Thursday, July 28, 2005

This is an ongoing, updated, annual awards program, listing those words or phrases in the English language that make reading newspapers in print or shall we put it? ..........interesting! Nominate words you come across, too!

NEW: DEADLINE-DRIVEN INFORMATION ILLUSION ... The search is on for safer subways, in text, "One might call it the Deadline-Driven Information Illusion: You lookfor it, untilyou find it - or else. "
James P.Pinkerton,0,3173391.column?coll=ny-rightrail-columnist -

0.0001 New: "word-bomb" , coined by New York Times reporter Michael Brick, as a euphemism for the F-bomb (the F word) as in "fuck you" or "motherfucker".
July 31, 2005
QUOTE: Across the land, word-bombs are falling. In May a New York television reporter who apparently thought he wasoff the air lit into two men who had intruded on his shot, broadcasting a word-bomb to the five boroughs. This month a card player at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas made his name by launching a word-bomb across the table early in the tournament. This weekend "The Aristocrats," a documentary film about a spectacularly crude joke, opened in New York and Los Angeles, strafing the two coasts with 86-minute cluster-word-bomb raids...

000000.2 THE QUIT, the pre-quit and the post-quit, coined by columnist Mark Bazer in Chicago in a humor column about quitting one's job. He calls the phenomenon THE QUIT, turning the verb into a noun. and there' s the pre-quit preparation and the post-quit anxiety.

0.1 "WORK CREEP" = "It's definitely a case of work creep -- everyone in this industry is working harder right now because of email, globalization and wireless access," said Christopher Lochhead, chief marketing heda of Mercury Interactive, a firm in 35 countries, including Israel, where Sunday is considered a normal working day (since the Israeli Sabbath falls on Saturday, not Sunday). NEW YORK TIMES citation in article about how "for some companies in today's Internet connected world and global markets, the workday never ends." [Some people compare this new term, Work Creep, to the auto firm phenomenon of "speedup" in the 1920s, when Henry Ford increased assembly line speed without paying workhers more...]

1.1 "a man date" = see N.Y. Times article by reporter Jennifer 8. Lee for a long feature article on this wonderful new term, coined, apparently, not by the reporter herself, but she did hear it used by someone she knows. Notice there is no such term as "a woman date." Women don't need it. Men do! [Quote One from Times article by Lee: Although "man date" is a coinage invented for this article, appearing nowhere in the literature of male bonding (or of homosexual panic), the 30 to 40 straight men interviewed, from their 20's to their 50's, living in cities across the country, instantly recognized the peculiar ritual even if they had not consciously examined its dos and don'ts. ] [Quote Two: Simply defined, a man date is two heterosexual men socializing without the crutch of business or sports. It is two guys meeting for the kind of outing a straight man might reasonably arrange with a woman. Dining together across a table without the aid of a television is a man date; eating at a bar is not. Taking a walk in the park together is a man date; going for a jog is not. Attending the movie "Friday Night Lights" is a man date, but going to see the Jets play is definitely not.]

17. UPPERBACKS, a new publishing term coined by Michael Cader at (Publishers Lunch). His coinage was later picked up by a reporter for the Boston Globe, David Mehegan, and rest is ..... publishing history:

"I'm happy to admit that my favorite part of Boston Globe David Mehegan's article about the coming wave of "upgraded" mass market books is his adoption of our term "[mass] upperbacks." (PL)

"Even Harlequin Romance, whose mass-market sales have been soft lately,is getting into the act. But to Harlequin it's not just the eyes tha tare getting older. Starting in July a new Harlequin line will appear, called ''Next." Like the other ''upperbacks," the books are taller, a bit pricier ($5.50, up from the standard $4.99), and easier to read..." (BG)

"Publishers, meanwhile, are scrambling to come up with a new format. Several -- including Penguin, Pocket Books, and Harlequin Romance --have announced new lines of boomer-friendly paperbacks in the past few weeks, which some in the business have dubbed ''mass upperbacks." Other publishers are watching closely before joining in." (BG)

So what's next? Lowerback books, middleback books, spineless books? Just joking, blogsters!

