Thursday, January 08, 2009

Digging dirt in politics

The Washington Post deploys its investigative reporting resources to delving into the etymology of a hyphenated word that is creeping into Obama's statements - shovel-ready.
The phrase doesn't appear in Merriam-Webster's online dictionary. Dictionary.com is stumped, but suggests an alternative spelling: "shovelhead." The Oxford English Dictionary, final arbiter of all word arguments that it is, offers no shovel-ready listing, either.

Could this be a made-up word? If so, who made it up, and how did it end up in the mouth of the next leader of the free world?

Deeper digging is required.
Read more and dig deeper yourself.

Speaking of made-up words, blogpourri is one too!

3 comments:

Nino's Mum said...

that's one more made-up word I like!
I don't know about shovel-ready though. Although Obama with his sleeves all rolled up and ready to get to work makes me feel better about the world.

Bhel Puri & Seekh Kabab said...

Construction projects have so much paperwork to go through after being greenlighted (anther neologism) that it takes a few months, if not years, before the first shovel is turned. Hence, shovel-ready projects- all the paperwork has been completed and all it takes is a shovel to break ground.

Btw, blogpourri is a portmanteau word.

Sujatha said...

BPSK, I had a vague understanding of portmanteau, but you made me go look it up, for that I shall give thanks.

Is shovel-ready a phrase you use regularly?

Nino's Mum, good image indeed!

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