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MALAPHOR

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MALAPHOR

Postby Dr. Goodword » Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:31 pm

• malaphor •


Pronunciation: mæl-ê-fêr • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: Catachresis, a mixed metaphor.

Notes: I recently heard Tennessee state senator Stacey Canfield say on MSNBC, "You don't have to be a rocket surgeon to figure it out," conflating "rocket scientist" and "brain surgeon". Such conflations occur when the speaker goes to his or her lexicon for an expression, comes up with two simultaneously, and has no time to choose. Malaphor has a modest following of about 2000 on the Web, and it appears in at least two dictionaries, Wordnik and Wiktionary.

In Play: Other classic malaphors include: "We'll burn that bridge when we come to it," mixing "burn your bridges behind you" and "cross that bridge when we come to it". Some others to leave you with: "I could stand out here 'til the cows turn blue". "Go take a flying hike!" "It is as easy as falling off a piece of cake." Get the picture?

Word History: Today's Good Word was contrived in 1976 in a Washington Post op-ed piece by Lawrence Harrison and recently revived by David Hatfield in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. It is a blend of malaprop and metaphor, both of which we have covered before. Malaprop is a commonization of Mrs. Malaprop, a character in Richard Sheridan's comedy The Rivals. Metaphor is a noun from the Greek verb metapherein "to carry beyond, to transfer". Metaphors were considered by the Greeks to carry us beyond the words contained in them. (Daniel Obertance didn't have to be a rocket surgeon to suggest today's up-and-coming Good Word.)
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby Slava » Wed Feb 20, 2013 12:21 am

Nice. A neologism that I think will survive. Or, at least, I think it deserves to.
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby MTC » Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:20 am

Some will dump on the bandwagon with malaphors, but I would rather cut to the mustard than beat a dead bush. Bite the bucket, that is. Anyway, it doesn't take a pocket scientist to play eight ball, does it? But we'll bump that bridge when we come to it. Of course, a rolling gnome gathers no moss. Well, things seem to be going south, don't they? Now look! You've got me foaming at the South! Mad as a batter!
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Feb 20, 2013 1:09 pm

Hey!
Take a drink of water.
Relax! Chill!
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby Perry Lassiter » Wed Feb 20, 2013 5:44 pm

Or at least a wink of drater.
Down here, btw, chillax is frequently heard, esp among teens.
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby gailr » Wed Feb 20, 2013 10:28 pm

I think I follow you, MTC; I've worked with a few people I described as not the brightest crayon in the box, mostly because they won't wake up and seize the carpet. But all's well in love and war, and all that glitters is as good as gold.
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby MTC » Thu Feb 21, 2013 8:38 am

Wow! Thanks gang! Don't know what came over me. I read "malaphor," then blacked out. Now this... If I said anything to offend anyone, well, sorry... Just don't sequester me, that's all.

"Sequester, sequestrate, sequestration?" Oh no, I feel the verbolepsy coming on again...
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby LukeJavan8 » Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:50 pm

Take a deep breath and follow it with a soothing nap,
and call me in the morning.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby chatsnoir » Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:18 pm

don't overlook the obvious..... this might be a JOKE, an intentional play on words..... at least that's how i saw it.....

:lol:
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby Perry Lassiter » Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:14 pm

A JOKE? No one jokes on this board? We are dead cereals.
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby Philip Hudson » Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:38 pm

chatsnoir: You have not posted much on Alpha Agora. I enjoyed your entrance into this zany discussion of malaphor. Post more often.
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Re: MALAPHOR

Postby LukeJavan8 » Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:43 pm

you bet, chatsnoir. I love your handle. Don't lurk in
the shadows....join us.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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