Trivia Teaser

How did playwright Tennessee Williams die?

He fell off a hot tin roof
A bookcase fell of him
He choked on a bottle cap
He was run down by a streetcar named Desire

Popping

06
Sep
2013
 

By Miranda

I bought a bottle of champagne the other day and, while traipsing up and down the aisles of the local mega liquor store, I saw the crown sealed bottles of champagne. No, wait! Not champagne but sparkling wine, since I doubt that Champagne's traditional winemakers will embrace the crown any time soon.

 

Now, for technology as with language, I try not to be too much of a Luddite and I freely admit to having welcomed the Stelvin seal - that's the screw-top for wine which is an actual improvement on the old corks.

 

And no doubt the new crown seals for sparkling wine are equally efficacious. They'll preserve the bubble, bead and flavour, no doubt.

But they won't pop.

 

Not the shaken then shot pop of the motor race winner, not the inexpert pop and spill of froth over clothes or tablecloths of the office or home celebration, not even the subdued, elegant pop of someone who can truly call her or himself a sommelier.

 

No pops at all.

 

And, for me, this is sad because pop is a lovely word, short, onomatopoeic, and marred only by its revolting association with sparkling drinks which are not produced by the methode champenoise.

 

It's a surprisingly versatile word, too. If you're popping you may be shooting, pawning, taking a medication, dancing, bursting open, making a particular noise, placing something or paying a visit.

 

Given this variety of meanings, there are some obvious pitfalls for those acquiring English. Pity the delivery person from the party-shop whose colloquial English isn't quite perfect yet, should she or he take literally a request to "Pop the champagne and balloons on the table".

 

What's your favourite-sounding word?

43 Responses to

Popping

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said:
September 11, 2013 at 6:56 AM

Tee, hee :)

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greenpeas said:
September 12, 2013 at 4:44 PM

Pop was up there among my favourite pet words as a child. Always liked Pop over Snap and Crackle. Pop goes the Weasel was a fave rhyme. And my old Pop was the one who taught me how to put finger in mouth then pullit out to make the most delightful "POP" sound.

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said:
September 12, 2013 at 11:02 PM

I wanted to call our new kitten "Puppy" just for the humour and irony of it (I've always wanted a dog) but my kids vetoed it because they didn't want her to be subject to ridicule (She's a cat for goodness sake!) so we made a compromise and called her "Poppy" (like the flower). Then a collegue of mine suggested that it was cruel and absurd to call a kitten Poppy as that was a name you give to your grandfather. I just can't win.

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said:
September 13, 2013 at 6:14 AM

Keight8...your colleague needs to lighten up. Nothing wrong with "Poppy". My daughter's Boxer is Lily, and our Springer has the kennel name Rosie. On the other hand, as a new grandad, I don't want to be called Poppy...would prefer something like Your Eminence, or Your Grace. :)

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pdiaco said:
September 13, 2013 at 10:13 AM

Why not give dogs human names, eg if it's a *PROFANITY* a nice name might be Julia, and if a mongrel the name Tony sounds good.

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pdiaco said:
September 13, 2013 at 10:14 AM

Life's a profanity, then you marry one.

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said:
September 13, 2013 at 10:32 AM

LMAO Pdiaco.

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said:
September 14, 2013 at 2:54 AM

Stjohn, Congratulations on becomming a new "Poppy"...(or should I say Grandad or "Your eminence")

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said:
September 14, 2013 at 6:10 AM

Thanks Keight8!My 6 week old grandaughter isn't ready to call me anything yet...I suspect I'll get "Pa", which was what my children called their grandfather.Do like the new outfit on your avatar!!

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said:
September 14, 2013 at 6:12 AM

Keight8...but she does look a bit sombre...

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said:
September 14, 2013 at 8:10 PM

Yeah, Sorry but there has been a bereavement in the family so I couldn't manage a smile

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said:
September 14, 2013 at 10:37 PM

Thankyou, Youplay, for giving me a distraction in my time of grief. You have helped me from becomming a crumbling mess!

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said:
September 15, 2013 at 7:12 AM

Sorry to hear that keight8.