A blog about life, language, writing, and other trivia.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

In a Word

I'm going to try to pay attention to interesting words I come across in my reading and feature one or two occasionally here. I haven't decided yet how regularly, but I might try to make it a once-a-week thing, like Bérubé's ABF Fridays or Spencer's Found Fridays.

The inaugural installation: lagniappe.

1. Chiefly Southern Louisiana and Southeast Texas. a small gift given with a purchase to a customer, by way of compliment or for good measure; bonus.
2. a gratuity or tip.
3. an unexpected or indirect benefit. (From this case a better resource than the OED).

"As long as the freshman-sophomore persistence rate goes up, [first-year composition] is a good investment, and the fact that the students get some real graduation credits for the experience is lagniappe."
--Bob Connors, characterizing administrators' attitudes toward FYC in a 1997 post to the WPA-L.



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