ST Means Stop

Joseph Aronesty was waking with his college friend Phil Cantessa through their college campus on a sunny day in 1969 when Phil offhandedly said, “All English words that start with ST have something stopping in them.”

And that was the end of the conversation about ST.

Sometime after Phil’s death, Joseph took a long train ride from Miami to Philadelphia. He reminisced about his friend and recalled the odd statement about stopping words. So he pulled out his pen and began to write down ST words on napkins.

STOP is s stopping word.

When you STAY somewhere you are going nowhere.

The same is true when you are STILL.

A STATION is where a train stops. And things that are stopped are certainly STATIONARY.

STICK, STACK, STORE, STEADY, STANDING. Those all imply stopping.

STIGMA sticks with you all your life.

A STAKE in the ground doesn’t move.

A STAIN stays stuck on your clothes.

If something is STIFF it doesn’t move. When you stop living you are dead: You’re a stiff (stop + life). Maybe you die because of a STROKE.

A STITCH stops fabric from coming apart like a STAPLE stops papers from coming apart.

How about STREET? A street stops you from wandering. It makes you go in a STRAIGHT line. STEERING also stops you from going off course.  STROKING is usually done in straight lines too.

You are stopped when you are STALLED and STALLS also stop animals from wandering. Pigs can’t move in their STY.

STAGNANT water doesn’t move.

STAFFS are stiff and stop you from falling. Just like a company’s STAFF provides support.

A STANDARD is a fixed norm.

STAMMERING and STUTTERING certainly stop you from talking fluently.

STATUES don’t move. And the word sounds like STATUTES which are a fixed laws that are enacted by STATES, places that don’t move. Speaking of STATES, we have states of being or states of mind which means we have a certain fixed attitude or feeling.

If you are STUPID it’s because your mind has stopped working. You are even worse off if you are in a STUPOR. Something can be so STUPENDOUS that you stop breathing as you hold your breath. Being STRANGLED stops you from breathing too.

What about STIR? When you stir something you move it, but at the same time it revolves around in the same place. The word STORM comes from stir and is a weather system that is stirred up in one place.

You SIT on a STOOL, which happens to be a handy sitting tool (SIT + TOOL = STOOL).

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