Another Word is Born


If you want to know how many babies are born at any moment, go to the “US and World Population Clock” website and watch the scary numbers roll by – 7.5 billion and counting.

Have you ever wondered how new words are born? And exactly where does this new-word incubator reside? The answer is, if enough English speakers decide that some word or phrase has value, and enough of them consult the dictionary in search of its meaning, then this newborn baby is put into the next edition of your favorite dictionary. So here are some new words hot off the printing press:

  • We’ve all heard of inflalation and deflation, but how about shrinkflation? This malady has recently hit the candy world – and chocolate lovers in Great Britain are not happy. The Brits blame Brexit, the fall of the British pound, and the rise in sugar and cocoa prices. What’s a candy bar maker to do? Raising the price was too risky so the makers of Toblerone chocolate bars shrunk the product, hoping the eating public wouldn’t notice. They did.
  • Fraudoscope is the brainchild of a Russian company that hopes to make lie detectors obsolete. Using a high-definition camera and PC software, a robot maps changing pixels focused on breathing, pulse, pupil dilation, facial tics – and translates them into a dishonesty profile. Imagine a lie-detecting camera at every pawn shop and border crossing and you can see this could be the start of something big.
  • Eggcorns happen every day. They’re phrases that sound correct but are mistakenly used in plausible sentences. Think “never regions” in place of “nether regions” or “come to not” when you meant “come to naught.” How about “coldslaw” in place of “coleslaw” or “get a new leash on life”?
  • The word flaking can describe old paint falling off the wall. Or it’s the new cool way to gracefully back out of a prior commitment without hurting someone’s feelings. To avoid ruined friendships, social scientists recommend the flaker send early, vague warnings about a future commitment conflict. It takes talent to remain endearing while pulling the plug on future plans. Or just say no from the get-go..
  • What is a MOOC? The word stands for Massive Open Online Course. It’s offered by large universities that want to attract new students on a world-wide basis. It’s a free way for students to gain access to prestigious universities and hear lectures presented by world famous educators. A win-win situation.
  • Starting a new job is always tough. But beginning school teachers often fall into DEVOLSON, an acronym for the “Dark, Evil Vortex of Late September, October, and November.” For some reason, new teachers are especially affected by this syndrome – maybe too much summer vacation?
  • Now, dear reader, you have six sexy new words you can fit into your daily conversations and wow all those ears around you. Have fun!


7 thoughts on “Another Word is Born

    1. As per Wikipedia – The term eggcorn was coined by professor of linguistics referencing a case of a woman who substituted the phrase egg corn for the word acorn. That in itself, is funny.

  1. I was puzzled by the Toblerone news. The article I read in our local paper sounded like the shrinkflation only applied to Toblerone sold in the UK. Is this chocolatey retribution for Brexit? This makes me want to go out and buy a Toblerone and examine it. Then eat it.

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