Reading from the Book of Common Prayer, I came across the word “riff.”

I wondered, did they mean to write ripp or riff-raff? I did not know what riffing meant, although I suspected it had to do with knitting. I will ask Becky.

My mother comes to mind as she riffs open a seam so as to make my father’s pants roomier in the waist. She riffed into our three dogs the Sunday that they slickied the roast from the table just before dinner. She riffed into me on occasion. Not often. I was almost perfect.

The dictionary revealed nothing. I even checked Galatians and Psalms and not a word about riff, nary a teaching on riffer. I went to the internet, but became so confused that I gave up and went back to playing FreeCell. It doesn’t seem to have made much difference.

It is hard for me to believe that I do not know everything, especially a silly little word like riff. I have probably read 5,000 novels in my life and cannot recall having come across this word.

This was a humbling experience. Why couldn’t they have chosen something within my range, like “stuff” or “stink” or my all time favorite — “churl.”

A churl is a Mexican twisted pastry dipped in sugar and guaranteed to riff a deadly mischief on the digestive system.

My husband just passed by and said the dog had done a giant riff on the carpet. Riffph it. I’m going to lie down.

Editor’s note: Bobbie’s rants are often tongue-in-cheek.