Lest we become urban rubes

At the risk of stirring the good Mr. Webster to spin in his grave, I thought today we might observe his birthday—and National Dictionary Day—with a visit to a more unconventional resource, the online Urban Dictionary.

Given that the Urban Dictionary exercises very few quality standards, I realize this might offend lexicographic purists. Even so, for the sake of balance, we might consider it beneficial, while remaining true to our values, to also remain current with the popular language and slang of our times.

I perused a sampling of the definitions contained within the online Urban Dictionary and immediately came upon one I related to. Post block syndrome (PBS): Similar to writer’s block, only in the context of social networking sites. Unable to come up with post-worthy content.

Here are a few more I found amusing:

Pre-festive: The state of premature holiday celebration by means of decorations, singing, or costume. You might say my blog post of yesterday was pre-festive.

Tongue typo:  What happens when you know perfectly well what you want to say but it comes out wrong. Not to be confused with a tongue taco, the ability to twist one’s tongue into the shape of a taco shell.

Auto incorrect: When the auto-correct feature on your iPhone tries to correct your spelling, but instead changes it to words that just don’t make sense with what you’re typing.

Lap flaps: The flaps found inside magazines that fall out onto your lap.

Finally, here’s one that went over my head for years. My son says it sometimes when we’re talking (or, I suppose, when I’m talking). That’s crazy: The perfect response when you haven’t been listening at all. It works whether the other person has been saying something funny, or sad, or infuriating, or boring….

Well, those are just half a dozen of 5 million definitions contained in the Urban Dictionary. If you have a few spare minutes after properly fêting Noah Webster, check it out. Or go in and add a definition of your own. That’s allowed. Obviously.

Please remember, Word Nymph doesn’t post on Sundays. She’ll be overcoming a bad case of PBS. See you Monday (maybe).

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Filed under All Things Wordish, Holidays, Reading, Technology and Social Media

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