Friday, July 31, 2009

Ilene Evans 7/31/09

In Celebration of our great adventure in words and sound and language here is my gift to all of us from eecummings. Happy Summer !

since feeling is first
e.e. cummings

since feeling is first
who pays any attention
to the syntax of things
will never wholly kiss you;
wholly to be a foolwhile
Spring is in the world
my blood approves,
and kisses are a better fate
than wisdom
lady i swear by all flowers. Don't cry
—the best gesture of my brain is less than
your eyelids' flutter which says
we are for each other: then
laugh, leaning back in my arms
for life's not a paragraph
And death i think is no parenthesis

Class Pictures

News from The Cultural Moment

I enjoyed this article from the AP on a number of points related to our class: discussion of vocabulary ("... this is not a summit, guys,” Obama told reporters. “This is three folks having a drink at the end of the day, and hopefully giving people an opportunity to listen to each other.") the use of "teachable moment" AND the example of bringing together the "victim" and the "offender" in which, ironically, the officer-of-the-law is the offender and the man-of-color is the victim! Also of interest is the staging of the meeting: in the garden, drinking beer. Joe Biden is included and in the news photo we see them seated clockwise: Gates - Crowley - Obama - Biden; black - white - black - white. The 2 guests are in dark suits while the hosts (Obama & Biden) are in their characteristic white shirts-with-sleeves-rolled-up. Curiously, although there are 4 men at the table, Obama says "three folks" I guess the VP is lower status?

WASHINGTON — With mugs of beer and more-carefully chosen words, President Barack Obama tried to push himself and the nation beyond an uproar over race, chatting in his garden Thursday with the black professor and the white policeman whose dispute had ignited a fierce, consuming debate.

Under the canopy of a magnolia tree in the early evening, Obama joined the other players in a story that had knocked the White House off stride: Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Cambridge, Mass., police Sgt. James Crowley. Vice President Joe Biden was with them on a Rose Garden patio.

The men were seen chatting with each other, each with a mug of beer. The media were stationed far away, out of earshot, and ushered away quickly.

Although Obama had invited Crowley and Gates as part of what he called a “teachable moment,” it wasn't quite reachable for the masses. The coverage allowed the public to get the we've-come-together photos and video footage that the White House wanted, while keeping the discussion private among the men.

Crowley and Gates, in dark suits for the highly anticipated meeting, seemed more formal than Obama and Biden, who had ditched their coats in the early evening. The president nibbled on snacks and was seen laughing at one point.

The meeting lasted over 40 minutes.

A short time earlier from the Oval Office, Obama had done what his aides had been doing for days: lowering expectations.

“I noticed this has been called the ‘Beer Summit.' It's a clever term, but this is not a summit, guys,” Obama told reporters. “This is three folks having a drink at the end of the day, and hopefully giving people an opportunity to listen to each other. And that's really all it is. This is not a university seminar.”

There's been a political cost for Obama for the episode, stealing attention from his agenda and drawing negative public reviews on how he handled the matter.

It began when Crowley investigated a potential burglary at Gates' house and ended up arresting the protesting professor for disorderly conduct. The matter mushroomed into a debate on racial profiling, fueled when Obama said in a prime-time news conference that the police “acted stupidly.” He later expressed regret.

Gates, 58, is black. Crowley, 42, is white. The charge against Gates has been dropped.

The White House meeting drew such media interest that press secretary Robert Gibbs said he looked forward to facing no more questions about what beers each man would drink. For the record, it was Bud Light for Obama, Sam Adams Light for Gates, Blue Moon for Crowley, and nonalcoholic Buckler for Biden.

Before the photo-op moment of diplomacy, Obama confessed that he was “fascinated by the fascination about this evening.”

“Hopefully, instead of ginning up anger and hyperbole everybody can just spend a little bit of time with some self-reflection and recognizing that other people have different points of view,” Obama said. “And that's it.”

Crowley told Boston TV station WHDH that he hoped for a meaningful discussion with the president and then a quick return to his job. “Right now I just want to get back to work, get back to doing what it is I do, get back to being a dad to my three children,” he said at an airport in Washington.

It was Obama himself who said last week the episode could be a “teachable moment” on improving relations between police and minority communities.

Yet his agenda became simply to allow for a good, productive conversation. The hope, in turn, is that people in communities across the nation will see the meeting as a model for how to solve differences — more listening, less shooting from the lip.

Yet a parallel goal for Obama is to cap this story and move attention back to his push for a national health care overhaul.

The White House says it is not paying for any transportation or other accommodation costs for Gates or Crowley. Gates and Crowley had family members with them. They got tours and pictures.

“I hope it's more than media hype. I really hope that it's a moment where everyone acknowledges the complexity of race relations in our country,” said Kelly McBride, a specialist in ethics at the Poynter Institute journalism center.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Steve Evans: Neologisms 22-25

SNIGLET: a term invented by comedian Rich Hall for a "word that should be in the dictionary, but isn't." A few examples: doork, a person who pushes on a door marked "pull", lotshock, the act of parking your car, walking away, and then watching it roll past you, pupkus, the moist residue left on a window after a dog presses its nose to it.

DAFFYNITION: a pun coined by reinterpreting an existing word. Making up daffynitions is a game on the BBC Radio 4 comedy quiz show I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. A few examples: antelope, to run off with your mother’s sister, testicle, an exploratory tickle, scandal, footwear you should be ashamed of, boomerang, what you say to frighten a meringue, pasteurize, too far to see

Consumers plan to stay home more often, taking STAYCATIONS instead of vacations.

"We don't want to get DIXIE-CHICKED. We've invested millions of dollars in the movie."(Dreamworks executive, 2003). dixie-chicked, to suffer economic loss by alienating a constituency.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Rachel finds Relief: People who Make a Difference to the Storyteller

Besides the storyteller, there are many people who make the difference.

Some of these people are--
  • Coaches--In 1556 of the Middle French "coche", the German "kotsche", and the Hungarian "kocsi" the word means "large kind of carriage". There was a village named "Kocs" of where the carriage was first made. The word transferred to several different transportation devices. Then, in 1830, another meaning of "instructor/trainer" came about and "coach" was Oxford University slang for a tutor who "carries" a student through an exam. By 1861, the coach connected to athletics. Storytelling could be considered a sport. The idea of being carried seems to take away the will of the storyteller. Now compare to the mentor.
  • Mentors--In 1750 from the Greek "mentor", it means "wise advisor". Interestingly, Mentor was the name of a friend of Odysseus and adviser of Telemachus, who was often the goddess Athena, the goddess of wisdom, in disguise. The word "mentos" means "intent, purpose, spirit, passion". The Latin "mon-i-tor" means "one who admonishes or "one who thinks". The word "mental" is from around 1422 Middle French "mental" to mean "of the mind" By 1927, it also means "crazy, deranged". This reminded me of how genius and madness are often the same thing. Think Yoda from Star Wars. The word "advice" comes from 1297 Old French "avis" to mean opinion" and the French saying of "it seems to me". There is reference to vision and ability to see, which then leads to knowledge. As for the word "wise", this comes from Old English "wis" to mean "to see". The slang meaning of 1896 means "aware, cunning". The Greek "eidos" of "wise" means "form, shape, kind" and "course of action". If someone had to choose to between a mentor or a coach, I would choose mentor every time.
  • Support--In 1382 from the Old French "supporter" and the Latin "supportare", it means "convey, carry, bring up" or "up from under". The "sup" means "up from under" while the "portare" means "to carry". The noun connects to "act of assistance, backing" as in "services which enable something to fulfill its function and remain in operation". When looking at "port", then the Old English "port" means "harbor, haven". The Latin "portus" means "entrance, passage". I certainly feel safe and able to enter risky ventures when I have the support of family and friends in storytelling.
May the world bless us with plenty of coaches, mentors, and support!

Until we tell again,

Rachel Hedman
(801) 870-5799

Rachel Reaches into Repertoire: What Any Storyteller Wants More Of

There are certain aspects of storytelling that I would want a never-ending supply.

