A quandary is, mostly, a dilemma, and that is the sort of quandary I’m talking about.
It can also be a small antelope of the genus Madoqua, that lives in the bushlands of eastern and southern Africa and the trade mark (as in “Quandry”) for a piece of Victorian picnic equipment – a combination camp kettle, spirit stove, windshield and adjustable toasting fork. They were well known at the time (c 1870 s to 1900s), particularly as the famous self-publicist Henry Morton Stanley took two on his expedition to discover Livingstone and wrote about them extensively -an early example of product placement.
I do love words. I particularly love the stranger and more obscure meanings and the way you start off in one direction and end up going in another.
This post was supposed to be about me being in a quandary about my list-making and using lockdown to write instead of doing housework. It became a discussion on alternative meanings simply because it has none and I thought it sounded like a small animal, a bit like a quagga or a quokka. After that, taking my cue from the Paradox (a combination rifle and shotgun), it seemed logical to add a toasting fork to a perfectly ordinary spirit kettle and stand, to make the “Quandry”. It nearly had a cake stand added too, but enough is enough…
It looks like, after a dip during the festive season I might be getting my sense of humour back. Sorry if I mis-led you with my spurious definitions, but I just couldn’t help myself. I may be the new Ambrose Bierce, though I will be more cautious than he was in the company of Mexicans. And following on from that, I will attempt to inject a little cheer into the lives of my American readers with one of Bierce’s more appropriate definitions.
Presidency – n – The greased pig in the field game of American politics.