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Diabolically Arcane

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Blast Off

10 December, 2010

Every summer, Melbourne is whacked. Hammered. Walloped. The culprit is the dreaded northerly wind, that dry and gritty blast which leaves the city panting, or running into cineplexes.

For such a malign presence, the wind needs a name, say the people of AMOS, otherwise known as the Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society. You can’t just say The Northerly, or The Hot Wind of Summer. Real winds have a name.

That’s why AMOS is running a naming comp, asking for the public to coin a new word for the dictionary. If Fremantle can have its Doctor, or Marseilles her Mistral, then why should Melbourne tolerate this nasty and anonymous scourge?

With a deadline about a week away, the suggestion box is filling. My favourite is The Melburner, though I’m sure you lot can trump that. The Woiwurrung people had a great word for wind, namely Murnmut, which sounds hellish enough.

Other ideas include The Mallee Mongrel, The Riverina Roaster and Big Red. Two in the rhyming category are The Dust Buster and Jeff’s Breath. But maybe you can go one better. Why not hit the AMOS website and test your windpower. Or share your suggestions here, full blast.

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Text-speak is creeping into Scrabble. Where do you sit?
OBVS I'm fine with it
Entrenched stuff - like LOL and OMG - but no more.
Words With Friends, maybe. Scrabble, no
Let the 'real' dictionaries decide first
Just the handy stuff, like FAQ and EUW
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