Tuesday, February 1, 2011

my classic snowclone rant

As yet another winter storm threatens the US, lingo-tweeter cum lingo-grad student Lauren Ackerman marvels at the media's lust for snowmageddon and terms of its ilk, and I was reminded of my own ruminations on the many words for snow in my own peculiar dialect (it helped that I spent 6 hours in near motionless traffic a few days ago while the DC metro region was castrated by a vicious and sudden sleet storm that halted traffic as well as sanity). So I offer this re-post from February 5 2010:

As the snow descends upon Northern Virginia in the latest winter storm, and as DC's elite line-up at their local Whole Foods and Trader Joe's clutching their reusable bags filled with heavily packaged prepared meals, cardboard-container salads, 6 bottles of wine, and one bottle of water ('cause, ya know, it's an "emergency"), I am struck by the fact that the great Eskimo vocabulary hoax (pdf) is no hoax at all! It turns out that I too have a great many words for snow. This evening, while running a few modest errands before the night's predicted 20 inch snow drop, I meticulously recorded the various terms I uttered as synonyms for the fluffy white stuff which descended, rather gracefully, upon the landscape.

A few choice examples (NSFW):

  • "Why do people drive like such morons in this shit?"
  • "Hey asshole! This shit's not Vasoline! You can drive faster that 6 miles an hour!"
  • "This crap's gonna be piled up in disgusting dirty brown heaps for weeks."
  • "Fuck these fucking fuckers who can't drive in this fuck!"
  • "Ahhhh! You drive on this asshole-shit-motherfucker like it's nuclear!"
  • (directed at a plow driver) "push the fucking fuck fuck onto the curb, not back into the road!"
  • "gawd I hate everybody! All of you! All because of this ... grrrrrrr!" (picture head exploding)

*asshole-shit-motherfucker is actually quite productive in my dialect. It replaces a great many phrases.

Addendum (1-31-2011): I want to see a Visual Thesaurus word map of my words for snow!


Matt said...

Christfucking shit swearing is so goddamn versatile. Uncouth? Fuck it; it's motherfucking *fun*.

Also, a good stream of cursing can be even more expressive sometimes, so fuck the folk who claim it implies a limited vocabulary. I have a great vocabulary; I use it often. But sometimes, "fucking shitting fuck" is just the right phrase.

Brandon C. Loudermilk said...

Chris - I enjoyed your spot-on observation about peeps at Trader Joe's shopping with reusable grocery bags stuffed full of overly-packaged preprepared meals.

Chris said...

Brandon, thanks! And I see you're at Davis, my neck of the woods. Love it. I miss the Sacramento Valley "winter", hehe.

Laura Payne said...

I just shoveled a shitload of heavy ass, mother f'ing, back-breaking, fuckity fuck in southeast Michigan. Some say it is pretty to look at, but I know that it is going to turn into fugly snirt* before long.

*For the uninitiated that is a portmanteau of snow + dirt.

Chris said...

Laura, I love snirt! It has a Liz Lemon ring to it!

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