Some words don't mean what you think they mean. Er, they didn't used to.Or - Old people like to share their knowledge. I was taking J to his apartment this week (He's in a wheel chair right now and needs to be escorted everywhere.) when we got into an interesting conversation. (Read that: J started talking to me about things he finds interesting. *wink*) He began asking me if I knew what a certain phrase meant. Since I had never heard it before, I had no idea of it's meaning. J was delighted to go into a full explanation. And then he gave me an assignment. He asked me, "Do you know what 'manufacture' means? How about 'sinister'?" Feeling confident about my vocabulary, I told J I did - in fact - know the meaning of those two words. But he challenged me with their original meanings. Did I know those??? Based upon J's amazing knowledge of the previously mentioned phrase, I figured he must know more than me, so I claimed ignorance. And that's when I received my assignment. "Get a dictionary," he said, "and look up those words. You'll be surprised at what they originally meant." So I did. I dusted off our dictionary at home and looked up 'manufacture' and 'sinister'. And I found nothing of much interest. Certainly nothing which surprised me! Which is when I decided to get serious about my research. Yeah. That's right. I turned to Google! And that's where I discovered a little more knowledge about the word 'sinister'. While today it means something along the lines of 'evil' or 'threatening', it's original meaning in its Latin form is "left-handed". Apparently, in some cultures the left side (and therefore, left-handedness) was deemed negative, so if you were left-handed you were considered evil. And over time, the term meaning left-handed came to mean evil. (Thanks for the concise insight, Wikipedia!) I couldn't find anything about 'manufacture' which seemed out of the ordinary, so I guess I'll have to ask J about that when I give him my 'sinister' report. (Which is much different than a 'sinister report'. *wink*) And I trust he'll give me some education, because it seems old people like to share their knowledge. If you know the secret meaning, do tell me about it in the comments - so I can impress J the next time I talk to him!