Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The 2014 Word of the Year

Time for ol' Bilbo to dust off that degree in Linguistics and talk about words again ...

Yesterday, the Oxford Dictionaries announced their Word of the Year for 2014: vape.

Vape? you say. What?

According to a press release from the Oxford Dictionaries, vape derives from the existing word vapor, and can be both a noun and a verb. As a verb, it refers to the act of inhaling and exhaling the vapor produced by an electronic cigarette; as a noun, it can refer to the electronic smoking device itself. Name your poison, right?

Vape beat out several other words on the linguistic word-of-the-year short list, which included:

Bae (noun) - a term of endearment for a romantic partner. It may derive from a shortened form of baby or babe, but may be an acronym for ‘before anyone else.’ Perhaps it's just me, but I think this is a dumb neologism ... I just can't see calling Agnes bae instead of schatz*.

Budtender (noun) - A person who serves customers in a cannabis dispensary or shop. I remember the good old days, when a Bud was something drawn for you by a bartender when you couldn't afford or find real beer ... not a reference to Mexican happy grass. Sigh.


Slacktivism (noun) - An informal term for actions performed via the Internet in support of a political or social cause, but regarded as requiring little time or involvement, e.g. signing an online petition or joining a campaign group on a social media website. It derives, of course, from the combination of the words slack (or slacker) and activism.

Don't just be a slacktivist ... expand your vocabulary today instead of visiting a budtender or vaping**.

Have a good day. More thoughts tomorrow.


* A German term of endearment which literally means "treasure."

** Are people who vape being vapid? Discuss.


eViL pOp TaRt said...

Ow! Those are terrible words! I hope they ride out of town on the horse named Iconic!

eViL pOp TaRt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Grand Crapaud said...

Slacktivism is a useful concept.

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

I heard about this on the morning news. I hate to admit it, but VAPE? not exactly an SAT word. So as my father would say, "we're going to pot" :-)

Kristen Drittsekkdatter said...

I hope that word does not last long. Or e-cigarettes.

Linda Kay said...

My daughter smokes an e-cigarette and is cutting back on the nicotine in her effort to quit smoking. But she is not typically vapid. The Budtender must be related to the Barista at the coffee shop!

Big Sky Heidi said...

Lousy words.

Mike said...

Vape sounds like something a vampire would wear.

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

I'll pass on that word and that product.