A port(e)manteau word is an imaginative linguistic creation anyone can come up with. It fuses two different existing sounds and meanings and compounds them into a new snug expression. A wide array of portmanteaux has quietly infiltrated into our common vocabulary rut without our noticing it. Many of these words are no longer recognisable as random concoctions. Some even made it into respectable dictionaries, whereas others are so painfully adventurous that – for straight minds – their meaning becomes utterly unfathomable. A circumstance that forces the ones who coined them into a kind of zugzwang, should they want to see their congenial brain waves preserved for the next generations. But we need not worry: The universal power of social media will reliably enhance their endeavours to the fullest, don’t you think?
Port(e)manteaux: Fusion and coining of words
So, when you and your framily are literally sick of the smog your polluted hometown is shrouded in and your imperfect medicare programme lets you down thoroughly on the subsequent health effects, you may consider heading off after brunch to check into a wholesome little countryside motel offering pristine air and all that. Or you may even invest in posh accommodation glamping style somewhere far beyond the beaten track.
Saves you and your folks having to use sporks and spives, which can be quite awkward, as is endorsed. If you belong to the nudist fraction, you might prefer a nakation over a playcation. On the other hand: Why not be greedy and recklessly indulge in both?
Bring your old camcorder to document your bizcation!
Whereas male members of LGBTI will undoubtedly go on a gaycation – unless they’d rather decide on a staycation – which, of course, is the most economical choice for virtually everyone, albeit perhaps a bit uneventful, especially for those devotedly following their in-depth blog. Frequent telethons or perma-zapping through worldwide edutainment channels may alleviate upcoming dramedy.
Socially responsible newly weds tired of decadently lazing about exotic sandy beaches are now keen on serious honeyteering, preferably enhancing a reputable ecotourism scheme. And practically thinking business people will make the best of the situation by farsightedly forging work and private time into a classy bleisure experience package.
Although for the latter, in some countries, it may be wise to consult the tax man first…
A small choice of portmanteaux:
Smog = smoke + fog
motel = motor + hotel
Ecotourism = ecological tourism
Brunch = breakfast + lunch
Staycation = holiday at home
gaycation = LGBTI holidays
nakations = staying at nudist colonies
playcations = just-for-fun holidays
Bleisure = business + leisure
Bizcation = business + vacation
glamping = glamorous camping
honeyteering = honeymooners + volunteering
framily = friends + family
blog = web + log
telethon = telephone + marathon
dramedy = drama + comedy
edutainment = education + entertainment
camcorder = camera + recorder
Here’s what wiki says about the origins of such cross-words:
„The word ‘portmanteau’ was first used in this context by Lewis Carroll in the book ‘Through the Looking-Glass’ (1871), in which Humpty Dumpty explains to Alice the coinage of the unusual words in Jabberwocky, where ‘slithy’ means ‘lithe and slimy’ and ‘mimsy’ is ‘flimsy and miserable’.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portmanteau
Header photo: ©Christina Feyerke