Hot: An Exploration

I'm honored to be sitting in as a guest contributor today while Jeri is out in the field doing research for her next blog: Swimming at My Boyfriend's House and Lazing Around Getting Tan While Other People Do My Work For Me.

Since today is the first day of what will be a scorching week-long heat wave here in lovely Burnell, New Hampshire, I thought it would be the ideal time to examine the word "hot", and its various meanings. Here's one way to look at it:

The dictionary definition of hot is: 1. (adj.) Having or giving off heat; capable of burning. 2. (adj.) Being at a high temperature. But, obviously, our language is rich with synonyms that go well beyond that basic interpretation, which we *[cough* Jeri ] use to describe ourselves as attractive:

Jerilicious. Beautijerimus. Jerimazing. Jhoice.

GorJerious. Jeriful. Extraodinjeri. Swankajeri.

(There are more, but, frankly, I've lost track - and my Watermelon Slushie.)

There are, of course, other perfectly expressive uses for hot as an adjective, and these immediately leap to mind:

Bitter. Enraged. Furious. Irate. Outraged. Resentful. Sullen. Galled. Fuming. Incensed . . . (you get the picture. I had an invitation to go for ice cream with Stick and Gordo, but I'm stuck here doing this. "You're the editor", she said . " It's your job", she said. "Good journalism is critical to our republic", she said.

It's amazing how someone so seemingly clueless can always hit me with just the right combo of truth, guilt, and responsibility. Now, if only people who actually work as reporters and editors would do the same.

Ah, well, all is not for naught. Stick just called: We're going to get that ice cream after all. Yes, we'll get it from her fridge and it will be gluten-and-sugar-free flavorless glop. Of course there won't be cones and cookie bits and colorful sprinkles. But THIS is journalism, people, and it ain't pretty. I leave you with this:

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