Words for Things You Never Knew Had Names
When I was little, I asked my mom, “Why does everything have a name?” I chose to float this question while we were battling our way through the mall for some last-minute Christmas shopping, so she was harried and distracted while I was eight years old and basking in the glory of my philosophical wonderings. She explained in exasperation, “Because otherwise we’d have to refer to everything as ‘it’ or ‘that thing,’ and nobody would have any idea what anyone was talking about.” So there was my answer, and poof! I suddenly achieved a whole new level of cosmic understanding. Everything has a name… even the following:
Meaning: It’s the armhole in your shirt, because "armhole" was just too obvious.
Meaning: This is when your stomach rumbles, but I’m going to go ahead and say what we’re all really thinking—it’s when your stomach gives an explosive roar like the MGM lion and everyone in class looks up from their test to stare at you with judgment in their eyes and fear in their hearts.
Meaning: Not wanting to get out of bed in the morning. I will freely admit that I exist in a constant state of dysania. It's closely related to slugabed, which means a person who remains in bed long after the usual time of rising. (I live in a constant state of that also.)
Meaning: The way it smells after it rains. Or a telepathic password. (Doctor Who, anyone?)
Meaning: Misheard lyrics. For example, how many people here thought “all of the other reindeer” was “Olive the other reindeer” and remained convinced that there was a total asshat reindeer named Olive running amok who used to laugh at Rudolph, call him names, and absolutely forbid him from joining any reindeer games?
Meaning: When your foot falls asleep, and we all know what comes next—you begin dancing around frantically and slamming your foot into solid objects to get rid of that pins-and-needles feeling, to the general alarm of everyone else in the room.
Meaning: This refers to “otter dung." Apparently the term “otter dung” didn't do it justice.
Meaning: It’s the name given to the little “&” symbol. It actually used to be part of the alphabet but was disgracefully kicked out of the club just like Pluto.
Word: semantic satiation
Meaning: When you say a word so many times it loses its meaning. For instance, go ahead and say “umbrella” eighty or ninety times in a row and behold the existential crisis that’s most assuredly coming your way.
Meaning: The offspring between a donkey and a zebra, which is weird, because I’ve been referring to that as a donkbra.
Meaning: It’s the dot over a lowercase i or j. This was recently a Jeopardy! question, so for everyone who says it’s a useless word you’ll never need to know, well, I totally impressed my mom with that one in Double Jeopardy, so put that in your juice box and suck it! (By "totally" I mean "marginally," and by "impressed" I mean "frightened." I bellowed it quite loudly.)
Meaning: It’s when you have that butterflies-having-a-mosh-pit-in-your-stomach feeling.
Meaning: Personally I think this sounds like the world’s most intense boomerang, but it’s actually just the double use of punctuation marks (?!). It's often used to convey shock, anger, and incredulity all rolled into one, like, "What are doing with that really intense boomerang?!"
Meaning: Buttock-shaped. You're welcome.
OFFICIALLY ADDING ALL OF THESE TO OUR DAILY VOCABULARY. Which one is your favorite?