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  • Becky Adams

Add These Words to Your Vocabulary Today!

The other day I had a rousing discussion with my good friend Bill Dolan, known in some circles as The Father of Proconsequentialism. Bill and I are strong proponents of building an extensive vocabulary, even if a good portion of it is completely fabricated.

Mr. Dolan’s Theory of Proconsequentialism was posited nearly a decade ago. The basic premise is structured around the observation that in the Social Service field, new lexicon and jargon pop up constantly. The new vernacular is then twisted into policies and procedures for hapless workers to learn and follow—until the next big idea comes along.

Proconsequentialism theorizes that if you reference the word itself in a phone call, meeting, or professional development training as though you know what it means, the other people in the situation will pretend that they also know what it means. The reference must be casual and a bit vague: “I’m sure you get my point, especially when you consider Proconsequentialism.”

Bill and I competed for a while, attempting to slide the word into conversations without getting caught. It was tougher than we had expected, but I’m happy to boast that I was the first to succeed. I brought it up during a rather hostile meeting with some haughty education staff—I couldn’t help myself; they were being mean. Anyway, how do you know that the word Proconsequentialism isn’t buried somewhere in all that pedagogy? For heaven’s sake, pedagogy is a word! Besides, if you capitalize Proconsequentialism and add it to your dictionary, Microsoft believes it’s a word.

Here it is at last, in writing: Proconsequentialism! You are all invited to use it as you see fit. Bill and I never quite dared to include it in writing as part of a permanent record, but it is our hope that after today, a Google search for Proconsequentialism will bring people to the definition from this article. You’re welcome, Bill Dolan, Father of Proconsequentialism.

In the spirit of vocabulary development, (and Proconsequentialism,) I offer you some other useful terms:

1. Bladdermouth (BLAD-er-mouth) noun: Coined by my niece Abigail, this word is used to describe a person who cannot stop talking about needing to use the restroom.

Ex: “Jeez, Auntie Becky, you’ve been a bladdermouth for this entire road trip.”

Also used as a verb, to bladdermouth, for reference to a state of well-being-

Ex: “All I remember about her is the constant bladdermouthing;”

or a plan of action- “Are we getting off at the next exit or do I have to bladdermouth all day?”

2. Retryerment (ree-TRY-er-ment) noun: Reaching the end of a long career, then coming back as a consultant.

Ex. Frank has doubled his salary while decreasing his hours thanks to a well-planned retryerment.

3. Paycheckmate (PAY-chek-mate) noun: Status whereby your net pay is equal to your current bills.

Ex. By 12:01am Friday, I was already in paycheckmate.

4. Taxplayer (TAX-play-er) noun: Often used in tandem with the previous term, a person who fills out their 1040 by their own rules.

Ex. Frank kept himself out of paycheckmate by honing his skills as a taxplayer.

5. Snailgating (SNAIL-gay-ting) verb: In a traffic situation, lagging so far behind the car in front of you that you miss every green light.

Ex. Frank’s rule was always: if you’re going to snailgate, get the hell out of my way.

6. Wealthcare (WELLTH-care) noun: The health insurance industry’s true priority.

Ex. Frank paid an $1100 copay for removal of his plantar wart while the CEO of the insurance company received a six-figure bonus, keeping the wealthcare system intact.

7. Stealthcare (STELLTH-care) noun: Related to the above, sneaky little paragraphs written in legal jargon that require you to pay significantly more money for healthcare than you realized.

Ex. Frank’s health insurance plan paid in full for removal of PLANTER warts, but not PLANTAR warts, and once again, the stealthcare system triumphed.

So, there you have it! A selection of new vocabulary words for you to slide into conversation, bring up during boring meetings, and utilize during your next quarterly review. Please be sure to keep a straight face.

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