Ph. brought home an English quiz with a score of 95.  Great.  Just
great.  It was a take-home quiz.  

Instructs: On your paper circle the letter of the word whose meaning is
unrelated to the other words in each set. [No kidding.]

10. (a) forgotten, (b) imagined, (c) conceived, (d) formed

Context: It’s a vocabulary quiz on Edgar Allan Poe’s "The
Tell-Tale Heart."
  Ph.’s answer: A. Marked wrong. Normally I
wouldn’t bring Ph.’s school work here (human-subjects ethics quandary), but in
this case, he’s looking at me distrustfully when I say that I think it’s
mistakenly marked wrong.  I could use some consensus here.  What’s the


More related (and because I’ve been horrible about
keeping family and KC friends updated since we moved to NY): Ph.’s middle school
soccer squad won again tonight, 4-0 over Cortland, lifting their record to 4-5
this season.  They’ve won four of the last five games, and Ph. has scored
goals in each of those five games, accumulating six goals along the way.  I
know, where’d he learn to do that? The last two strikes have been direct kicks
from 30 yards.

Evening grad seminars have kept me from several of these
matches, unfortunately (D.’s able to attend most of them).  And he’s not quick to report on the results.  But for the first time ever, he’s keeping handwritten notes on the refrigerator
schedule–recording W’s and L’s.  From somewhere, in the last year, the record
has started to matter. He’s definitely not high and low according to wins and
losses; admirably even-tempered about the whole thing.


  1. In my humble opinion, “A” is the correct answer.

    Re: The W & L’s. It reminds me of Accounting 101; balancing a check book.

    Have I ever mentioned the fact that “truth is absolute, however, human kind doesn’t have the capacity to understand it”?

    Those were some awesome kicks, wish I could have been there. Congrats, Ph! 🙂

  2. My first answer would be (a), since the other 3 strike me as “creative” verbs, but I suppose you could argue that (d) is odd word out, since the other three are all specifically mental verbs. But then (a) is a different verb tense (wouldn’t simple past just be “forgot”?)

    When they give the advice not to overthink the multiple-choice questions? Yeah, that’s me that this advice is designed for…

  3. Yeah, what Collin said, with this addition: they could all be seen as adjectives, which eliminates the apparent difference when they are all viewed as verbs.

  4. I guessed A, too.

    Let’s just say I went to the web site where the full text Poe story is posted. Then I searched for exact matches with each term in the list. I found (in this hypothetical, non-obsessive scenario) “conceived” is the only term, as listed, appearing in the story-text: “It is impossible to say how first the idea entered my brain; but once conceived, it haunted me day and night.”

    Cripes, and how appropriate in its context. Proven over and over again: always pick C.

    And still, in my brain, it’s A.

  5. If meaning is key, the correct answer is either A or D, depending on whether the point is that three words have to do with creation or intellectual activity (and yes, “form” could be argued to be a mental activity).

  6. Ph. just got home from practice. According to his teacher, D is correct. Formed.

    *deep sigh*

    It’s all rushing back–how I was never teacher’s favorite in middle school, high school. And it’s a damned miracle I maneuvered the GRE.

    Ph. just said he explained to his teacher that his family had a discussion about no. 10 last night, and everyone agreed it was right. Mm…nope. ~!~

  7. Great Job PH !!!!
    I would have picked “A” also… it’s the only negative or non-productive word. Images and conceptions are both formed. The teach should change Ph’s grade…

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