Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Webster 2.0: Blabbergasted

Being an English major, I have more than a passing interest in the etymology of languages. The evolution of the English language is one of the more interesting subjects I've studied, especially in our modern age when everything, as we know, moves at warp speed.

The advent of the space age resulted in all kinds of new words. There have been countless articles written about it. Then came computers, and a whole new sublanguage of bits and bytes, floppies and flash drives. With the spread of the internet, we started talking in a dialect that our great-grandparents wouldn't have understood. Maybe still don't understand, honestly.

With all of the acceleration of new words and terms in the English language that come from leaps in technology, there's still an age old, dependable way we coined new words. Kids, especially kids being silly.

Without further ado, I submit the following for consideration in the 2014 edition of Webster's Dictionary: BLABBERGASTED.

You have to admit, it has cache.

Let's break it down:

  • blabber: to talk foolishly or excessively; to say indiscreetly
  • flabbergasted: to overwhelm with shock, surprise or wonder
So, naturally:
  • blabbergasted: to talk excessively when overwhelmed with shock, surprise or wonder

Sound like anyone you know? Here's what it looks like at our house:

Blabbergasted, indeed. I believe we've coined a new word.

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