My sister, Tara, likes to say okay to or acknowledge a text with a single word, which just happens to be “Word.”

For example, when I say, “That’s sad, but at least you are seeing it,” she’ll reply, “Word.” Or if I say, “I think part of X’s success lies in his confidence. Y’s too,” she will write back, “Word.” And of course, if I text her, “I believe you. We just need to keep telling them they have gifts their teachers might be unaware of,” you know what her response will be: yes, “Word.”

When Tara writes that word (ha!) in her reply texts, part of me likes to think she’s really saying, “You’re right, of course, you’re right.” (I am, after all, the older sister.) In reality, she’s just agreeing with me and is taking a short cut to say so. Have I gotten a little tired of her use of the word, “Word”?  A little, but I’m sure she’s tired of some of my responses as well.

Last week, it became clear that her phone or the Universe or some higher power is also tired of Tara’s standard response. Autocorrect took over Tara’s phone and “word” became “Wod” then “Worf” then “Woed” and finally “Woef.”

I looked “Woef” up, thinking it might have some true meaning and it does. It is the Dutch word for the sound of a dog barking (Woef, Woef!).

Which means when I write something, Tara is now writing back the equivalent of Woof, which in dog speak is “You’re right of course, you’re right.” I  just know it.


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Christina Consolino is a mother, dreamer, author, editor and teacher from Dayton, Ohio. She's a member of the Plot Sisters and teaches Anatomy & Physiology at Sinclair Community College. She writes literary women's fiction, personal essays and more.