Archive for the ‘Verbing’ Category

Word times: two Ruthies, three Psychs

June 24, 2016

Annals of lexical confusions and innovations. Two word problems from Ruthie in the cartoon One Big Happy (two recent strips), a word confusion and two innovations from the tv show Psych.

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binge-bingeing

May 7, 2016

The wonderful creation of Pierce in Zits:

binge-bingeing is the PRP form of a verb to binge-binge, which is an instance of one or the other of two different compound V constructions of the form to N + V, whose semantic and pragmatic differences are small enough to ignore here.

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icing

April 26, 2016

A Speed Bump cartoon from a little while ago, found on Pinterest:

The patient in the doctor’s office is — remember, this is Cartoon World — a gingerbread man, complaining of a sore knee. This sets things up for a play on the ambiguity of the verb form icing, related to either one of two verbs ice; one of them is related to the mass noun icing (in the U.S., parallel to frosting). From NOAD2 on this mass noun:

a mixture of sugar with liquid or butter, typically flavored and colored, and used as a coating for cakes or cookies

This substance mass noun icing and the verb ice ‘to decorate a cake with icing’ are in a very close synchronic relationship, so close that it’s hard to say which is basic and which derived (note: the verb could be back-derived from the noun); the history looks equally unclear, and the same relationships hold (in the U.S.) between the mass noun frosting and the verb frost (as in frost the cake). Somewhere in all of this is a metaphor relating the appearance of the cake-decorating substance to the appearance of accumulations of ice or frost.

The other verb ice, not well covered in the dictionaries I’ve looked at, is a at root a simple verbing of the noun ice referring to frozen water and meaning roughly ‘chill with ice’, but specialized in reference to ice therapy for sore muscles or joints. (I have joint problems all over the place, and so have cold packs to use for icing these joints.)

plate my meal

April 19, 2016

Instructions on meals from the Freshly firm, which is currently supplying me with food at home:

[FR] We recommend plating your meal after heating [that is, after heating it in the microwavable tray it comes in]

This has the verbing to plate; from NOAD2:

serve or arrange (food) on a plate or plates before a meal: overcooked vegetables won’t look appetizing, no matter how they are plated.

Two things: why verb the noun plate? And why not other dinnerware nouns?

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Annals of verbing: to long-press

March 23, 2016

Benjamin Barrett, back on the 21st, posting to ADS-L:

Apple has just released iOS 9.3, which includes the verb to long-press:

Show thumbnails instead of large images and attachments by long-pressing on any image or attachment in a note

Long-press on an Evernote Export file to import its contents into Notes

We first get the nominal long press as a specialized technical term in the mobile phone industry; there’s evidence (see below) that this goes back at least to 2004. I don’t follow this literature, but Barrett’s is the first report of a verbing so far.

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Jeremy, adulting

March 7, 2016

Today’s Zits:

A natural verbing of the noun adult, pretty much immediately understandable. Grammar Girl (Mignon Fogarty) looked at the verb back near the end of 2014, when she chose adulting as her 2014 Word of the Year.

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aussieBum, Shearing the Rams, and Slim Dusty

January 29, 2016

On our last visit to Australia (in “Bruce Bruce Bruce” on the 27th), we started out in Aussie underwear (the Daily Jocks AUS line), moved through Monty Python and Bruce as a  stereotypically Aussie name (and in the U.S., as a stereotypically gay name) and on to Barry Humphries and two Australian characters he created, with notes on the Aussie celebration of working-class masculinity (amiable crudity, matiness) and disdain for effete Pommies (Brits). At the end, a promise:

For a later posting, on Aussie masculinity (and class): aussieBum underwear, Shearing the Rams by Tom Roberts, and Slim Dusty.

Now’s the time. Looking ahead: two images of Aussie men in their aussieBum swimwear and underwear, a surfer and a jackaroo:

(#1_

(#2)

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butt/booty, dial/call

January 20, 2016

Yesterday’s Rhymes With Orange:

The nouns butt and booty overlap in their uses, and so do the verbs dial and call, and so do the related nouns dial and call. However… the compound nouns butt dial and booty call (also the related verbs butt dial and booty call) are both slang idioms, and they aren’t at all interchageable.

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manga/anime hair

December 17, 2015

Yesterday’s Zippy:

(#1)

This follows on the previous day’s posting on (among other things) manga eyes.

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Disruptive conversation

July 8, 2015

From Wondermark on 9/9/14:

(#1)

From blogger Tegiminis (“Game critic, writer, big gay robot” in Seattle WA) on the site Simplikation (“Heaps of words on games, culture, and media in general”) on 11/20/14: “Why Sealioning Is Bad”:

Chances are you’ve seen this comic by David Malki if you frequent Twitter at all these days. It even coined a new verb – “sealioning” – to describe the act of jumping into a discussion with demands for evidence and answers to questions.

But why is it an awful thing to do? Why do people react so negatively to a request for evidence? Surely a reasoned, rational person would acquiesce to such a statement!

Well, no.

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