Here are ones that would be on my wish list--
  • Creativity/Create--In 1386 from the Latin "creatus", it means "to make, produce", which is also related to "crescere" as in "arise, grow". There is reference to the Creator or "Supreme Being". When we create, we certainly are working with a divine quality. There is a sense of imagination to the act. "Create" also relates to "crescent". In 1399 from the Anglo-French of "cressaunt", then we get "come forth, spring up, grow, thrive". Ceres, the goddess of agriculture, came from the Latin "creare" as in "to bring forth, create, produce". The word "create"references "shape" within the Old English "scapan" to mean "to create, form, destine". There is the sense of scraping, polishing and sometimes hacking.
  • Idea--In 1430 of the Latin "idea" it means "figure, image, symbol" as well as "archetype" in Platonic philosophy. The Greek word "idea" means "ideal, prototype" and has reference to being able to see or have vision. Funny enough, an idea was the "result of thinking". How else an idea may come. . .well. . .I guess some things are like lightnings of inspiration. But even thinking is involved here since one needs to recognize that the idea is an idea! When one delves into the meaning of "vision", the word came from 1290 Anglo-French of "visioun" to mean "something seen in the imagination or in the supernatural". Vision also has the connection "to know, to see".
  • Originality--In 1315 of the Latin "originalis" we have "beginning, source, birth". From the Latin word "oriri" we get "to rise". The word references to "orchestra" of which, in 1606, the Latin word "orchestra" means "area in an ancient theater". The "tra" part denotes place while the "orkheisthai" means "to dance" as well as "to go, come". As storytellers, to be original may then mean to go or come from another direction upon the stage as a starting point for the story to evolve.
  • Theme--Around 1300 of Old French "tesme" (of which the "s" was silent) and from the Latin "thema" we receive the meaning "a subject, thesis". The Greek thema means "a proposition, subject, deposit" or "something set down". This comes from the root of tithenai that means "put down, place". The word "theme" references the word "factitious", of which the Latin "factitius" of 1646 means "artificial". Could this mean that a theme is a man-made device to assign meaning to something presented. Does this make it "artificial" that we put down as if like a thesis for people to make judgments on after hearing the story or stories?
  • Motif--In 1848 of the French "motif" it means "dominant idea, theme". It references the word "motive", of which this word came about in 1362 from the Old French "motif" to mean "something brought forward". Then, from Modern Latin "motivus", we have "moving, impelling". When connecting to the word "move", then it could mean "that which inwardly moves a person to behave a certain way". A motif is much like the universal thoughts and observations that move us to certain results or actions.
  • Archetype--In 1545 from the Latin "archetypum" is the meaning "original pattern from which copies are made". The Greek "arkhetypon" means "pattern, model" or "first-moulded". The "arkhe" means "first" and the "typos" means "model, type, blow, mark of a blow". Then, from Jungian pyschology of 1919 we then have it mean "pervasive idea or image from the collective unconscious". Some of the word "archetypes" connects with "archon" of mean the Greek "arkhon" means "ruler" or "to begin, rule, command". Some common archetypes in storytelling are the wild woman, old hag, the step-mother. We see them in all cultures and seem to "rule" how we view these models or characters.
  • Repertoire--In 1847 from the French "re'pertoire", it means "a stock of plays, songs, etc." The Latin "repertorium" means "inventory. The word references "repertory", which is from the 1552 Latin "repertus" to mean "to find, get, invent". The "parire" part means to "produce, bring forth". There was also reference to the word "parent" from the Old French "parent" or the Latin "parere" as to "bring forth, give birth to, produce". Any stories we put in our repertoire is a form of birthing. The stories become our children. . .and sometimes we "show them off" to the world.
  • Interaction--This is a combination of the words "inter" and "action" put together in 1832. The "inter" comes from the Latin "inter" to mean "among, between". Sometimes "inter" is spelled "entre" in French and used in such words as "entertain" and "enterprise". The "action" comes from Old French "action" or the Latin "actionem" around 1360 to mean "to do". In 1599, relates to "fighting". Then by 1968 it means "excitement". In the storytelling sense, an interaction with the audience could be more "fighting" if anger-based, but usually ours would fall more into the "excitement" area in an attempt to engage among them.
  • Improvisation--In 1786 of the French "improvisation" and "improviser", they mean "act of improvising musically" as well as to "compose or say extemporaneously". The Italian "improvvisare" means "unforeseen, unprepared". When looking up extemporaneous, the word comes from 1656 from the Latin "extemporaneus" to mean "offhand, in accordance with (the needs of) the moment". There is a connection to "time", of which the Old English word "getimian" means "to happen, befall". Improvising is about seeing what will befall when asked to shared ideas at first thought. Whenever we tell stories, there is always the improvising with the audience although the plot of the story may stay fixed. Then there are the storytellers who are 100% improvisational.
  • Spontaneity--In 1656 of the Late Latin "spontaneus" we have "willing, of one's own free will". When looking at "will", this word comes from the Old English "willan" or "wyllan" to mean "to wish, desire, want" as well as to "be pleasing". Rather than the frozen sound that storytelling could have, the free flow of words tend to be more "pleasing" to the audience.
What do you wish you had a never-ending supply of as a storyteller?

Until we tell again,

Rachel Hedman
(801) 870-5799

Katie Nuttall Language Usage #21-25

Language History Lessons: My last entries for the Language Journal. Number 22 was very surprising to me! I have really enjoyed this assignment. Enjoy!

21. On July 14th while I was sitting in Linguistics class David simply said, “We pay attention.” I must have been paying attention a little too much because that phrase stuck with me. I started thinking about the word “pay,” and all the different uses for it. We pay the clerk. He has to pay. Pay it forward. (Notice I had to use three examples!) There are also idioms associated with the word pay: pay as you go, pay back, paying its way, pay the piper, pay through the nose. But it made me think about the origin of the word pay.

Word History: Given the unpeaceful feelings one often has in paying bills or income taxes, it is difficult to believe that the word pay ultimately derives from the Latin word pāx, "peace." However, it is not the peace of the one who pays that is involved in this development of meaning. From pāx, meaning "peace" and also "a settlement of hostilities," was derived the word pācāre, "to impose a settlement on peoples or territories." In Late Latin pācāre was extended in sense to mean "to appease." The Old French word paiier that developed from Latin pācāre came to have the specific application "to pacify or satisfy a creditor," a sense that came into Middle English along with the word paien (first recorded around the beginning of the 13th century), the ancestor of our word pay. (From

Given the word history it is very interesting indeed how we use this word.

22. The Linguistics’ class went out to dinner on Thursday July 23rd. There were many conversations going on. But as I was talking with Kristy and her friend Rachel, the phrases “Sell me up the river” and “Selling down the river” came up in our conversation. It is an interesting phrase. First, it would be very difficult to go up the river and go against the current. But, what is the difference between the two? To me they were very similar, so I looked it up. This is for your “gee-whiz collection” so you’ll always know. It is also a very good lesson in history!

Sell someone down the river: to betray someone; to reveal damaging information about someone; to do something which harms or disappoints someone who trusted you, in order to get an advantage for yourself; to do something that hurts someone who trusted you

Send someone up the river: To send someone to prison. (Underworld. As done by a judge or indirectly by the police.)

Where they came from: The Origins

SELL DOWN THE RIVER: This expression arose in the U.S. in the mid-19th century and referred literally to the sale of troublesome/uncooperative or escaped slaves, as punishment, to the owner of a plantation on the lower Mississippi River - thus 'down the river'- where conditions were harsher than in the Northern slave states. The term first appeared in print in Harriet Beecher Stowe’s novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin in 1851 and came to be used figuratively by the late 19th century.

SELL/SEND UP THE RIVER: which means send to prison, originally referred to incarceration at Sing Sing (also referred to as the ‘Big House’)—the infamous prison (PC is now ‘correctional facility’) located up the Hudson River from New York City and which, by the late 1800s, was notorious as one of the most brutal penitentiaries in the country.

