Word Distinction – A light-hearted/cheery change of pace

In our recent posts about word distinction, we concentrated on word pairings that are used when discussing weighty topics, such as the environment. For instance, we looked at the difference between  “weather” and “climate.”

When it came to technology, we tackled “smart” and “intelligent.”

Knowing the difference between important words is, in fact, important.

We’re seeing words like weather and climate growing in use and in importance. Words like smart and intelligent are changing meaning as fast as the speed technological innovations are coming.

But there are host of other word pairings – not quite as high-brow, mind you – that we felt would be interesting to explore as well. Because our lives are too short not to have a little fun/joy.

Fun? Joy? Oh, there is a difference between those two words, some argue. In an article in Aish.com, the world’s largest Jewish content website, the difference is put this way:

“Amazingly, there is no word for ‘fun’ found in the Torah. The Torah speaks about joy, gladness, and happiness but never fun. Fun is fleeting. The Torah speaks of the everlasting. Joy, on the other hand, transcends time.

If you seek happiness that is enduring, you need to distinguish the difference between ‘fun’ and ‘joy’. Fun is seeing a hit Broadway show, spending the day at a spa, or trying the latest hot restaurant. Joy is watching your baby take his first step, seeing your two children getting along at last, or walking your child under the chuppah.”

This blog post then? It’s fun and hopefully even adds some long-lasting satisfaction and joy.

Daily, you may come across these word distinctions. It can even be tough to leave your house/home without coming across one. Oops, there’s another one. Here’s a charming story from the Washington Post on celebrated architect Peter Eisenman, whom, unlike many architects, does not live in a house he created.

“Architects design houses,” Eisenman notes in the article. “I live in a home.”

Peter Eisenman’s Connecticut Home

But one wonders: Is the home clean or tidy? Is there a difference between those two words? You bet, some maintain. A number of people who have blogged on the subject seem to agree on this distinction: Clean means using elbow grease to get the house/home ship shape. Tidy means just picking things up and putting them in their place.

The biggest difference? What would you buy? Mr. Clean. Or Mr. Tidy. Exactly…

Credit: Procter and Gamble

There’s actually a website devoted to a number of common word distinctions called, Difference Between, which breaks down the distinctions in  categories such as “People” and “Home” and “Health.”

Some seem rather obvious: The difference between interior and exterior paint? Hmm. One goes on the inside and the other goes on the outside, perhaps? Well, actually, the article explains the different properties that make up the two kinds of paint.

Want to know the difference between a blazer and coat?

Moisturizer and cream?

It’s all there – and thousands more.

The website creators explain their mission this way:

“We know that making the right choice is the hardest task we face in our life and we will never be satisfied with what we chose, we tend to think the other one would have been better. We spend a lot of time on making decision between A and B.

And the information that guide us to make the right choice should be unbiased, easily accessible, freely available, no hidden agendas and have to be simple and self explanatory, while adequately informative. Information is everything in decision making. That’s where differencebetween.com comes in. We make your life easy by guiding you to distinguish the differences between anything and everything, so that you can make the right choices.”

Over the past month, the Collaborative Services blog did the same when it came to word distinctions that are front-and-center in marketing and communications. Through these distinctions, we highlighted some of the most important issues of the day – our environment, technology, and health – to help us with the choices we have.

We hoped you enjoyed it.

Our next post will will close out the theme and provide a few words about our next blog topic beginning right after Labor Day.

Mike Stetz, Senior Writer
Collaborative Services, Inc.

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