1. "Planet bin Laden" -- citation: "One of the lessons we drew from our captivity was that we were immersed on planet bin Laden, especially when we were in a cell of the Islamic Army in the north" of Iraq, former hostage Pierre Malbrunot told France Radio. Also: "On Planet bin Laden, they look first at your nationality," Malbrunnot, 41, said. (The UK Observer), January 3, 2005 [Headline: Freed French hostage describes captivity as 'planet bin Laden'] . Taipei Times: So Planet bin Laden, coined from the popular Planet Hollywood restaurant chain name, now has currency, thanks to Monsieur Malbrunnot. It's a catchy phrase and might last a few years, at least until Monsieur Bin Laden is captured, tried in court and sentenced to death for unspeakable crimes against humanity. For now, Planet bin Laden is here to stay! Ouch!

2. "Wardrobe malfunction" -- Concocted by some half-cocked PR hack working for Janet Jackson's management company after she was seen unleashing one her mammary glands on an unsuspecting American public watching a Sunday football game -- yes, the Super Bowl -- this word caught on in 2004 and became popular. We like it and predict it will hang on for a good 10 years or so, as more and more actresses and actors find a need for instant media PR. We're holding on to this one! [NOTE: Used again in 2005 as headline for Prince Harry wearing Nazi uniform at party in UK: "Prince Harry's Wardrobe Malfunction" was the headline in the China Post in Taiwan.] So the term still has legs. Beware!

3. "to be dooced" = to lose your job because you blogged about the company you worked for and the boss found out some unsavory things you wrote. Email: for more info.

4. TSUNAMI -- Japanese word meaning "harbor wave". Can be singular or plural, three tsunami or three tsunamis. This word has been around for a while in English, of course, but it went global, in over 35 languages, immediately after the tragic Great Asia Tsunami of 2004 of December 26, 2004. Sure to be in the top 10 list of Words That Ring a Bell next January 1, 2006. [NOTE: Earlier newspaper uses of the term, such as "a tsunami of voter apathy" or "a tsunami of music fans" are now kind of out of place, given the real impact of this Great Asian Tsunami of 2004. We predict this word will only be used from now on in relation to tidal waves and earthquake stories.]

see also *** ''SILENT TSUNAMI'' (see oped article by Jeffrey Sachs, Washington Post or Los Angeles Times... (and tag line of some new ads in TIME magazine about famine in African nations)

and.... *** ''TSUNAMI TOURISTS'' (see Time magazine, article by Andrew Perrin, Feb 21 issue from Phuket, Thailand)

5. "NARRATIVE TCHOTCHKES" -- New Uses for Yiddishisms Department: Stephen Holden, a movie critic for the New York Times, in a review of the movie "Wimbledon," stretches his understanding of Yiddish and goes for a home run, writing: "The movie [which he basically liked, by the way] is strung with many annoying narrative tchotchkes....For example, Peter and Lizzie meet cute in a hotel when he is accidentally given the keys to her suite and catches her in the shower; Lizzie and her father have a noisy little dog that threatens to give away a secret midnight rendezvous; a comet apppears just in time to underline a passionate kiss; and a worshipful ball boy keeps reappearing in the film -- Peter's good luck omen." [NARRATIVE TSCHOTCHKES? Stephen Holden, shame on you! Or maybe, we should say, good on ya, mate! Yiddish evolves, nu? Calling Bill Safire, calling Bill Safire!] [It's not your grandmother's Yiddish anymore, is it? Since when did tzotchkes develop narratives?] Maybe Critic Holden is on to something here....

6. "Relationship obituaries" -- when Brad Pitt and Jennifer Anniston broke up in early January 2004, news reports surfaced that several media outlets had prepared a relationship obituary on the Pitt-Anniston marriage situation and a new term was born: relationship obituaries. Some major news organizations prepare obituaries about famous people and celebrities in advance of their deaths, so the media can rush out quickly with a death notice and story. Now some media groups are preparing "relationship obituaries" -- who knew? -- about famous couples and other VIP relationships. One magazine denied they do this: An editor at US magazine told Derrick Lang of the Associated Press in New York that "we don't have relationship obituaries ready to go." They will soon!

7. ''Stunt-casting'' --- re the recent movie "Beyond the Sea", about Bobby Darin, starring Kevin Spacey, a NYTimes analysis of recent films calls Spacey's work: "He does a good impersonation of Bobby Darin, though, which turns the film into a giant exercise in stunt-casting?" [What the heck is stunt-casting? We like the term, but don't understand it.....yet!]

8. ''vindex'' -- (visibility index) -- from a New York Times article by Alan B. Krueger: (January 2005) headlined: "It's now official: Rich people consume more conspicuously" QUOTE: "The index of visibility, or vindex, is the average score for how long it would take to notice that the consumer spent more than average on a product."

9. '' celebrity cemetery'' -- A news article about the death of a famous fashion designer in Germany said he was bured in a "celebrity cemetery." What the heck is that?

