Wednesday 7 October 2009

Vocabulary: Wicked Wicker Wig Makes Wiggly Wick, Gets on my Wick

Wicked Wicker Wig Makes Wiggly Wick, Gets on my Wick
Some lessons ago, one of my students asked me the name of the material that is used to make a banneton, a basket like the picture above, and finding it from the internet was quick. It is
called wicker. But wicker itself is not a raw material. It can be made from plastic or the traditional rattan stalks, willow (reminds me of Harry Potter), reed or even bamboo.

What triggers my interest is that a few of these words that begins with "WI" in their spellings.

Most people know how to express their delights using "great", "awesome",
but "wicked" is not so often used in Hong Kong or in the American movies. Is it more of an English slang? I started hearing it when I was a little boy, and Ron in the Harry Potter's movies refreshed my memory. Apart from meaning great, it can also mean "morally wrong and bad", depending on the context.

Wig was once a very important business in Hong Kong, now
they are still worn by those who have hair problem, models, celebrities, party-goers or by judges.

Wiggle can be a verb or a noun, both of the same meaning, and that is "Move up and down, from side to side." What comes to your mind first? For me, jelly comes first. Because of "Wiggly wobbly Jelly".

A wick is a candle string, a thread in the centre of the candle. I guess you must have burnt a lot this Mid-Autumn Festival or on birthdays.

Last but not least, a relatively older slang "get on sb's wick", which is more common to say "get on sb's nerve" nowadays, which means, "to annoy someone".

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