Monday, June 30, 2014

2257 As the Word Turns

I'm glad folks feel free with words. It helps our language grow. But sometimes wordsmiths can be a little too free.

Take Cesar Chavez. Well, not actually Cesar Chavez, a guy who decided to legally change his name to Cesar Chavez. He's running for congress in Arizona, and figured he'd get better name recognition on the ballot if he had a more memorable name. Or is that remembered name? 

Which is a great concept. Next time I apply for a job at M.I.T. I'll change my name to Albert Einstein. Or when I want to apply for a job at Walmart I can go by Sam Walton. Or heck, run for president as Abe Lincoln. 

The guy, by the way, is a Democrat named Scott Fistler, who lost two previous elections as a Republican, so he's changing his stripes too. Maybe he lost those previous elections because, um, he's willing to essentially lie to get into office. And the public picked up on his moral character before. Still, with a name like Fistler...

Another word change I saw in the news recently was from a reporter reporting on the economy. He was talking about the economy's anemic growth and said it had "a truly craptacular annualized decline of 1%."

Craptacular. Wonder if I should add that to my spellcheck's vocabulary now or wait to see if it catches on. Not as light and airy as twitterstorm or twitterverse. Or lyrical as "buttload" or "for shizzle." The Oxford Dictionary doesn't have it, although they recently added terms like hackable and frack. And the food-oriented flexitarian (a not too committed vegetarian).

But it still has a certain flair. For describing something spectacularly crappy: Craptacular.

I would use it to describe a name like Fistler. 

America, ya gotta love it. 

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