Saturday, September 22, 2007

Linguistics and Me... and I?... and Christine

Today's weird news took a couple of odd little turns. First there was the story about Oxford's new dictionary getting rid of the hyphen in 16,000-odd words.... using the cited story's example of their not getting rid of the 16,000 odd words themselves. The most interesting part of this story was the choice of words to share with the world that had lost their hyphen to become one word, or split into two. They seemed an interesting selection and I have posted them here with my interpretation of their linkage.

Formerly hyphenated words split in two:

fig leaf, hobby horse, ice cream, pin money, pot belly, test tube, water bed.

(Apparently some story about Adam constructing clothing before eating the forbidden flavor, spending some dough to realize he's fat and weighing his options of conception between non-Eve and location facilitated options?)

Formerly hyphenated words unified in one:

bumblebee, chickpea, crybaby, leapfrog, logjam, lowlife, pigeonhole, touchline, waterborne

(Ummmm an insect who eats an odd salad and is so disappointed that he skips over the lumber traffic because he's a real loser, stuck in his position at the edge of a rugby game supported by consumable liquids?)

The other story was more down those that generally make me smile. Judge recieved an egg, presumably chicken, in the mail from a whiner locked up in jail. Unable to resist the inherent humor of the situation he wrote what I would consider my favorite poetry of today (According to Yahoo News and the AP):

"I do not like eggs in the file, I do not like them in any style. I will not take them fried or boiled. I will not take them poached or broiled. I will not take them soft or scrambled/Despite an argument well-rambled."

And ordered "No fan I am/Of the egg at hand. Destroy that egg! Today! Today! Today I say! Without delay!"

1 comment:

  1. Ok… I was going to say something snarky about how small our world's problems are that people can focus on whether words should keep their hyphens or not but thought that sounded rude. Instead, I will say I hope this hobby horse of theirs doesn't create a logjam in the lowlife work of comma usage or pigeonhole apostrophe fanatics as crybabies. I would hate to see anyone with egg on their face.