Word of the Year 2007

185 Responses

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  • Sara Noble,

    So how about some creative egg-horning or will that make you all apocalyptic?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2007 • 127 posts Report Reply

  • kowhai montgomery,

    I am still enamoured with the term "bromantic".

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

  • kowhai montgomery,

    horse mounted hippies disciplining the flock

    I know that was way back on the thread, but thanks Steven Crawford for giving me the most bizarre mental image of my entire week (and I love bizarre).

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Fell is cruel or fierce

    Ta - you know, I realise I originally guessed it was related to foul at the time I was probably reading the LotR at age 13 or so (fell beasts etc). Been under the misapprehension ever since.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Che Tibby,

    I was probably reading the LotR at age 13

    ah.. the halcyon daze.

    the back of an envelope • Since Nov 2006 • 2026 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I seem to be surrounded by people who suffer from some weird pseudo-homonym dyslexia...

    The linguistic community has a name for these - they're called eggcorns

    I thought the word for this is was 'malapropism'. My wife does them all the time and they seriously crack me up. Some of them are really quite apt.

    btw, I withdraw my entry 'Fizzer' in awe of 'Sub-prime' capturing it much better. Now I won't trust Fizzer with a tin-foot barge pool.

    I agree with Robyn that 'World Class' really means 'World Class in Oceania'.

    Well, you can't be literally buggered if you're supine.

    Don't make me show you a picture. The only thing you can't be literally buggered in is a chastity belt.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Oh wait - I have another - Bollard (def: Thick wooden post, an impediment to progress).

    Since Nov 2006 • 2074 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    The only thing you can't be literally buggered in is a chastity belt.

    I really really hope that one day I'll be able to use that quote in a conversation.

    Under the western motorwa… • Since Nov 2006 • 523 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I waive all copyright, just for you. All I ask is that you relate how you pulled it off. I'll be metaphorically buggered if I can work out how you could.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    ...chastity belts...All I ask is that you relate how you pulled it off.

    She's good at picking locks. With her tongue.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 727 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Sorry, that was probably inappropriate. But I've had six bottles of [redacted] sitting on my desk all day for [redacted] and I haven't touched them, and I've already blow-dried my hair, and now I am clock-watching until the big shindig tonight. And trying to fight rising needless sensations of panic.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 727 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Your locks are itching to be picked? (one your [redacted])

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Nah, the penicillin took care of the itching, thanks for asking though!I'm just keen to start partying...

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 727 posts Report Reply

  • Rongotai,

    "Scumbag"
    after 20 years in Wellington i finally went and sat through question time
    very interesting it actually makes perfect sense now. you say something to wind someone up so they show there true colours Cullen can look like a very angry school teacher sometimes

    Wellington Region • Since Nov 2006 • 4 posts Report Reply

  • daleaway,

    No, Kath and Kim think "pacific" is an Australianism - maybe we gave it to them, or maybe it's just transnational Basic Bogan.

    "Apostrophe Catastrophe" was the title of a mystery serial I wrote online with a Canadian co-author around 1999, just for a lark - someone gave it its own webpage and someone else wrote a fussy book with the same title some years afterwards.

    Not wishing to be too negative, I'll also throw my vote behind "sub prime". It just seems to mean anything below par, dodgy or all-round stupid. Like lending to people with insufficient funds.

    Since Jul 2007 • 178 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Nah, the penicillin took care of the itching, thanks for asking though!I'm just keen to start partying...

    Crikey. I was actually referring to the locks on your 6 bottles of [redacted]. But I'm glad to hear the [redacted] is all cleared up too.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    is [redacted] the new smurf?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    I thought the word for this is was 'malapropism'.

    I do that, I hold the computer spell check responsible. I'm crap at spelling, it should know better.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2777 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    It never catches my 2 most common typos - "on" for "one" and "to" for "too". Grammar checking in MS Word used to do a sterling job for that, and also opened my eyes to the whole world of split infinitives. But it did piss me off that it always pulled me up for using the passive voice, or any sentence with more than 15 words. Would have been good if you could turn certain warnings off, as 'my style' settings.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Grammar checking in MS Word used to do a sterling job for that...

    I have nothing but obscenities for Grammar Checker. Allow me ( cause how're you gonna stop me) to share from Language Log on the subject:

    For the most part, accepting the advice of a computer grammar checker on your prose will make it much worse, sometimes hilariously incoherent. If you want an amusing way to while away a rainy afternoon, take a piece of literary prose you consider sublimely masterful and run the Microsoft Word™ grammar checker on it, accepting all the suggested changes.

    I designed a writing exercise for our group last year that was full of grammar errors. Too/to, stripped/striped (okay, yeah, it was erotica), and for a laugh, I ran it through MS's grammar and spelling checkers to see what it would pick up correctly. Answer? Nothing at all.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4371 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Andrew,

    But it did piss me off that it always pulled me up for using the passive voice, or any sentence with more than 15 words. Would have been good if you could turn certain warnings off, as 'my style' settings.

    Umm, you can - Tools, Options, Spelling & Grammar, Grammar Settings.

    Hamiltron - City of the F… • Since Nov 2006 • 842 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Umm, you can

    You can now. But I haven't used Word for years. Glad to hear they followed my (and a million other people's) suggestions, though.

    Emma, despite the truth of all that, that doesn't make them useless. They're good at the subset of proofreading that they do.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Emma, despite the truth of all that, that doesn't make them useless. They're good at the subset of proofreading that they do.

    Well, it's a combination of poor tool (in that they can't read context, which is the main thing that tells you whether you've used the right word or not), and PEBKAC. I've had people who call themselves writers tell me they don't need to proof-read, because they've used the spelling and grammar checkers. If those tools weren't there, they would proof-read, and end up with a slightly better end product.

    But that throwing in some John Donne and accepting all the 'corrections' is a genuinely fun game, at least for literature nerds.

    No, actually on consideration, I don't even accept the 'subset' thing, because they're wrong about as often as they're right. They're only useful if you have a functioning intelligence in the chair to begin with.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4371 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Andrew,

    They're only useful if you have a functioning intelligence in the chair to begin with.

    True of so many things in life...

    Hamiltron - City of the F… • Since Nov 2006 • 842 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Emma, I don't buy it. The kind of things it pinged me for were pretty useful, like punctuation and simple typos that just made no sense (but were not spelling mistakes). Sure it didn't catch the accidental typos that did make grammatical sense, but they are a much lesser number. It's a support system, not a substitute for proof reading, and I found it useful. It catches the kind of things people miss, like putting the
    the twice across lines.

    OK, I do buy that it can make you lazy. That's pretty much the case with all software, and has never been a particularly compelling excuse not to use it. It's more of an argument to get harsh on the mistakes that people try to excuse themselves from in their lazy use of a system.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8675 posts Report Reply

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