Thursday, September 27, 2012

My Penultimate Goal in Life

I have to keep reminding myself that penultimate does not mean: even more ultimate than the most ultimate thing that you could ever imagine.  It actually means: next to last.  Penultimate describes a place in ordering from first to last and does not appear to have other qualitative meanings or connotations.

According to dictionary.reference.com the word Ultimate has the following definitions:

1. last; furthest or farthest; ending a process or series: the ultimate point in a journey; the ultimate style in hats.
2. maximum; decisive; conclusive: the ultimate authority; the ultimate weapon.
3. highest; not subsidiary: ultimate goal in life.
4. basic; fundamental; representing a limit beyond which further progress, as in investigation or analysis, is impossible: the ultimate particle; ultimate principles.
5. final; total: the ultimate consequences; the ultimate cost of a project.

Strictly speaking, there is nothing beyond what is the ultimate.  But if you want to aim for the great beyond, you could try describing something as: √úberultimate or Ultraultimate.

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