A copacetic podcast


Today’s word, copacetic, is a favorite of mine. Although I too often forget to use it.

Copacetic is an adjective meaning completely or entirely satisfactory. I think its connotation is much more positive then satisfactory. For example if a boss told me my work was satisfactory I would be concerned it wasn’t very good, that it was barely above unsatisfactory. But if they described the situation or my projects as copacetic I would be much happier.

The etymology of copacetic is murky at best. Bartelby, Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com all list the etymology as unknown. Word-detective.comand Etymonline.com both take a stab at the etymology noting it emerged in America around the end of the 19th century. Both sources suggest it has its roots in America’s African American culture.

Mea Culpa- Adam Curry’s favorite bit of latin for podcasting


podcast-logo.pngWelcome back. Today we have a celebrity inspired term, Mea Culpa.

Recently Bill Gates used it when describing MS’s failure to dominate the online music industry.

“Mea culpa” is a latin phrase uttered to accept guilt. It translates to “my fault.” I think people like using the phrase because it is psychologically easier to say than “my fault.”

Bill Gates use of mea culpa is interesting. While I am sure Bill thinks he can dominate anything he directs MS to tackle. Apologizing for not dominating the online music industry is awfully presumptuous.

I have also heard Adam Curry drop this bit of Latin on the Daily Source Code many times. My notes show I first heard it over a year ago, back on September 27, 2004. Since then I have heard him utter mea culpa several times. Funny how his use of mea culpa humanizes him and makes him more credible, while Gates’ use reveals his underlying expectation of unmitigated success.

I would like to offer my own mea culpa for being so derelict in producing podcasts. I have been busy applying for law school and trying to make a living in Cincinnati. Thank you for staying subscribed.

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