The editors at OxfordDictionaries.com try to stay on top of the latest developments in English vocabulary, and they just added 1,000 new words to their online dictionary.
Updates include acronyms like WTAF (“what the actual f__”), shortenings like jel (jealous) and creative spellings like hawt and fone.
The new entries aren’t necessarily new words; some are very old (cool beans, five-second rule), and some are so “last year (or five)” ( lolcat, duckface, Obamacare), but quite a few were new to me. And I like to think I keep up with the latest in word news.
Most of these are British or Australian coinages, and haven’t made it to the US yet. I plan to do my part for al desko and mahoosive at the very least.
1. AL DESKO
A play on al fresco, which means “dining outside,” this word is perfect for the way we live now, wolfing down food at our desks while messing around on the computer.
Even bigger than massive. And it sounds that way doesn’t it? The new ginormous.
Stands for “middle aged man in Lycra” and has to do with the current cycling craze. Observe the MAMIL in his natural habitat. His bike is expensive and his outfit is way more professional than it has to be.
It’s yeasty. It’s salty. You love it or you hate it. And now it’s “used in reference to something that tends to arouse strongly positive or negative reactions rather than indifference.”
5. SHINY BUM
An Australian term for a bureaucrat or office worker. Not sure what the imagery is here. They sit so much their bums get shiny? They spend their time polishing their bums for kissing?
Australian for “person who is socially prominent or displays social aspirations.”
British word “used to convey that something is very straightforward.”
8. STICKER LICKER
How Australians refer to the person who issues parking fines.
9. THE ANT’S PANTS
This Australian version of “the bee’s knees” is the cat’s pajamas.
Term for a style of soccer play “involving highly accurate short passing and an emphasis on retaining possession of the ball.”
“Tomorrow,” which has way too many syllables, obvs.