Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Emergence in Action

credit: Steve Garfield

A friend on Facebook recently said:
Google Hangouts needs a universally accepted verbization.  You could IM or message someone, or text your friends, or PM them, or FaceTime them. You used to ICQ a person. But you can't Hang someone Out. It's just too awkward.
True!  (And old timers like me can phone someone!)

Hangout is a noun derived from the phrasal verb "to hang out". The verb is intransitive when used to mean "spend time casually with friends", so it does sound awkward to say, "Hang me Out when you get a chance."  Not only that, it brings a common idiom to mind: "to hang someone out to dry".  That's not a good association, since that means to leave someone alone without any support! (There's also a similar idiom: "to leave someone flapping in the breeze.")

I would use one of the examples she provided as a model for a new verb.  My first thought was "HO me" but that has funky associations too!  It evokes either Santa or a wanton.  So, in her comments, I suggested "GH me."  What do you think? Is there already a verb being used for this meaning?

PS: I like my friend's coinage "verbization" too!  Would you say this?  Or would you say "verbification"?  Or something else?

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