Select Page

X is for Xanadu

X is for Xanadu
This entry is part 24 of 27 in the series A to Z

I thought I maybe knew the definition, but I never really looked it up.

How often are there words that you might sometimes use–or at least hear–where you have your own definition in your head, but you’re not really sure what they mean? I had that with Xanadu.

Xanadu: a place of great beauty, luxury, and contentment. Mongol city founded by Kublai Khan, 1625, Anglicized form of Shang-tu. Sense of  “dream place of magnificence and luxury” derives from Coleridge’s poem (1816).

I’m kinda into words–but I’m no word snob as I use words like kinda–but I also like my own version of words. I even prefer to make up my own words. Hey, I’ve worked for a naming company (a branding company that only creates names for products and companies) for the past 8 years), I better be into words! But something like Xanadu sounds so commercial to me. I’ve heard it in songs and in pop culture. For me, that’s maybe even a reason to use it, but it’s also a reason to not use it. Ha, interesting, when I don’t capitalize Xanadu, it’s labeled as a spelling mistake. I suppose it’s a proper noun–guess it is a real place. Whaddyaknow. It’s good practice to look up words. It seems we stop the habit once we’re out of school. As if we know all of the words out there.

If you create something from nothing, it’s yours to keep. Forever.

But I still prefer something that I branded, something that I made up or at least that I have an association with. Perfect example of my own Xanadu: The Lounge Chair of Timeless Oblivion. I have my own definition, my own image in my head that goes with it. I created it, invented it, it’s mine. Xanadu isn’t mine, apparently it’s Kublai Khan’s–who seems like a tough guy, grandson of Genghis Khan and all.

Why bother with copyright issues? I’m not going to mess with Kublai’s Xanadu at all. That’s his, I accept that and I don’t want his Mongol warrior trademark lawyers ringing my doorbell (or pillaging my village). Create something of your own that you can take with you for your lifetime–and beyond.

Lounge Chair of Timeless Oblivion: moments in life of such clarity and peace that define your present self and give you insight into who you’d like to become; snapshot of life

So what’s your Xanadu? What’s your Lounge Chair of Timeless Oblivion? What have you created that’s yours and only yours?

Want Mongolian trademark warrior attorneys at your doorstep? Create something that's yours. [Steppe of Mongolia]

Want Mongolian trademark warrior attorneys at your doorstep? Create something that’s yours. [Steppe of Mongolia]

P.S. In case you don’t think I put my money where my mouth is, I’m notorious for creating names that are hard to pronounce, take the name of this site, Pass the Sour Cream or the name of my day job WordPress design and development, Likoma. Hard to pronounce, easy to misspell, but they have a huge backstory and they’re mine.

Series Navigation<< W is for WhisperY is for Yellow >>


  1. Another Clean Slate

    You have such a cool job! Is it as interesting as it sounds? I still need to find my xanadu.

    • Bradley

      It’s one of those jobs where everyone says, “Ooh, that sounds cool! I could do that!” But in reality, yes, sure, some of it is certainly cool, but then, for example, you get into trademark database searching to see if the names are legally available and that can get pretty tedious. The hardest part is really bringing the client along for the wild ride of finding a new name for their company or project: I’ve found that if they’ve been along for the ride from the beginning, they’re working with us and the result is always better.

  2. dee

    Lounge Chair of Timeless Oblivion is a very nice phrase. Congrats for thinking it up!

    • Bradley

      Thanks, Dee. I think it’s fun to “create” and see what happens, see what sticks, see what we like–and what others are attracted to. Post back here the next time you coin your own phrase, I want to be the first to know!

  3. cindydwyer

    Love your lounge chair concept. Actually, I think of my writing as my Xanadu. Sure I’d love to get published, but even if that never happens I’ve preserved a lot of funny family memories.

    • Bradley Charbonneau

      Cindy, that’s brilliant, ” … my writing as my Xanadu.” That’s it! That’s what writing is for me, too. It’s my place and no one can take it away from me. As long as I can write, I can create my own Xanadu.

      Thanks so much for the comment. Made my day.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.