I’ve been thinking about buying s new laptop for a while now.  I know what I want – a  MacBook Air but the name got me thinking.
Nowadays, when we talk about Macs, most of us are talking about Apple Macs but when I was a child it was very different.  I don’t think Steve Jobs had even started his business back then.  So this week, I thought I’d write about the various “Macs” that are in our lives.
courtesy of Pixabay
courtesy of Pixabay

TarMAC or TarMACadam – a road surface material patented by Edgar Purnell Hooley in 1901.  The MacAdam bit comes from John Loudon McAdam who invented macadamisation (no, I don’t know why they can’t decide whether it’s Mac or mc either) .  Cutting a long story short, these earlier road surfaces were OK for horse drawn traffic but no good for the “horseless carriage” so something else was needed.

MACkintosh.  A waterproof raincoat first sold in 1824.  It is named after Charles Macintosh, the chap who invented the rubberised fabric from which it’s made.

Smack – I bet we’ve all had a few of them in our time!

Mace –  no, I know it doesn’t sound the same, but I didn’t say it had to!  There are three types of mace that I know of: mace as in mace and sceptre, mace the spice made from dried nutmeg, and mace the so-called self defence spray.  I’m pretty sure its use is illegal in the UK so don’t go out an buy any.

MAC make up – One of my favourites!  I particularly like the lipsticks, eye shadows and eyeliners.  MAC stands for Make-up Artists Corporation, and there is the MOST wonderful range of colours.  Just take a look at the website, it is like a sweetie shop for grown up girls.   If you’ve never tried MAC, give it a go.


Mach – the ratio of the speed of an aircraft (or similar) to the speed of sound.  I was going to say it’s around 770 miles an hour, but when I looked it up to check, there are so many variables, I decided I couldn’t be that geeky today.

Macaw – a type of parrot, native to Central and Southern America.

Courtesy of Pixabay
Courtesy of Pixabay

Macula – The macula is a spot near to the centre of the retiina in the human eye, with a diameter of about 6mm.  It’s yellow in colour, so it absorbs blue and ultraviolet light and acts like a pair of sunglasses.  It’s function is related to high acuity vision.

Couresy of Pixabay
Couresy of Pixabay

Macrame – I can remember doing this many years ago.  It’s a way of making things by knotting string.  I know that doesn’t sound very exciting, but if you use different coloured threads and put beads in, it’s actually quite attractive.

Pomace – the remains of grapes, olives, etc after the fruit have been pressed.  So this would be the pulp, the skin and the seeds.  Apparently, you can get something called Olive Pomace Oil, which is nothing like olive oil to taste.  It seems that this contains quite a number of chemical additives, so I won’t be buying that.

Stomach – the first site of protein digestion in the alimentary canal, rather than the thing that sticks out under our jeans…..  Oh, you don’t have one of those?  Ok!

Macchie is the German word for Maquis, in other words, Mediterranean crubland.

Machine – I think we all know what this is…

Primacy, grimace, macabre, yashmac…. If you want to find more, try http://www.scrabblefinder.com.  But no cheating when you play “Words with Friends,” with me!

Courtesy of Pixabay
Courtesy of Pixabay© Susan Shirley 2014


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