23. The waitress also came to take our orders. But, she first shared the special. It was some sort of beef with vegetables and garlic mashed potatoes. I then commented to Debbie, “Garlic. Mashed. Potatoes. What could be better than that?” The second I said it I realized what I had said: a combination of three. No wonder it sounded so good. Here was the triple threat being used against me. I wanted those mashed potatoes. However, I don’t think they would have sounded so appetizing though if she said, “The steak comes with a side of potatoes that are mashed with some garlic.” Word order has an impact to the ear. I wonder if restaurants have ever looked into that as a sales tactic?

24. On Thursday night, July 23rd, we were coming back from Café Lola. Steve, Debbie, Ilene, and I were sitting at a red light on Roan Street when someone said, “Let’s do a Chinese Frill Drill.” This brought back memories of myself as a teenager running around the car and changing seats. Steve mentioned how when he did a “Chinese Fire Drill” he would run and left the windshield wipers on the car in front of them. Although I think this phrase would be considered politically incorrect to use, it made me stop and think.
So…where did this phrase start? I did a little digging. I went farther then trusting Wikipedia. The best explanation comes from Random House. Hope it is enlightening for all of you who have participated in this before:

There are two main senses of Chinese fire drill. One is the broad one, 'a state or example of utter confusion'. The other, rather specific, is a high-school or college prank where a group of students jump out of a car that's stopped at a red light, run around the car, and pile back in before the light turns green. Both of these stem from the idea of a fire drill being confused and panicked.

The first sense was first used in the military in World War II. Chinese here is not necessarily a racial sentiment. Several expressions in common use in aviation since World War I, such as Chinese landing 'a clumsy landing' and Chinese ace 'an inept pilot', derive from the English phrase one wing low, thought to resemble the Chinese language or a Chinese name. The use of Chinese to mean 'clumsy; inferior' may stem from these phrases, although there were earlier isolated examples which were based on ideas of the inferiority of the Chinese.

The car-prank sense is first attested in print in the early 1970s, but a number of people have reported its use in the 1940s, '50s, and '60s, so it is likely that the phrase was current at the time, but simply was not written down that early.

25. On Monday July 27th, I was having a discussion with Debbie, when I used the phrase, “I was in la-la land.” La-la land? Hmmm…made me think. I also use this often when referring to students that are not paying attention. Then I thought about all the other references to this sentiment: never-never land, out to lunch, in outer space, spacey, going to your happy place, head in the clouds, and the list goes on. Many of them have to do with location. It is interesting that not being focused is associated with being in another place—since technically we kind of are. I like the references to lands; it makes it sound a little gentler to be escaping reality by going to another world.

Catherine Horn: language 23-24

This phrase was used in a newsletter from mt granddaughter's school
Lake Wobegon Effect-
"...where all the children are above average"
School systems where test scores of all students fall within the above average range. (a statical impossibility)
Earliest citation: Christopher Connell, "Education Officials Say Achievement Tests Paint Unrealistic Picture" 1998 Associated press

A Joe Bidenism (or foot-in-mouth-disease)
July 15, A phrase from my husband after hearing an implicitly racist remark in a news interview,
"I don't know if that was intentionally indirect or it was a Joe Bidenism."
Something for the fun ot it!

Reece Museum Program by Ilene Evans

I did a family storytelling program at Barnes and Nobles over the weekend.
Mbira - the thumb piano that I played is an African American adaptation of the African mbira from Zimbabwe. To read some more about their significance in the culture in Zimbabwe here are to sites to visit: and

Baba Jamal Koram has had an American artist make an African American version of the traditional instrument that is very nice to play.

Katie Nuttall Language Usage #17-20

The Bachelorette and the power of language:

I was watching the Bachorlette this week. It was the “men tell all” edition. This episode is usually a wasted week. BUT it is a LINGUISTIC DREAM! It is always a mixed bag of nuts! But, it provided ample examples of language. Everyone is different from each other and a definite product of their environment.

One of my favorite moments of the show was watching a neologism in the making. To understand its meaning you would of have to have watched last season. Last season, the Bachelor was named Jason Mesnick. The last episode featured him making his final decision of who to marry. He was distraught over his decision. After he dumped the final girl and walked her out, he proceeded to go over to a balcony railing and hang his head and cry. Knowing that, makes you appreciate this part of the show:

Contestant A: I think the last moment you really pulled a “mesnick.” Let me just clarify what a mesnick is: it is when a grown man leans over a hotel railing and cries. Because I heard that in ya. That’s really what that was. Pulling a mesnic. PULLING A MESNICK EVERYBODY!

Host: On a scale, though... of like zero to mesnick...How did he do?

Contestant A: He was like a mesnick. He straight. Up. Mesnick. Being a 10! He was right there.

Contestant B: That’s the problem. When you tell people all the time that you are perfect…You came across like it’s so canned like you came off of a like soap opera. It is the whole nine yards.

This was beautiful! From the “mesnic” to the “being canned like a soap opera.” I thoroughly enjoyed this moment!

Next, the big part of the episode was discussing “man code.” One of the more aggressive guys made this comment: “It’s man code that you don’t break, and when you do it is just disrespectful.” The host even commented on how a lot has been made of this “man code” and sought a definition, which I was interested in knowing as well. “Man code is an unspoken rule…set of rules, that men…don’t have to talk about.” It was even more fun to listen to this guy give an example of how you don’t hook up with your best friends girl and to how essentially they were breaking “man code” already by being on the show, because they were “fishing in the same pool.” This got others to define what their definition of “man code.” Another said it was more about respecting women, being an adult. It seemed the men themselves couldn’t quite agree on what “man code” was and spent a lot of the discussion going around in circles. I never got a clear understanding, but may be someone else can enlighten me?

Also, one of the other guys made this comment, “I prepared to go on the show, I prepared to meet Jill, I prepared to meet some guys, but what I didn’t prepare for was…having to defend myself.” I have noticed that the rule of three is everywhere we talk: from words, to phrases, to even sentences. We tend to need that beginning, middle, and end in our speech.

The conversation got more and more intense as the episode moves forward. It heated up. The swear words started to fly. It was pure drama that I would usually associate in a “cat fight.” I think one of the contestants summed up this entire shows theme, when he said, “Why waste all this energy on all this whole Alpha male banter stuff. Where’s Jillian?” That was what this part of the show thrives on: the craziness of personalities mixing.

The best thing is you can ALL watch this on over and over and over again. Then you can see the Alpha Male banter for yourself.

Catherine H: Language 18-23

Language limiters
Drive-thru, pay-at-pump, self-serve, debit card, ATM machine

Sunday morning on my way back to ETSU, I stopped at the bank, got gas, and picked up a cup of coffee at McDonald's. In my errands I encountered the above words/phrases. None of these phrases are particularly new or interesting, however taken together as a whole they exemplify a small pocket of our lives in which we now function in relative isolation that only a few years ago would have been filled with person-to-person encounters and conversation.
  • I have to admit I think the ATM machine is the best technological innovation is the last 30 years. I don't remember how I functioned without it. When I got cash Sunday morning I went to a bank that was not open, where I do not have an account, and I got cash. SOOO Convenient! I did not have to go in my local bank, engage in small talk, explain to the staff where I was going, and I didn't have to look at any graduation or new grandchildren pictures.
  • Drive-thru service eliminates physically walking into the restaurant and the possibility of incidental conversation with folks waiting in line or at surrounding tables. Drive-thru conversation with the order taker/ cashier and server is formulaic and stilted.
  • Self service at gas stations eliminates talking to the station attendant and with the pay-at-pump convenience you don't even have to go into the building. I have bought my gas at the same gas station for three years. I don't even know what the people who work there look like. Ten years ago I knew who owned the local station; I knew stories about their children; I knew where they went to church; I knew their medical history. I knew these things because I talked to them every time I bought gas.
The gain in these conveniences might be time but the loss is community. The small conversational encounters are important in their own right but cumulatively they build a network that I don't think we can really afford to lose.

