The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is OSCILLATE
Seeing this word piqued my curiosity. What’s the difference between OSCILLATE and VACILLATE?
Pursuing this inkblot of thought has put me on a cloud nine a-puff with a plethora of delectable VERBS!
Over at one of my favorite hangouts, Merriam-Webster, I’ve learned that
Oscillate means to swing back and forth,
or move back and forth between two points
For example: an oscillating electric fan.
You can oscillate between opposing beliefs, feelings, or theories
For example, the way people’s moods and views on whatever tend to do.
Oscillate can mean a variation from a fixed or given point
For example: Stats, interest rates, test results that vary from the norm.
Or how clean your laundry actually get compared to those in the ads for new Blastout laundry detergent.
All the lovely & useful words explained for comparison sake:
swing, sway, vibrate, fluctuate, waver, undulate
When I hear the word OSCILLATE my mind automatically goes to a fan, because it carries the sense of a regular or timed back & forth.
– to waver in mind, will, or feeling, hesitate between choices
– prolonged hesitation from inability to reach a firm decision.
Pondering, “Should I or shouldn’t I?” is vacillating if you do it for long.
Or to sway through lack of equilibrium, to fluctuate, oscillate. When I think of VACILLATE, I automatically think of indecision.
More lovely and useful synonyms:
Hesitate, waver, dither, teeter
Word lover that I am, this is like a trip through the chocolate factory, inhaling the aromas. I hesitate to promise I’ll put all these useful verbs to use –and I may vacillate at times as to which one to choose – but it’s always good to understand the nuances.