The Washington Post neologism contest

Here at The Word we know the Washington Post’s competition for creating new words by combining two existing words, such as Foreploy (n): Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid; or, Ignoranus (n): A person who’s both stupid and an asshole.

Well, The Washington Post has also run a competition for neologisms, in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common words.

ne·ol·o·gism
–noun
1. a new word, meaning, usage, or phrase.
2. the introduction or use of new words or new senses of existing words.
3. a new doctrine, esp. a new interpretation of sacred writings.
4. Psychiatry. a new word, often consisting of a combination of other words, that is understood only by the speaker: occurring most often in the speech of schizophrenics.

Here are this year’s winners:

1. Coffee (n.), the person upon whom one coughs.

2. Flabbergasted (adj.), appalled over how much weight you have gained.

3. Abdicate (v.), to give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.

4. Esplanade (v.), to attempt an explanation while drunk.

5. Willy-nilly (adj.), impotent.

6. Negligent (adj.), describes a condition in which you absentmindedly answer the door in your nightgown.

7. Lymph (v.), to walk with a lisp.

8. Gargoyle (n.), olive-flavored mouthwash.

9. Flatulence (n.) emergency vehicle that picks you up after you are run over by a steamroller.

10. Balderdash (n.), a rapidly receding hairline.

11. Testicle (n.), a humorous question on an exam.

12. Rectitude (n.), the formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.

13. Pokemon (n), a Rastafarian proctologist.

14. Oyster (n.), a person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.

15. Frisbeetarianism (n.), (back by popular demand): The belief that, when you die, your Soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.

16. Circumvent (n.), an opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men.

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4 thoughts on “The Washington Post neologism contest

  1. Hmmm…these words are being recycled as I type! I just received this list as ‘The 2010 NYT Neologism Contest’. Looks like they’ve been around for a while…and will be again! 🙂

  2. I have an original, but with no contest [The Washington Post neologism contest] anymore to enter, I’ll post it here:

    “Poisonality”(poison-ality)- (n) A personality disorder, characterized by symptoms among which include a poison tongue, or a tendency to spread untrue rumors. (Not to be confused with, “Pois-onality” (n) A personality type marked by a tendency to exhibit a great deal of personal poise.) -Richard Ritterbusch, 2010

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