A hundred words for….

One enduring urban legend that’s nicely poetic even though everybody knows it’s nonsense is the old “The Eskimos had eight hundred words for snow” chestnut. However, even if this was true, I’m not sure how much of a linguistic amazement this would be. I mean, I hear lots of different ways of referring to snow all the time:

Squall precipitation
Lake-effect flurry
Snowy shit
F***ing snow
That white shit
The shit that’s all dirty and muddy on the side of the roads in February
“Oh shit, when did this start?” (uttered when you walk outside into a flurry after being inside a while)

It goes on.

One of my Facebook friends, who lives in New York City, seemed less than excited that she’s about to experience a second Nor’easter in three weeks. The first one dumped a lot of snow in her region, and the second isn’t supposed to be as bad…but that’s small consolation when you’re barely dug out of the last one. Anyway, she opined about how sick she is of hearing the word “Snowpocalypse”. I was going to suggest the obvious “Snowmageddon”, but she had already declared her antipathy for that one, too.

My suggestions?


And my favorite:


Man, if there’s not already some kind of winter festival called SNOWLAPALOOZA, there needs to be. And it must be held right here, in Buffalo. So come on, Organizers of Buffalo’s Social Scene! Start the planning now for SNOWLAPALOOZA 2012!

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One Response to A hundred words for….

  1. Lynn says:

    Eight hundred?! Oh my! The number keeps growing. First, when I was still just a kid, I heard it was eleven, which seems reasonable. After that I heard, I think it was 25, then "over a hundred". Now, eight hundred? I expect that sooner or later we will hear that all words in the Eskimo language mean snow.

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