What could possibly be more fun than making up a witty new word?
Well, to be honest, lots of things. But inventing words is still an enjoyable creative exercise. I made up several in less than an hour this evening, while half-watching an old movie. A few may be lame, but I hope you will discover one or two you enjoy.
I’ve touched on the subject of inventing words in the past. But this approach involves a different process.
This article from The Guardian asks, “English speakers already have over a million words at our disposal – so why are we adding 1,000 new ones a year to the lexicon?” That’s certainly a fair question. However, it doesn’t pertain to my thoughts here. I’m not attempting to birth any neologisms. These are simply humorous tweaks to existing words. A form of wordplay.
I got the idea when I read a short article, “The Best Made Up Words Ever,” by Bill Bouldin.* He admits to including a number of words from an online site I won’t name here (due to its preponderance of vulgar terms). While Bouldin doesn’t indicate which examples are his own contributions, and which are reproduced, I found a couple of the words quite entertaining.
The first of these reminded me of many group meetings where we consider all sorts of opportunities and possibilities.
Blamestorming – The act of attempting to identify the person who is most at fault for a plan’s failure.
As a pastor I couldn’t resist modifying this gem.
Sinergy – When performing two bad acts make you feel as guilty as if you had committed three.
This one struck home since it’s a play on one of the words in the title of the Narnian classic, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.
Chairdrobe – A chair on which one piles clothes that belong in the closet. Not to be confused with a floordrobe.
The final example will resonate with everyone who enjoys reading and writing.
“Illiteration – The mistaken impression that you know more about rhetorical devices than you really do.
At the risk of revealing myself to be an illiterator, I’ve included below some of the words I conjured up during an idle hour. I don’t claim any are masterpieces, but you may find one or two that bring a smile to your face. And, who doesn’t need an extra smile during these trying times?
My Initial Experiment
Caution: Before proceeding, keep in mind these are not real words. As genuine and utilitarian as they may appear, I advise you not to use them in conversation or composition. They are offered by Mere Inkling purely for entertainment purposes. Feel free to add some of your own in a comment.
Subbatical: the period when some temp like you is hired to fill in for some privileged person who has a job that has sent him or her off for an extended paid vacation.
Dippididude: Confused men who use hair gel designed for young girls and women.
Cemetarry: The unwillingness of some people to ponder the reality of their own mortality.
Mannekin: A boring, sedentary relative, who rarely rises from the couch.
Candlelablouse: The name for candlesticks with multiple arms in the homes of prudes.
Carnivirus: Individuals who strive to draw blood from those who view the coronavirus and its implications differently than they do.
Brigadeer: A domineering deer who tries to order all the other members of its herd around (antlers optional).
Altruistick: Actions that appear on the surface to be selfless, but include a hidden agenda.
Monumentill: Descriptor for someone of little worth who builds a significant reputation with the sole purpose of lining their pockets.
Blasphemee: An individual’s personal inability to consistently observe the Second Commandment.
Concupiscents: Hollywood’s obsession with including graphic sexual themes in all of their productions, resulting in the selling of their souls for pennies on the dollar.
Cathedroll: A large church led by a senior minister given to quaint and unintentionally comic humor.
Cadaversary, pl., cadaversaries: A member of the endless hordes of the undead during a zombie apocalypse.
Literasee: The capacity of one’s imagination to visualize what you are reading.
Bloggrr: An essentially angry person, given to writing unbridled tirades on various digital formats.
Gerdprocessing: When whatever you are typing just doesn’t work, and causes you severe heartburn instead.
Manuskipped: The sad condition when the article or book into which you poured your blood, sweat and tears has been tossed into a slush pile to lie forgotten.
Editteen: The maturity level of the editor who did not recognize the merits of your manuscript and rejected it without comment.
Subliminil: When the word you are reading or writing possesses no hidden or subconscious message.
Proofreaper: Someone you invited to read your manuscript for misspellings who advises you to delete entire sections of your precious creation.
Skulldigory: Misbehavior by the English professor, Digory Kirke, who, as a child, introduced evil into Narnia.
I will close now with two words that cat-lovers may find objectionable. If you are a devoted feline-fancier, you are advised to cease reading now.
Lucifur: The anonymous leader of that faction of felines devoted to serving evil.
Purrification: The activity of forgiveness and restoration that occurs when any cat makes a sincere confession of its sins.
* This columnist cites various words from the Bouldin’s piece, and others from a book entitled The Emotionary: a Dictionary of Words That Don’t Exist for Feelings That Do.