-mageddons and -pocalypses

From Jon Lighter on ADS-L this morning cited, “This is Obamageddon!  It’s Barackalypse now!”

This is a report of Rush Limbaugh’s frothing on his radio show on the 8th, quoted on Fox and Friends yesterday:

Obamageddon. That’s what we have witnessed since Friday. Obamageddon. Barackalypse Now. The only silver lining I can find is that as far as 2012 goes, Obama’s a Debt Man Walking.

-mageddon and -pocalyse again, now available as related libfixes.

Some background. Back in 2008 there were the heavy snows, prompting cries of snowmageddon and snowpocalypse (and more) — portmansnow words. Then came the closing of I-405 in Los Angeles a little while back, yielding the words Carmageddon and Carpocalypse (and more; see here). Then last month the fierce heat waves, and yes, heatmageddon and heatpocalypse (and more).

In the NYT (by Erik Eckholm, on-line on July 22):

Heat … Wave? Bubble? Dome? Seeking an Apt Name as the Hot Days Pile Up

“Everybody talks about the weather, but I guess TV meteorologists have to do it more cleverly,” said Jay Trobec, a weatherman at KELO-TV in Sioux Falls, S.D., as he sought to explain why the phrase “heat dome” is suddenly being heard and seen everywhere.

“I could call it Heatmageddon, but we just had Carmageddon,” he added, referring to last weekend’s freeway closing in Los Angeles.

Heat dome — the condition tormenting the middle and eastern parts of the country this week — is not a standard scientific label, but it has been used sporadically over the years to describe sprawling high-pressure systems in the mid- to upper atmosphere that push warming air to the surface and hold it there.

A fair number of other hits from the same period, plus of course some for heatpocalypse, like this one:

Victims of Heatpocalypse 2011 Are Fighting Back with Refreshing Hipster Herbal Summer Cocktails (link)

Heatpocalypse has a separate life as an extravagant synonym for global warming, as in this cartoon:

Back in January we had dead bids falling from the sky in various places. Yes:

Birdpocalypse Strikes Near Home: Over 100 Dead Birds Found Near Geyserville (link)

Birdmageddon-Signs of the times (link)

There’s more, much more, too much to try to keep track of. For a sampling, see Mark Peters’s 2009 column “Wordgeddon”, focusing on –mageddon and –pocalypse.

Not just Wordgeddon. There’s Wordmageddon, too — the death of the book:

Hell, it’s the Bookpocalypse! It’s Wordmageddon! We shall be crushed, our books shall be driven from the land, and you shall hear the lamentations of our women. (link)

And then Wordpocalypse, a blog by


Disaster is all around us: a constant parade of mageddons and pocalypses, usually traveling together.

8 Responses to “-mageddons and -pocalypses”

  1. arnold zwicky Says:

    From Jack Lynch on Google+:

    I was thinking of this very question just a few days ago. The first round of -pocalypses struck me as clever (and, like you, I first noticed it with the snowpocalypse in ’08 or so). Alas, it’s become a cliche far too quickly; just as anything scandalous, however trivial, is a -gate, so ever spot of bother is now a -pocalypse or a -mageddon. Time to move on, I think. (Though Barackalypse is clever, and would have worked if it didn’t come so late in the day.)

  2. A topical -mageddon « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] 8/10/11: -mageddons and -pocalypses (link): Obamageddon, Barackalypse, snow- words, car- words, heatmageddon, heatpocalypse, birdmageddon, […]

  3. Inevitable -mageddon « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] and -pocalypses abound these days (some discussion here), but this one is especially satisfying, because drachma and -mageddon overlap in the unaccented […]

  4. Death at play « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] (Earlier (non-Reaper) Savage Chickens cartoons I’ve posted: on the development of language, here; and on heatpocalypse, here.) […]

  5. On the portmanteau watch « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] some other political portmanteaus, see here on Newtiny and here on Obamageddon and […]

  6. A cyberlanche « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] version of the -mageddon I’ve written about several times on this blog (a summary piece here, then additions here, here, and here). Cybermageddon would have been possible, but Cybergeddon […]

  7. Reality denialism « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] Aside from the references to the current U.S. presidential campaign, there’s the entertaining kittenpocalypse, with the libfix -pocalypse. […]

  8. The news for libfixes « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] two disastrous libfixes have gotten lots of notice on the net; see my posting here with some of the history and this posting from May 2012 with an inventory of links to postings on […]

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