How not to use a thesaurus

Roget the thesaurus enjoys turning clear English into incomprehensible babble. Watch him mutilate a perfectly readable excerpt from my short story, The Emperor’s Cat.

I’d like you to meet my good friend, Roget. Roget enjoys long walks on the beach and messing with other people’s fiction. He’s also a thesaurus (which I suspect is some kind of dinosaur).

Good uses for Roget include remembering the perfect word that’s on the tip of your tongue and using your own vocabulary more effectively.

Bad uses for Roget include using other people’s vocabulary and looking up big words to insert into your magnum opus in an attempt to make yourself look smart.

Hint: it doesn’t.

Since doing things wrong is more fun than doing things right, that’s what I’m going to do here. Yes, it’s game. Here are the rules:

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Eating should be optional

Having to eat every day is a ridiculous design flaw in humans. Eating is expensive, time-consuming, and often dull. I have a better proposal.

Whoever designed humans so we have to eat every day made a serious mistake.

Perhaps it seemed like a good idea at the time, but if a bit of thought had gone in it would never have made it out of the boardroom.

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How to write a resume that stands out

Once your job application has an employer’s attention, you need to stun them with your resume. Here’s how to use your best weapon: honesty.

Recently I wrote a post about how to catch an employer’s attention with your job application. I even called the post “part 1”, intending to write a part 2.

This is it.

You got your application into the correct inbox. Now, how do you make your resume stand out?

Having recently read 110 of these monsters (did I mention that?), I can give you the definitive answer.

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Ten things I should have done before I turned 30

I accomplished a few things by the time I turned 30, but it turns out they were the wrong things. Here’s what I should have done instead.

Recently I saw a tweet by @obviousplant_ listing 20 things to do before you turn 30. Some of the items were great. “Release the kraken” was my favourite.

I decided to write my own list, and this is it.

In the interests of full disclosure, I should say that all the things I will achieve by the time I’m 30 I’ve already done.

There are some, honest.

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The introvert’s guide to practicing a foreign language

Studying a foreign language can be challenging for introverts. Read on for my language-learning strategies and a few unintended consequences.

Some time back, I wrote The introvert’s guide to choosing a foreign language. In the months since I wrote it, that post has helped thousands of introverts–okay, hundreds of introverts… Dozens? Fine, one or two introverts if you want to be generous about it–to decide what foreign language to study.

With all these introverts studying new languages, it’s now time to provide some reliable information on the best way to study a foreign language as an introvert.

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