Five years ago I took note of the Teapartyganza segments on Jon Stewart’s Daily Show in 2010 (there’s a set of videos of the shows here). At the time, I took the name to be a one-off playful portmanteau (Tea Party + extravaganza), so I didn’t post about it; if I tried to take note of every portmanteau that comes past me, I’d go nuts.

Then in 2014, Eleganza came past me in a Zippy: Eleganza Fashions, a business that still seems to be going, So then there were two.

This morning, I stumbled upon my Teapartyganza note and thought to check on –ganza nouns. Oh my, it’s clearly gone the familiar route from portmanteau element to libfix (conveying, roughly, ‘an event of considerable size, scope, or complexity’): a Libfix-A-Ganza, to use one of the spellings that’s become customary in these situations.

On the item that contributes its –ganza to these formations, from NOAD2:

extravaganza  an elaborate and spectacular entertainment or production: an extravaganza of dance in many forms.

ORIGIN mid 18th cent. (in the sense ‘extravagance in language or behavior’): from Italian estravaganza ‘extravagance.’ The change was due to association with words beginning with extra- .

(Nice reshaping of the Italian to fit English patterns.)

The libfix has two variants, /ǝgænzǝ/ and /gænzǝ/, apparently with the long variant after consonants, the short variant after vowels. The short variant is sometimes set off from its base by a hyphen. The /ǝ/ of the long variant is spelled with an A or an O, and it is often set off on one or both sides by a hyphen.

Some examples of the long variant:

Drew Carey’s Improv-A-Ganza [an improv show on the Game Show Network] (IMDb link)

Travel-O-Ganza: The Melting Pot for Cultures and Education (link)

Boston Stoker Cigar-a-ganza [sale on cigars at the Boston Stoker Coffee Co. in Dayton OH] (link)

Explor-A-Ganza event {Cedar Valley Nonprofit Association in Northeast Iowa] (link]

The Queen’s 2013 Recap-a-ganza! [Bravo Fashion Queens show] (link)

More short instances of the short variant, in addition to Teapartyganza:

ALLMSES 3rd Annual Eco-Ganza Celebration [Alain L. Locke Magnet School
 for Environmental Stewardship, PS 208, in Harlem, New York] (link)

Agape-Ganza! [Open House at Camp Agapé, sponsored by N.C. Environmental Education, in Fuquay-Varina NC] (link)

I’m sure there are many more.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: