence Puttenham’s term, figure of reference). Epitrope can be either biting in its irony, or flattering in its deference.


You tell me, “How many roads must a man walk down before they call him a man?” “How many people dey hustle?” “How many mothers have to cry?” “How many shots can you take?” “How many Instagram videos you gonna play back?”

I’m tired of the questions. I’m tired of the answers. You tell me what the hell it all means! You tell me! The streaming indignities. The obstinate memes.

The grist pours out of the Hell Mill. We bake ourselves into cakes and loaves of bread and go stale in the darkness. Do YOU care about what it all means? Contemplate the horizon you’ve set for yourself. Is the sun rising or setting? Are the trite lullabies you ply yourself with keeping you awake? Are your hopes actually fears? Put yourself in some rich guy’s Birkenstocks and run away. They’ll fly off your feet like two birds. Tell me what this means and I’ll give you a ticket to ride.

Tell me!


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epizeugma

Epizeugma (ep-i-zoog’-ma): Placing the verb that holds together the entire sentence (made up of multiple parts that depend upon that verb) either at the very beginning or the very ending of that sentence.


Hope and fear, noise and silence, life and death, heaven and earth, old and young and countless other contraries marking the changes that make life meaningful. For it is the oppositions that provide us with a sense of where we are—always somewhere between them, their proximity provides us with meaning.

As soon as one pronounces oneself to be young, one has begun to voyage toward getting older, and being old. And when one pronounces oneself old, one begins to think of death—maybe like a toy balloon floating away across the sky and disappearing, or a more grim image of what the end is like: imps with glowing branding irons searing your flesh. But having that word—“death”—enables one to contemplate the end on of one’s life without having to experience it. This is a blessing or a curse: it can be anything one may imagine it to be (balloons or imps), for better and for worse.

Although we are all on the same trajectory, we are at different stages along the way. But, we are all alive, traversing the tangible world—what is present to our senses; what may divert our imaginations from what is impossible to know and resides solely in faith, to a yummy cheeseburger, a martini, or a drive to the grocery store to pick up a loaf of bread. This isn’t to say that all of the hellish prospects conjured by your imagination are not actually operative here on earth. It’s a question of dwelling—the house you build in your head, and your willingness to accommodate bad tenants.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Epizeuxis

Epizeuxis: Repetition of the same word, with none between, for vehemence. Synonym for palilogia.


Dough! Dough! Dough!

Cheese! Cheese! Cheese!

Pepperoni! Pepperoni! Pepperoni!

Pizza! Pizza! Pizza!

That’s how we make it where I come from. In Genoa, we yell each of the ingredients and their oven-fired result out loud for good luck, and to keep the peace. This tradition dates back to Prince Adorno, patron of our ancient city. He loved pepperoni pizza more than gold and was benevolent to a fault, helping countless nona across our cobbled streets and through our dimly lit and twisted alleyways. When asked why he manifested such kindness, he would say “It’s the pepperoni pizza.” To cultivate his wonderfully edifying sentiments, the people of Genoa made him a pepperoni pizza for lunch every day, calling out the ingredients so he would know where to go to get his beloved pizza.

Traditions are born in strange ways. Knowing their origins rounds out our lives. Mysteries are solved and foundations are strengthened. “Pizza” is a catchphrase for our culture. “Pizza! Pizza! Pizza!” is it’s living spirit as it rings out loud a clear at dinner tables, pizzeria counters, and wedding feasts.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Erotema

Erotema (e-ro-tem’-a): The rhetorical question. To affirm or deny a point strongly by asking it as a question. Generally, as Melanchthon has noted, the rhetorical question includes an emotional dimension, expressing wonder, indignation, sarcasm, etc.


Whoa, whoa, whoa! Where the hell are we going with this? I’ve been selling “Billy’s Fudgy Cakes” ever since I was 22, and now I’m 60, and I’m still selling them by the ton, literally. We all mourn Billy’s passing, Junior, and are ready to roll up our sleeves and sell Fudgy Cakes until the word smells like their secret frosting. Doesn’t it seem imprudent to make them smaller, make them vanilla, and rename them “Whitey Cakes”? Where are we headed with this? Your father’s ashes are rattling in their urn. Will your eulogy tell the story of his successful leadership, followed now, by certain disaster of your doing? How are you going to feel when we’re all desperately waiting for our meager unemployment checks?

