True patriotism is less about defending one’s country than it is about making that country worth defending.
Any language, where the unassuming word fly signifies an annoying insect, a means of travel, and a critical part of a gentleman’s apparel is clearly asking to be mangled.
If you have a morbid fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth, there is a word for it: arachibutyrophobia. There is a word to describe the state of being a woman: muliebrity. And there’s a word for describing a sudden breaking off of thought: aposiopesis. If you harbor an urge to look through the windows of the homes you pass, there is a word for the condition: crytoscopophilia. When you are just dropping off to sleep and you experience that sudden sensation of falling, there is a word for it: its a myclonic jerk. English has words for just about anything.
And yet there are odd gaps. We have no word for coolness corresponding to warmth. We are strangely lacking in middling terms – words to describe with some precision the middle ground between hard and soft, near and far, big and little. We have a word to describe all the work you find waiting for you when you return from vacation – backlog, but none to describe all the work you have to do before you go. Why not forelog? And we have a large number of negative words – inept, diseveled, incorrigible, ruthless, unkempt – for which the positive form is missing.
It is an idea which failed to reach escape velocity.