Tag Archives: Chimney Creep

Recidivism

My original plan was to discuss Purim today. What a wonderful holiday; it is one that is celebrated by imbibing a little too much and giving to needy people. And eating hamantashen. Which, let us be rather honest here, are delicious.

Instead, though, I spent the day locked in the Solarium (yes, again) and resorted to using my dressing gown belt to belay down the west wall out one of the windows.

So, clearly, today’s word is Recidivism.

Recidivism  is a noun for the act of repeating undesirable behaviors even after experiencing the negative consequences of that behavior or after being treated or trained to not repeat that behavior. It is often used to discuss criminal behavior and the relapsing into a mode of criminal behavior. Recidivism has also been used to denote the percentage of former prisoners who are rearrested.

Recidivism comes from the Latin recidīvus for recurring, which in turn is from re- for back plus cadō for I fall. There was no falling from the Solarium parapet – I’m rather an expert rock-climber, though I prefer to do it in boots rather than house slippers.

Perhaps my pre-coffee curiosity should have been squelched until I was post-coffee, but my shrieking violets were causing such an unholy ruckus and I was curious to see if they had eaten another midnight intruder (I find carnivorous plants are a delightful rodent repellent and much easier to live with than glue traps). Between the violets and dear Bubo, this house is one of the few Brooklyn abodes that is varmint free.

Had I really learned from my previous Solarium entrapment, I clearly would have made sure the door was properly bolted open and that my dressing gown contained the house keys. Instead, today was spent pondering recidivism and why Mordecai didn’t think to let me out, even after receiving a note I’d written and slipped to the Chimney Creep who can slip through the fireplaces of the house.

I suppose that’s a bit redundant, then. Double recidivism for me!

 

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