May 142014

And if my longstanding experience is representative, some of you have already hit the dictionary, found “melty” in it, and are ready to let me have it in the comments.

Listen up, dudes and dolls.

When some abomination like “melty” comes out of your cakehole and I say “that’s not a word,” you’re not zinging me if it’s in the dictionary. The dictionary reflects, perhaps even more than it dictates. If melty is in the dictionary, it may just mean that enough of you lowered your linguistic standards for long enough for your friendly neighborhood lexicographer to be forced to put your stupid “word” in there.

A year or so ago a fellow meeting attendee said definitize.

Say it to yourself. Admire it. Consider carefully this “word”‘s unambiguous inferiority to define.

I told him it wasn’t a word. He found it in a dictionary and did a little victory lap with me.

Sigh. Everybody loves to gig the writer. It’s about two-thirds Alabama-Auburn intensity, actually.

We have so much communication happening so much of the time now that we may need to adjust our thresholds for when something gets in the dictionary. I’ve encountered “totes adorbs” a few times in the past several months. I know what it means, but clearly, it’s fleeting. That’s not going to hang around. Yet am I going to have to cope with “adorbs” in the 2015 dictionary?

If I tell you something isn’t a word, just listen and comply. How would that be?

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 Posted by at 8:21 pm

  18 Responses to “Melty is not a word. Stop saying melty.”

  1. My kids use these crazy words all the time & it makes me feel un-hip (is that a word?). This is why I majored in math.

  2. Lost cause. Try telling people email is a mass noun and not a count noun. Similar herpderping will commence.

  3. I say unto thee, amend thy ways.

  4. Swag can disappear anytime now. You are dangerously close to “you kids get off my lawn” levels though. I’ll worry when you start wearing loafers and cardigans.

  5. Quiet please. We’re ideating!

  6. I will say this about the sort of English integrity I crave: it’s a real pleasure encountering a kindred spirit.

    For all the good and bad it entails, we’re raising two boys with a good bit of rigor in this vein. I hear my nine-year-old’s friends have problems with subject-verb agreement, double negatives, and the like. Meanwhile he knows the difference between the comparative and the superlative.

  7. Where do you stand on “addicting” vs “addictive”? That one has always driven me nuts.

    • I might be persuaded of enough subtle difference there to be OK with both. Does “addicting” carry a connotation of continuity to you that “addictive” doesn’t have? It might to me. I’ll think about it.

  8. ADDICTING is not a word!!!! It’s just an uneducated way of saying “addictive.”

    There, I feel better now.

  9. Personally I think it’s time to launch a serious campaign to force Merriam-Webster to renounce their own gullibility/stupidity, and get that HEINOUS “melty” the heck out of their dictionary. Reminds of when Coors introduced “ARTIC ICE” beer many years ago. Why the heck does Madison Avenue

  10. Just found your post… was wondering if anybody else had smelt the overflowing sewage of pop culture’s assault on the language. Interesting that you’re from Alabama — the latest “melty” offender is Sir Charles, purchased by McDonald’s.

    • Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Gene!

      My younger son especially loves to gig me with melty.

      I have coworkers who love to say utilize in my presence. (It has its place, but most of the time use is better.)

      • I hate ignorant corporate-speak. As you say, utilize is very specific, and use is better and therefore correct most of the time. Where I work whoever made the signs seems to love utilize, even though it’s not only wrong, but is going to cost more to engrave.

  11. I absolutely HATE HATE HATE when I hear the non word “melty”. I dunno who made it up but I’d love to punch him/her right in the head.

    • Kim, glad to hear from another like-minded warrior! The best punches we can throw are not to use it, and to pleasantly point out its ridiculositude to those who do. 🙂

  12. I’ve been bothered by “melty” for a few years now. Each year that I’ve put off looking it up, it’s been featured in more fast food commercials — further muddying (“meltying”…?) the waters as far as finding out origins. Finally made a note to look it up tonight and, well, whether it’s included in a dictionary or not, as long as there’s others annoyed by it as I am, I’m satisfied.

  13. Cheese is either melted or its not!!! There is no melty!!!! Drives me nuts

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