Will you come down from cloud-cuckoo land? Will you look in the mirror and see that your life will be ruined by what you’re about to do? You say you want to take control and make your mark. The only “mark” you will make is a skid mark.

It’s not too late to change your mind. Don’t you want to continue your father’s legacy and keep Billy’s Fudgy Cakes fudgy?


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Eucharistia

Eucharistia (eu-cha-ris’-ti-a): Giving thanks for a benefit received, sometimes adding one’s inability to repay.


Thank-you so much for the chocolate hockey puck, the six-pack of multi-colored erasers, and the sheet of 100 Pokémon press-on tattoos. It isn’t even my birthday! It isn’t even Christmas, or any other common holiday. But, digging deep into my knowledge of folklore and the history of holidays, I know what day this is: International Odd-Shaped Mole Day.

This is my ticket to being feted today: my dark brown 2-inch mole protruding from my forehead. It is hairy and looks like a Hyena running up an ant mound. Usually my mole is noted as a site of teasing and ridicule. I’m used to being called hyena head and having people ask to touch the mole or take a picture. It has gotten so bad that I have to wear a big Band Aid to cover over it, or a watch cap pulled nearly over my eyes. These measures generally work, but when I run into somebody I know, I become the brunt of their teasing—they may rip off my Band Aid, or pull off my cap all the while taunting me. Crowds will often gather, sometimes chanting “hyena head, hyena head” as they circle around me like Medieval villagers in a Gothic novel.

But today is my day! You wonderful people have invited me here to celebrate my odd-shaped mole. For awhile, you’ve made me feel normal; even better than normal. I can never repay you, but, if you like, you can line up to touch my mole and take a picture.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Euche

Euche (yoo’-kay): A vow to keep a promise.


Him: From now on, I promise to put the seat down when I’m done weeing.

Her: You might as well promise to drink gasoline at Cliff’s every time you fill up the car. What prompted this anyway? Are you terminally ill and want to go out on a positive note? Changing 30 years of ‘seat up’ to, ‘from now on, seat down’ must’ve been paid for by our daughter, or caused by something more bizarre.

Him: I dreamed I was a toilet seat. I was arrogant. I was uncaring. I was sexist. I only went down for crapping men, and then I went right back up again. Women had to pull and tug on me to go down so they could sit and pee. Realizing the suffering I caused as a mean toilet seat, and feeling the warm butts of the harassed women sitting on me, were transformational. I developed a degree of genuine empathy that is enduring and will enable me to keep my promise to you.

Her: My God! This is the best one yet! Your “I was a toilet seat dream” speech! But what the hell. At this point, after 30 years, I’ll take anything, no matter how crazy.

Oh, before you go to work, make sure to put the seat down. It’s been up since you got up this morning.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Eulogia

Eulogia (eu-lo’-gi-a): Pronouncing a blessing for the goodness in a person.


“Robin Hood, Robin Hood riding through the glen.” Your well-tailored cammo breeches and matching tunic, and jerkin with a ruffle fringe that flutters when you run from the stooge posse, are the height of highwayman fashion. Your hat with the pheasant feather pen is totally cool—while you’re on the run, you can write threats and sarcastic thank-you notes for stolen loot, and also, tickle Maid Marion under the chin when you have some personal time together at your secure hideout in Sherwood Forest; in your wooden hut with running water, a fireplace, and a bed wide enough for romping.

But more than all of that, we are grateful for your valor and courage in harassing the depraved Sheriff of Nottingham in his dirty dealing campaign to overthrow our rightful King in his absence, and make Merry England into Scary England. Time after time you have come to England’s rescue, interdicting the nefarious actions of the evil Sheriff. You tirelessly pursue the preservation and application of the the basic tenets of Magna Carta: all people, no matter their social status or rank, are subject to the law, even the king.

For all of your goodness, we bless you. Additionally, we pray you will continue to protect England and it’s subjects.

