Thursday, July 16, 2009

In Which We Lament the Death of the English Language... Then Have a Viking Funeral For It

My post was originally going to be about this article. Independence Day is when we communally celebrate the birth of this, the Greatest Nation on Planet Earth*, by crossing state borders to illegally purchases fireworks, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and acquire third degree burns on our right index and middle fingers. That isn't actually a third-degree burn... it's the burn of liberty coursing through our veins. At no point during an awesome display of violent, colorful firepower intended to percussively remind us that our country was baptized in the fires of bloody conflict did I wonder - hey, is this good for the environment? I could go on, but I will merely leave this with an &c. and talk about English.
My beloved girlfriend, Maria, informed me that the morning news (you know, where everyone smiles and laughs at each others terrible punny jokes to the point whether you wonder if the first qualification for appearing on the morning news is the removal of ones central nervous system) reported that Merriam-Webster added a few "questionable" words into the hallowed, sanctified halls of the English Language. Among these additions include:
  1. fan fiction
  2. staycation
  3. webisode
  4. frenemy
  5. açai
  6. locavore
I here point out that my spell checker underlined all but one of these entries in red. Now ladies and gentlemen, I freely admit that I do enjoy what is often deemed old-school. I think umpires should always have a place in baseball. I think a good seersucker suit is a better alternative to anything I see certain "fierce" persons wearing into my coffee shop, THE DEATH STAR. I think cast-iron beats Teflon any day. And if I had a telegraph, I would fucking use it! But I am adaptable. Home run review is okay. I tried to steal a nonstick pan from my mom. I realize things must change lest we devolve, but these words are abhorrable and deviant and perverse! I here DESTROY each of these words and reveal them for the FRAUDULENT, UN-ENGLISH CONGREGATION OF ROMAN LETTERS that they are... in my own particular order.

5. Açai: a small dark purple fleshy berrylike fruit of a tall slender palm (Euterpe oleracea) of tropical Central and South America that is often used in beverages ; also : the palm
This is offered in many health drinks in expensive smoothie shops, including Jamba Juice, the SWORN ENEMY OF DEATH STAR COFFEE. I have recently taken a hatred to smoothies because of DEATH STAR COFFEE's introduction of V---o Smoothies. Any time someone orders a V---o Smoothie, an unholy orchestra of Demons begins evilly scraping their cursed instruments until I can bear it no longer and throw cups all over the place and curse in French, just to show how intelligent I am and how the occupation in which I currently find myself is well below what I ought to be doing. Also, this is not an English word.

4.) Frenemy:
: one who pretends to be a friend but is actually an enemy
ENGLISH HAS THIS WORD MANY TIMES! I suggested the first synonym that came to mind - traitor - to a thesaurus, which yielded such long-standing gems as: backstabber, double-crosser, renegade, fifth columnist, turncoat, defector, deserter, collaborator, informer, mole, snitch, Judas, Benedict Arnold, and quisling. Even snake-in-the-grass, two-timer, rat, fink and scab were accepted as informal. But FRENEMY? It's too adorable to get its meaning across! Try this: next time someone two-times you, try the following sentences on them:
  • "You double-crossing, backstabbing Benedict Arnold!"
  • "You frenemy!"
See which one elicits the more appropriate response.

3. Webisode: an episode especially of a TV show that may or may not have been telecast but can be viewed at a Web site
What's so wrong with using the word "episode" in this case? Honestly? And I'm noticing a disturbing trend of "adorably punny blending of words" in recent years.

6. Locavore:
one who eats foods grown locally whenever possible
I am relatively certain this word was invented in the trendiest parts of Brooklyn. I can just imagine a person unironically wearing a bandana on her head on the streets of Park Slope, slurping down a $9 Chai latte and proudly proclaiming what an honest "locavore" she is and how important that is for the environment and what a good person she is for being one and why we should be one too.

1. Fan Fiction:
stories involving popular fictional characters that are written by fans and often posted on the Internet —called also fan fic \-ˈfik\
It is probably my distaste for the practice of fan fiction that I hate this entry so much. First, it is two words whose meaning is self-evident and does not require elaboration or a place in a dictionary. Secondly, FAN FICTION WRITERS ARE THE LOWEST FORM OF SENTIENT BEING ON PLANET EARTH - and that's using "sentient" very liberally. Fanfickers, especially SLASHERS (person who writes stories about science fiction and fantasy characters homosexually macking on one another) have no place in healthy society. They are not thinkers. They are not doers. They are simply there riding the coattails of (possible) genius as they sit in their darkened rooms brooding about The Tenth Doctor's obvious man-love for Harry Potter who then attempts to time travel to Hogwarts to fill him up with butterbeers and steal his anal virginity. Then they, the slashers not the characters, drink too much, cry about their feelings, and complain about all other slashers on their Live Journals, much to the delight of unknowing Midwestern girls who think the New York slash scene terribly glamorous and attempt to emulate these obese, bad-skinned losers. (I pause here to catch my breath)

2. Staycatio
n: a vacation spent at home or nearby
I had a small stroke when I heard this word. Not only does its atrocious punness rake against my happiness and peaceful state, but seriously... staycation? Vacation comes from "vacate" meaning "to boogie out of town." Ergo and thus, not "vacating" or "going on vacation" means you stay at home. You cannot "staycate" and you cannot go on "staycation"! IT IS NOT POSSIBLE! And now that I have revealed the atrocity of this word to the world, I can only demand that it be CLEANSED and PURGED and if need be BLASTED from the lexicon to prevent future generations from thinking this is a terribly good word to use in their upcoming Doctoral thesis which is probably laden with abbreviated text language anyway! I WILL NOT STAND BY AND ALLOW WESTERN SOCIETY TO DECAY IN SUCH A MANNER! You have stayed at home and done nothing instead of travelling to Switzerland or Jamaica! YOU HAVE STAYED HOME! And I urge anyone who even THINKS of using this word to STAY HOME ANYWAY because you are probably SOCIALLY INEPT and CANNOT BREATHE WITHOUT CONCENTRATING AND WITH GREAT DIFFICULTY EVEN THEN!

Please, Merriam-Webster, reconsider your great mistakes. You are only doing our great language harm. Until next year when they release even more unspeakable crimes against the lanugage I bid you adieu.

*-Proven in the July 1776 "Scientific Proof Magazine" and ratified by the Convention of Versailles on February 11, 1936.

1 comment:

  1. peets coffee is better than death star's. it tastes more "organic"