Friday, May 29, 2015

selfies, belfies, and soulfies

One of the great virtues of American English is that it has served as a lovely, anarchic breeding ground for new words, for all sorts of coinages and neologisms. Give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses of slang. We're not like the French, waiting for an academy to grant approval to our local, handcrafted, artisanal, non-GMO, and ferociously democratic wordsmithing.

"Selfie" is but one example, illustrating the modern solipsistic passion for pictures of one's self, or of one's orbit of selfdom. By extension, the New York Times tells us this week, "belfies" are self-administered photos of one's behind. Posterior selfies. Who knew? (Not me.)

Which gets me thinking. Try these on for size. And feel free to chime in with your own inventions.

soulfies -- Snapshots of the current state of your soul.

barfies -- Instagrams of pub crawling. Can be used for calling in sick the next day.

aarfies -- Adorable dog images.

rolfies -- Photos of successful holistic soft-tissue release. (Cf. rolfing. Replaces old-fashioned smiley-face emoji.)

nullfies -- Blanks. Nothing. Zilch. Nothing on the screen, but takes up memory anyway. (A sly comment on nihilism. Then again, maybe not.)

oughties -- The pictures you really should have displayed, instead of the ones you regrettably did display.

Your turn, dear reader.


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