I think if you’re a blogger, and therefore a writer, then by virtue of this, you possess an enquiring mind. Writing is thinking “on paper” (to use an anachronism).
When I first considered a foray into blogging, my enquiring mind, and my love of semantics, wanted to know more about this “word” – blog.
Other bloggers might well read this and go,
“Uh Duh!! Done that already, about three billion years ago!!” My apologies to them.
“What about the word “blog” then?”, others may reluctantly ask, but lacking the conviction that they really care. Their shoulders sagging in utter world-weary (not to mention word-weary) resignation, that every second bloody second there’s more zeitgeist (as if we didn’t have enough already!!!).
What do we call it – linguistically speaking (is that tautology?), if we take two words, WEB and LOG, then make them into one word, WEBLOG, then drop the first two letters to form the “word” BLOG?
I’d just finished writing the foregoing, when my mate walks in, and says “What’s a portmanteau?”, which you’d have to admit is no ordinary question; he possesses an enquiring mind too.
I say, “French for suitcase I think, why?, what’s the context?”. (Nota Bene – he has no idea what I’m writing about.) He replies, “A portmanteau word; apparently ‘blog’ is a portmanteau word”.
Wow!!! Synchronicity. Love that.
“Hang on”, I reply, “I’ll look-it up on an-extremely-well-known-leading-brand-of-search-engines” (no, I’m not going to say it…. again).
Here’s the gist. In Victorian England the word portmanteau was used to mean a suitcase of sorts, however in the original French, it was more like a kind of clothes horse… A bit like a pre turn of the century (the 20th, not the 21st) Corby trouser press!! Ultimately what it means in terms of semantics is that two words have been compressed into one, but the resulting word retains the meanings of both of it’s parent words. Nice. Tidy!
So, do we apostrophise? Is it ‘blog, or is that too pernickety? I’m sure the good people at the O.E.D. would say not, but they’d probably have to be some of the most retentive people in the cosmos – n’est pas?
So to reiterate, I apologise if this subject has been flogged and blogged to death already, but for the sake of my own enquiring mind, I needed to enquire.
And still more parentheses….. (I feel as if I need to add a disclaimer of sorts… For anyone not familiar with the expression ‘to flog a dead horse’ – it means to continue to discuss and debate a point which has already been settled – something I’m pretty good at as you can tell – I’m the kind of person who explains jokes!!! I would hate anyone to think that I’m some kind of equine sadist – Heck, I’m virtually a vegetarian (little fishes that swim, and flightless birds excluded) – I don’t eat or indeed flog, quadrupeds of any sort. Hope that’s clear.)
Next week, my lovelies,