Monday, November 26, 2007

sporting malapropism of the week

Carlton Palmer on the BBC's Final Score on Saturday afternoon, talking about Everton's drubbing of Sunderland, and the trying afternoon endured by keeper Craig Gordon:
The keeper's had an absolute....holocaust....out there
Interesting. I assume that word just popped into his head as a synonym for "nightmare" or something. Although if Gordon had been conducting some sort of genocidal atrocity during the game that might account for his attention wandering a bit.

Another interesting one is the use of "horror show" in the same context, i.e. synonymous with "nightmare". The interesting bit is that it's a phrase made famous by Anthony Burgess' novel A Clockwork Orange (and Stanley Kubrick's film adaptation), as part of the invented slang language Nadsat, but it was used to mean "good" rather than "bad" (like most Nadsat words it's an Anglicised version of a Russian word), i.e. precisely the opposite of its intended meaning by the sporting pundits.

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