Monday, October 15, 2007


How would you describe someone who has risen up and become a manager?

The word boss has its origins in Dutch (from baas: master, foreman), but
there are several homonyms of the word. Is your boss a timid manager, or
a bungler, or ... ? Depending on how your boss runs the show, you apply
one of these alternative meanings:

1. boss : a calf or a cow. That's where Bossy, a familiar name for a cow,
comes from. (From English dialect borse/boss/buss: a six-months-old calf)

2. boss: a protuberance or swelling on the body of an animal or plant
This is where the word emboss comes from. (From Old French boce)

3. boss-eyed, adjective: cross-eyed or squint-eyed. (origin uncertain)

4. boss, verb: to bungle. (origin uncertain)

Why refer to your supervisor just as a plain old boss? On National Boss Day
(Oct 16), why not use a more colorful word from this week's selection?

archon (AHR-kon) noun

A high official or ruler.

[From Latin archon, from Greek arkhon (magistrate), from arkhein (to be
first, to rule). An archon was one of the nine principal magistrates in
ancient Athens.]

It is said that a rogue does not look you in the face, neither does an
honest man look at you as if he had his reputation to establish. I have
seen some who did not know when to turn aside their eyes in meeting yours.
A truly confident and magnanimous spirit is wiser than to contend for the
mastery in such encounters. -Henry David Thoreau, naturalist and author