Archive for the ‘Libfixes’ Category

Annals of (possible) libfixes: -abelia

April 17, 2015

In the April 20th New Yorker, a fascinating story of a lost, and eventually found, Tlingit totem pole, in the Our Far-Flung Correspondents category: “The Tallest Trophy: A movie star made off with an Alaskan totem pole. Would it ever return home?” by Paige Williams.

In the midst of this, a portmanteau, Barrymoreabelia, combining Barrymore [John Barrymore, the actor in question] and memorabilia: ‘Barrymore memorabilia’. I suspect that the element -abelia has been “liberated” as an affix of its own — a libfix — but this is very hard to test, given the existence of a plant, the flowering shrub abelia (which I’d been meaning to post about, but this isn’t the occasion).


Once -tastic, now -astic

January 20, 2015

A recent ad for Daedalus books, spotted in the latest issue of Harper’s magazine, and no doubt in other bookish publications:

The libfix -tastic, extracted from fantastic, has here been whittled down a bit further to -astic and tacked onto daedalus. (daedalustastic would have been possible, but daedalusastic is shorter and neater.)


Commercial playful morphology

September 10, 2014

In television commercials that recently came past me: yummify (and more) in a 5-hour ENERGY commercial; and waffulicious in an IHOP commercial.



April 5, 2014

In the news recently, stories about the chemical spill in West Virginia, now widely labeled the Aquapocalpse — with the libfix -pocalypse used in denoting a disaster, but not (as you might at first have thought) a flood, but instead a different type of watery disaster.


-gate news

January 12, 2014

The libfix -gate seems to be irresistible, trotted out for all sorts of public fusses; discussion here. Recent example, reported by Victor Steinbok on ADS-L:

According to MediaBistro, there’s now yet another -gate. Newly crowned NYC Mayor [Bill de Blasio] was caught on camera eating pizza with a fork, which is sacrilege in NYC. Appropriately, the affair has been dubbed “forkgate”, lack of coverup notwithstanding…

Like most -gate formations, this will surely be short-lived. Then Joel Berson suggested on ADS-L that Gate-gate is likely to come upon us,

for the scandalous way in which the former Secretary of Defense [Gates] has dissed the present VPOTUS

Previously coined for a silly British scandal involving David Cameron, detailed in 2012 here (among other places).

And then Larry Horn chimed in with some overlap portmanteaus involving -gate:


Brief morphological notes

December 14, 2013

Three recent items: robophobic, fungineering, fracktacular. Three sightinga, among many for each of these.


Thanksgiving news

November 28, 2013

Two items for (U.S.) Thanksgiving: once more on Thanksgivuk(k)ah, and the entertaining tryptophantastic.


Animal -zilla

November 5, 2013

A story that combines libfixes, extraordinary animals, and science reporting. From Stan Carey yesterday, a pointer to this BBC News science story, ” ‘Platypus-zilla’ fossil unearthed in Australia” by Rebecca Morelle:

Part of a giant platypus fossil has been unearthed in Queensland, Australia. Scientists have dubbed the beast “platypus-zilla” and believe it would have measured more than 1m long (3ft).

Writing in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, the researchers say the creature lived between five and 15 million years ago.

… Today, all that survives of this platypus is a single fossilised tooth, which was unearthed in the Riversleigh fossil beds in northwest Queensland.

Based on its size, the researchers have estimated that the new species (Obdurodon tharalkooschild) would have been at least twice as large as today’s platypus.

Bumps on its teeth and other fossil finds nearby suggest that the creature feasted on crustaceans, turtles, frogs and fish.


Yet another -kini

October 15, 2013

From Karen Chung on Facebook, this story from 8/21/12 (note the date), “The Latest Chinese Beach Craze – Face-kini”:

A new kind of swimwear trend is sweeping the Chinese beaches in Qingdao in eastern China’s Shandong province. As the weather get hotter, both men and women are seen appearing on the beaches wearing full body suits that cover from head to toe. The upper part of the swimsuit has a ski-mask with holes cut out at appropriate places to leave the eyes, nose and mouth exposed, giving the wearer an odd Lucha libre look. The Netizens are calling the swimwear “face-kinis”

The mask[s] are a way for Chinese bathers to protect their skin from the sunburn, but it turns out that they are equally handy at repelling insects and jellyfish.


Two from The Week

September 23, 2013

Two recent items from the magazine The Week: Neal Whitman on libfixes, James Harbeck on apostrophes. Both with humor.



Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 846 other followers