Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Words, Words

Our December and January snows melted long ago, seeped into aquifers underground or evaporated and now our air is as dry as Arizona on a damp day.  Our grasses have browned like winter wheat ready to harvest, worse in some spots, black, Karen says, as if a flash fire flew down from the James River Face.  I'm thinking about buying a pump to shift water from Elk Creek to my field garden, and a solar panel to power it or maybe I could harness the energy of the stream itself and microhydro the hydro.

Not really, instead I'm learning new definitions of residential mortgage loans, mortgage originators, prepayment penalties and high-cost mortgages.  Yes, mortgages.  For years I've resisted using that term that way.  A mortgage is the document filed to bind your home or other real estate to your lender, to ensure that you live up to the promissory note you signed when you borrowed money against your house.  You got a mortgage loan and gave a mortgage.  But I'm finally giving up.  Congress, in its new financial reform bill, uses the word both ways, as does everyone else.  I'm sorry, shoot, now I can't even remember your name -- the elder lawyer at Citicorp Mortgage who shook and shuddered when folks in the office said "mortgage" instead of "mortgage loan" -- you're the last of a breed, my friend.

It's nothing after all, no worse than saying the sun sets.

"Stop shaking," says Virginia.  "This, too, shall pass."


  1. Remember our recent conversation about how you had a hard time getting used to people using cliche`s, similes and metaphors once you went off to college? Below is a paragraph you may not like. As a fictional writer maybe you use descriptions that aren't completely accurate more than you think.

    John Doe had been sleeping like a log when his alarm clock screamed like a Banshee. It was afternoon, and
    John had planned to be up and at 'em bright and early that morning. Now his eyelids were as heavy as lead as
    he wracked his brain for excuses for missing class. He had stayed at last night's mother of all parties until the
    crack of dawn, and now he had to pay the piper. He had missed his enrichment class and now the fickle finger
    of fate on the heavy hand of doom was pointing straight at him.

  2. Looks like you've opened a can of worms. Reminds me of an old friend, though - was in the Army, and cringed if I employed the word 'gun'.

    And what were those things called? - oh, ram pumps, I think. That might do it.