Sometimes a lot…
Take the word crude, which came to mind this morning in the shower while thinking about a recently viewed movie. It has more than one definition, each being a world away form the other.
One definition, which applies to more-and-more to movies (and is often used by foreigners to describe Americans), is “offensively coarse or rude, especially in relation to sexual matters”. I prefer innuendo, which requires more thought and clever use of words. It does not take much talent to be crude, which explains why so many new films are such duds.
Another definition: “In a natural or raw state”. This applies to such things as crudités, a French word for an hors d’oeuvre of uncooked, sliced vegetables used to dip in a sauce. It is rather good. (Sorry for all the French word, but they understand food and subtlety.)
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.