A word that’s been floating around my Facebook friends page is mubarak’d.

Of course, this has everything to do with yesterday’s spectacle that was Hosni Mubarak’s speech in Egypt, and the rumors and media frenzy that surrounded his possible resignation, only to have everybody be terribly disappointed when he basically said “I hereby resign… myself to being your dictator for a few more months.”

To this effect, the word mubarak has now come to be a verb, with the meaning of “to act like you’re giving someone something they REALLY want, and then not doing so, with disastrous consequences”. However, I’ve only seen it in the passive, to be mubarak’d, which means being the recipient of such behavior.

An example of this construction would be: “I thought he was going to propose to me when he got down on his knee, but he was just tying his shoe. Totally mubarak’d.”

Sure, it could be argued that this word could — and should — be spelled mubaraked or maybe even mubarakked or mubaracked(!). I, personally, would use mubarak’d because of the extra connotation of -‘d.

This -‘d ending is certainly an Internet phenomenon — just have a look at Urban Dictionary. It’s frequently used to make a verb out of things that are not already verbs. One of the examples at UD, retro’d, is one I see all the time. People can basically affix -‘d onto any word to make it a past participle, and frequently a passive one.

I, personally, feel that -‘d has an extra connotation to it meaning sarcasm, irony, or some similar inflection. In trying to figure this out, I’ve been observing my own usage of -‘d. One usage is to defuse the seriousness of an utterance — one way that I have used it is when I go on a random linguistic tangent about something someone said that just has such cool morphology, to the point where I may scare the speaker with my exuberance about their utterance. If I’m doing this in a textual medium, I will sometimes say to that person, “Sorry, you’ve just been linguist’d.” (I probably would never say this out loud, mostly because of the difficulty of pronouncing the consonant cluster at the end.) It can also add a playful connotation to an utterance — an example from just yesterday is when my cat forcefully dropped her favorite toy (a multicolored snake attached to a stick)  in my lap while I was chatting with my friend, I said, “brb, rainbow snake’d”.

I am pretty sure that I picked up this usage from my Warcraft studies. For instance, when my guild defeated a particularly difficult enemy with surprising ease, the enemy was referred to as being faceroll’d. There are many other examples, too numerous for a blog post.

So, which version of mubarak’d do you prefer? Will you pick up this word too? Maybe it could make it into the Word of the Year 2011 vote.


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