win some lose some

Just kidding!  I had to say that because of this (at the very bottom):

winsome

gaston

Winsome smile… kind of.

So, whenever I come across a word that I kinda know what it means because I’ve read it for years in context but never took the time actually open a dictionary for it, I look it up. Which is what I did here.  I “knew” that winsome meant attractive, charming, or even childlike because authors of romance novels often describe men (especially villains) as having a “winsome smile” or being winsome in some way. Which, of course, throws  everyone around the felonious villain off so they can commit their dastardly deeds. But I never looked it up because I got the jist of it from the context of the story. So, today with it being the daily prompt, I looked it up and lo and behold, I was right. Quelle surprise!  What I found interesting (and y’all might not) because I’m a word geek, is that each dictionary has a slightly different definition. I’m ignoring the advertisement in the middle. Yeah, they all boil down to the same thing — attractive, but two go out of their way to point out that it’s an innocent or childlike attraction, as opposed to any other type of attraction. These things matter when you’re writing, you know.  A villain who emits an evil aura from the get go is far far different than an impish villain who disarms everyone with their childlike charm.

Anyway, it was the last line up there that got me laughing this morning. The one I highlighted in yellow — It doesn’t mean you win some and you lose some. I had to laugh because this means that the poor person who included it in the definition either had someone ask them that, read it in somewhere, or they honestly believed someone, somewhere would take winsome to mean that.  Maybe they thought it themselves when they first heard that. I don’t know. But there’s a story behind that sentence.  And I love a sentence with a story behind it.  Even if I’ll never find out what that story is.

Edited to add… I just had a thought. I wonder if the person who added that sentence to their definition read a pun with winsome in it and being of a type of personality that doesn’t “get” puns thought that whoever made the pun honestly thought winsome meant “you winsome you lose some.”  It could happen. ^_^

via Daily Prompt: Winsome

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