August 26, 2017

"DoggoLingo, sometimes referred to as doggo-speak, 'seems to be quite lexical, there are a lot of distinctive words that are used'..."

"... says Internet linguist Gretchen McCulloch. "It's cutesier than others, too. Doggo, woofer, pupper, pupperino, fluffer — those have all got an extra suffix on the end to make them cuter.' McCulloch also notes DoggoLingo is uniquely heavy on onomatopoeias like bork, blep, mlem and blop.... The origin of "bork" itself is less clear, but it's clearly onomatopoeic. It's perhaps most well-known thanks to Gabe the Dog, a tiny floof of a Miniature American Eskimo/Pomeranian whose borks have been remixed into countless classic tunes. Jurassic Bork, The Bork Files, Doggos of the Borkribbean, Imperial Borks — the list goes on and on."

I'm reading "Dogs Are Doggos: An Internet Language Built Around Love For The Puppers" at NPR.com. It's from last April, but NPR.org is featuring it on its front page today. Why? I can think of 2 reasons: 1. NPR thinks people are stressed from all the scary news — hurricane, race-focused protest, Trump — and need something reliably nice nice nice, or 2. The new story "What's Making These Dogs In Mumbai Turn Blue?" is getting a lot of clicks so they went digging back in the archive for something else about dogs.

Speaking of 2 reasons, I was interested in the "doggo-speak" story for 2 reasons, both relating to the infusion of a fun new life into a heretofore negative word:

1. "Bork" — based on the defeat of the Supreme Court nomination of Robert Bork — has meant "To defame or vilify (a person) systematically, esp. in the mass media, usually with the aim of preventing his or her appointment to public office." That's an OED definition. The verb "to Bork" is actually in the OED. Interestingly enough, the oldest usage plays up the dog-related similarity to "bark": "I think this time the local minorities are ‘Borking’ up the wrong." That's the L.A. Times in 1987. But the usage really got going when Clarence Thomas came along: "'We're going to Bork him,’ the National Organization for Women has promised. But if they succeed, liberals may discover that they have Borked themselves." (1991 New Republic).

2. "Doggo" — this has been slang — in the phrase "lying doggo," meaning to lie low and keep hidden — since the 19th century, where the first usage, according to the OED, was "He had been a guest, after lying doggoh for some time, at one of Blobbs' quiet little suppers." I'm most familiar with the word as it comes up in the Samuel Beckett play "Endgame." Clov has a flea and shakes a lot of insecticide powder into his pants. Hamm asks "Did you get him?" and Clov says "Looks like it. Unless he’s laying doggo." There's then some byplay about "laying" versus "lying," with the punchline "If he was laying we'd be bitched."

IN THE COMMENTS: Earnest Prole said:
Reason 3 for why NPR is featuring it today: It's National Dog Day.
Never heard of it before, but it checks out in Google News. National Dog Day.

19 comments:

Fernandinande said...

Dogo Argentino

Earnest Prole said...

The dumbest doggo-speak is when someone imagines a dog referring to its master as “my hooman,” as though dogs read the word human on a page and don't know how to pronounce it.

tcrosse said...

My cat says this is stupid.

traditionalguy said...

Maybe Fur People are hoomans stuck in reincarnation cycles gone bad.

EDH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Laslo Spatula said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Laslo Spatula said...

A lot of dog-speak overlaps with the rhythms of
Cockney rhyming slang.

Cherry Hogg is Cockney slang for Dog.

Further Cherry Hogg. Lots of extrapolation of words there, practically OED (catnip for Althouse).

I am Laslo.

EDH said...

McCulloch also notes DoggoLingo is uniquely heavy on onomatopoeias like bork, blep, mlem and blop...

My mind, as it is wont to do, immediately went to Jet Screamer (err Violent Femmes) of The Jetsons fame.

robother said...

These Progs, if they're not kicking their dogs in anger at Trump, they're neutering them with overly cutesy talk. An endless cycle of projection and passive aggression.

Jay Elink said...

Had an opera-loving friend with a mutt named Poochini. She sang "Bésame Poocho" to him.

tcrosse said...

I'm fond of telling dog-fanciers that my Grandma was a Pomeranian.

(She was born near Stralsund, in the German province of Pomerania in 1878)

EDH said...

As best I can tell this hilarious music video is about a 1960s TV masturbation fantasy involving Debbie the Bloop from 'Lost in Space.'

cronus titan said...

To "Bork" someone is commonly known, and used, now.

I was young, but I recall watching in disbelief as the Chappaquiddick Kid made up one wild story after another. Young as I was, it was obvious it was a pack of lies. Yet the media never, ever questioned the veracity of it. THey simply went for broke trying to prove the lies (including stealing the Bork family video rental records on the hope that he had something pornographic). Lessons learned? first, never trust the media. THey have their own agenda, far more interested in destroying people than reporting the news. Second, it's good to be a Kennedy. You ca get away with anything(including responsibility for homicide). Third, truth is irrelevant. THe state is all. Fourth, only those with dangerous ambition seek public office, either relected or appointed, No normal person would put themselves and their families through that nonsense.

Oso Negro said...

As I recall, Meadhouse indulged in some doggo of its own.

Earnest Prole said...

Reason 3 for why NPR is featuring it today: It's National Dog Day.

Fernandinande said...

Leadbelly's Dog Latin Song (-> ~20sec)

Mountain Maven said...

They'll probably cancel national dog day now that Huffpo decided that pets are bad for the environment. How about National Bite a Liberal Day?

stlcdr said...

When did this doggo thing start? I've been using this kind of *talk* (when talking to the doggos, who used to be puppers) for a couple of years, but never seen it actually written down.

Is it a case of a lot of people independently talking like this then someone decided to meme it?

(Maybe there's something in the link, but I prefer to read Althouse commentary than the actual source material which is generally less than high school writing and less imaginative than a very imaginarive thing).

Ginger Sanches said...

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