Recently (15 minutes ago on Facebook), I was reminded for the second time that my word choices sound harsh.  A few months ago, I was sitting on a tire in a garage, talking with a friend who thought that if I called my trudges something else, perhaps I might enjoy them more.  It was then it occurred to me that readers may think I don’t enjoy my trudges, because I call them trudges.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  I LOVE to trudge!

I am not a gifted runner.  I am not graceful by most definitions when it comes to running.  I don’t want people to think I run like a gazelle, but more like a gazelle being taken down by a cheetah.  However, that has no bearing on my enjoyment.  I love trudging.  I love the word trudging.  It has a humorous, ungraceful feel to it for me.

Now, having said that, if the word trudging brings up negative feelings for you, don’t use it.  You can use run, walk, hike, slither, bounce, streak, scat, go, flow, travel, move, sail, race, rush… whatever word makes YOU feel good.  Trudge brings a smile to my face, what word brings a smile to yours?

In the same way, I use the words guck and slosh.  Guck was a word my dad used when I was little when he was in a great mood and poking fun at my mother.  He would come in with us, usually from the barn, and say, “what guck have you there, honey?”  Sometimes he would ask, “well, what culinary delight have you got for us tonight?”  But I don’t consider myself a cook, and know that mostly what I create is good for me and doubtful anybody else would partake.  Again, the word guck is a happy word to me.  I am very comfortable with it.  I smile each time I say it, write it, or make it.

The word slosh is attributable to an old boyfriend.  He asked what I was having for breakfast and I said it was like a fruit smoothie- but a good one, not the junk you buy in the mall kiosks.  He took a good look, raised an eyebrow and said, “not very smooth.”  Of course, he was right- it was not chunky, but it was not smooth.  He twirled it around a bit and said it looks sloshie.  Again, a happy humorous name for me… but maybe not you.

I enjoy putting silly names to my creations.  Especially names that people won’t assume they understand.  When I say I trudge, few people assume they know what I mean.  They don’t visualize anything.  I like this because I am trying to help people find their own way, not fit mine.  I am not a great cook, although there are a couple things I can cook quite well.  I am not a natural athlete, I work hard to be able to work out hard.

So, I make up names that are good for me.  I use them often.  Do what works for you.  In fact, if you have family, they can help you come up with family nicknames for new foods- goop, glop… dugschmiel (hoping that is not actually a word in another language).

In the future, when you read my blogs about trudging, sloshes and guck, I hope you smile with me, even if you roll your eyes at the same time.