March’s Non-words

Here are the Non-Words for March:

    endeem, v. to cause something to become endemic. 1 Mar

    overmind, v. to pay too much attention to those in authority. 2 Mar

    ummify, v. to repeatedly use “um”s and “uh”s in one’s speech (the noun form is ummification). 3 Mar

    mehme, n. a failed meme, an idea or image that doesn’t propagate endlessly over the internet (from meh + meme). 4 Mar

    regretoric, n. the language of apology (contributed by Rob Adams). 5 Mar

    sgaggle, n. a succession of noisy groups (a spate of gaggles; not the same as a gagglepate, a gaggle of spates). 6 Mar

    counterproduce, v. to be counterproductive or inefficient, to waste time. 7 Mar

    codgertate, v. to reminiscence about how good or hard or cheap things used to be a long time go. 8 Mar

    movementum, n. The rate at which a popular, coordinated action proceeds (contributed by LeRoy Fulwiler). 9 Mar

    degreeter, n. person at a wholesale store exit who checks your receipt and cart to make sure you don’t steal anything. 10 Mar

    catch down, v. to reach a state of parity with those at lower rankings (“Other states will soon catch down to us”). Mar 11

    renegation, n. the act of reneging on an agreement or withdrawing a commitment. 12 Mar

    stenchmark, v. the process of comparing everyday smells to malodorous standards, such as feces, vomit, or rotting fish. 13 Mar

    mullify, v. to ponder a choice until a decision is no longer valuable (from mull + nullify). 14 Mar

    evocateur, n. Person or thing (object, word, song, smell) evoking a memory (suggested by Wilkins O’Riley Zinn). 15 Mar

    gesunbesuelude, interj. (GEH zun buh SWE loo deh) a multilingual response to someone’s sneezing (from Justin Close). 16 Mar

    o’nomastics, n. the yearly process of putting an apostrophe in names beginning with the letter O (like O’bama). 17 Mar

    ofrom p. a blend of “off of” and “from” and (“I got it ofrom the internet.”). 18 Mar
    corporaphilia, n. loving corporations as though they were people. 19 Mar

    heisty, adj. in the mood to commit an unarmed robbery or petty theft. 20 Mar

    levitas, n. the virtue of dignified nonseriousness, especially as a leadership tool. 21 Mar

    hangry, adj. to become angry due to hunger (from hungry + angry, courtesy of Jessica Jade Zigenis). 22 Mar

    pastache, ambiguous n. an incongruous blend of leftover pasta OR a mustache of spaghetti sauce. 23 Mar

    artisn’tal, adj. having the quality of “artisanal” products but lacking the pretension and cost. 24 Mar

    wrang, v. to argue endlessly with no purpose other than arguing (clipping of wrangle). 25 Mar

    twalkers n. people who walk and text at the same time and nearly run into others. 26 Mar

    snlob n. someone who is snobbish about being a slob. 27 Mar

    confoundation, n. A non-profit organization that causes surprise or confusion by its actions. 28 Mar

    retromend, v. To advise or suggest a return to the past as a course of future action. 29 Mar

    growd, n. an angry gathering and one growing in size (from Bill Cameron, passed on by Robert Arellano). 30 Mar

    distopia, n. Any locale is which ritual insult is the preferred and usual means of interaction. 31 Mar

Thanks to Jessica Jade Zigenis, Rob Adams, Leroy Fulwiler, Justin Close, Wilkins O’Riley Zinn and Bill Cameron for their non-words. And catch down was a new usage I overheard from Oregon University System Chancellor George Pernsteiner. Catch down has a specific medical use as an adjective in catch down growth, but its use as a phrasal verb seems unique, so it’s in. Thanks, George!

Some suggested non-words that are already in the Urban Dictionary. Uniquity, suggested by David Brown (which has the nice allusion to both ubiquity and iniquity) and voiceterous suggested by Devora Shapiro (blending boisterous and vociferous).

Don’t forget to use these non-words: If you find yourself getting hangry you can have a pastache. Or you can go for a sandwich but with artisn’tal bread. But watch out for the twalkers.

About Ed Battistella

Edwin Battistella’s latest book Sorry About That: The Language of Public Apology was released by Oxford University Press in June of 2014.
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