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Postby Dr. Goodword » Fri Apr 01, 2005 12:34 am

• subduction •

Pronunciation: sêb-dêk-shên

Part of Speech: Mass noun (Good for prayers)

Meaning: The application of duct tape to the bottom of something, usually to hold it up but also for decoration.

Notes: Today's ducky little word for the first day in April comes from a large family of duct tape derivations. Superduction refers to placing duct tape over something, as the duck to the left demonstrates, while circumduction refers to running duct tape all the way around something (Victoria's wardrobe emphasizes circumduction. Click here for an explanation.) Abduction, of course, means binding someone's hands with duct tape and carting them off.

In Play: This word, more than anything else, proves that duct tape is duct tape and not duck tape, an issue that has plagued linguists for decades: "When Marvin threw the duct tape to Eldridge, the latter yelled to Benito, 'Duck! Tape!'" This is probably how the misnomer "duck tape" arose. (Click here for an alternative explication.) The normal use of today's goodly word, of course, goes something like this: "The light fixture was held to the ceiling by subduction."

Word History: Part of the duct tape-duct tape confusion comes from the history of this term. This word comes from Latin subductio(n-) "the sticky stuff under ducks", based on sub "an underwater vessel" + duct "duck, stickiness" + ion "tape". The root, duct- come from Latin ductus, ducdu- "ducky, sticky". Anyone who has tasted Peking Duck with duck sauce knows how sticky these birds can be when prepared for consumption. The suffix –ion comes from Latin ionere "to iron or tape" from ion "iron tape". When you put the two together, you get—well, you know. (Our gratitude to a new comer, April Phule, of Truth or Consequences, New Mexico, for today's controversial word.)
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Postby gailr » Fri Apr 01, 2005 1:16 am

A fine word and etymology for the day!

For more circumduction take a gander [sic] at duck tape fashion. Is necessity the mother of invention in these creations, or do they represent people with too much time (and tape) on their hands?


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Postby tcward » Fri Apr 01, 2005 8:14 am

The Duck Tape Club website is a great fun place to be.

I like the idea of sticking Duck tape meanings to other -duct- words.

Conductor - one who uses Duck tape
Reduction - re-applying Duck tape to something
Induction - taking something useless and using Duck tape to make it useful again
Deduction - figuring out ways to take something broken and useless and, through the art and science of creative Duck tape application, making it useful again
Production - a use of Duck tape so good, it can't help but encourage other folks to use Duck tape!

-Tim :lol:

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Postby KatyBr » Fri Apr 01, 2005 2:24 pm

tcward wrote:The Duck Tape Club website is a great fun place to be.

it can't help but encourage other folks to use Duck tape!

-Tim :lol:

Speaking of which, Duct(sic) tape inspires long TV shows, replete with clothing made of the stuff. even a tutorial on making duct tape purses.

whose motto is, "if it can't be fixed with either duct tape or superglue it can't be fixed."
I noted that duck comes in colors, Horrors! Duct tape is a dull aluminum color, ONLY!

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Postby Apoclima » Fri Apr 01, 2005 2:47 pm

Very funny, Doctor! You almost got me! That will teach me to look at the web before I've finished my coffee!

Very clever!

And what wonderful sites everyone has found!

I do love duct tape! I holds my plumbing together, and keeps the edges of my linoleum down. It is also handy when babysitting.

'Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination.' -Max Planck

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Pierre Laberge

Postby Dr. Goodword » Fri Apr 01, 2005 5:10 pm

Sorry about missing reduction. Several writers have mentioned it today. Here is the response of Pierre Laberge (who clearly has too much time on his hands):


I guess you forgot to note the most important word of the Duck Series!


1) To have to re-apply duct tape to something.
2) To cause to cease someone from applying duct tape to something.
OR: To force someone to use less duct tape.
(As through a court order or other edict.)

GRAMMARY & PARTS OF SPEECH: None. The word has more uses than a dog has fleas, and we can't keep track of this, here at Bad Word of the Day! Anyway, I couldn't identify a part of speech if it walked up and duct taped itself to me.


1) "It was necessary to request the landlord to cause a re-duction of the Lexiteria offices heating system, when the glue on the old tape wore out, and meters of the tape rained down on the hapless (helpless?) crew."

2) "The Good Judge Arnold Leakfast issued a Reduction Order against Wendy Middleton, for having the Good Doctor Beard duct taped to his desk, so as to make him work harder." (This order is currently under appeal....)

The roots go back to at least the early morning of April 1st, 2005, when a
pie-eyed reader of the daily Good Word managed to get two brains cells to

ET-mology: From the Pig Latin Root "RE" to "Re-do it", and the Creeky Greek Root "RE" to stop or re-strain", this noble word first traveled to France, where it was ignored because they were too busy. Then it went to England, where Queen Victoria was only slightly amused with it.

And from the Pig Latin Suffix "duction" to "draw out or do again" , and the Streamy Greek Suffix "duction" to "cause to happen, again, oh no". This word traveled to Germany, where it became associated with beer fests and hangovers. Then it traveled to the USA where it was bought for use during Budget hearings of the Senate. Somewhere near the Canadian border, the two words bits met, married, went to Niagara Falls on a honeymoon, and then went to live in Burbank California.
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