From Alon Lischinsky, this Questionable Content cartoon:
A straightforward route to the noun whelm: from overhelm, the verb whelm by back-formation, then nouning of this verb, to give the abstract mass noun whelm.
But this analysis is a bit hazy,
A Bizarro from 2012 (send to me by a kind friend whose identity I have managed to lose):
Today’s One Big Happy:
permanent record, with the most common, literal sense of permanent — well, most common for adult users, but things are likely to be different for kids like Ruthie.
Two recent items in my mail from Chris Ambidge (both entirely G-rated): a Xmas penguin, and a quotation from Jane Austen:
It starts with today’s Doonesbury —
and ends with shirtless lycanthrophy. In between: Roland Hedley, III, the apps Tinder and Grindr (with some shirtlessness), geosocial networking (aka geosocial), and professional lycanthrope Tyler Posey (appearing shirtless). A long strange trip.
Today’s Rhymes With Orange:
Nouning by truncation, with the nominal Adj + food abbreviated to Adj, but still functioning as a nominal: Mexican ‘Mexican food’.
(Warning: This posting discusses gay sex in very plain terms and has images that are right on the X line — between X-rated and nominally for general consumption — but in recompense, there is some actual lexical discussion. Use your judgment.)
On AZBlogX, a piece “Blowout and sleaze” on two pieces of e-mail:
In my mailbox in recent days, a sale bulletin (“Labor Day Inventory Blowout”) for Falcon / Raging Stallion (today is Labor Day in the US) and an ad for a recent Channel 1 Releasing feature Sucked Off in Weird Places featuring Jason Phoenix and a very sleazy Johnny Hazzard. The images and the texts are both intensely oral.
Cropped versions of the images, right on the X line:
Ok, no question about what’s going on in these images, but here you see no acual naughty bits. Note blowout in the title of #1, and in #2, the normally well-groomed Johnny Hazzard (though presenting himself as working class) with sweaty face and greasy hair — definite sleaze. So some words about these two lexical items, then a few about the over-the-top rhetoric of the (advertising) sex for #2.
From Tara Narcross-Wyckoff, a supermarket scene:
Two points of linguistic interest here: the noun rub; and the semantics of N + N compounds X rub. (Several observers have speculated on possibly raunchy interpretations of the product name Cowboy Rub. I’ll get to that.)
For years it was clasped firmly in the embrace of a plastic device with a magnetic strip on the back, which allowed it to be displayed on a refrigerator (or other metal surface). But then it somehow slipped out and, being almost weightless, wafted away on some breath of a breeze, until eventually it was discovered by a visitor, on the floor far from the refrigerator.
It’s a Chinese paper cut, depicting my animal from the Chinese zodiac, the dragon:
A gift from the students in my 1985 classes at the Beijing Language Institute (as it was then).