Catherine H: name etymology

Gender: Feminine
Usage: English

Pronounced: KATH-ə-rin, KATH-rin [key]
From the Greek name Αικατερινη (Aikaterine). The etymology is debated: it could derive from the earlier Greek name ‘Εκατερινη (Hekaterine), which came from ‘εκατερος (hekateros) "each of the two"; it could derive from the name of the goddess HECATE; it could be related to Greek αικια (aikia) "torture"; or it could be from a Coptic name meaning "my consecration of your name". In the early Christian era it became associated with Greek καθαρος (katharos) "pure", and the Latin spelling was changed from Katerina to Katharina to reflect this.

The name was borne a semi-legendary 4th-century saint and martyr from Alexandria who was tortured on a spiked wheel. The saint was initially venerated in Syria, and the name was introduced to Western Europe by returning crusaders. It has been common in England since the 12th century in many different spellings, with Katherine and Catherine becoming standard in the later Middle Ages.

Famous bearers of the name include Catherine of Siena, a 14th-century mystic, and Catherine de' Medici, a 16th-century French queen. It was also borne by three of Henry VIII's wives, including Katherine of Aragon, and by two empresses of Russia, including Catherine the Great.

Catherine H. etymologies 22-25


1656, "a drawing of the outline of anything," from It. profilo "a drawing in outline," from profilare "to draw in outline," from pro- "forth" + filare "draw out, spin," from L.L. filare "to spin, draw out a line," from filum "thread." Meaning "biographical sketch, character study" is from 1734. The verb is 1715, "to represent in profile," from the noun. Meaning "to summarize a person in writing" is from 1948. Profiling in the racial/ethnic stereotyping sense is recorded from c.1991.


O.E. hors, from P.Gmc. *khursa- (cf. O.N. hross, O.Fris. hors, M.Du. ors, Du. ros, O.H.G. hros, Ger. Roß "horse"), of unknown origin, connected by some with PIE base *kurs-, source of L. currere "to run" (see current). Replaced O.E. eoh, from PIE *ekwo- "horse" (cf. Gk. hippos, L. equus, O.Ir. ech, Goth. aihwa-, Skt. açva-, all meaning "horse"). In many other languages, as in O.E., this root has been lost in favor of synonyms, probably via superstitious taboo on uttering the name of an animal so important in I.E. religion. Used since at least 1391 of various devices or appliances which suggest a horse (e.g. sawhorse). To ride a horse that was foaled of an acorn (1678) was through early 19c. a way to say "be hanged from the gallows." Slang for heroin is first attested 1950. Horseplay is from 1589. The belief that finding a horseshoe by chance is lucky is attested from late 14c. Horse latitudes first attested 1777, the name of unknown origin, despite much speculation. Dead horse as a figure for "something that has ceased to be useful" is attested from 1638. High horse originally (c.1380) was "war horse, charger;" fig. sense in mount (one's) high horse "affect airs of superiority" is from 1782. The horse's mouth as a source of reliable information is from 1928, perhaps from the fact that a horse's age can be determined accurately by looking at its teeth. To swap horses while crossing the river (a bad idea) is first attested 1864 in writings of Abraham Lincoln. Horse sense is 1870, Amer.Eng. colloquial, probably from the same association of "strong, large, coarse" found in horseradish. Horse and buggy meaning "old-fashioned" is recorded from 1926 slang, originally in ref. to a "young lady out of date, with long hair." The proverbial gift horse was earlier given horse:

"No man ought to looke a geuen hors in the mouth." [Heywood, 1546]

The modern form perhaps traces to Butler's "Hudibras" (1663), where the tight iambic tetrameter required a shorter phrase:

He ne'er consider'd it, as loth
To look a Gift-horse in the mouth.


1593, "a 'vocal gesture' expressing the action of puffing anything away" [OED], first attested in Hamlet Act I, Scene III, where Polonius addresses Ophelia with, "Affection! pooh! you speak like a green girl, / Unsifted in such perilous circumstance. / Do you believe his tenders, as you call them?" But the "vocal gesture" is perhaps ancient. Among the many 19th century theories of the origin of language was the Pooh-pooh theory (1860), which held that language grew from natural expressions of surprise, joy, pain, or grief. The slang reduplicated verb pooh-pooh "to dismiss lightly and contemptuously" is attested from 1827. Pooh as baby-talk for "excrement" is from 1950s (cf. poop (n.2)).


c.1225, from O.Fr. coart, from coe "tail," from L. coda, dialectal variant of cauda "tail," of uncertain origin + -ard, an agent noun suffix (denoting "one who does"). The word probably reflects an animal metaphoric sense still found in expressions like turning tail and tail between legs. Coart was the name of the hare in O.Fr. versions of "Reynard the Fox." As a surname (attested from 1255) it represents O.E. cuhyrde "cow-herd."

"Cowardice, as distinguished from panic, is almost always simply a lack of ability to suspend the functioning of the imagination." [Ernest Hemingway, "Men at War," 1942]

An O.E. word for "cowardly" was earg, which also meant "slothful."

Beth Ohlsson - etimology 23-25

23. create: c.1386, from L. creatus, pp. of creare "to make, produce," related to crescere "arise, grow" (see crescent). Creator for "Supreme Being" (c.1300) drove out native scieppend, from verb scieppan (see shape). Creative is from 1678, originally literal; of the arts, meaning "imaginative," from 1816, first attested in Wordsworth. Creative writing is from 1907. The native word for creation in the Biblical sense was O.E. frum-sceaft. Creationism as a name for the religious reaction to Darwin is from 1880.

24. Shape shifter: N. a common theme in mythology and folklore, as well as in science fiction and fantasy. In its broadest sense, it is a metamorphosis (change in the physical form or shape) of a person or animal. Shapeshifting involves physical changes such as alterations of age, gender, race, or general appearance or changes between human form and that of an animal (therianthropy), plant, or inanimate object.
shift: v. O.E. sciftan "arrange, divide," related to sceadan "divide, separate" (see shed (v.)), from P.Gmc. *skiftanan (cf. O.N. skipta "to divide, change, separate," O.Fris. skifta "to decide, determine, test," Du. schiften "to divide, turn," Ger. schichten "to classify," Schicht "shift"). Sense of "change" appeared c.1250; that of "move, transfer" is c.1375; that of "manage to get along" is first attested 1513, in phrase shift for oneself, and yielded shiftless in the modern sense (1584).

25. Metamorphosis. n. 1533, "change of form or shape, especially by witchcraft," from L., from Gk. metamorphosis "a transforming," from metamorphoun "to transform," from meta- "change" (see meta-) + morphe "form" (see morphine). Metamorphic, in geological sense, is first attested 1833, in Lyell; rocks whose form has been changed by heat or pressure.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Steve Evans: Neologisms 15-21

ANDROPAUSE (OR VIROPAUSE), n. The end of virility. [blend of virility and menopauseContext and Source: "andropause or viropause, the end of virility"

DETOX, n. A clinic or treatment facility at which substance abusers attempt to rid themselves of dependency on a particular drug. Part of this process entails the actual physical removal of toxins present in the body due to the abuse of a substance [clip of detoxification ].

FANTABULOUS, adj. beyond fabulous. [blend of fantastic and fabulous]

GLOBOBOSS, n. A cosmopolitan executive that has the ability to perform well across the globe.

IMHO, In My Humble Opinion [Acronym used on the Internet]

MOTO, n. Energy for action toward a goal; motivation. [clipping of "motivation"]

PSYCHODRAMATIC, adj. very crazy (psychotic) and overly dramatic. [blend of psychotic and dramatic]

Class Pictures from Thursday

I emailed these pictures to the class email list but a few came back undeliverable so I figured I'd post the pictures here for all to see.

