Saturday, December 30, 2006

The Etymology of Belle

For Christmas, I received the book

Word Origins ... and How We Know Them: Etymology for Everyone (Hardcover)
by Anatoly Liberman
. Friends of mine, familiar with my penchant for word play, immediately thought this book was write up my alley. They know me well!

Inspired by Mr. Liberman's efforts, I thought it would be fun to explain the origins of some of the new terms that have entered our familial lexicon* since Belle came to live with us.

Tinkle Belle: Fondly applied to Belle during her potty training days, and resurrected with each bladder infection, it is a take-off on Tinker Bell - the obnoxious fairy in "Peter Pan" who sprinkled her magic over everyone and everything.

Puppernazi: A doggy dictator - puppernazi is a play on words. It combines the words puppy and nazi but borrows its meaning from paparazzi - which is defined by Wikipedia as "...photographers who take candid photographs of celebrities, usually by relentlessly shadowing them in their public and private activities". "Relentlessly shadowing" is generally a good thing for a service dog to be capable of, but I sometimes feel as if I no longer know the meaning of "private" time.

Poopernazi: A very short-lived nickname (thankfully) assigned during the diarrhea dog days of the summer of 2006.

Belle Boo: (pronounced Belly Boo) Alliterative familiar form of Belle used most often as an endearment. Also Miss Boo and Booey.

Puddle o' puppy (Pudl'o for short): Upon morning release from her kennel, Pudl'o is the sprawling position assumed by Belle at the top of the stairs which effectively blocks all access to those that follow. Requires excessive ear scritching, Bell(y)e rubs and general adoration of Belle by human before safe passage down the stairs is permitted.

*But please, do not refer to me as a lexicographer - which Wikipedia states is "...famously defined in Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language (1755) as "A writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing the original, and detailing the signification of words". Harmless, yes - but a drudge? Perish the thought!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Does all of this mean that we will receive more PUNishment than before? Oh, Pooperscooper.