Sunday, June 28, 2009

An Opportunity to Say “Bloviate”

Hardly a day goes by that I don’t learn something new and today was no exception. The lesson came early in the day.

Watching George Stefanopoulos’ news and politics show This Week this morning, I listened as Obama advisor David Axlerod used a word that I had never heard before.


It was in this context:

AXELROD: Well, first of all, you know, let's be clear that we didn't meddle in the election in Iran. The dispute in Iran is between the leadership in Iran and their own people, and plainly, Mr. Ahmadinejad thinks that by -- by fingering the United States, that he can create a political diversion. So I'm not going to entertain his bloviations that are politically motivated.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, (inaudible) entertaining them.

AXELROD: It's just an opportunity to say "bloviate."


So you can get from the context that a bloviation is rhetoric of some kind.

Still, my curiosity was nudged, and I went to to look it up (it wasn’t in any dictionary I have).


–verb (used without object), ‑ated, ating.

to speak pompously.

1850–55, Americanism; pseudo-L alter. of blow to boast; popularized by W. G. Harding

bloviation, noun

So it’s a word that is uniquely American and it is derived from “blow.” That’s just too much fun.

Now the challenge for me will be to use it in a sentence sometime soon. Around here with so many tea bagging conservatives spouting off that shouldn’t be too difficult.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As you've pointed out before, I have a horrible time with the English language. I thought bloviate was something a president had done to him by a chunky intern near the Oval Office. Silly me.