Katie Nuttall Etymologies 16-25

16. folk: O.E. folc "common people, men, tribe, multitude," from P.Gmc. *folkom (cf. O.Fris. folk, M.Du. volc, Ger. Volk "people"), from P.Gmc. *fulka-, perhaps originally "host of warriors;" cf. O.N. folk "people," also "army, detachment;" and Lith. pulkas "crowd," O.C.S. pluku "division of an army," both believed to have been borrowed from P.Gmc. Some have attempted, without success, to link the word to Gk. plethos "multitude;" L. plebs "people, mob," populus "people" or vulgus. Superseded in most senses by people. Colloquial folks "people of one's family" first recorded 1715. Folksy "sociable, unpretentious" is 1852, U.S. colloquial, from folks + -y.

17. lore: O.E. lar "learning, what is taught, knowledge, doctrine," from P.Gmc. *laizo (O.H.G. lera, O.Fris. lare, Du. leer, Ger. Lehre), from *lais- (see learn).

18. tale: O.E. talu "story, tale, the action of telling," from P.Gmc. *talo (cf. Du. taal "speech, language"), from PIE base *del- "to recount, count." The secondary Eng. sense of "number, numerical reckoning" (c.1200) probably was the primary one in Gmc., cf. teller (see tell) and O.Fris. tale, M.Du. tal "number," O.S. tala "number," O.H.G. zala, Ger. Zahl "number." The ground sense of the Mod.Eng. word in its main meaning, then, might have been "an account of things in their due order." Related to talk and tell. Meaning "things divulged that were given secretly, gossip" is from c.1350; first record of talebearer "tattletale" is 1478.

19. fairy: c.1300, "enchantment, magic," from O.Fr. faerie "land of fairies, meeting of fairies, enchantment, magic," from fae "fay," from L. fata (pl.) "the Fates." In ref. to a class of supernatural beings, the word is used from 1393. The slang meaning "effeminate male homosexual" is first recorded 1895. Fairy tale "oral narrative centered on magical tests, quests, and transformations" (1749) translates Fr. Conte de feés of Madame d'Aulnois (1698, translated into Eng. 1699). Fairy ring is from 1599. Fossil sea urchins found on the Eng. downlands were called fairy loaves.

20. legend: c.1340, from O.Fr. legende (12c.), from M.L. legenda "legend, story," lit. "(things) to be read," on certain days in church, etc., from neuter plural gerundive of L. legere "to read, gather, select" (see lecture). Used originally of saints' lives; extended sense of "nonhistorical or mythical story" first recorded 1613. Meaning "writing or inscription" (especially on a coin or medal) is from 1611; on a map, illustration, etc., from 1903.

21. tradition: c.1380, from O.Fr. tradicion (1292), from L. traditionem (nom. traditio) "delivery, surrender, a handing down," from traditus, pp. of tradere "deliver, hand over," from trans- "over" + dare "to give" (see date (1)). The word is a doublet of treason (q.v.). The notion in the modern sense of the word is of things "handed down" from generation to generation.

22. audience: c.1374, "the action of hearing," from O.Fr. audience, from L. audentia "a hearing, listening," from audientum (nom. audiens), prp. of audire "to hear," from PIE compound *au-dh- "to perceive physically, grasp," from base *au- "to perceive" (cf. Gk. aisthanesthai "to feel"). Meaning "formal hearing or reception" is from 1377; that of "persons within hearing range, assembly of listeners" is from 1407. Sense transferred 1855 to "readers of a book." Audience-participation (adj.) first recorded 1940.

23. universal: c.1374, from O.Fr. universel (12c.), from L. universalis "of or belonging to all," from universus "all together, whole, entire" (see universe). In mechanics, a universal joint (1676) is one which allows free movement in any direction; in theology universalism (1805) is the doctrine of universal salvation (universalist in this sense is attested from 1626). Universal product code is recorded from 1974.

24. pantomime: 1615, "mime actor," from L. pantomimus "mime, dancer," from Gk. pantomimos "actor," lit. "imitator of all," from panto- (gen. of pan) "all" + mimos "imitator." Meaning "drama or play without words" first recorded 1735. The Eng. dramatic performances so called, usually at Christmas and with words and songs and stock characters, are attested by this name from 1739; said to have originated c.1717.

25. rehearse: c.1300, "to give an account of," from Anglo-Fr. rehearser, O.Fr. rehercier "to go over again, repeat," lit. "to rake over," from re- "again" + hercier "to rake, harrow" (see hearse). Meaning "to say over again" is from 1340; sense of "practice a play, part, etc." is from 1579. Rehearsal dinner first attested 1953.

Bonus: drama
1515, from L.L. drama "play, drama," from Gk. drama (gen. dramatos) "play, action, deed," from dran "to do, act, perform." Dramatic "appropriate to drama" is from 1725. Dramatis personæ 1730, from L., lit. "persons of a drama."

Bonus: read
O.E. rædan (W.Saxon), redan (Anglian) "to explain, read, rule, advise" (related to ræd, red "advice"), from P.Gmc. *raedanan (cf. O.N. raða, O.Fris. reda, Du. raden, O.H.G. ratan, Ger. raten "to advise, counsel, guess"), from PIE base *rei- "to reason, count" (cf. Skt. radh- "to succeed, accomplish," Gk. arithmos "number amount," O.C.S. raditi "to take thought, attend to," O.Ir. im-radim "to deliberate, consider"). Connected to riddle via notion of "interpret." Words from this root in most modern Gmc. languages still mean "counsel, advise." Transference to "understand the meaning of written symbols" is unique to O.E. and (perhaps under Eng. influence) O.N. raða. Most languages use a word rooted in the idea of "gather up" as their word for "read" (cf. Fr. lire, from L. legere). Sense of "make out the character of (a person)" is attested from 1611. The noun meaning "an act of reading" is recorded from 1825. Read up "study" is from 1842; read-only in computer jargon is recorded from 1961. O.E. ræda "advise, counsel" is in the name of Anglo-Saxon king Æðelræd II (968-1016), lit. "good counsel," and in his epithet Unræd, usually rendered into Mod.Eng. as Unready, but really meaning "no-counsel." Rede "counsel" survived in poetic usage to 17c. An attempted revival by Scott (19c.) failed, though it is used in Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings."

Steve Evans: Neologisms 10-14

AUDIOPHILE, n. One who loves and collects audio equipment and media [compound from L. audio 'hear' and G. phile 'loving'] Context and source: "Being an audiophile, I own an 8 track player, phonograph, cassette player, CD player, DAT recorder, and a Minidisc player." (Conversation)

EBONICS, n. Black English Vernacular [Blend of ebony and phonics]

NETIZEN, n. A person who spends an excessive amount of time on the Internet. [blend of Internet and citizen]. Context and Source "...investors and Netizens alike were left wondering what went wrong. ( Newsweek).

METROSEXUAL, n, adj. A heterosexual male who has a strong aesthetic sense and inordinate interest in appearance and style, similar to that of homosexual males. 1994; blend of metropolitan + heterosexual

SCHIZO, n. A cup of coffee made with equal parts of caffeinated and de-caffeinated coffee [clip of schizophrenia]. Context and source: Menu list, Sundance Coffee

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Rachel wrestles with Rhetoric: What words work best for storytelling events?

The names of events suddenly became important with the possibility of the 2012 National Storytelling Conference to be held in Salt Lake City, UT.

I proposed to the National Storytelling Network that we change the name from "National Storytelling Conference" to something that had a global sound and invited more than professional storytellers.

Since we already have the International Storytelling Center, it seems that "world" would be better to use than "international" to avoid any confusions.

The word "storytelling" often conjures images of an old lady reading stories to preschoolers. When "storytelling" is then "story", then people will see the event as one that could fulfill their interests.

It is the last word for the new name of the National Storytelling Conference that baffles me.

While transcribing the "Mythical Storytelling Conference" discussion for Storytelling Linguistics, what should be on my mind but the importance of a name.

For a while, I loved the name "World Story Fair" to replace "National Storytelling Conference". I prefer to listen to many opinions. I found myself on the cell phone calling storytellers from Tennessee to Minnesota to California to Hawaii.

I discovered support for "World" and "Story", but different views were shared for the last word.

Yes, I will need to expand my mini survey. Of course, the vote ultimately comes upon the National Storytelling Network Board on July 31, 2009.

