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Fan-diddly-damn-tastic!
October 1, 2008 8:56 AM   Subscribe

Fan-diddly-damn-tastic! The whirly-twirly-leapy-flippy world of nonce words. When something is crappy, do you ever yearn for synonyms such as crapitudinous, crapfestacular, and craposcopic? (via ADS-L)
posted by strangeguitars (49 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite

 
lolnonce
posted by Jofus at 9:09 AM on October 1, 2008


It’s common for linguists and lexicographers—on the lookout for terms that linger in the lingo for more than a cup of coffee—to use the phrase “just a nonce word.”

Really? It seems like that would be dismissing da Vinci's notebooks as "stuff that never went anywhere". This kind of instantacular vocabumandering provides a window on both how we create and how we understand language. For instance, why did I choose "instantacular" rather than "instantlicious" or "instanterrific"? And don't these patently have different meanings to the reader, even though most have never seen them before?

I guess lexicographers probably aren't that interested in that (quite the opposite, maybe) but surely linguists would be.
posted by DU at 9:19 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


My own favorite, used daily, is 'Fuck-a-RAMA!', which is like 'FUCK!' with a huge side of 'WHOAH!'
posted by unSane at 9:29 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


You encounter things that require a huge side of "WOAH!" to describe them on a daily basis?

I'm not sure I want a life that exciting.
posted by flaterik at 9:43 AM on October 1, 2008 [3 favorites]


If you use it daily, is it really a nonce word?
posted by DU at 9:44 AM on October 1, 2008


Great googly moogly I can't wait to use some of those words!
posted by googly at 9:47 AM on October 1, 2008


My old roommate once described the TF2 server we were playing on as a 'Cock-Circus'. Load that phrase in your mind with as much frustration and anger as you can imagine the human voice can bear, and you'll see why I laughed so hard.
posted by The Power Nap at 9:48 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Tmesis
posted by ladd at 9:56 AM on October 1, 2008


Don King Enjoys Grandilomentitudinous Sandwich

LAS VEGAS—Boxing promoter Don King described himself as "outrighteously mesmerated" by a deli sandwich served to him at the Treasure Island Casino’s V.I.P. dining room Saturday. "The meatumental pastramification of this pumpernickelously toastified bread was augmenticized by slatherfication in sumptuous Switzerlander cheesiness," raved King following the meal, "and expertaciously mayonnaised by a condimental Hellmanifestation of sand-wich-Kraft-Miracle-Whiplash proportions that thrillified me down to my delicatesticles." King also praised the sandwich's generous helping of onions, lettuce, and pickles, offering its maker his "Undulatronic Spamboozled Donkey Kongratulations. Gumpzilla."
posted by Rhaomi at 10:02 AM on October 1, 2008 [6 favorites]


This post is lemurrific.
posted by Bernt Pancreas at 10:15 AM on October 1, 2008


Comcastic.
posted by kurumi at 10:15 AM on October 1, 2008 [2 favorites]


I guess lexicographers probably aren't that interested in that (quite the opposite, maybe) but surely linguists would be.

That's exactly right. Lexicographers are interested (professionally, that is) in words they can put in dictionaries. They watch new creations to see if they stick around; if not, they forget them. Linguists are interested in how speakers form words, among many other things. Linguistilexicographers, on the other hand, are selfconfoozled.
posted by languagehat at 10:25 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Bullshitastic.
posted by Termite at 10:35 AM on October 1, 2008


Merdificient!
posted by Termite at 10:37 AM on October 1, 2008


Bullshitorama.
posted by Termite at 10:38 AM on October 1, 2008


It's all just a big shitbullatorium.
posted by Termite at 10:40 AM on October 1, 2008


Kiddy-fiddleriffic!
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:43 AM on October 1, 2008


In before cromulent.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:43 AM on October 1, 2008


It's Cocmastic!
posted by wendell at 10:47 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


C'est un veritable merdasme.
posted by Termite at 10:59 AM on October 1, 2008


- What do you think about it?
- It's cock-wankingly boring.
posted by Termite at 11:05 AM on October 1, 2008


MetaFiller
posted by not_on_display at 11:11 AM on October 1, 2008


"Cromulent" is another non-nonce ("non2ce") word. It's perfectly cromulent!

Also, I assume "asshat" was recently nonced.
posted by DU at 11:17 AM on October 1, 2008


Chastisationalized
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 11:21 AM on October 1, 2008


Did anyone else have their browser completely resized (and receive an invitation/demand to subscribe to a virus protection because their computer may now be infected) when they clicked that link?
posted by yhbc at 11:31 AM on October 1, 2008


Best of Flanders.
posted by rokusan at 11:32 AM on October 1, 2008



Tmesis posted by ladd at 9:56 AM on October 1 [+] [!]

Yes.

Also infix and portmanteau

These. Mostly.

It’s common for linguists and lexicographers. . . .to use the phrase “just a nonce word.”