Robin Hood, as a token of our love, we give you this time piece from far-away Bavaria: a bird pops out of the little door every hour and makes a “cowkoo” sound. Again, we are in your debt.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Eustathia

Eustathia (yoos-tay’-thi-a): Promising constancy in purpose and affection.


I love you as much as I love Canada. Like maple syrup you sweeten up my life. You let me push you around without complaining. You’re as cute as a baby beaver. You smell like hot poutine. I adore your goose down overhauls and your well-insulated snow boots. Your lips are the color of unripe Saskatoon berries begging to be kissed. Your collection of Ann Murray CDs makes me lose all control, and your giant autographed portrait of Justin Bieber makes me want to get down on my knees and thank God that you’ve come into my life.

I love you and I always will. Without you, I’d just be another failure from New York, pining at Niagara Falls, looking at the colored lights and whining into the wind.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Eutrepismus

Eutrepismus (eu-tre-pis’-mus): Numbering and ordering the parts under consideration. A figure of division, and of ordering.


Things are going wild in the USA. I can think of four measures that may bring us back from around the bend:

1. Declare martial law in Florida and Texas.

2. Declare war on home-grown militias.

3. Sanction the Republican Party

4. Nullify the two most recent Supreme Court appointments.

These are simple one-step measures. They will stop the madness. To be sure they are heavy-handed, but with good reasons and appropriate legal procedures, they will achieve their goals within the constraints of the law. Given what’s at stake, we must consider their effectiveness above all else. Will they get the job done? Yes.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Exergasia

Exergasia (ex-er-ga’-si-a): Repetition of the same idea, changing either its words, its delivery, or the general treatment it is given. A method for amplification, variation, and explanation. As such, exergasia compares to the progymnasmata exercises (rudimentary exercises intended to prepare students of rhetoric for the creation and performance of complete practice orations).


You have that far away look in your eyes, memories pressing against the present, you see through your eyes, but your eyes don’t look. Your eyes can’t look. They can’t help you understand. They just drop pictures with clouded colors, unmerciful veils failing to occlude what you don’t want to remember: terrifying traces of war nurse chemical imbalances in your brain, supplanting everything “out there” with vivid, cartoon-like hallucinations mocking the present with twisted revelations and tear-inducing images swarming like flies in front of your face.

So, your aging mother—nearly ninety—feeds you your medication. After awhile, the tide of madness starts to drain. The tumultuous sea of anxiety is filled with warmth and tranquility as the chemicals bring you back from drowning—like a lifeboat sent by God.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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Exouthenismos

Exouthenismos (ex-ou-then-is’-mos): An expression of contempt.


“There is a time to hate” and I hate you—not just now, but for as long as I live and beyond. People like you deserve to be worked over with a set of electric hedge clippers, giving your face a buzz-cut, and then, putting your privates on a tree stump and having at them with a dull hatchet. I know this is disgusting, and maybe psycho, but you’ve pushed me here with your own pathological behavior: taping an M-80 on my pet turtle’s back, lighting it, blowing Tuffy into fragments of meat and shell, and laughing and bragging about your sicko behavior to the dumpster dwellers you call friends, puts you in league with the criminally insane.

I am going to have you arrested, tried, convicted and put in prison. Wait until the other inmates find out what you did to get there. They will find ways to “enhance” your sentence.

I have managed to find enough of Tuffy in the parking lot to bury in this cigar box. I’ve taped his photo to the lid and painted a little pond around it. I am working on Tuffy’s eulogy. It is hard to keep my rage out of it—you have ruined something special and taken an innocent creature’s life. You are disgusting. You are sick. You will go to Hell when you die. If I am alive, I will come to your burial and spit on your grave, or, find a way to scatter your ashes in a porta-potty.

May eternity treat you with horror and pain.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Buy a print edition of The Daily Trope! The print edition is entitled The Book of Tropes and is available on Amazon for $9.99. There is also a Kindle edition available for $5.99.

Expeditio

Expeditio (ex-pe-di’-ti-o): After enumerating all possibilities by which something could have occurred, the speaker eliminates all but one (=apophasis). Although the Ad Herennium author lists expeditio as a figure, it is more properly considered a method of argument [and pattern of organization] (sometimes known as the “Method of Residues” when employed in refutation), and “Elimination Order” when employed to organize a speech. [The reference to ‘method’ hearkens back to the Ramist connection between organizational patterns of discourses and organizational pattern of arguments]).