Most people wanted an event word that would reflect a gathering of story colleagues and professionals. That meant "Fair" could focus too much on the general public.

Sometimes change is resisted within the storytelling community, and the word "conference" would be needed. To me, the word "conference" lacks the interactivity and socialization that make an event great.

That was when I decided to delve into the etymologies of places and events for us storytellers.

Some words relate to my challenge at hand.

And the others?

I was just plain curious--
  • Practice--In 1392, this word came from the Old French "practiser" to mean "to do, act, or perform habitually". Modern Latin uses the word "practicare" to mean "to do, perform, practice" while the Greek "praktikos" means "practical". Then, in 1568, the word "practiced" referred to being an expert and related to professions, especially in the religious area. I am sure any storyteller would agree that practicing is "practical" and the professional ones tend to do so with religious fervor!
  • Rehearsal/Rehearse--The Anglo-French of 1300 used the word "rehearser" or "rehercier" to mean "to give an account of", "to go over again, repeat", and "to rake over". The "re" part is "again" while it is the "hercier" part that connects with "to rake, harrow". Surprisingly to me, this word connects with "hearse". When approached from this way, then the raking has a different view. The word "hearse" could also be "herce" in Old French or "hirpicem" in Latin. The Oscan "hirpus" means "wolf" and relates to the "teeth" on the rake. The rake breaks up the soil. Nowadays we think of hearse as the vehicle that carries a body away. I only hope that the rehearsal for the storyteller will break up soil so that something can live rather than something that is dead. Perhaps by rehearsing, we bury the dead and rough-and-tumble practices to make way for the new evolved story to be shared soon with the intended audience.
  • Premiere/Premier--The French word "premiere" came from a longer word "premiere representation" and refers to the "first performance of a play". The word was first recorded in 1889. Yet, the word "premier" as an adjective came about 1470 from Middle French to mean "first, chief" and from Latin "primarius" to mean "of the first rank, chief". This may seem a little unrelated, but when from the word "primary" from "primarius", then it also means "of the first rank, chief, principal, excellent". It is that "excellent" part that a storyteller strives for that first time presenting a piece to an audience.
  • Festival/Festivity--From the Old French in 1387 came "festivite'" as well as the Latin "festivitatem" and "festum". The "festum" related to "feast". Yet, the first time "festival" was recorded as a noun, it was 1589. Modern Latin provided that "festivalis" was "of a church holiday. If the word "festival" is broken down to "fest", then we have American English who borrowed and abstracted from the German use of the term "Volksfest" to be "fest".
  • Fair--The noun emerged in 1330 from the Anglo-French "feyre" and from Old French "feire" to mean "holiday, market fair". The Latin "feriae" referred to "religious festival, holiday". Feasts were often involved in one way or another.
  • Venue--Originally "venue" came from the Old French "venir" as in "to come" around 1330. However, it was "a coming for the purpose of attack". Then, in 1531, it became known as a "place where a case in law is tried". Finally, in 1857, the word was extended to mean locality in generally, "especially site of a concert or sporting event". Perhaps the storyteller is always "on trial" by the audience? When exploring the word "come", this one came from the Old English "cuman" and could mean "to go, walk, step" as well as "to regain consciousness". Could it be that audience members are brought to consciousness to the world of story?
  • Conference--This word really comes from "confer" or the Latin "conferre" in 1533. This word means "to bring together, compare" with the "com" meaning "together" and "ferre" meaning "to bear". "Confer" relates to "Infer" and there is a sense of "taking counsel". From "infer" with the Latin word "inferre" of 1526, then it means "bring into, cause" as well as "to bear, to carry, to take". The Russian word for "infer" is "brat" or "bremya", which means " burden". Though, by 1529, there was a sense for the word to mean "draw a conclusion". Therefore, a conference could be a place where people come together, compare techniques or information, take counsel, and then draw conclusions as individuals as well as for the community at large. Perhaps the word "conference" is not so bad after all to continue to use for the National Storytelling Conference's name change.
  • Exposition (Expo)--This comes from the Old French in 1388 of "exposition" to mean "explanation, narration". From the Latin "expositio" we get the word "expound". Later, it meant "public display" recorded for the first time in 1851 with reference to the Crystal Palance Exposition in London. Yet, the abbreviation "expo" was first connected to the world's fair held in Montreal in 1967. To expound on the word "expound", it comes from the Old French of 1300 of "expondre" to mean "put forth, explain". I had considered the phrase "World Story Expo" to reflect more of an interactive sound. I had also thought of "World Story Fair" so expo's connection with the world's fair is intriguing.
  • Stage--The noun come from the Old French "estage" in 1300 to mean "story of a building, raised floor for exhibitions" as well as "a story or floor of a building, stage for performance". From the Latin "staticum", it means "a place for standing". The stage was often the place for actors and plays so the word connected to these performances. The word "stage" could refer to a "period of development or time in life". In many ways, a storyteller develops when sharing stories upon a stage. The story evolves as it is finally before an audience.
  • Slam--There are a couple different means for "slam". For one version, "slam" means "a severe blow" from a Scandinavian source in 1672 from the Norwegian "slamre" or the Swedish "slemma". The verb means "to shut with force" and to "say uncomplimentary things about". Slam has connected to such words as "slam-bang", "slam-drunk", "slam-dance", and even "slammer" to refer to jail or prison. The second version of "slam" could mean "a winning of all tricks in a card game" from 1621 or "complete success" from 1920. As for the Story Slam, the event is lively and intense and could be like verbal blow to the brain. The audience is encouraged to boo or heckle. However, when a slam artist connects with the audience, then there is the feeling of "complete success".
  • Fringe--The word comes from 1354 of the Old French "frenge" or the Latin "frimbia" meaning "fibers, threads, fringe". There is the figurative sense of "outer edge, margin" recorded in 1894. Nowadays, it refers to an unfiltered festival that has "edgy" material and could have adult content warnings. There are some fringes that are family-friendly.
After some of these meanings, perhaps the new name "World Story Conference" in place of "National Storytelling Conference" would be best.

What do you think?

Until we tell again,

Rachel Hedman
(801) 870-5799

The Rachel Response: New Words in Storytelling & the Arts

The global storytelling movement for the past 40 years has brought new words to the art.

Sometimes, these words are shared for hopes of protologism, in which the creator of a new word or phrase is desirous for it to be accepted within the art community or beyond.

For the storytelling community, the word seems to be "accepted" when included or in relation with events such as the National Storytelling Conference or the National Storytelling Festival. There are moments when words, not meant to be used more than the one time, take flight and land in other areas across the world.

