Asperity — What the World Does NOT Need!

My husband and I went for a little trip this past Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  I didn’t have an Internet connection so I was unable to post something on Friday.  I was rather lugubrious at times because I was expecting an e-mail message and didn’t have a way to get it!  (I’m STILL waiting for that e-mail to come!!)

Lugubrious (loo-goo-bree-uhs) is an adjective that means dismal, mournful, gloomy, sorrowful.  I was gloomy.  I was mournful.  I was sad.

A song could be lugubrious – if it’s a sad song – you know the kind where you love someone but they love someone else.  Or your loved one dies a tragic death. Or in country and western songs, their dog dies or something happens to their pick-up.

Some people have a lugubrious countenance all the time.  They are gloomy and sad.  Nothing seems to go right for them and life sure is terribly hard.  After Hurricane Katrina, many people’s homes were flooded and the prospects for fixing up their home were lugubrious (dismal).

The next word for today is asperity. Asperity (uh-sper-i-tee) is a noun that means something rough or harsh. Asperity could refer to the tone of a person’s voice, to their temper, or to their manner.  Sometimes when person stops to buy milk on his way home from work and the clerk is slow to wait on him, the person speaks to the clerk with asperity – harshness or sharpness.  Or maybe it’s the other way around.  The clerk speaks to a customer with asperity and treats the customer severely and with harshness.

My image of a sergeant in the army is a person who speaks with asperity to his platoon and treats them with asperity – harsh, severe, sharp, mean.

Sometimes frazzled parents speak to their children with asperity.  Sometimes mean bosses treat their employees with asperity.  Sometimes policemen treat criminals with asperity.  Rough.  Harsh.

Makes me think of an old song ‘what the world needs now, is love, sweet love . . . “  Love – not asperity!

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