The art of “PORTMANTEAU”.

James Murray

For those of you uncertain as to the proper pronunciation, it’s “Port-Man-Toe” in the written Ebonics. Carrying on, the dictionary will simply describe Portmanteau as a word or morpheme whose form and meaning are derived from a blending of two or more distinct forms. (I say that with complete certainty because the bulk of that last sentence was a direct cut and paste from a dictionary website.) The most common example of this one could argue is the word “Smog” as it originates from “Smoke” and “Fog”. So many of these words have found their way into our everyday dialog, including more recent additions such as; “Bootylicious” or “Guesstimate”. Even when first presented with one of these words its meaning is so very often intuitive. Rarely is a definition required to help a new user successfully adapt it into their vocabulary.

As many of the other Gents will attest to, I have on occasion found myself “Unscrupivised”. As to say, I was both without adequate scruples and adequate supervision to make an appropriate decision. (I must of course state that many of those occasions came while pursuing my studies in Mixology with Gentleman Lee Dunteman. Who as it turns out, was also unscrupivised.) I would further put forth that when you first read the word unscrupivised, you had a “Quimsical” look upon your face. Would you not agree that the expression would have conveyed both your questing of the word and how whimsical it sounded to you? As I do realize that I stated that defining such words was unnecessary, I did so simply to help you feel certain in your application and confident in your future use of these and other Portmanteaus that you may encounter as you progress through life.

In general, remember that there is an art to language and regardless of practicality, art is always necessary. Revel in the ability to share concepts and ideas. While not everything will be Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, thankfully, it can be more than a little amusing to give voice to your thoughts. You don’t have to be a Shakespearian Actor or a Used Car Salesman to benefit from a rich vocabulary and keen awareness for body language. Embrace the need to express and open yourself to those around you. (As much too how something is said as to what was said.) You can only grow and better yourself for it.

Cheers!

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