So, what's a Cheeky Cognoscenti, you may ask?
Dictionary.com defines a cognoscente as: "a person with superior, usually specialized knowledge or highly refined taste; a conoisseur" and "a person who has superior knowledge and understanding of a particular field, esp. in the fine arts, literature, and world of fashion." The word is derived from obsolete Italian, and pronounced "con-yuh-SHEN-tee" in its plural form (cognoscenti with an "i" at the end). My favorite definition of cheeky, on the other hand, comes from the web site The Very Best of British: The Americans' Guide to Speaking British: "Cheeky means you are flippant, have too much lip or are a bit of a smart arse! Generally you are considered to be a bit cheeky if you have an answer for everything and always have the last word." As you're probably starting to realize, I really like WORDS, particularly unusual, colorful, precise words with layers of meaning, words that are rich with imagery and flavor. Although I'm not arrogant enough to think I know all there is to know about everything I'm interested in, I do enjoy the arts and try to find out as much about my various interests as I can. I'm also a smartass. And I like the anachronism of mixing these two words together, with their wildly different connotations and origins. To me, a cheeky cognoscente is what you get when you mix Eliza Doolittle with Leonardo da Vinci -- you get someone I'd very much like to invite to dinner!
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