Thursday, June 14, 2007

It's Not New, You Numbnuts!

Ok, I love Mike & Mike. Call me a sucker, but their shtick amuses me. I listen every morning while getting ready for work. But, Mike, Mike, ridonculous is not a new word. You cannot copyright it, trademark it, patent it, or even debate its spelling because it already exists. Here it is in Urban Dictionary.

You see, this morning Mike and Mike attempted to establish a new word to replace "filthy" when describing a pitcher's outstanding stuff. Each of their options was flawed, but I have a solution. We'll get to that in a bit. First, there options: ridonculous, schnizzily, savage, fecalicious, and unkempt.

As mentioned, ridonculous is not a new word, which is largely what had Mike and Mike excited about it. I admit it sounds good. And that's why I, and I assume thousands of others, have been using it to describe spectacular, or "filthy," sports plays for years. In fact, here it is in sports discussion from back in '05 where a Red Sox fan inaccurately predicts the divisional playoffs: "Because we wear down pitchers like nobody's business. We drive pitch counts insanely high and have some guys with ridonculous OBP's. That being said I don't think the ChiSox can beat us in the playoffs." Point is, if the goal was to add a word to the sports lexicon, they failed. They merely discovered a word the rest of us have been using for years.

As for the others . . . Schnizzily is kind of fun, but really, it could mean anything. It doesn't even sound like it means "filthy," or outstanding. It is, as Tim Kurkjfjksgnvjkian, or someone, pointed out this morning, too soft.

Savage is nothing new. Saying a curve ball is savage is just like saying its nasty, or wicked, or any other word that means really, really mean. So to all the people who voted for savage, and nearly made it the winner: congratulations. You have voted to maintain the status quo, to uphold the dominant paradigm. America has always thrived on an aversion to new ideas and an unwillingness to embrace progress and change. So, thank you. Oy.

Fecalicious? Let's face it, almost all of us are just uncomfortable with the word fecal, and any of its iterations. First off, there's the uncomfortable association with, um, fecal matter. Then, there's the fact that the word just sounds gross, like yeast or moist. Yuck. Fecalicious just won't work.

Finally, unkempt is just too mild, too polite. Replacing filthy with unkempt is like replacing nasty with mildly unpleasant. Justin Verlander didn't strike anyone out with a mildly unpleasant curve ball. Unkempt is weak.

So, what is to be done? I have a solution. Some of you know, and some of you don't, that I'm a prosecutor at an unnamed county, state or federal agency somewhere in Chicagoland. (Actually, I'm an appellate prosecutor, hence the user name, uh, Criminal Appeal. Anywho . . .). Occasionally I have to deal with briefs, motions or petitions from actual prisoners: pro se filings. Occasionally these prisoners are insane. Recently, I had a prisoner who liked to invent words for his filings. This man has provided us with an answer to the question, how else can we describe a pitcher's filthy stuff. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you:

SUPERSEGOGATORY. A couple nights ago, Justin Verlander's stuff was just supersegogatory. You'll note that not only is supersegogatory not a word, neither is plain, old segogatory. So, it can't just mean something is extra segogatory. In fact, I have no idea what he meant. Even in context, it was just nonsense. But now, this word has purpose.

So forget filthy or nasty or even ridonculous. The new word for the sports lexicon is supersegogatory. Remember, use it three times today and you'll own it for life.


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