Perhaps this is a legacy of being raised in Wisconsin which was known as America’s Dairyland when I was growing up; however, here is my new favorite word: tyromancy. It means to divine the future by studying the patterns that form during the coagulation of cheese!

Every now and then, I see house with a sign outside advertising that an authentic palm reader or psychic resides within and is immediately available for consultation. Perhaps I could learn this ‘art’ and become the premier practitioner of tyromancy for the 21st century!

I could setup a cool website and have groovy business cards that state:

Thom Quinn
Master Tyromancer

Of course, I’m just kidding. I guess in some ways, the modern career of futurist isn’t so far removed from tyromancer so maybe I’m halfway there.

Nevertheless, the evolution of language is fascinating (at least, to me and professional linguists). Today, this word is a fossil; however, at an early time, there were enough individuals practicing this particular craft to understand the future that a distinct term was deemed necessary by society-at-large.  I wonder what common words today will become laughable in a few hundred years.