A Logophile’s Look at Aviation

By Scott Spangler on December 31st, 2018

JW-1Like many word merchants, I’m a logophile, a lover of words. When a new one catches my attention, meaning I can foresee some sentence in which it might be of use, I record it. For the past 15 years or so, my logo reliquary (“a container in which relics are kept and displayed for veneration,” also, a synonym for an aviation museum) is a reporter’s notebook I got at a Garmin media presentation at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh.

Despite decades of collecting, I don’t often have the opportunity to employ many of my discoveries in my pursuit of word merchanthood. But opportunity is what you make of it, so join me for a stroll through the pages for a logophile’s look at aviation.

Without a doubt, today’s enhanced vision systems are perspicacious, which originally meant “having keen vision.” That foundation led to the leading sense of the word’s meaning, “having keen judgment or understanding; acutely perceptive,” which still applies to seeing-eye avionics.

Image result for will fly for foodHow to make a million dollars in aviation is a staple of aeronautical humor. Related to it is the t-shirt that proclaims, “Will Fly for Food.” If you want to confound your peers during your next hangar jeremiad (“a long lamentation or complaint”) describe yourself as an impecunious (“having no money; poor; penniless) aviator.

Jeremiad can also be “a long, scolding speech or sermon expressing disapproval or warning of disaster.” Who hasn’t nodded in agreement with such a sermon on the consequences of an improperly cleaned windscreen, where the residual bugs might be traffic on a collision course? But who have we every heard complimenting the line crew for a pellucid (“transparent, clear”) canopy or windshield?

Related imageInvesting in an aviator’s raiment contributes to their being impecunious. Some articles, such as a surplus flight suit, will not break the bank, but adding a sheepskin flight jacket, a watch with multiple dials, and shiny sunglasses that reflect airborne aspirations, are another story.

These reflective lenses can be helpful when an aircraft activates its fulgent lighting system. When these “very bright, radiant” lights begin to flash like lightening, it is clear that fulguration is one of their options.

Image result for cloudscapeI could go on, but you’ve likely had enough. But let me leave you with one more as we at JetWhine wish you and yours a happy and prosperous New Year. The hardest question any aviator will ever face is “Why do you fly?”

The answer is simple. Flight is many things to many people, but to all it is ineffable: “too overwhelming to be expressed or described in words” and an insatiable pursuit that many hold as “too awesome or sacred” to be spoken of. –Scott Spangler, Editor

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2 Responses to “A Logophile’s Look at Aviation”

  1. A Logophile’s Look at Aviation | Industry news Says:

    […] Source: FS – Aviation A Logophile’s Look at Aviation […]

  2. Paula Williams Says:

    Love this, Rob! I am not as perspicacious (or loquacious) but being a logophile myself, this was a perfect read for a holiday morning.

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