In a word: Murder

I started off thinking that murder was pretty straight forward, you know, someone pulls out a gun and shoots someone else: murder.  Of course, there are any other means of doing the same crime, by knife, poison, strangulation, or suffocation.

Or, by endless inane conversation.  Much less chance of going to jail with that one.

Its the stuff that keeps crime writers going, fictional detectives detecting and crime scene investigators analysing.

Still the fact someone might be getting away with murder, means they’ve successfully found a way to have their cake and eat it.

Come to think of it how many times have we used that word in vain, like when a child drives you to distraction, red-faced and you say with a great deal of conviction ‘you do that again I’ll murder you’.

Just make sure it doesn’t actually happen, or those words will come back to haunt you.

But this is only one aspect of using the word.

You could, if you want, scream blue murder, which is literally impossible.  In fact, what the does that really mean?

It can also refer to an onerous task or experience, hence the possibility that listening to that discussion about hot water bottles was absolute murder.

For one thing, it probably murdered an hour or two of my time.

It could also describe a comprehensive defeat, that we murdered the other side 86 to nothing.  Come to think of it, I never got to participate in such a game, so that might account for why I’d never heard it used before.

And, lastly…

Did you know it can refer to a flock of a particular type of bird, I think crows.

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