Welcome to another installment of SHANE’S EXCELLENT NEW WORDS, a regular Wednesday feature at NA Confidential.

But why all these newfangled words?

Why not the old, familiar, comforting words, like the ones you’re sure to hear when asking the city’s corporate attorney why the answers to my FOIA/public records request for Bicentennial commission finances, due to be handed over on July 8, still haven’t arrived on August 31st?

Bicentennial commission financial trail? What’s two (yawn) weeks (shrug) after 463 days?

August 31 update: Make that 8 weeks since the FOIA record request due date and  504 days since I asked Bob Caesar to tell us how many books were left unsold, and how much the city’s 200-year “summer of love” fest cost.

It’s because a healthy vocabulary isn’t about intimidation through erudition. Rather, it’s about selecting the right word and using it correctly, whatever one’s pay grade or station in life.

Even these very same iniquitous, bond-slush-engorged municipal corporate attorneys who customarily are handsomely remunerated to suppress information can benefit from this enlightening expansion of personal horizons, and really, as we contemplate what they knew and when they knew it, all we have left is plenty of time — and the opportunity to learn something, if we’re so inclined.

Today’s word is disoblige.



verb (used with object), disobliged, disobliging

1. to refuse or neglect to oblige; act contrary to the desire or convenience of; fail to accommodate.
2. to give offense to; affront: to be disobliged by a tactless remark.
3. to cause inconvenience to; incommode: to be disobliged by an uninvited guest.

Origin of disoblige

Middle French
1595-1605; Middle French desobliger, equivalent to des- dis-+ obliger to oblige

And, the word used in a sentence:

The intended spirit of open public access to government information isn’t necessarily the same as local practice, as when the default setting of officialdom is to disoblige those making requests.