Tuesday, December 7, 2010


This seems to be a new buzzword. Until recently, it seldom appeared, although it was understood when it did. I have recently seen it in several different manifestations. Sometimes, it is used as a compliment, and sometimes as a politely negative epithet.

Most people would probably yawn at any reference to "baptismal theology". I recently found this referred to as "robust". I suppose that means that it is a lively form of that rather academic concept.

When there is a political confrontation, we hear that there has been a "robust" discussion. That is the equivalent of reporting a political argument (especially between leaders of two nations) as a "full and frank discussion".

When the word is used with health, I visualize a person who brags about being "in shape", and suggests that I need more exercise..

A red wine may be described as "robust", meaning that it lacks subtlety, perhaps to the point of being rough or overpowering.

It's a useful word in sports reports. When I read that a local team has put up "a robust defense", it's probably trying to comfort local fans, who have just had to swallow another defeat...

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