Friday, March 6, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Oxford chooses ‘omnishambles’ as word of the year

By
From page A2 | November 13, 2012 |

By Jill Lawless

LONDON (AP) — Britain’s media are in a meltdown and its government is gaffe-prone, so Oxford Dictionaries has chosen an apt Word of the Year: “omnishambles.”

Oxford University Press on Tuesday crowned the word — defined as “a situation that has been comprehensively mismanaged, characterized by a string of blunders and miscalculations” — its top term of 2012.

Each year Oxford University Press tracks how the English language is changing and chooses a word that best reflects the mood of the year. The publisher typically chooses separate British and American winners. This year’s American champion is “gif,” short for graphics interchange format, a common format for images on the Internet.

The editors said gif was being recognized for making the crucial transition from noun to verb, “to gif”: to create a gif file of an image or video sequence, especially relating to an event. And, inevitably, to share it online. Cute kittens, Olympic champions, President Obama — they’ve all been giffed.

Coined by writers of the satirical television show “The Thick of It,” omnishambles has been applied to everything from government PR blunders to the crisis-ridden preparations for the London Olympics.

Oxford University Press lexicographer Susie Dent said the word was chosen for its popularity as well as its “linguistic productivity.”

She said “a notable coinage coming from the word is Romneyshambles” — a derisive term used by the British press after U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney expressed doubts about London’s ability to host a successful Olympics.

Omnishambles was chosen over shortlisted terms including “mummy porn” — the genre exemplified by the best-selling “50 Shades” book series — and “green-on-blue,” military attacks by forces regarded as neutral, as when members of the Afghan army or police attack foreign troops. (For American English speakers, it’s “mommy porn.”)

The Olympics offered up finalists including the verb “to medal,” ”Games Maker” — the name given to thousands of Olympic volunteers — and distance runner Mo Farah’s victory dance, “the Mobot.”

Europe’s financial crisis lent the shortlisted word “Eurogeddon,” while technology produced “second screening” — watching TV while simultaneously using a computer, phone or tablet — and social media popularized the acronym “YOLO,” you only live once.

The final shortlisted term in Britain is an old word given new life. “Pleb,” a derogatory epithet for lower-class people, was alleged to have been uttered to a police officer by British Cabinet minister Andrew Mitchell. He denied using the term, but resigned.

Other words on the U.S. shortlist included Higgs boson (as in particle), superstorm (as in Sandy) and “nomophobia,” the anxiety caused by being without one’s mobile phone.

All the shortlisted words have made a splash in 2012, but editors say there is no guarantee any of them will endure long enough to enter the hallowed pages of the Oxford English Dictionary.

Comments

comments

The Associated Press

.

News

Bay Area developers join Mace proposal

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

 
Trial ordered in Davis child death case

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1

‘Topping out': Sign a building beam at the Shrem Museum

By Jeffrey Day | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Life after lawn: Fifty greens for shade

By Katie F. Hetrick | From Page: A1 | Gallery

UCD police warn of sexual battery incident

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

 
Bob Dunning: There’s an exception to every rule

By Bob Dunning | From Page: A2

Ukraine declares heavy weapons pullback from front line

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
NASA craft circling Ceres in first visit to dwarf planet

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

CHP car hit with bullet on highway

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Got sun? Indoor herbs can thrive on windowsills

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

How can we know that the products we buy for our homes are safe?

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Quick home improvements that raise your resale value

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

Spring-clean your kitchen in five easy steps

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Peripheral neuropathy support offered

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B6

Workshop eyes creating peace through creative play

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B6

 
Museum brick sales to end this month

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B6

 
Cabrillo Club plans membership dinner

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B6

Dryers: Homes’ energy guzzlers just got greener

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Need a new best friend?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B6 | Gallery

UCD improving farming, food production with fewer pesticides

By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: B6 | Gallery

 
PSAs highlight area nonprofits

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B6

Waldorf’s spring tea party doubles as open house

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
Register online for Woodland rec classes

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

Older adults will discuss conscious aging movement

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7Comments are off for this post

 
St. John’s shows off cuisine at brunch

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

 
Seniors serious about fitness

By Savannah Holmes | From Page: A11 | Gallery

Pig out at Pig Day Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
Porkers on display at Hattie Weber Museum

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

.

Forum

Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: B4

 
Some convicts don’t deserve parole hearings

By Tom Elias | From Page: B4

Here’s how to make college cheaper

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B4

 
Obama’s world is a dangerous place

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

Dirty laundry on the company line

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B9

 
.

Sports

DHS girls track and field team reloads for 2015

By Dylan Lee | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
UCD women fall at UCR

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

Aggie men clinch Big West crown

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Marsh provides radio images of a ‘magical’ Aggie hoops season

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Blue Devil volleyballers cruise in home opener

By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Sports briefs: Bella Vista slips past DHS softballers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B12

.

Features

 
Rec Report: Looking ahead to spring break

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B5

What’s happening

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: B5

 
Wineaux: A local diamond in the rough, revisited

By Susan Leonardi | From Page: A9

.

Arts

Tables available at Vinyl and Music Fair

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

 
Steve Kiser’s work on display at Gallery 1855

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery

‘The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel': Second-rate

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
Learn from experts at ‘Art of Painting’ conference

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

Tom Brousseau to visit ‘Live in the Loam’ on KDRT

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

 
‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ auditions set

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

Hugh Masekela and Vusi Mahlasela celebrate Mandela’s legacy

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A12 | Gallery

 
.

Business

Honey, we shrank the SUV — and Europe loves it

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Friday, March 6, 2015

By Creator | From Page: B10