(With apologies to Flaubert.)

< ...>: A form of emphasis employed by bloggers who wish to show that they understand HTML. The ellipses are usually replaced by “SARCASM” or “RANT” but anything will serve. Rendered as […][/…] by bloggers who do not understand how to escape characters in HTML.

: May be appended to anything except an actual trademark.

call your office: A directive not intended to be followed addressed to someone who will never read it.

cool kids: Other people.

crickets chirping: A colorful synonym for “silence.” Often set off in its own paragraph for extra color.

even the: Always succeeded by “liberal,” if you are conservative, or “conservative,” if you are liberal.

fascist: See idiotarian.

heh: The soul of brevity is to use one word where none will do.

idiotarian: A particularly dull-witted commentator, and thus deserving of special attention, who disagrees with you. Thunder against.

indeed: See heh.

literally: Figuratively.

meme: Anything that anyone else has ever referred to on the Internet.

read the whole thing: Always preceded by “As they say,” or “To coin a phrase.”

shocked: Always succeeded by (shocked!).

the “Q” word: Quixotic.

Aaron Haspel | Posted July 21, 2003 @ 1:37 PM | Blogs,Language

9 Responses to “A Blogger’s Lexicon”

  1. 1 1. Andrea Harris

    Actually, I use the square brackets because I am too lazy to type out the escape characters. Also, a lot of php blogging and messageboard programs use square brackets for formatting code instead of the pointy brackets. Which have a name that I can’t remember right now, because I am too lazy.

  2. 2 2. Jonathan Wilde

    How about:

    open thread – I can’t think of anything original to blog, so you guys go ahead and engage in a flamewar with each other.

  3. 3 3. Aaron Haspel

    Not bad, but so far as I can tell it’s Tacitus’ particular specialty.

  4. 4 4. James Russell

    When you say "thunder against", do you mean against people designated as idiotarians or against the word "idiotarian" itself? Cos I prefer the latter option there.

  5. 5 5. Aaron Haspel

    James: "Thunder against" is Barzun’s translation of Flaubert’s frequent injunction "tonner contre" from The Dictionary of Accepted Ideas. As to your choices, I don’t actually mean either.

  6. 6 6. James Joyner


  7. 7 7. James Joyner

    Daily Kos does the open thread thing, too.

  8. 8 8. Dodd

    Personally, when I use the word "shocked" it is always *preceded* by the word "shocked."

  9. 9 9. Deb

    I thought it was "shocked, simply shocked" –it’s the "simply" that’s always puzzling.

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