Very little evidence in the writing here that this writer has ever met either. Real linguists(sm) (accept no substitutes) do not breezily dismiss data as "just a . . ." although a prof once sighed ruefully (not dismissively) to me that "idioms are linguistic black holes from which no syntax can escape".

It's not that these are beneath notice or unimportant so much as that once you've identified the production processes (see above), there's not a lot to be learned from noting this week's fan-freaking-tastic, re-god-damn-diculous innovation.

I'm speaking theoretical ling here, not socio-ling.

If a nonce word does stick around, either because it's hip or useful or whatever, then there may be something to be learned from it. Who uses the new word, when, in what social or rhetorical context? Spoken or written only? Et-flugging-cetera.

Under my editor hat, I hope for /back-and-forth/ for /argument/ and /crap/ for /crappy/ to die off. Under my linguist hat, though, I'm dispassionately watching and waiting. . .
posted by Herodios at 11:33 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Under my linguist hat

Upon review, that looks like a callout (or something) for languagehat.

Not.

Also, what languagehat himself said.

BTW. As you were. Carry on.
posted by Herodios at 11:38 AM on October 1, 2008


I'm Phil Collins, and I'm talking Nonce-Sense.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 11:45 AM on October 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Why does every freaking post have to be about Sarah Palin?
posted by mothershock at 11:47 AM on October 1, 2008 [3 favorites]


yhbc: Yes. Hopefully, it didn't infect you.
posted by bz at 12:02 PM on October 1, 2008


far from being the lameiest, nonce words are the fierciest.
remember to look closelier, nothing is unpossible.
posted by sexyrobot at 12:11 PM on October 1, 2008


gumple-foisted is the perfect word to describe John McCain.
posted by mike3k at 12:19 PM on October 1, 2008


What a finely newnonced bit of writing.
posted by Kabanos at 12:51 PM on October 1, 2008


Shitola Cola

rigodamniculous
posted by wocka wocka wocka at 1:01 PM on October 1, 2008


yhbc: "Did anyone else have their browser completely resized (and receive an invitation/demand to subscribe to a virus protection because their computer may now be infected) when they clicked that link?"

Yes. I felt groped. (And "grope" is already a word, I know.)
posted by not_on_display at 1:06 PM on October 1, 2008


An old friend and I coined the term "integrilicious" as an adjective to describe someone or something that has integrity (it seems that there is no parallel adjective in English, though it exists in cognate languages).

At my friend's funeral four years ago, the pastor described him as "integrilicious". :)
posted by darkstar at 2:09 PM on October 1, 2008


gumple-foisted, 1824
Meaning “sulky, out of temper,” this term will be handy as duct tape if bratty and petulant and stink-faced are appearing in your blogs and soliloquies too often.


Werd, mike3k.
posted by darkstar at 2:13 PM on October 1, 2008


From the Rutles: Psychedelicatessen

(I talked to some hipsterdufus about Lollapalooza and I was saying how it was a humdinger and an extravaganza - supoilative even. And he looked at me like I was a dick. I mean, like it’s a serious name or something. It came from the goddamn three stooges (I’m the goddamn K.O. Stradivarius)
posted by Smedleyman at 2:15 PM on October 1, 2008


It's Cocmastic!

No, Cock-mastic [SFW] for when you really need those chickens to stick.
posted by morganw at 2:18 PM on October 1, 2008


MetaFilter: MetaFilter
posted by JHarris at 2:46 PM on October 1, 2008


Y'know, "cromulent" has become such a key part of my own vocabulary that I struggle to find a word with the same meaning. What was the English language like BEFORE "cromulent?" I guess you can substitute "acceptable," but it doesn't have the same... cromulence.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 3:22 PM on October 1, 2008


I've been studying German for a few years, and some of my favorite words are words that sound like they were invented on the spot by a struggling second-language-learner like myself, like they were "Germanonced" if you will. These include "geparkt" (parked) and "ausflippen." (to flip out). This thread makes me wonder if German have its own nonce words and, if it does, how are they constructed?

Multilingual Mefites, how do you nonce when you don't nonce in English?
posted by Flipping_Hades_Terwilliger at 3:25 PM on October 1, 2008


"What was the English language like BEFORE "cromulent?" I guess you can substitute "acceptable," but it doesn't have the same... cromulence."

True. It's embiggened the language.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:25 PM on October 1, 2008


Yes, I use 'Ausgeshagged' for when I'm knackered, and 'Flippen-floppen-mucken-schmearen-schpreader' for windshield wiper. Sometimes.
posted by unSane at 5:02 PM on October 1, 2008


Don't be a recockulous fuckstick.
posted by oncogenesis at 5:13 PM on October 1, 2008


I remember the day I first heard "craptacular" -- I laughed until my ribs ached. And I knew then that I, too, loved nonce words as that writer does.

I frequently use "enhugen" to describe making something bigger in a handwaving way. I also say to myself, when annoyed, ich bin aufgepisst, which is not German but definitely clear.
posted by Countess Elena at 5:32 PM on October 1, 2008




Recockulous! Fuck-a-doodle-do!
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:02 PM on October 2, 2008


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