Michael Adams madams1448 at AOL.COM
Mon Feb 13 19:06:55 UTC 2006

The origin of unexpected -y suffixations like "Olympicy" doesn't seem
to be tied to "all," but "all nouny" is a frequent collocation --
CSLI's recent/continuing work on "all" may give us some insight into
how frequent the collocational pattern is; in any event, my sense is
impressionistic because there's isn't a corpus to which we can turn for
reliable contrastive results for "nouny" and "all nouny." When it comes
to "origin," this type of -y suffixing has been going on much longer
than "all nouny" or other current colloquial alls; it certainly
antedates the collocational pattern, though intensive "all" is emergent
in ninetheenth-century Scots/Ulster Scots "all that."

-----Original Message-----
From: Benjamin Zimmer <bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU>
Sent:         Sun, 12 Feb 2006 15:05:33 -0800
Subject: Re: Olympic-y

  On 2/12/06, Mullins, Bill AMRDEC <Bill.Mullins at us.army.mil> wrote:
> > And observers of the Buffyesque productive suffix "-y"
> >should appreciate his use of "Olympic-y":
> >
> > "I got all Olympic-y."
> Is the total construction "all [noun]-y"?  I hear "all" used this way
a =
> bunch.  But I'm not a Buffy fan, so I don't know if that's the origin.

Michael Adams can weigh in on that, but I see that other news reports
give slightly different versions of White's remark:

"I'm feeling all Olympic-y," White quipped between qualifying runs.

Standing at the base of the mountain, he said that he felt "all weird
and Olympic-y."

--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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