Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Impatient [im-pey-shuhnt] (adj)

Week 1 - Off We Go
After the long wait and anticipation of Week 0, I expected a quick start and lots to do from the word go. The course, however, starts off too slowly for me. I know that Robert explained the need for this (newbies who have never done anything online) but I am one of those who has taught online courses, so I am only too eager to sink my teeth in some real tasks and the current speed makes me feel impatient.

I once asked my students for the meaning of "impatient". One smart aleck answered "healthy". When I asked him how he got to this answer he replied: 'From the prefix "im", which means "not" and "patient". He is no longer a patient so apparently he is healthy!' It took me a while to explain that "patient" comes from "to suffer" and "to be able to bear suffering". So impatient means "not being able to endure the suffering any longer".

But that is a bit too strong a description for my feelings. It's just that I will not have much time later this week, so I would like to do as much as possible without having to wait. I know, I know - impatience is a bad habit and it can sometimes blow up in your face like the following clip examplifies:

Therefore, instead of getting annoyed, I am keeping myself busy with writing my second blog post and will exercise some patience because the tasks that we did get until now were fun to do. So I will be "able to endure this suffering"; a bit longer :-)

etymology of "impatient"

Monday, September 26, 2011

Anticipation [an-tis-uh-pey-shuhn] (n)

Week 0 - About to start the course.
Full of expectation and hoping this will be time well-invested. Still don't quite know what to expect. I have never written a blog so don't really know how this will proceed...

Anticipation and to anticipate are words that often confuse my students because of the misleading prefix. They feel the word must have a negative connotation as they misinterpret the "anti". The etymology of the word is actually from "ante" (before) "capere" (to take), meaning "taking into possession beforehand". Only later (in the 1640s) did this come closer to "expect, looking forward to". It is, however, not a synonym for "expect" because it has the additional meaning of "prepare for". And this is indeed something I am trying to do while writing my first post.

Anticipation for me means wanting to start already. Therefore I have started playing around with this blogger site even before the course officially started. If we may believe the classic Heinz ketchup TV add from1979, anticipation is the "taste that's worth the wait". Let's hope that is right.

Some words that go well with "anticipation":
"contemplation" - yeah, I'm doing that a lot these days
"apprehension" - ok, I'll admit, I do feel some fear. Will I be able to finish this course? Or have I taken too much upon myself?
"premonition" - pretty much the same as apprehension. Also with negative connotation. Hmm, need some more positive connotations because I am not THAT afraid...
"realization" - yes! that's a good one. Just realized I have in fact finished my first-ever blog post and am still alive. Can't imagine people actually following my blog (still haven't figured out how that will work) but sure am mighty proud of myself!

etymology of "anticipation"
"anticipation" on dictionary.com