Monday, March 24, 2008

Friggin' Spoofulated

Okay, so I am a wino and should join AA. I drink a glass or four every night. So sue me. And I use Cellartracker to keep my wine room up to date. 1200 bottles is not easy to keep organized in my pea brain, you know. So I drank 2003 Waterbrook Melange tonight and was underwhelmed by it. But some knuckledragger writing tasting notes just before me decided to use the word "spoofulated" to describe the wine. Now remember, I read a lot of wine reviews, both professional and amateur, and I have to admit, the word was a new one on me and for some reason it just pissed me off.

So I Googled it. Wonderful how we create new words (verbs in this case) in the English language. It turns out some anus created the word out of nothing at some nondescript point to describe over manipulated wine. First of all, the Melange was not good, but over manipulation was not its problem. But more fundamentally, why does someone have to create a word to describe something they can just describe? Yes, we hear new words all the time and some stick and there is a certain inside joke to be had when the word you create (google?) makes it to the lexicon. But spoofulated? How does spoofulated begin to describe over manipulated wine? I mean, taken out of context, "spoofulated" could be the word my two year old made up for what is in his diaper right now. If you are going to make up a word to describe something easily describable (overmanipulated perhaps?), at least make it have some intelligent tie back to what it is you are trying to describe. Otherwise, you might as well just pick some words my kid babbles and assign them random meanings. J.K Rowling or Tolkien can make up words. It would be a really, really, really long trilogy (or quadrogy?) if he had to describe a hobbit every single time one appears in the story instead of just calling it a hobbit. Wine reviewers not so good on the made up words.

So I do not know why this ticked me off so. Perhaps I am just jealous because I never heard of the word before today or did not make it up myself. But rather I think I am upset about a made up word showing up on community tasting sites without context. These sites truly will live or die by the quality of tasting note they provide to augment the professional gurus (or idiots if you prefer). Alder over at Vinography has already fielded a long discussion on why he thinks community tasting sites like Cellartracker (which of course serves a much greater purpose as a cellar tracking aid) are bound to fail. Idiot use of fake words like "spoofing" or "spoofed" or "spoofulated" or whatever are only likely to hasten that demise. If someone says "ginormous" to me again, or if I see it on another hamburger house commercial I am sure going to throw up, or at least never buy a hamburger from that place again. But at least a fifth grader can understand "ginormous"...gigantic and enormous rolled into one. I get it. But friggin' spoofulated??? Where does that take its roots from? Latin for idiot? If you are going to take the time to review a wine, at least take the time to speak English...for the greater good.


RichardB said...

Good grief, somebody has to leave a comment on this topic!

The problem with jargon -- and especially new jargon -- is that people love it. We already have several terms for confected wines. Why do we need another one, and one that is so misleading. Congrats on taking a stand. We do not need this term (although I will add it to my Wine Lexicon second edition).

Richard Best - The Frugal Oenophile

Do Bianchi said...

just stumbled upon your blog. Anyone who writes a blog called "On grapes and guitars" is alright by me! Blog on, brother. Best, Jeremy