Posts Tagged ‘Hangry’

Is it Wine O’clock Yet? Awesomesauce!

 Dictionaries

Every year the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) adds new words to its online dictionary. This year’s crop was very exciting for me because the word “hangry” (meaning, “bad tempered or irritable because of hunger”) made the cut and, about four years ago I used that word in a piece called, Feeding the Hangry.

Four years ago! I was so ahead of the curve on that one!

I immediately told my kids how cool I am.

Never one to allow me to bask in my coolness, my younger son informed me that other cool words also made the cut, like “rando,” as in “a person one does not know, especially one regarded as odd, suspicious, or engaging in socially inappropriate behavior,” and “mkay” as in “to invite agreement, approval, or confirmation,” (in other words, “okay” spelled with an “m” instead of an “o”). Then there was “beer-o’clock” as in the right time to start drinking beer and “melty” because, apparently, melted is too difficult to write.

Not only did I not feel cool anymore but, I started to become very worried about my children’s use of the English language in the future.

I’m all for making up words. In fact, it’s one of my favorite things to do as I get older and I can’t remember words when I’m speaking. Just the other day, for instance, I suffered from a total brain fart. I couldn’t remember the words: real estate broker. So I went with “thepersonwhoputsyourhouseonthemarketwhenyouaretryingtosellit.”

Thankfully most of my friends also suffer from “old age brain” as well (see what I did there? I coined a phrase) so everyone can figure out what I’m talking about or at least not make fun of my new words.

But sometimes, made up words should have a short shelf life. Unfortunately with the advent of the Internet (one of 1974’s new words) new words crop up often and get passed around and, unfortunately, they never seem to die.

Don’t get me wrong. I understand the need for new words. Before text-messaging evolved in the 1980s there was no need for a word that described sending a message via text. Hence the need for a new word. Similarly, Goldendoodle dogs didn’t exist until the 2000s so that’s when the definition of Goldendoodle became relevant. Once they became a breed they were given a name.

Those words actually refer to something specific and definable. The word “fur-baby,” as in “a furry pet,” is neither specific nor definable. Call it your dog or your cat or your hamster. Or, call it your fur-baby. But does that word really have to be included in an archive of current English usage like the OED?

Well, yes.

According to the Oxford Dictionary website it does. It is also one of the top 5 most popular words in the U.S. as of today.

Right up there with:

-Awesomesauce

-Swole

-Butthurt and, my favorite,

unthaw – which now has a new meaning. The new definition as set out in the OED does not mean to freeze something. It now means to thaw. So, what’s with the “un” which means to negate?

At this point I don’t even know if I’m using real words in this post.

The interesting thing is that the tag line for the Oxford Dictionary’s webpage is: Language Matters. I assume that means that they are discussing matters of language instead of trying to tell us that the language we use makes a difference, because, if that is the case, then the word “swole” should not be a word. You know why? Because we already have the words, “swell” and “swollen.” SWOLE IS NOT A WORD!

But, apparently it is.

Rly!

In fact, it has, according to the peeps over at OED, been used so much as to demonstrate “continued historical use.”

WTF!

According to Fiona McPherson, senior editor of the OED’s new words group, in an interview with The Telegraph, new words are only added to oxforddictionaries.com after they “have been around for a reasonable amount of time and are in common use.”

Which means that enough people in the world have been using the term “cat café” (“a cafe or similar establishment where people pay to interact with cats housed on the premises”) to warrant the term’s inclusion in the dictionary.

Now do you understand why I am worried for my children and my children’s children??

Thankfully, words do fall out of fashion. For instance, the 1950s brought us the words aerospace, brainwash, artificial intelligence, do-it-yourself, and decaf but it also brought “Nowheresville” and “noshery.” Similarly, the 1990s gave us emoticon, gastropub, carjacking, and World Wide Web but also gave us “geeksville” and “poptastic.”

So there may be hope…or not.

Ms. McPherson believes that including slang words like “bants” (to banter) and “weak sauce” (“something that is of a poor or disappointing standard or quality”) isn’t “really about dumbing down, it’s more creative ways that people are using language.”

Great, next year all of our words will be creatively missing vowels.

NBD, rght?

Big News!

I have some really exciting news – and, no, I am NOT pregnant. That certainly would be “news” but not exactly the “exciting” kind.

No, today I was launched as a blogger for Manilla – an on-line, award-winning, free and secure service for consumers to manage their bills and accounts, in one place.

