Kate Barnes (k8cre8) wrote in 1word1day,
Kate Barnes


 It's been a rough week for our friends at Live Journal, and I hope things get back to normal soon. 

It has been a decade since several physicians announced the completion of the first hand transplant from a dead donor. The case was a groundbreaking one, as, hands have long been considered “non-vital” organs, and as such, doctors have questioned the wisdom and risks associated with such surgery.

Doctors are far more convinced that the surgery would be less controversial if the hands were fitted with accessories that would make them more useful, in a general sort of a way, than the traditional “finger-laden, soft and exposed” versions that most people are born with. Instead, doctors feel that they can ”build a better hand.”

These better hands will be fitted and equipped with a metal poly alloy coupling into which the lucky amputee can fit a wide range of handy attachments. Doctors have suggested tools such as scissors, egg beaters, vacuum cleaners, shovels, post-hole diggers and chain saws in addition to the traditional prosthetics such as hooks and finger-laden models. For sailors especially, the notion of a hook-handed pirate will be a thing of the past as doctors have included special attachments to carry a wide variety of hanks, including a separator to organize wooden and metal hanks from a rope hank.

Some people have put in requests for these researchers to investigate the problem of adding additional hands with attachments, for those people who want to improve their ability to multi-task. One lady was hoping to have a dedicated hand for texting and using her cell phone, and another eager hand-thusiast was wanting to use the additional hand to play piano duets by himself.

hank  (HANK ) noun. Middle English 1. a loop or coil of something flexible. 2. a specific length of coiled thread or yarn (a hank of worsted yarn contains 560 yards) 2. in nautical terms, a hank is a ring of wood, metal or rope on the edge of a staysail, and slides on the controlling stay.
From the depths of the 14th century, this word from Middle English migrated from its Scandinavian homeland. It's related to the Old Norse "honk hank;" and is also akin to Old English "hangian," which means "to hang." My grandfather told me that his mom used this word to refer to yarn all the time, and it was neat to know that it was part of the "living language" of my ancestors, before I'd even been born.
Tags: h, middle english, noun, theme: stories

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