Wednesday, 9 April 2008
New English Words and Phrases
Yeah, you guessed it...i have blogstipation! I'm therefore setting a challenge for you all - The person who features as many of these words/phrases as possible in their next post wins a prize...
New English Words and Phrases
1. Multi-dadding pp. Having multiple children with multiple men.
—multi-dad v., n.
In our part of the world, Lucy Lawless, Sally Ridge and Wendyl Nissen happily navigate their way through multi-dadding arrangements. ...
Women like Anderson say the negative reaction towards multi-fathered families comes from an assumption that multi-dadding women must be promiscuous.
But Anderson is quick to set the record straight, saying she has only had relationships with four men — the fathers of her four children.
—Shelley Bridgeman, "Who's the daddy?," The New Zealand Herald, September 30, 2007
2. Smexting pp. Sending text messages while standing outside on a smoking break. [Blend of smoking and texting.]
The smoking ban has had an unusual side effect.
A record number of text messages have been sent by smokers who want to pass the time over a cigarette while banished to outside venues. ...
Experts have now dubbed the phenomenon 'smexting'.
—Mark Prigg, "Smoking ban leads to surge in texting," The Evening Standard, August 7, 2007
3. Butt bra n. An undergarment that supports the buttocks. Also: buttbra.
In appearance, the Biniki is similar to the kind of complicated Victorian undergarments you read about in your Brontes class in college. Consisting of two leg loops and a waistband, this foundation garment encircles the buttocks and "lifts and smoothes" the back of the upper thigh (which, when you hit 30, may or may not look like a burlap bag full of doorknobs). This device is often referred to, subtly, as a "butt bra."
—Emma Downs,, "A thing of booty," Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette, March 2, 2006
4. Approximeeting pp. Getting together with one or more people by first arranging an approximate time or place and then firming up the details later on, usually via cell phone.
Marty Cooper, known as the "father of the cellphone" for his work in developing the first mobile phones at Motorola, recalls that he only became aware of the device's full potential as a result of actually using it. His secretary called him on his prototype mobile phone as he was getting into his car to drive to a meeting to say that it had been cancelled—thus saving him from a wasted journey. But explaining the benefits of being able to change plans on the fly to potential customers was difficult, he says, so the first phones were marketed instead on the basis that they could make people more productive, by allowing them to work while on the move. But today the idea of "approximeeting"—arranging to meet someone without making firm plans about time or place, and then finalising details via mobile phone while out and about—is commonplace.
—"The phone of the future," The Economist, December 2, 2006
5. Generation XL (jen.uh.ray.shun eks.EL) n. Children or young adults who are overweight.
Internet workers call it "the start-up 15," the extra pounds they gained when they gave up a balanced diet and regular exercise for their dot-com jobs.
"In my case, it's the start-up 24," Phillips said.
Meet Generation XL. Like college freshmen who get fat from too much dorm food and too little activity, many cubicle potatoes lead very unhealthy lives. They have erratic eating habits and indulge in too much late-afternoon or late-night high-fat snacking. They are only half joking when they say their only physical activity is surfing the Internet.
—Jessica Guynn, "As dot-coms trim fat, so do ex-workers," Contra Costa Times, March 19, 2001
6. Nico-teen (NIK.oh.teen) n. A teenager who smokes cigarettes.
Teenagers are more likely to start smoking if their favourite film stars are smokers.
—Matthew Hart, "Film star smokers blamed for nico-teen addicts," Courier Mail, February 26, 2001
7. Protirement (proh.TYR.munt) n. Retiring or quitting an unattractive job to pursue work or hobbies more suited to one's personality. Also: pro-tirement.
Yet, for an increasing number of us, the conversation doesn't end there. More than 80% of 30-to 35-year-old professionals claim they are unhappy at work, worn down by a combination of stress, boredom and "aspiration deficit": the feeling that their job isn't giving back as much as they put into it. As working hours and the pressure to earn big bucks increase, the generation that once thought it could have it all has started to wonder whether it is worth sacrificing life to get it.
"People are starting to have midlife crises as early as 26," says Ann-Marie Woodall, author of Secrets of a High-heeled Healer. "Careers, especially those in areas such as the City and media, have become all about instant gratification. You can get success so quickly, more and more people are tasting it, and then realising that it's not making them happy."
For many, that realisation leaves a straight choice between continuing in a career that pays well but makes them miserable, and doing something less lucrative but more fulfilling — a lifestyle option that has been dubbed "protirement". According to research, one in 15 under-35s is already "protired".
—Anita Chaudhuri, "I want to change my life," The Sunday Times of London, September 21, 2003
8. Skinship n. Feelings of relatedness and affection between two people, particularly a mother and a child, caused by hugging, touching, and other forms of physical contact.
Cathedrals of the Flesh, by Alexia Brue (Bloomsbury; $24.95). This entertaining picaresque chronicles the author's mostly naked reconnaissance of the world's public baths, from cavernous marble Turkish hamams and smoky Helsinki saunas to militantly hot Moscow banyas and a New York bathhouse of dubious hygiene. ... Brue's depiction of herself as a bumbling innocent abroad isn't entirely believable, but her approach to other cultures is refreshingly humble, and her devotion to the pleasures of bathing with strangers makes a seductive case for "skinship," in which, naked together in the same water, "you do away with all the normal social barriers in life."
—"The Critics: Briefly Noted," The New Yorker, January 20, 2003
9. Mouse race (MOWS rays) n. A lower-stress lifestyle that results from moving to a smaller community or taking a less demanding job. —adj.
Glen and Phyllis Swank were looking to move from southern California two years ago.
"We wanted to leave the rat race and join the mouse race," said Phyllis, who among other jobs worked at a Jewish day school, a private high school, an affordable housing program and as a cake decorator.
Glen, who labored for 25 years as an applications engineer for the world's largest tool manufacturer, said retiring from that job was retirement number one. He is currently in what he calls retirement number two: serving bed and breakfast customers. He is looking forward to a third retirement, when he will actually vacation in bed and breakfasts.
—Tom Wharton, "Mouse Race Pace Suits Them Fine," Salt Lake Tribune, May 3, 2003, Saturday
10. Hurry sickness n. A malaise where a person feels chronically short of time, and so tends to perform every task faster and to get flustered when encountering any kind of delay.
The microwave oven is one of the modern objects that convey the most elemental feeling of power over the passing seconds. You watch those seconds, after all, as they tick past on the digital display. If you suffer from hurry sickness in its most advanced stages, you may find yourself punching eighty-eight seconds instead of ninety because it is faster to tap the same digit twice.
—James Gleick, Faster, Random House, 1999
11. Salad dodger (SAL.ud daw.jur) n. An overweight person; a person who shuns healthy foods. Also: salad-dodger, SD.
So, food is a national comforter. Famously too, though the Scots are a nation of salad dodgers. It's a fair cop but, in our defence, have you seen what nature provides in the way of soil? Anything that isn't gorse isn't that easy to grow here. Scotland's stony fields are in fact, particularly suited to growing turnips.
"Chips with everything: Ridiculed by gourmets, feared by doctors, and now celebrated by Irvine Welsh, Scottish food has always been an acquired taste," The Guardian (London), August 20, 2003