Crème: (n) cream
Sometimes I foolishly allow myself to get on a jag of discovering correct grammar, proper sentence structure, and believe it or not, accurate spelling.
In the midst of this pursuit, I occasionally stumble on a word that has an old-time spelling and a new-fangled spelling without any particular consensus on which one is definitively correct.
Idiot that I occasionally am, I adopt the unusual spelling or pronunciation, thinking it makes me a trifle uptown or high-falutin’.
The result is always the same.
All the people who do not share my predilection for a historical study of the English language—etymology—immediately wonder why in the hell I use the word etymology when I wasn’t mentioning insects.
I know they don’t know what they’re talking about.
I am positive I have discovered some nugget of personal treasure which I am offering in order to seem expansive.
But inevitably, I’ll be corrected—rudely.
In one of my novels I wrote that my character requested “coffee and crème.”
First, my spellcheck had a stroke. (You know—when the squiggly line is SO dark and red that you realize it’s coming from a rage from spellcheck’s childhood.)
I resisted spellcheck and had it published, only to hear from grammar Nazis, concerned friends, and those who joined the club (which probably is called, “Cream Should Be Spelled C-R-E-A-M.”) They all asked me to reform. I became defensive, which made them believe that I was not only ignorant, but mentally challenged.
So I have learned in a world that talks a good game of creativity while desperately extoling the status quo, to let the cream rise to the top and let the crème sink to the bottom.