There are typically two human responses that I display when I, as an adult and as a professional, learn something new.

Either, I feel happy that I’ve gained this new knowledge and are therefore smarter than I was before… or I just feel stupid for having not already known what I just learned. Most recently, it was the latter.

I learned the word: CHEVRON

Growing up, I knew exactly what a “chevron” was. It was an oil company who had a gas station (Chevron Corporation) just off the Ledgewood Circle (which, sadly, no longer exists) on Route 46 in New Jersey.

But alas, a “chevron” is actually the name of a shape, akin to the more popular shape names like triangle, square and miss popular, circle.

It’s basically the letter V, pointed either up or down. Wikipedia has a nice page dedicated to the chevron. I would think most military personnel (past or present) are laughing at me right now, because those “stripes” that you get when your rank goes up are actually called chevrons. My dad should know this word too, as he had several chevrons on his sleeve as a Sargent in the US Army.

How have I never come across this word, in regards to shape names and graphic symbols before now?? Where was this hole in my visual education and what else may have fallen into it??

This also leads me into a tangent of thinking about what other companies, besides Chevron Corporation, are oddly named after the shape of their logo? A post for another time, I’m sure…