Paris Hilton goes for gold while crims are pretty in pink
In a decision to mortify the linguistic purists among you, Merriam-Webster has crowned "w00t" Word of the Year for 2007. Other contenders included facebook (verb), blamestorming, and the less painful "conundrum", "quixotic","charlatan" and "Pecksniffian". You did not approve:
I'm sorry, it was my fault. I was going to vote for 'apathetic' (one of the other nominees) but couldn't be bothered. :(
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That hurt my eyes, Coward.
While it pains me to see made up words (w00t, etc.) being added to a dictionary (even ones that don't count, like American ones!), 'verbification' has been going on for a long time, and not just in IT.
Take 'Hoover', 'Xerox' and 'Velcro', for example - these are all brand names (I am probably in breach of something-or-other for not including the odd TM or (R) in there) that have become popular as verbs.
I just 'Googled' for similar things and there appear to be several sites dedicated to the concept. For starters, try this list... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_generic_and_genericized_trademarks.
I rather like 'blamestorming'. So descriptive. in fact, I love all business-speak. It's a mixture of trying to make something sound cool and important when it's not (e.g. teleconferencing for a group phone call) and efforts to carefully avoid offending (from 'lessons' to 'lessons learned' to 'learnings' and now, since' learnings' suggests a deficiency, 'takeaways'). Words such as 'skill-set' make my day. You can see a middle manager or consultant suddenly thinking of 'let's take this off-line' and being totally, totally thrilled. Bless them, every one. Heck, I remember when 'liaising' was heard with a swift intake of breath; there was no verb variation of 'liaison', but suddenly 'liaison' was a word business people spoke, so a verb was required. (Liaison replaced, I believe, 'meeting with' .)
Hardline Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio has got his DUI charges pretty in pink, by making them bury dead alcoholics while dressed in pink clothing. 'Embarrass them into good behaviour' seems to be the idea. Arpaio also previous issued prison inmates with pink underwear. The man seems to have something of a fixation.
Best the good sheriff doesn't come to London with all the City striped suits in their pink shirts and matching pink ties (Yeah, WTF indeed) he'd probably take a cardiac over the number of criminals just left to walk the streets :-)
Don't make me wear the pink! People might think I'm a girl! Or ghey! Oh noes!
I do like the row of gold stars on his collar, though. It's got a certain "decorated by my three-year-old daughter" chic to it.
And if he keeps getting promoted, the ring of stars could go all the way 'round and meet at the back.
No, no, no! They shouldn't be dressed in pink shirts.
A pink tu-tu, on the other hand...
Actually, these sorts of ideas are used in several parts of the UK, it just wouldn't suit the Daily Mail to highlight that fact.
I used to live in an East Anglian city where 'yoof' on community service orders were formed into teams to remove graffiti; the usual practice was to get them to do it in their 'home' area, the humiliation proved to be an effective deterrent to further offending, and offending by their friends who did not want to experience the same treatment - a spell at Her Majesty's pleasure would not have had the same effect.
The pink underwear came about as I recall due to the prisoners habit of smuggling it out prison to sell (yes American crims are weird clearly) to the tune of tens of thousands of $$ worth every year. Since it started being pink, thefts have seemingly dropped to nil or virtually nil.
Shocking. I of course get my underwear from the charity shop like a normal, upstanding citizen.
Where did everybody go? ®