Monday, 30 March 2015

Neologisms 12

Cheffy tricks

I like a vivid turn of phrase from the likes of - Nick Clegg and David Cameron?

cheffy tricks
(James Martin)
chisel-faced securocrat (Nick Clegg)
cupcake tat (@roxieroulette doesn’t want any at her Ipswich vintage fair)

edu-change industry
ludic workplaces (Alex Paknadel)

mud hut anthropology
(Nigel Barley)
nutgraf (US press speak for nutshelling a phenomenon – like why Ed’s 2 kitchens matter so much to the Brits)

(Tony Turtle ‏‪@ATurtle05‬)
Sonnenfinsternis (German for eclipse)
sunset gig

(triangular diamond)
trolley dash

white-glove sale
(at Sotheby’s – means “all the lots were sold”. White-glove service is ultra-posh, fawning service. And a White Goat is... a dingus that turns your waste paper into loo paper.)

Shouty pointless sponsored marquees. (Euan Ferguson on political cabaret)

A shoot-me-now moment at Gardening Club last night bonkers woman talking about allotments got group to stand up, pretend to plant potatoes. (Caroline M ‏@LadyofMisrule)

They were not unnice people. (Trevor Macdonald on the Mafia)

If, as Goethe posited, architecture is frozen music, then these buildings are vertical money. (

One of those buses where the seats are a duster glued to some moulded fibreglass. Comfy. (John Grindrod ‏@Grindrod)

Getting the right conditions for life to form is like “shooting through the holes in the Swiss cheese”. (Eden)

Jacob Rees-Mogg, MP for the 18th century... (@JamesMelville)

At the risk of sounding like a promotion for a new dog food, I favour what I would call a “scientifically balanced” approach to teaching reading. (Kevin Wheldall)

Lawyers spend a great deal of their time shovelling smoke. (O.W. Holmes)

You may as well ask a man to eat molecules with a pair of chopsticks. (Dracula)

Oh, time for that programme where people bimble around buying woodworm-riddled farm implements. (@revpamsmith)

The screaming meemies in three octaves! (Murder She Wrote)

Worryingly desperate LALALALANOTLISTENING quality to kippers faced with actual facts. (Alex Andreou ‏@sturdyAlex on UKIP supporters)

Women’s lives aren’t an endless Clyde of damnation! (@Chrîss_m)

Burning Man; a long open-air grit-filled rave. (Diminuto Lacerta ‏@Jugbo See the Edinburgh fringe "a rave for middle-class kids”.)

It’s painfully obvious that she’s had several jobs done, leaving her nose barely there and her forehead frozen in time. ( on LaToya Jackson)

The Legacy is not all døm and gløm. (

Why did the authorities allow the situation to lurch along, disregarding modern accounting standards, for so many decades? (Catholic Herald on the Vatican’s finances)

It was in rag order, but it was very grand. (Bob Geldof on a mansion the band used to live in)

There are three layers to this flat – it’s like a little sponge sandwich, isn’t it? (Lucy Alexander of Homes under the Hammer)

Oh no it’s John Rutter-mas. (LD)

That train sailed before it even arrived. (@AmyDentata)

The LibDems have fallen off the edge of the planet. (UKIP spokesperson Nov 2014)

Red lights are flashing on the dashboard of the global economy. (BBC News, quoting David Cameron)

I could build a castle out of all the bricks they threw at me. (@How_Upsettting)

That will peg back the temperatures. (Carol Kirkwood)

Pork pies – the pastry and meat “seemed to lead entirely separate lives”. (RI)

What the Scandinavians were churning out by the bucketload. (Tim Wonnacott on some 60s glass)

This "feminist T-shirt" business is really low-wattage stuff on all sides. Depressing wristband pseudo-activism vs confected outrage. (@WillWiles) 

More here, and links to the rest.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Overstatement, Hyperbole, Catastrophising and More

Sweeping generalisations and hysterical over-reactions.

