I parenthetically (in brackets) translate words in my head.
Not all words. In fact, not even most words. Most words slip through my mind without leaving a ripple. This lulls me into the false sense of security that I know them well. In reality if I was put on the spot to concisely define a word like, say, ‘define’, I would have to make up a plausible distraction to escape the conversation (“did you know that the reason they can’t find the Lock Ness Monster is that it actually lives in my bath tub?”). So the words I know well my brain can’t easily explain, but the ones that feel unfamiliar and clunky are succinctly (briefly but aptly) described.
Call it a foible (little crazy thing) of mine.
Unfortunately, the awkward weirdness of my brain has a tendency to spread. It’s gone a whole extra step with ‘foible’ (little crazy thing). Whenever I read, write, think or say ‘foible’ (little crazy thing) I don’t just think the words ‘little crazy thing’ I think of a little crazy thing.
I mean, literally (exactly as written) a little crazy thing.
This guy, to be precise.
Which does at least stand up as a conceptual definition. I think using the word ‘foible’ (little crazy thing) makes the weakness or quirk out to be a cute little lap-dog monster. And sometimes they are. You could buy a rhinestone (cheap diamonds) collar for a-tendency-to-mention-dinosaurs and carry it around in a purse.
But, like dogs, foibles (little crazy things) aren’t all purse-sized. Some, like difficulty-talking-sensibly-in-front-of-groups-of-five-or-more-people, are more like those Great Danes with delusions of tininess who think they can, nay should, perch delicately in your lap.
We pretend anyway.