10. '' Slump buster '' = see Maureen Dowd's NYTimes column Feb. 21ish

11. ''road beef '' = see Maureen Dowd's NYTimes column Feb. 21ish

12. ''Dutch tulip moment'' = [see column on blogging by William Powers in National Journal, google] QUOTE: "....Powers dismisses our current infatuation with bloggers as a fad in a National Journal column, "Why Blogs Are Like Tulips." Powers doesn't disparage these lowly but mighty scriveners, writing that their greatest attributes are bird-dogging factual errors in the press, speaking in a vernacular, and having fun. But he says they "don't have resources or, in most cases, the skills to do the heavy journalistic lifting that the big American outlets still do better than anyone, and will continue to do for a very long time.""We're having a Dutch tulip moment with the bloggers. This, too, shall pass," he concludes."] [MORE: What's a Dutch tulip moment, you ask? "That's a reference to a giant financial bubble of the 1600's that happened in Holland," says our source. "Financial historians and journalists often use it as the premier example of a particular commodity (tulips in this case, tech stocks and maybe bloggers in others) becoming the subject of an irrational craze. Here's one little synopsis: ]

13. "flow" - the notion of FLOW was coined by Mihaly C., a professor at Claremont in California, GOOGLE him, the author of a book called "Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience." Flow, in essence, is a state of deep cognitive engagement people achieve when performing ab activity that demands a certain level of focus, like writing or checking email.

14. Screenager = a "SCREENAGER", mentioned in William Safire's column ON LANGUAGE, from a book. means young people of today who grew up with email, internet, cellphones, etc., so a screen monitor or a monitor screen is very natural to their lives. From teenager, new word is coined as screenager. Clever. Will it last? Who knows? Teenager has lasted. We will see.

15. UPPERBACK BOOKS, also known as "upperbacks" -- a publishing term coined in 2004 or 2005 by Michael Cader of and also appearing in a news article by Boston Globe book reporter David Mehegan:

"Even Harlequin Romance, whose mass-market sales have been soft lately,is getting into the act. But to Harlequin it's not just the eyes that are getting older. Starting in July 2005 a new Harlequin line will appear, called ''Next." Like the other ''upperbacks," the books are taller, abit pricier and easier to read.But, as the name suggests, the stories will focus on romance withheroines at the ''next" stage of life: Their kids are grown, they maybe widowed.

Says Cader: "The coinage is official, and I'm happy to admit that my favorite part of David Mehegan's recent article in the Boston Globe about the coming wave of "upgraded" mass marketbooks is his adoption of Publisher's Lunch's term "[mass] upperbacks."

16. "asylum shoppers" = immigrants from poor Third World countries who shop around to find the best country to emigrate to, in terms of welfare benefits, health care benefits, employment opportunities, education, etc. They seek asylum, usually political asylum, in countries like the UK, the USA, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, etc.

17. ''Pokkuri '' = a Japanese term meaning "to pop off" when you die......quietly, suddenly, in one's sleep, or a sudden heart attack. A "pokkuri moment" is what many people hope and pray for, and in fact, there is a Buddhist temple in Japan where people pray to used underwear hoping that they will pop off in old age, rather than spend weeks, months, years in a hospital or nursing home and be a burden to their familes. See for more information on this word increasingly popular in USA and UK now.

pokkuri , to die quietly in sleep, discreet death, RIP, old age

彼は「愛してるよ」と言って、ぽっくりと死んだ in Japanese

[kare wa "aishite'ru yo" to itte, pokkuri to shinda] in romaji

He said "I love you," and dropped dead. (translation)

18. ''SKYSCRAPERS'' = tall, thin ads that appear in websites, blogs, emails, homepages on the Internet

19. SPLOID - a Drudge-like headline news blog with a tabloid look, run by the Nick Denton people

20. Walter Kirn: "Women bend the truth, of course, but not like men do. Women fudge, but men construct whole chocolate factories." (from GQ magazine)


NOTE: You may nominate words or phrases that you think are worth noting by adding a comment below. Write to: [that is d underline h underline 888 at mark yahoo dot com]. This first awards list will be published in January 2006, and released in late December 2004. If the world is still standing.

The Words That Ring A Bell Awards List is released each year in late December, just in time for New Year's Day. This is attributed to the fact that New Year's Day is traditionally a slow news day, and newspaper editors are looking for stories to fill space on the front page or inside. Also, reporters and wire services are desperate for news.