Posted on January 25, 2015
Is this a thing? I gather from mentions on various TV shows that Opposite Day parties and celebrations have been happening for years – just not where I live, I guess!
At any rate, we are urged to do things backwards, to do different things, to live as opposite to normal as possible. If you say “yes,” you mean “no.” If you say “black,” you mean “white,” if you say “bright,” you mean “dark,” if you say “day,” you mean “night.” You get the drift!
|Dressing backwards has a long and|
Opposite or not?
|I don't think that most colors have|
opposites, but we are very used to
thinking of black and white as opposites.
But I just used this picture because
everything is better with kitties!
Not all words have opposites, of course. When you look at antonyms (which is a fancy term for the word opposite in meaning to another), you find that a lot of adjectives and adverbs, and some nouns and verbs, have an antonym. But a lot of words do not. For example, what is the opposite of yellow? I would say that yellow's complementary color—the color on the opposite side of a color wheel from yellow, which is purple—is not actually the antonym or opposite of yellow. I would say that yellow has no antonym. Unless, of course, you are using the word yellow to mean cowardly, in which case it has antonyms like brave and courageous.
I would guess that most words have some meanings for which there is no antonym. For example, day and night are often thought of as opposites, but day often (maybe usually) means a 24-hour period that includes “daytime” or light AND “nighttime” or dark. And that meaning of day has no opposite.
Here are a few other examples of words that have no antonyms: panda, hour, ukulele, daffodil.
Celebrate Opposite Day!
- Play an antonym game at ABC Ya or at Learning Games for Kids.
- Eat dinner at breakfast or dessert first and salad last.
- Dress backwards.
- Have an Opposite Day party with an upside down cake that you eat on the floor, under the table!
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