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Werd: Bailout - Part Five

Posted by Patrick Snajder Categories: Editorials, Taxes, US Economy,


The history of the word “bailout” is spotty at best.  My handy not-quite-the-real-OED has no etymological definition.  Merriam-Webster, who chose “bailout” as the word of 2008, gives a lame definition with a general reference to the year 1951:

Date: 1951
: a rescue from financial distress

So I went to the vast Google books resources and noticed that bailout in 1951 referred to pilots, bailing out of their cockpits [see also, Popular Mechanics in 1947 and 1956].

But what does that have to do with finance?

Click to continue reading Werd: Bailout - Part Five

Read More | 2008 Word of the Year


Merriam-Webster to Release New Words

Posted by Sheila Franklin Categories: Corporate News, Internet,

M-W DictionaryMerriam-Webster has announced over one hundred new words that will go into its 11th Edition Collegiate Dictionary. To determine which make the cut, they study the usage for sometimes decades before accepting them. Among the words are webinar, infinity pool, dwarf planet, Norovirus, and dirty bomb, but it is mondegreen that is our fave.

What is a mondegreen, you ask? According to M-W, it is a “noun defined as a word or phrase that results from a mishearing of something said or sung” first coined by author Sylvia Wright in the 50’s when she admitted that she misunderstood song lyrics. We know that some of our personal mondegreens include those from “Blinded By the Light” and “Louie, Louie.”

To celebrate, M-W Online is calling for submissions of your favorites through July 25. Already available online, the 2008 print update of the Eleventh Edition will be in bookstores September 1.

Read More | Merriam-Webster

w00t is Word of the Year

Posted by Sheila Franklin Categories: Wearables, Design, Internet,

w00t cap“w00t” has been announced as the word of the year by Merriam-Webster. Site visitors were asked to vote on 20 words and phrases that were derived from the most frequently searched words. The runner-up was facebook, followed by conundrum, quixotic, blamestorm, sardoodledom, apathethic, Pecksniffian, hypocrite, and charlatan.
Some believe the word “w00t” came from the obsolete word “whoot” (“hoot”,) while others believe it originated from the bunnies in Quake III. We are not surprised that it took the top award, since we have seen the word cropping up in such items as shirts, buttons, tree ornaments, mousepads, and this cap for $14.89, designed for those who actually know what it means.

Read More | Merriam-Webster