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Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Subject:||An elusive word|
|Question:||Good evening. For years I have been searching for the word which describes the following action: * two people who, upon accidentally meeting face-to-face as they walk towards each other, move left then right then left again in a comical yet unsuccessful attempt to bypass one another. Please put me out of my misery. Regards Michael|
|Reply:||A good example of a concept for which most of us don't have a word. Time to promote 'bobbing'? While on this topic, how about a word for 'surfaces of a room' (i.e. any or all of ceiling, floor, wall)? And here are some I recommend (some of which are making international headway): From Singapore/Malaysian English: 'kiasu' (keen to get the best for self). From my native Middlesbrough: 'cotter' (a tangle in the hair) From India: 'prepone' (to bring an event forward) From Australia: 'bottom out' (to hit the bottom of the car on using an overly steep driveway) Anthea|
|Reply From:||Anthea Fraser Gupta click here to access email|