Here are some neologisms for our art--
  • Urban Storytelling/Word Artists/Spoken Word--The term "urban storytelling" has become popular mostly due to The Moth, a New York City-based nonprofit at The Players Club. At this place, people from the community are guided by an artistic director to find the essence of a dramatic personal experience and make it presentable for the public. The themes of urban storytelling tend to be edgy and on the rebellious nature for whatever may be on the social agenda at the time. Sometimes the words and images chosen seem raw or violent. The word "spoken word" could be applied, though this term has different meanings depending on the region or intended audience. In the 1980s, the term "spoken word" was adopted by academia in an effort to categorize word-based performance as opposed to established areas of art like music, theatre, and dance.
  • Poetry Slam/Story Slam--Storytelling and poetry have existed for centuries and now these art forms have evolved into something more intense and lively. Story slams and poetry slams outreach mainly to high school students and college-aged adults, though all ages, cultures and races participate. The key components of a slam--poetry or storytelling: anyone could share poem/story; no props or costumes; about five judges from the audience and/or pre-determined panel; time limit (3 min. for poetry, 5 min. for story); and the importance of audience reactions. The event usually has three rounds of about 7-10 artists, with a different artist to be "sacrificial". The audience is taught to boo and hiss as well as to applaud. Heckling is encouraged. This world is highly competitive. The National Storytelling Conference had its first Story Slam in 2008. You can learn more about slams at my blog.
  • Anti-Slam/Art Stars--With all the booing and hissing from slams, then this movement of "anti-slam" came along. Usually that is how it works. For every trend there is a counter-trend. Reverand Jen Miller developed a poetry slam and created the venue called "Collective: Unconscious" and premiered on October 17, 2007. Every week the performers are called "art stars". Though the performers are given boards that show 1-10 numbers, the purpose is for the panel of "judges" to all give "10"s, thus calling each participant a winner. Performing arts could range from stand-up comedy to fiction to commentary to poetry and even rants. Author John S. Hall said of this movement, ". . .where everybody gets a ten. In a sense, that's kind of like the opposite problem [to slams], which is that you're saying there are no winners or losers at all. And even at an open reading, there are winners and losers, but it seems less stratified and controlled and gamed."
  • Tridem--This term was coined by Elizabeth Rose, director of the National Youth Storytelling Showcase, in 2007. Although the showcase asked for auditions for solo and tandem storytellers, she would also receive entries with three storytellers telling one story. Though the word "tandem" is still used as the category title, the word "tridem" was needed to be more specific in the kind of storytelling taking place. This term has spread to other youth-oriented storytelling events such as the Weber State University Storytelling Festival where over 70 youth tell stories alongside national and regional storytellers. The new audition page on the website has been clarified to say that the event looks for solo, tandem, or tridem performances.
  • House Concerts/Backyard Concerts--Although musicians, singers, and comedians have used houses as venues for their work, this have been a new term amongst the storytelling community in the past couple years. One of the 2009 Storytelling Magazine issues spotlighted this type of event featuring Dan Keding and Rivka Willick. Other storytellers who have benefited from these events are Priscilla Howe and Tim Ereneta. A host, sometimes the same person as the storyteller, invites friends and family to their house. Depending on the weather, the event could be inside or outside. Some of these concerts are ticketed while some are offered free. The artist could be testing material or may give polished performances of the same level as any paid venue. The Utah Storytelling Guild will launch and sponsor House Concerts as part of their membership's professional development series in Fall 2009. The participating storytellers must have completed at least five practices with specific audiences. The storytellers will tell for free, but will be allowed to sell merchandise.
  • [Here]Say/[Murmur]--Yes, the brackets are important if you want to refer to the community-based storytelling occurring in some downtown areas. The use of [here]say is the play on the word "hearsay", which means "scuttlebutt or gossip". In the storytelling sense, [murmur] is a pioneering mobile-based oral history documentary project which started in Toronto, Canada. Out from [murmur] came [here]say, which are community-based oral history documentary projects. Often these two programs are thought as story maps. For example, a person may see a sign in the downtown area to call a certain number to hear a story about that part of town. More signs would scatter along the street to have an experience like an art walk. What started in Canada has now become popular in the United States. You can read more about them here. Or should I say hear?
  • Second Life/Storytelling Guild of Second Life--This refers to a virtual world developed by Linden Lab on June 23, 2003 and not a second chance at life. Or is it? Second Life (SL) can be accessed through the Internet where people could create an avatar/character to look like them or look however they want. These avatars are often called "residents" and socialize with other "residents". This is for ages 18 and older, though there is now a Teen Second Life for 13-17-year-olds. People could own virtual property and places. For example, storyteller Dale Gilbert Jarvis created the virtual place for the Storytelling Guild of Second Life. There are regular storytelling events streamed lived where avatars gather. If you want to read about my experience with Second Life, then read it here.
  • UnFestival/UnConference/Open Conference--These are kinds of event where audiences "vote with their feet". Rather than the festival or conference where the audience is expected to arrive and leave sessions when scheduled, the audience is given permission to come and go as they feel the need. The presenters accept this fact. This eliminates the need for time limits on stories. Anyone could be the storyteller, presenter, or speaker. The term "open conference" is the more common term and derives from the adjective "opensource" that means "public access and community development". For the storytelling community, these terms were shared often due to the decision by the National Storytelling Network to not have an annual conference in 2009. Rather, this year became known as the "Year of the Regions" as NSN combined efforts with regional storytelling conferences in sponsorship. Some storytellers resisted the break in tradition and proposed having unconferences. Read more about these terms at Tim Ereneta's blog here.
  • Open Space Technologies/Brain Trust Sessions--A facilitator guides a group of people to briefly share the theme of the gathering. People announce what topics are of most interest to them. These ideas are listed on a piece of paper or board for the improvised agenda. The person suggesting the topic would be expected to lead the discussion when people can decide what room to go for the discussion. When all ideas are listed, then discussions ensue and people attend whichever ones they wish. The attendees organize the action. At the end of each session, someone reports what was expressed within the group. The report is then recorded and and becomes available to anyone. OSTs actually came into being 1985 by Harrison Owen. For the storytelling communities, Brain Trust Sessions occurred for the first time at the 2008 National Storytelling Conference. One room was used, though a couple sessions took different corners of the room so many topics could be discussed in small groups at the same time.
  • Storytelling Elitism--Storyteller Marilyn Hudson coined this phrase in 2008 after what she saw happening with the Oklahoma Tellers. In this case, the elitist could be the person who hires the storyteller or could be the storyteller himself. The elitist is the person who "sees only one type of storytelling as 'true storytelling' (theatrics vs. traditional, for example)." The organizer or the teller may see one style and may want to imitate only that style at the event. This causes difficulty for new tellers or lesser-known tellers to grace the stage. For more of Hudson's views, you can go here.
  • Festival-Worthy/Festival-Ready--When storytellers submit promo materials or audition items for storytelling festivals, then they are hoping to be "festival-worthy". This term is used most often for the National Storytelling Festival as well as for the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival due to the prestige associated with these events. I have heard the term "festival-ready" by Kathy Palermo, one of the directors of the Arne Nixon Student Storytelling Festival. Since Palermo teaches a storytelling class at Hanford High School in California, she has her students perform for this event. The students divide into several classrooms with a professional storyteller in each room to act as mentor/judge. The professional storyteller choses which students could tell later that afternoon and are then deemed "festival-ready". This phrase is even written on the ballot sheets. The afternoon is open for the public and not all youth are expected to be chosen to share their stories. However, all youth do receive certificates.
  • New Voices--These storytellers are in the 18-30-year-old range. Due to the small numbers of this generation in the storytelling community, some people consider age 35 to be part of this discussion group within the National Storytelling Network. This group formed at the 2005 National Storytelling Conference in Bellingham, WA. The "new" part of the name refers to the ages and not necessarily to their amount of experience with the storytelling art.
  • YES! (also known as Youth, Educators, and Storytellers Alliance)--The name for this organization was voted into place by people within the Youth Storytelling special interest group merged with the up-and-coming Educator special interest group of the National Storytelling Network at the 2005 National Storytelling Conference. The NSN Board encouraged the groups to merge due to some overlapping goals. The exclamation point was a key part of the name and represents "alliance". The name was also chosen to answer the question, "Storytelling in Education? YES!".
  • Edu-tainment--This word combines the words "education" and "entertainment". Storytellers wanting to promote both elements in their program told sponsors that they had "edu-tainment" value. Some storytellers are offended if their stories are only considered entertainment or "full of fluff".
  • Sense Presence--This term was coined by storyteller Bill Harley. The word is a combination of "stage presence" and "senses". The storytelling community often talks about "The Triangle" in that the three important relationships in the storytelling: teller to story to audience. Harley said that "sense presence" was when a storyteller did a perfect melding of these relationships in which the right story was told to the right audience by the right teller. A teller may not feel "sense presence" after every performance or even from a story that received that feeling before. It was something to strive for each time a storyteller went on stage. Harley predicted that these sense presence moments were rare despite someone's experience with the art.
  • Storetry--This word combines "story" with "poetry". My first encounter with the word was when Mitch Capel (a.k.a. Gran'daddy Junebug) labeled his style as "storetry" at the 2007 Timpanogos Storytelling Festival. All his stories/narratives were recited with rhythm and rhyme. I have since seen a book named Storetry by Allan Williams and published by RoseDog Books.
  • Citizen Journalist/Public Journalist/Street Journalist--Anyone can post news online and be their own journalist through tools like blogs, Facebook, and Twitter. This movement started around 1988 and has exploded due to people being able to go on the Internet from home or on their cell phones. These terms are not to be confused with "community journalist" or "civic journalist", who are considered professionals. Several storytellers write regular blogs so to join the citizen journalist force. From the seminal 2003 report We Media: How Audiences are Shaping the Future of News and Information came the statement that these journalists are "playing an active role in the process of collecting, reporting, analyzing and disseminating news and information."
  • Ezine--This is the back-formation of Ezine Articles. Writers are able to write about their expertise and become featured at This site has a searchable database that make it possible for people to ask permission of the writers to add these articles to their own newsletters. In a content-driven world, this service is invaluable. Anyone could submit articles, but there are guidelines and all articles are proofread before posting online. Some storytellers have received offers for performances or presentations due to the articles posted at this site.
  • is geared mostly for music, the site is where people can find stories available for download at similar fees. The "i" refers to "Internet". These audio stories could be placed on your computer, mp3 player, iPod, or on a CD. Storytellers receive a commission on any of their stories sold at this site.
  • Digital Storytelling/Web-based Storytelling/Hypertexts/Narrative Computer Games--These terms are still being figured out, though, at this time, they refer to using the Internet or computer software to create visual and/or audio ways to share true stories of one's life. The main focus is to share it in an engaging way that involves the emotions. Most of these stories are less than eight minutes long. One of the most popular places that uses these forms of storytelling is the Center for Digital Storytelling in San Francisco.
  • YouTube Storyteller--This phrase was likely coined by storyteller Tim Ereneta. On YouTube, he created a "channel" or group within YouTube called "The Ancient Art of Storytelling". People could submit their videos to this channel if they were performance storytelling pieces. Some people submit stories only online rather than going about the world as professional storytellers. Thus, they could be called "YouTube Storytellers". There are also storytellers who have over 20 videos of stories on YouTube and could also qualify for this term although no number has been set for who would be a YouTube teller. Perhaps if you at least have one, you can join this family!
  • Fringe Teller--This phrase, like "YouTube Storyteller", was most likely created by storyteller Tim Ereneta. This may have been the shorter way of saying "a storyteller who performs often at fringes". A fringe is a festival-like atmosphere that allows people to apply for a slot. The person could use the average of 55 minutes in whatever way he wishes. There are adult content warnings listed, if applicable, so the audience member could decide on their attendance. Most fringes gear for adults though there are specific family-friendly ones. Common artists found on the fringe circuit are musicians, comedians, and actors. As more and more storytellers are looking for alternate venues, the fringe has been a welcoming place. Any performing artists must pay for their own advertising, but they are still linked to a specific fringe.
  • Masterminding--This is a verb created from the noun of "Mastermind Group". Sean Buvala has popularized this term in the storytelling community. A Mastermind Group is a bunch of people all committed to improve as individuals in their industry. The group often meets in-person, by telephone, or through online methods to "check-in" with each other and keep everyone accountable for their individual goals often involving the marketing and/or development sides. The group may all be storytellers or the group may be a mix of business men from all backgrounds.
  • Shout Out--Several storytellers have labeled blog posts with "Shout Out" when they want to promote an individual, company, or idea. This term is a sign of respect and is synonymous to the phrase "giving props". The phrase emerged in 1990 with rap artists and has finally caught on in the last year with storytellers. Sometimes game show hosts have used the term when contestants have family in the audience so there could be a "Shout Out" to them.
  • Storytelling Tourism/Storytelling Tourists--This is the act of gathering a bunch of people to travel to another place--most likely a foreign country--to delve into that place's take on storytelling. The "tourists" are usually storytellers who combine their skills with the storytellers of the area visited. There is then a cultural exchange of ideas and techniques. The most famous of these tours are organized by Eth-Noh-Tec, a storytelling husband and wife team. Each year tends to rotate between India and China with the tourists coming from the United States.
Please share any words that you have heard within the storytelling community. . .or ones about to emerge.

