Sunday, December 7, 2008

Fides: trust, faith

Welcome, etymology fans, to my next entry concerning the Latin root fides: trust, faith. You may perhaps recall that Billy is currently en route from Europe back to Green Mountain, VT, having gone there on the advice of Panfloss, who suggested that he discover a golden genealogical past with which to woo Morgan, his bepedestaled beloved. Billy, full of confidence in his newfound ancestral glory, nevertheless, as his mind was wont to do, began to waffle back and forth as he was treated to 88% cacao content dark chocolate on his plane trip back from France, the amazing manuscript of Franz Fontagerus Liszt in his very hands, its cerulean glow lighting up the organic chocolate wrapper as he read about the wonders of sustainable agriculture, fooling his fellow row mates that he had a Timex indiglo. As he continued to savor the chocolate, he thought about the beauty of Morgan, and his heart, like the chocolate, began to melt, and, as in all great love, his courage began to melt as well, great fear overwhelming him like a tsunami engulfs an atoll.

As we hear of Billy's dramatic psychomachia, keep in mind the following Latin roots, reminding yourself again about Latin root word origins:

Fides—trust, faith {faith, fealt}
Fidus—trustworthy, safe {fi, fy}
Fido, fidere, fisus sum—to trust {fi, fy}

Billy's desultory sem (that wandering part of the mind that has over 60,000 disjointed thoughts per day) now began to focus uncharacteristically on one and only one thing: his confidence. His stream of consciousness ran amok: "Do I truly have complete "faith" or "trust" in myself? Can I confidently approach her and tell her how I feel? I have little self-confidence when I approach strangers; why would I have more bathed in her overwhelming radiance? I am probably the most diffident person I know, completing "lacking in faith," that is, having "no trust" in myself; and yet I did travel to Europe and went through many harrowing adventures just for her, but the very sight of her beauty sends my popliteals (the soft part behind the knee) to undulating. Best be faithful to the quest, lest my own faithlessness lead me to the fen of unfaithfulness. And even if, someday in the very far future, she does consent to marry me (for Billy admitted to himself that he did love her that much that he would unquestioningly plight his troth with her), would I be worthy to be her fiancé (a man held in "trust" or "faith" to a woman), even if she would consent to be my fiancée (a woman held in "trust" or "faith" to a man)? Oh, delirium, oh suspirium (Latin for "heartthrob")...oh wearium..."
Just as Billy's thoughts were beginning to sink into pure ecstasy at the thought of becoming affianced (entrusted by betrothal) to his scarlet flame, a corpulent mephitic image trudged parallel to his seat, now bending low to squeeze between the isles, and a little chihuahua, brought low before the heavenly chocolate of the man whose thoughts were in heaven, ate the food of the gods right up, bringing Billy back to the stark reality of nasty little barking dogs who drove everyone except their owners practically insane.
"Fido!" chided the waddling microcynophile (lover of diminutive dogs), whose very tone of voice indicated complete devotion and love to her toyie doggie woggie, which showed total devotal "trust" in her. Not knowing, of course, that chocolate is lethal for dogs, as it was certainly not lethal for her, she did not court medical advice, nor did she even bother apologizing to Billy, so mercilessly evicted from his morganatic musings by the tiny chihuahuic canine clippers.
Will the choco-chomping chihuahua make a visit to Davy Jones's Locker? Will the chicken cross the road while hounded by a rabid grey wolf? Will Billy's self-avowal of diffidence be a huge step in the right direction? Find out in the next installment of the Latin root word fides: trust, faith.

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