There’s no tree in this country that’s more than 200 years old.
(Boris Johnson)

Everyone has a fear of immigrants. (Boris Johnson)

Boris Johnson compares critics of the garden bridge to the Taliban. (@AdamBienkov)

OMG. Just received an email sent in Comic Sans. I now need a new computer, a new email address, and bleach. (@ianvisits)

I'm of the opinion that if you use the world "selfie" to describe a picture you should be banned from using a camera. (Mr Wood ‏@woodo79)

The number of BBC presenters who say "haitch-dee" is enough to drive a man to drink and violence.  (@woodo79)

Accents were always the topic that attracted most of the ire, and the words used to express the writer’s attitude were always of the most extreme kind. Correspondents would say they were ‘appalled’, ‘outraged’, ‘horrified’, ‘disgusted’ ... to hear a particular accent or a particular pronunciation. (You Say Potato: A Book About Accents, Ben Crystal and David Crystal)

Sign if you want to make describing a casserole with a pastry lid as a 'pie' a criminal offence. (@elizabday)

Anyone over the age of 12 who uses the word "chaterama", without irony, should be cast out from polite society. (Peter Smith ‏@Redpeter99)

End the Tyranny of 24/7 Email. (NYTimes)

This misplaced apostrophe is a tragedy. (Hamlet is a tragedy. A misplaced apostrophe is a punctuation mistake.)

When the Harry Potter books were at their most popular, there were rather ill-natured complaints that "other authors couldn't get published" because of Rowling's omnipresence, which seems rather unlikely. Meanwhile other people were claiming that she had single-handedly "saved reading" - equally over-reacting. (Moira Redmond)

Women bishops are voted in. A woman asks “Are we saying the Bible doesn’t matter any more?”

Christians/atheists are always shoving their beliefs down our throats. (Translation: They criticised my beliefs/They stated their beliefs.)

Why are you attacking me? Why are atheists allowed to attack Christianity? (Christians on Twitter when asked for evidence)

All atheists are terrorists.
(Saudi Arabia Oct 2014-10-12)

Christmas pudding is idolatrous! (Edmund Gosse’s father belonged to a tiny Puritan sect that didn’t celebrate Christmas. He found his son eating a bit of Xmas pudding and threw the “idolatrous” stuff on the fire. The Plymouth Brethren, and subset the Exclusive Brethren, are still around, running schools where they tear pages out of text books and worse.)

The Welsh Dis-Establishment Bill shocks the conscience of every Christian community in Europe. (FE Smith in 1914)

Homosexuals are destroying human identity.
(Latvian Archbishop Surely a Catholic Archbishop ought to say it is a mortal sin and if you don’t repent you will go to hell and burn for all eternity?)

Gay relationships are not ‘positive’, warn Catholic bishops (Oct 2014-10-13)

Claims that same-sex couples die younger, are more prone to cancer, depression and suicide, as well as being more likely to abuse and injure children have been defended by the Alliance for the Defence of the Family and Marriage (Adfam). (Irish Times Feb 2015)

Without irrationality there would be no film, music, literature, drama, romance or even love. (Letter to Times, 2014-10-11)

Apple smashes through forecasts (FT headline Results exceeded forecasts.)

If young people leave London because of high housing costs it will end up as a theme park for the rich! (The council tenants will stay, and the Turkish, Bengali, Chinese etc communities. They will carry on working as nurses, running shops and driving taxis.)

Life in Britain is now so terrible I’d rather go to Mars and never come back!

Everybody is buying drones as Christmas presents. (Sunday Times Dec 2014)

There is a CHILD in the quiet coach. I cannot contain my horror. (@MasumaRahim)

Children are coming to school unable to use a knife and fork! (Moany reports of head teacher spending hours every day cutting up pizzas because the children can’t. They are four. Give them macaroni cheese and chicken nuggets.)

A levels are the “enemy of scholarship”. (Headmaster in the 50s)

Newspapers contain no news any more! (Translation: There are some opinion columns and I disagree with them.)

The Festival of Britain (1951) - "three-dimensional Socialist propaganda" according to Churchill who demolished it. (via @oniropolis)

According to at least one critic, the 5th Doctor's love of cricket makes ALL of Doctor Who "thunderingly racist".
@NickyMorgan01 and @TristramHuntMP both say that they are against compulsory governor training as it would put off volunteers.

We have to oppress women because they are weaker than us and have babies. (You don’t hear that one so much any more.)

In a long rant, film-maker Werner Herzog claims that safety helmets remove our sense of adventure. He doesn't like painkillers or antibiotics either, preferring to adventurously die of septicaemia. All kinds of safety measures that we now take for granted were once “an assault on our precious liberties”. (And libertarians never suggest going back and removing them all.)

More here and links to the rest.