(But that’s not where I come in because I have no idea how to pay my bills on-line…yet)

Manilla.com, which is owned by the Hearst Corporation, also hosts a blog with over 75 expert contributors who write about money, organization, productivity and lifestyle topics on a monthly basis. I will be sharing my “expertise” about the joy and pain and stress and (joy!) of preparing two children to go off into the world as mature, responsible adults.

I was really drawn to Manilla when I saw their booth at the BlogHer Conference in Chicago in July. This t-shirt spoke to me:

photo

I’m always trying to get my s**t together; I thought having the t-shirt would help with that. It was definitely the first step.

If you want to get your s**t together, check out the site and the blogs and see what the other writers have to say about family, health, time management and money strategies.

But wait, there’s more!

If that wasn’t exciting enough for you, today is also the day that the new anthology, Not Your Mother’s Book…On Being a Parent is being released nationwide…and one of my stories is in the book!

Parenting 450_rgb

I am very excited to be part of this series of books and to have my parenting story be published alongside some really funny authors who simply tell it like it is—the good, the bad and the WTF? Not Your Mother’s Book…On Being a Parent is just one title in a slew of humorous books published by Publishing Syndicate, on topics ranging from college to menopause and everything in between.

So, without further ado, here is the piece that was included in the book. Although I wrote it a couple of years ago, very little has changed except that now I have two teenaged boys to feed.

Feeding the Hangry

“I’m so hungry and there is NOTHING TO EAT!”

And so begins the after school fun.

My 15-year-old will stand in front of an open refrigerator teeming with food—yogurt, wedges of multiple types of cheese, tortillas for quesadillas, frozen ravioli, drawers full of fruit and lunch meat, 3 different kinds of bread, frozen pizzas, 2 kinds of peanut butter, 3 different jellies, eggs (uncooked and hardboiled), and every kind of condiment you can imagine—and complain that there is no food in the fridge.

This is usually followed by words that make my blood boil: “Make me SOMETHING!”

Keeping up with the food intake of a 15-year-old boy is a very time-consuming (not to mention, expensive) proposition. My son needs to eat at least every 2 hours or he becomes Hangry – no, it’s not a typo – he becomes so hungry that he becomes angry and nobody needs a teenager who is angrier than usual.

He is capable of consuming an entire sub sandwich, a large bag of chips, yogurt and fruit and he’ll finish all of this off with a bowl of cereal. That’s between 3:30 and 3:45. By 4:15 he is starving!

So, what does he do? Does he then sort through the pantry and whip up a satisfying snack? Does he sift through his memories to find one of the endless recipes that I have painstakingly demonstrated to him should he find himself hungry and alone? No, of course not.  He waits for me to make him something or he grabs a completely unsatisfying cereal bar and moans until dinner.

I have been saying for years that he would starve to death if someone weren’t there to feed him. And whose fault is this? Mine. I take all the blame for this one.  I have gratefully fed him all of these years because he loves food—especially my food. What mother wouldn’t want to hear her child gush about how good her food is? “You’re the best cooker,” he told me when he was 5 as he inhaled whatever dish I put in front of him. That was cute then. Now, not so much.

So the other day, while he was begging me to make him some spinach ravioli with browned butter and shaved Parmesan (yes, yes, I’ve spoiled him, I know!), I turned to him and said: “No – make it yourself.”

“But I don’t know how,” he insisted. “And you’re right here. You could make it better.”

“Pretend I’m dead,” I responded. He turned to me in horror.
“What?” he asked.

“Pretend I’m dead,” I repeated. “How would you eat?”

I could see the wheels turning.  Should he demonstrate his limited cooking skills and make a quesadilla or should he pour another bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios?

It’s usually around this time – right after I’ve thrown down the gauntlet and demanded that he learn to take care of himself that I start to feel myself back-peddling. Would it really be so horrible to continue to cook for him while he lives at home? Couldn’t I just baby him a little while longer, he’ll be gone in a few years, right?

The reality is he would eventually find food or find a way to make food. He likes food far too much to subsist on sugar cereal and frozen waffles. He even signed up for a Creative Cuisine class next year at school. But why would he ever put any of those skills to use if I’m around to feed him? And should a 15-year-old have to?

What’s worse: not feeding your child who is asking for food or not teaching your child to fend for himself?

I feel my defenses breaking down. I’m just about to break out the pots and pans when he decides to answer me.

“If you weren’t around to feed me…I’d order take out.”

Problem solved.

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