Until we tell again,

Rachel Hedman
(801) 870-5799

Neologisms 19-25

#19 fauxhawk - think mohawk, but not exactly. Instead of all of your hair being shaved off except for one row in the middle, this is where you comb your hair all to the middle to come up in a point (not sure if I am explaining that hair). It gives the look of a mohawk without having to shave any of your hair off

#20 Octomom
I'm not sure what her real name is but this was the name given to the lady who recently gave birth to eight kids when she already had six I think. The media was obsessed with her though I haven't heard much about her lately

#21 Facebook Status - what you are doing on facebook. You can write a sentence (or probably more) to share with the world (or at least your friends) what you are doing or thinking at the moment, I guess it is like twitter, but I'm not sure

#22 Comic-Con - a big comic conference (that's what the "con" stands for) in San Diego

#23 Abandominiums - abandoned row houses where drugs are used (sad)

#24 dot gone - an internet company that did not succeed. A play on .com

#25 bling bling - my students enjoy this one. Bling refers to jewelry. If you've got a lot of it on (or it is very big and noticeable you get to say bling twice)

Kristy's Etymology #21-25

A few others that have caught my attention throughout this course:

#21 maxim -
single-barreled, water-cooled machine gun, 1885, named for inventor, U.S.-born British engineer Sir Hiram S. Maxim (1840-1916).
maxim Look up maxim at
"precept, principle," 1426, from M.Fr. maxime, from L.L. maxima, usually in maxima propositio "axiom," lit. "greatest premise," fem. of maximus"greatest" (see maximum).
Obviously the second one has to do with what we have been talking about in class.

#22 discourse
c.1374, alteration of L. discursus "a running about," in L.L. "conversation," from stem of discurrere "run about," from dis- "apart" + currere "to run." Sense of "formal speech or writing" is first recorded 1581.

David has mentioned that storytelling is a conversation. I was thinking about "a running about" and how we looked at Kim's storytelling performance and the goal that we always arrive back safely and go through the various emotions or actions. That somehow through the running around in the stories there is something that keeps it all connect.

#23 analysis -
1581, "resolution of anything complex into simple elements" (opposite of synthesis), from M.L. analysis, from Gk. analysis "a breaking up," from analyein"unloose," from ana- "up, throughout" + lysis "a loosening" (see lose). Psychological sense is from 1890. Phrase in the final (or last) analysis (1844), translates Fr. en dernière analyse.
Taking something complex and putting it into simple elements. I think that is what we do with stories as we get to know them piece by piece but also in their entirety.

#24 conversation -
1340, from O.Fr. conversation, from L. conversationem (nom. conversatio) "act of living with," prp. of conversari "to live with, keep company with," lit. "turn about with," from L. com- intens. prefix + vertare, freq. of vertere (see versus). Originally "having dealings with others," also "manner of conducting oneself in the world;" specific sense of "talk" is 1580. Used as a synonym for "sexual intercourse" from at least 1511, hence criminal conversation, legal term for adultery from late 18c.

#25 safe -
"chest for keeping valuables," c.1430, save, from M.Fr. en sauf "in safety," from sauf (see safe (adj.)). Spelling with -f- first recorded 1688, from infl. of safe (adj.).
safe (adj.)
c.1280, "uninjured, unharmed," from O.Fr. sauf, from L. salvus "uninjured, healthy, safe," related to salus "good health," saluber "healthful," all from PIE*solwos from base *sol- "whole" (cf. L. solidus "solid," Skt. sarvah "uninjured, intact, whole," Avestan haurva- "uninjured, intact," O.Pers. haruva-, Gk.holos "whole"). Meaning "not exposed to danger" is attested from 1387; of actions, etc., "free from risk," first recorded 1590. Safe-conduct (1297) is from O.Fr. sauf-conduit (13c.).
The first one jumped out at me. The stories we tell are valuable, the audiences we tell to are valuable and our job as storytellers is to keep them safe while taking them places through stories they wouldn't otherwise go