"catfishing"--early WOTY candidate?

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Thu Jan 17 03:02:26 UTC 2013

On Wed, Jan 16, 2013 at 9:35 PM, Laurence Horn  wrote:
> On Jan 16, 2013, at 8:56 PM, Ben Zimmer wrote:
> > In his press conference this evening, Notre Dame athletic director
> > Jack Swarbrick referenced the movie "Catfish" and the MTV spinoff of
> > the same name, and also used the verbal noun "catfishing" (which he
> > admitted to learning about from Dr. Phil).
> Surprised it hasn't made it into urbandictionary yet, but maybe that's
> attributable to the disjointness of the set of Dr. Phil watchers and that of
> urbandic entry submitters.  What other cultural-phenomena-denoting verbs
> (or verbal nouns) derived from movie themes on the model of "Gaslight(ing)"
> and "Catfish(ing)" are there?  For example, I could imagine someone being
> "Vertigoed" the way Jimmy Stewart's character memorably was in Hitchcock's
> movie, but I haven't come across it, except in an internet meme referring to
> the mashup of various movies--actually done for real in "The Artist", as Kim
> Novak complained afterward, and just for fun online for "Star Wars",
> "Zoolander', etc., in each case just involving the setting of the spooky Bernard
> Herrmann music from the Hitchcock movie to the action of the other movies.
> Cf. http://www.buzzfeed.com/abrams/the-vertigo-score-improves-any-movie-even-ep

In an episode of "Modern Family" ("Unplugged," 10/20/10), Haley
carries out an elaborate deception on her parents, after which her
father says, "Holy crap, we've been Shawshanked."



Ben Zimmer

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

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