Today, I’m putting on my filthy leftist Hating America First hat and suggest that American English could really benefit from being more like German. Y’know how German has compound nouns, words that are basically created by further modifying other nouns through attaching more descriptive terms to the original term? Well, that’s how German works, or at least so I’ve been told. It’s how German ends up with wonderfully descriptive nouns, such as “Backpfeifengesicht,” or “a face that cries out for a fist in it.”
Pretty cool, eh? So, English needs a little more of that. One compound term that keeps popping into my head is “totally unbelievable yet entirely unsurprising.” We need a word for that. Now, obviously, yes I could use that whole phrase every time I wanted to get such a sentiment across, but it’d be a lot easier to have one word.
Take this as an example: Cool little piece from Copyblogger about niche marketing. Money line:
Chris Christensen owns a business that manufactures and sells high-end beauty products … for dogs.
Yup, that’s right. Some guy has been enormously successful and runs a highly lucrative business selling makeup to dogs. Betcha feel pretty good about trying to get that law degree now, don’t you? This story, to me, captures both emotions of “totally unbelievable yet entirely unsurprising,” which, by the way, does occur in that order every time. I read that post and said, “Wow, some guy is making money hand over fist marketing makeup to dogs? That’s absolute bullshit!” And then I thought about it for a second and realized that in this world, in this day and age, that’s just not surprising at all. There are people who are willing to spray paint hair on their heads, fer chrissake.
Mitch McConnell rhapsodizing about how the goals of he and his cohorts supersede… elections? Pretty ridiculous when you think about the way that democracy is supposed to work. And totally unsurprising if you’re a follower of Mr. McConnell’s work. I rest my case.