Pondering words again, which are approximated concepts of reality, concrete and abstract, usually in that order. The physical comes to us initially through our five senses; then the metaphysical follows. My first thought/word today was sanity. Could it be related to sanitize and sanitation? Well, why not? Let’s see…
Cambridge Online Dictionary says,
Okay, that fits, now how does it link to sanitize and sanitation? All the way back in Roman times sanus was the root of all this word growth. It meant “healthy or sound“. Well, it’s an easy jump from a healthy mind to healthy body parts or vice versa. When we wash our hands or use sanitizer, we are going for sound, healthy practices, right? And picking up garbage or flushing sewage is healthy, thus sanitation. Conversely, the absence of sanitation leads one to insanity. Right? I believe that was the take away lesson from “Alice’s Restaurant”… that littering was somehow equivalent to war crimes.
The Urban Dictionary of Rome speculates that the root of all this evil could have been an old contraction of sans anus, or “without an anus”, or in modern vernacular “not an asshole”. That proposed theory remains to be fully researched by Wikipedia with a grant from the Gates Foundation. Till then it makes common sense to believe that sane people are not anuses. To say that others may be anuses means that you may be insane or that the other person really is an anus. Or it could mean that you are an anus who merely appears to be sanus.
Hmmmm, well how about another Latin based word, vain.
Let’s pull another word out of the ancient hat– urbane.
Webster’s tells us this about the adjective,
And finally we come to inane inanity. It is the height of silliness and nonsense. This post, for instance, is an example of inanity. It lacks purpose, direction, meaning, focus, and utility. Yet you have read this far following the pretty pictures, hoping for redemption in a pithy conclusion. Sorry to disappoint. When finally the dog stopped chasing his tail, he simply curled into a ball and took a nap.
While seeking personal sanity
In the dull halls of mundanity
I vaulted over my vanity
Embraced my suburbanity
And Landed in a canal of inanity
On the back of a manatee
Uttering only profanity
Oh, the humanity!