Home Columns Anantha Narayan Just coined

When billions of people have millions of things to convey, even the 6,00,000 words in the Oxford English Dictionary may seem woefully inadequate. Which is why, neologisms are minted every year to keep pace with our thoughts.
2015 saw many new words take the world by storm. The practice of using drones to deliver packages was brought to light by Amazon. But DHL went a step further and actually deployed it by labelling the service as ‘Parcelcopter’. The name has fast emerged as the category descriptor.
Another word with immense utility is the Mx honorific. Although coined in the 1970s, the gender-neutral title gained currency as Mr, Miss, Mrs or Ms wasn’t doing the job for transsexuals, cross dressers, gays and lesbians. By extension, one can state that the gender-neutral pronouns would be Xe (instead of he/she), Xyr (for her/their), and Xym (for him/them).
An acronym that’s gotten popular is FOGO (Fear of Going Out). It’s the uneasy feeling anti-socials experience when their friends call them out for a lunch, dinner or a hang-out session. I can confess, I get FOGO all the time.
The noun ‘manspreading’ is something most males will relate with. It’s the habit of sitting in public transport with legs wide apart. Another masculine word is ‘lumbersexual’. It’s a reference to young urban men who cultivate the appearance of a rugged outdoor person by sporting a beard and looking neatly unkempt.
Tiger Moms of the 80s have given way to Helicopter and Lawn Mower Parents. Helicopter parenting involves hovering over children and constantly worrying about them, while the Lawn Mower types actually smoothen the path by eliminating all hurdles, thereby creating spoilt brats.
The digital overload of mindless WhatsApping, Facebooking, Tweeting and YouTubing has created a new kind of beast, the ‘Disconnectionist’. Basically, it cues a person who believes in shutting down all devices and focusses on opening up to oneself. Another appropriate coinage is ‘Dumbwalking’. It’s the zombie-like walk of someone who has lost his attention to a smartphone.
Booze lovers will relish ‘Wine O’Clock’. It’s the time of the day when you start wetting your lips. Foodies will concur with the thinking behind ‘Hangry’. It’s the state of being so hungry that you become angry. The Urban Dictionary has a lot more of these creations. Till you visit the site and find out for yourself, I won’t breathe a word.

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