Brian Penry PenryPosts are the musings of designer, writer, artist and branding expert, Brian Penry. His posts are offered in hopes of amusing, enlightening, sparking spirited debate and disrupting the status quo—as well as those intrepid souls who dare to read them. Note: Mr. Penry does not ‘blog’, that being a word most foul—and an activity in which he refuses to engage [please read Better Uses For The Word, “Blog”].


Photo: Sandy Connolly

Better Uses For The Word, “Blog”

I was taught not to criticize that for which you can’t offer a better solution—good advice, especially when in challenging situations, and in that seemingly boundless frontier of chronic whiners, the online realm.

But then, there’s that really annoying, creepy and altogether disgusting word, “blog”.

I pay brief homage to the folks who coined, then expounded upon the phrase: Jorn Barger, the originator of “Weblog”; Peter Merholz, who first used the contraction, “blog”; and Evan Clark Williams—the first to use blog as a verb. Thank you for giving us yet something else to blog – I mean, prattle on about. But really guys, what were you smoking?!

I can’t help but wonder why at least one of these three, brilliant visionaries didn’t have the foresight to realize that they were creating, helping perpetuate and ultimately making ubiquitous a word that sounds like the foulest of intestinal blockages.

Never mind how it sounds. I’m struck by how discordant the root word, “log” is, in respect to how people actually think and speak, geeks aside. For instance, I’ve yet to meet the person who, upon being inspired to write something, anything, would naturally say, “Hey, I think I’ll write that down in my log”, unless they happened to have served in the Merchant Marines. One is far more likely to hear, “Hey, that’d make a great entry in my journal—or, “I think I’ll write about that in my diary.” Or simply as I, for one prefer, “I think I’ll post that online” rather than “on my blo-o-o-o-g… Ohhh, Gawwwd—I shouldn’t have had one, never mind that second bowl of five-alarm chili!”

In the spirit of not criticizing without offering better ways of repurposing this sad, ugliest of English Language duckings, I humbly offer the following, alternative uses for blog:

Blog – The worst kind of lower intestinal event, manifested in high-decibel, operatic baritone farts—and episodes hideous beyond description.

Blog Horn – These already exist, I simply suggest renaming them as such. I’m talking about those angry, blasting “BL-A-AGH – BLA-A-AGH!!!” sounds that fire engines make to clear traffic out of their way—the last resort of first responders when sirens aren’t getting the attention of idiot drivers (who are of course, understandably distracted, being as how they’re busily texting blog posts).

Blog-Logs – These little guys make pond scum look downright scrumptious, and just could make concrete blocks obsolete. Blog-Logs are construction blocks fashioned from compressed waste material—talk about sustainability. These, too already exist, under trade names like BituBlock. But hey, doesn’t Blog-Log just sound better, and (pun intended) roll off the tongue?

BLOG Acronym – Last but far from least is the obligatory Blog Log-inspired acronym, which of course is: Blob (of) Lugubriously Offensive Goop (BLOG).

On a much brighter note, let the wordsmiths at Penry Creative help ensure that your brand story and lexicon speak well of you.