I am sick of mowing my lawn, but my lawn keeps growing. I was going to play Corn Hole with my daughter yesterday, but we couldn’t find it buried in the grass. So, we decided to play badminton instead, but the long grass slowed us down and we couldn’t get to the birdie in time to hit it. So, we gave up on father daughter play time and went our separate ways. I paid bills. My daughter applied for jobs on the internet. I thought, pretty soon the tall grass will make it hard to get out the front door and we will be living in Hay Fever Hotel.

Something must be done. But what?

1. Burn the grass; 2. Get a herd of goats to eat the grass; 3. Plow up the grass and replace it with gravel; 4. Move to the grassless city; 5. Hire my neighbor Mow to deal with my grass.

Let’s take these proposals one at a time and see if one rises to the top.

1. Burn the grass: no, no, no. My house will be surrounded by flaming grass and will probably catch fire and burn down; 2. Get a heard of goats to eat the grass: no. Goats smell bad, make lots of “baaa” noise, and butt people (looking at a lawsuit here); 3. Plow up the grass and replace it with gravel: no, no. Weeds grow out of gravel and look like hell. Also, vandals can throw fistfuls of gravel at my house, breaking windows and denting its aluminum siding; 4. Move to the grassless city: no. The up side of city living is no yard maintenance. The down side is that it’s the city: honking horns, crime, and way expensive. As a WalMart floor manager, I could never afford it. In fact, I would probably have to quit my job and start all over again, just because of my unruly lawn; 5. Hire my neighbor Mow to deal with my grass: Jackpot! Mow is a professional lawn mower. His nickname is short for his profession and he’s only 100 feet away. He mows his yard every day at 5 pm, even in the rain! His grass is as short as a golf course putting green—weedless too. His mower is what I call a “lawn limo.” It goes 30 miles per hour, steers with levers, has two cup holders, and a glass-pack rumble muffler. However, there’s a major stumbling block to securing Mow’s mowing services. I call it the “Hot Tub Misunderstanding.” Mow calls it “My Neighbor’s Death Wish.” Mow’s been divorced since the incident occurred 3 years ago. He has a hot young girlfriend now and seems a lot happier since he divorced Marge. So, I’m going to risk my life, go next door, and ring his doorbell. It would be cowardly to just text him. Maybe I’ll get to meet Mow’s new babe Melinda and have a beer or two with her. No matter what, I’ve got to get Mow on board or soon it will look like I’m living in a hay field. Which reminds me, I could just get a farmer to mow my yard, bale it up, and drive it away. But given all that hiring Mow has to offer, I’m going to give him (and Melinda) a shot.


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu). Bracketed text by Gorgias.

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Excusitatio

Exuscitatio (ex-us-ci-ta’-ti-o): Stirring others by one’s own vehement feeling (sometimes by means of a rhetorical question, and often for the sake of exciting anger).


I am totally sick of having to have Mr. Tallyman tally my bananas before I can go home to my wife and son Harry. It’s patronizing! It’s demeaning! It’s degrading. I know how many bunches I picked, working all night long—Banana Spiders falling on my bare shoulders and big black rats circling around my bare feet gnawing at the banana trees.

If I have to call out to Mr. Tallyman to tally my bananas one more time, and stand here wasting my time waiting for him as the hot sun rises or the rain falls, I am going to stick a green banana up Mr. Tallyman’s ass and go home. Is anybody else with me? Does anybody else want to be a little more free? Why do we have to wait around for the damn tally? When we’re done picking, we can do the tally, go home, and pick up our pay tomorrow. To hell with Mr. Tallyman and Damn you Del Monte too!

YOU are a man! I am a man! WE are men! TOGETHER we are strong. Do not fear the Tallyman! Do not fear Del Monte! Do your own tally and go home!


Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

Buy a print edition of The Daily Trope! The print edition is entitled The Book of Tropes and is available on Amazon for $9.99. There is also a Kindle edition available for $5.99.