Friday, July 25, 2008

A Wee Contest

Here's my latest on Encarta:

Since I received a matched set of decade-appropriate teal suitcases for high school graduation, I've had an unholy obsession with luggage.

For at least as long, I've also had an indecent interest in the lives of celebrities. Now, the realization that my favorite kind of word is also a type of suitcase and it has to do with celebrities is almost more than I can bear.

I'm talking here about portmanteaus.

In the world of suitcases, a portmanteau is a stiff leather case that hinges open to reveal two equal-sized storage compartments.

As great as this is, the word-nerd's version is even better. A portmanteau is a hybrid of two other words that carries the meaning of both. The word itself is even a portmanteau, as it comes from the French word "porter," meaning "to carry," and "manteau," a "cloak or mantle." Sigh.

And talk about celebrity baggage ... it's there, too, in the form of TomKat, Gyllenspoon and even Bennifer.


Have a favorite portmanteau of your own? SPOGG is having a contest. The best one wins a prize from the SPOGG shop. Send your entries to

No comments: