James Young

Competition | 23 August 2008

James Young presents the latest competition

James Young presents the latest competition

In Competition No 2558 you were invited to submit entries to Dr Johnson for inclusion in a 21st-century supplement to his dictionary.

At first the Doctor feared that too many of you were confining your definitions to the five examples he gave of the sort of thing he wanted. In the event he awarded first prize of £30 to the entrant who best defined these five examples — Brian Murdoch, albeit a Scotchman. The runners-up are Bill Greenwell and Basil Ransome-Davies, who win £20 each, while the other contributors get £5 for each definition used.

asbo a certification, notarised by a Justice, confirmatory of the fact that the bearer is a roisterer, scallywag, lummock or jailbird, though he be not in jail; possession of which is reckoned a mark of distinction amongst those justly called scapegallows.

blog an electronically medium whereby initiates convey uninteresting personal intimacies to the uninterested commonality.

chav a low person of either sex, a would-be buck, whose means exceed his manners, now-a-days frequently resident in the County of Essex.

whadeva a formulaic response signifying ‘what you will’ betokening complete indifference on the part of the utterer to diction, phonology, pronunciation, and to the person of the interlocutor.

innit a punctuative phatic interjection having no meaning whatsoever, capable of appendance to any sentence by young persons of no breeding in the southern parts of England. It has no connexion with the word now current to designate the Esquimaux.
Brian Murdoch

arsed used in negative passive constructions as a synonym for ‘bothered’ (viz. ‘am I bovvered?’), indicating that the speaker is in an idle or apathetic frame of mind, loth to expend energy, e.g. ‘I’m supposed to be at work today, but I can’t be arsed.’

metrosexual an affluent urban male with all the cartoon attributes of a vain and narcissistic heterosexual woman (keenly concerned with fashion, grooming, diets, expensive toiletries, etc.)

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