I watched the U.S. Open 2012 of tennis over the past two weeks, during which a young man, Andy Roddick, retired at age 30 after devoting 22 years to the sport. Roger Federer, at 34, is still playing although no longer number one.
Professional athletes commit themselves to their chosen sport. They practice for hours, endure months away from home while on tour/season, and suffer injuries from overuse of their bodies. The definition of “commit” in this instance is “to pledge or engage oneself: an athlete who commits to the highest standards.”
Then, there’s the other kind of commit, i.e., “to confine officially or take into custody: to commit someone to prison or a psychiatric facility.
One might argue that the commitment to spend all your time hitting a fuzzy fluorescent ball across a net is grounds for the second kind of commitment.
In fact, that I find the following so fascinating might be grounds as well. It’s okay if your eyes glaze over because of this subject. I love it.
I thought I knew that homonyms shared the same spelling and pronunciation, but had different meanings. Fun blog. I’ll do a little research. Famous last words. There are more subsets to homonyms than I realized.
Homographs (same spelling regardless of pronunciation): bark (sound of dog), bark (skin of a tree); stalk (plant part), stalk (follow/harass a person).
Heteronyms, sometimes called heterophones (pronounced differently, spelled same): bow (front of ship), bow (a weapon); desert (to abandon), desert (arid region).
Homophones (same spelling, same pronunciation, different meaning): skate (glide on ice), skate (fish); rose (flower), rose (past tense of rise).
Heterographs (different spelling, different meaning, same pronunciation): to, too, two, and there, their, they’re; read (peruse), reed (waterside plant).
Language! Ya gotta love it.