Tag Archives: word of the week

Word of the week #5

Interrobang (noun, also known as interabang)

I’m going to defer to Wikipedia on this one but this is essentially the combination of ?! at the end of a sentence to indicate shock or incredulity when asking a rhetorical question. As in: How much do we owe on our credit card?!

If you follow the Wikipedia link you’ll see the correct way represent this little known punctuation tool is to type one character over the other … but find me a computer keyboard that will cope that with that with a minimum of stress. On a typewriter, maybe.

While we’re on obscure punctuation marks, I’m impressed by the Frenchman who suggested the Irony Mark (aka Snark), Doubt Point, Indignation Point, Love Point and several more. You’ve got to like that thinking.

Thanks to the erudite King of Quirk, Lliam, for this tip-off.

Word of the week #3

futzing (v) – spending (wasting?) time on unproductive computer activities when you’re meant to be working.

As in, He was “futzing” about while his boss waited for the report.

Hmmm… FB anyone?

Thanks to Guy Noble, ABC Classic FM and Word of the day (Penguin 2001) for that one.

Word of the week #2

phlegmatic – adj.

Proposed new meaning: to habitually and calmly inhale, gargle or snort snot at the end of every utterance, as if this is socially acceptable. Commonly observed on public transport.

As in: “My cab driver was totally phlegmatic.”

Previous meaning: Passive, stolid, sluggish, not easily perturbed.