More fun with etymologyJuly 2, 2008
(Previous fun: A sniglet for our times, 12-23-07.)
1. Modern biology labs are full of plastic 1.5-mL microcentrifuge tubes commonly known as Eppendorf tubes. Somewhat less ubiquitous are similar but smaller tubes that only hold 0.5 mL. Lots of researchers refer to these as mini-Eppendorfs, 0.5-mL Eppendorfs, or PCR tubes … but Dr. Chris Damman, who worked in our lab this past January, has come up with a much better term: Eppendwarves!
2. Slate.com, my favorite news website, has spent the last several months dutifully cataloging the “Obamafication” of the English language. For instance, a Baracktogenarian is “an Obama supporter over the age of 20”; an Obamaton is “a mechanical Obama supporter constructed to act as if by its own motivation.” Now Slate offers a new Obamaism every day. All of this seems a bit silly to me, and yet I couldn’t resist submitting my own Obamaism, which was published today:
Nirbama (ner-BAH-muh). n. A state of bliss and peace gained by breaking the cycle of reincarnation of Bushes and Clintons running for president. Example: After seeing the political soul of George H.W. Bush reappear in the form of his son George and that of Bill Clinton re-emerge as his wife Hillary, many voters experienced feelings of Nirbama when Barack Obama won the nomination.