Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Improve your writing, improve your life - Improv

One of my favorite ways to improve my writing ... is improv! 

And, the next session at the Plaza Playhouse Theater will begin its next 8-week session on Tuesday, Sept. 15. The workshop’s new director is Tom Mueller, co-founder of Ventura Improv Company, Incorporated and its former artistic director and president.
Tom Mueller

Here's some of the small print: Best suited for those 17 and older, the Improv Workshop is open to all interested parties and will meet from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. through Nov. 10 (no class on Oct. 13). There will be an improv performance on Friday, Nov. 13, at the Plaza Playhouse Theater.

Enrollment is limited to 20 participants and is on a first come, first served basis. The workshop fee is $100. 

Registration may be completed online at or by sending a check to Plaza Playhouse Theater, ATTN: Improv Workshop, 4916 Carpinteria Ave., Carpinteria, CA 93013. Sorry, no drop-ins allowed. For more information call Amy Orozco (that's me!) at (805) 284-2622.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Five Beautiful Non-English Sayings

I'm happy to introduce guest blogger Jessica Kane. My love of words has gone international. I even have practiced saying the words and phrases aloud. Enjoy! And, thank you Jessica. 

Five Beautiful Non-English Sayings

Some languages crystallize joy in a single word or phrase. They capture the essence of happiness in verse that explodes with bliss. They're poignant in their native tongue but have no English match. Still, you can enjoy employing them to condense your speech. Below are happy foreign words that aren't found in English.

I'm in Love!
Forelsket - Norwegian

This word sparkles with the thrill of falling in love for the first
time. It sings with exhilaration and dancing anticipation. It embodies the bubbly feeling that bounces inside. Your emotions are skipping. Your heart is doing cartwheels.

This verb for being swept off your feet should have an English counterpart. Though it doesn't, you can glimpse an image of it here.

To hear the word pronounced, go to:, or click here.

It's Heaven Being Here With You
Hyggelig - Danish

This word conveys a cozy ambiance. It portrays a homey scene with your honey. You're snuggling in your sweetie's arms before a glowing fireplace. You're supremely content. Nothing could enhance the ease of the moment.

There is no English equivalent for the exquisiteness of hyggelig. However, you can see and feel what it's like by clicking here.

For the way to say this perky word, go to:, or click here.

Something Tells Me You're The One
Koi No Yokan - Japanese

It's not quite love at first sight. Still, when you look at this person, you sense they may be "the one." There's a hint of recognition in their eyes. There's an inner knowing in their smile. The direct connect may not occur just yet. It's bound to happen in time.

This phrase is depicted in the "Sound of Music" movie. When Captain von Trapp and Maria have their first dance, you see it in their faces. To view this example of Koi No Yokan, click here.

For the pronunciation of Koi No Yokan, go to:, or click here.

Gosh, It's Great to See You!
Retrouvailles - French

This word connotes the surge of joy in reuniting after a long time. There's a rush of glee, a flush of excitement. The jubilation is tremendous. You hug each other with heartfelt delight. This word is epitomized in the embrace of a wife and returning soldier. For a close-up of such a reunion, click here.

To hear retrouvailles spoken in silky French, go to:, or click here.

You're Just So Cute!
Gigil - Tagalog

Someone is so adorable, you have to pinch their cheeks. You have an irresistible urge to express your affection. You can't refrain from seizing their face with a loving squeeze. Children often elicit this impulse. If a baby accrued a dollar for every stolen pinch, they'd be rich. To see a pinch-worthy angel, click here.

To hear gigil pronounced, go to:, or click here.

Short and Sweet
Now you have five gems to add to your verbal repertoire:

       koi no yokan

Teach your new words to your loved ones and have fun speaking in code!

Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Bureau Translations, a leading company that provide translation services for businesses.

Friday, August 7, 2015

The ology of ology

Google etymology and this definition is front and center: the study of the origin of words and the way in which their meanings have changed through history; the origin of a word and the historical development of its meaning.

And the etymology of etymology? According to, there's the Greek etumos, which means real or true, plus ology, which means the science or study of something — you know, like genealogy. 

Genealogy is from the Greek genea, which means race and generations, and ology, and, well, you know what that means. 

Here's a fun part of my job — I get to learn something new every day. Not that the above is all new to me, but that I had a very interesting assignment helping to launch
If you've thought about how deep the roots of your family tree go, I suggest checking out the Web site. You never know who you'll find.