Do you ever have a conversation that’s been difficult because no matter how hard you try you can only see the person as being prickly? Of course, we know that the right thing to do in those circumstances is to step away from the conversation and re-engage later. The hard part is that usually, we’re so passionate about what we’re discussing that stepping away is hard to do. This is one of those times where you can win and the dictionary can help.
Just accuse the person your talking to of being erinaceous. The word is obscure enough it will likely get their attention and in their moment of being caught off guard by your superior vocabulary you can suggest that the conversation pause until both parties look up the word and agree to not be so erinaceous.
What does erinaceous mean? It’s a delightful sounding word (Erin-A-she -us) that means “like a hedgehog.” With such a lovely sounding and apt description, it makes you wonder why this word isn’t used more often to describe people’s behavior online?