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Olympics - Going to Medal?

(26 Posts)
Rubyrubyruby Mon 18-Aug-08 10:26:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mrsbabookaloo Mon 18-Aug-08 10:42:31

When it comes to sports commentary, the rules are there are no rules (hmm, not sure how to punctuate that!).

Sports commentators love to coin new phrases and also they are thinking on their feet and spouting rubbish a lot of the time.

AMumInScotland Mon 18-Aug-08 10:44:21

I've been tempted to turn off the commentary a number of times lately - they just seem to open their mouths and make noises at random sometimes!

But "to medal" has become a standard sports term, though I agree it shouldn't be.

MrsBadger Mon 18-Aug-08 11:04:01

It sounds like the same derivation as US college students 'majoring' in a subject.

Calvin & Hobbes put their finger on it

Personally I can live with it as it's a usage issue and not nonsensical or factually inaccurate. (Luckily the nitrogen tank at work that says 'Danger - Liquid Gas' has been moved or I'd be there with my marker pen right now)

Tigerschick Mon 18-Aug-08 11:17:09

MrsB - I love that Calvin and Hobbes cartoon! So clever grin

I agree that 'to medal' is not correct but it is used in specific way and only a certain place so I don't really have a problem with it.
My favourite one from the Olympics so far was the American journalist who described Phelps as being the 'winningest' athlete of all time grin
But, they are thinking on their feet and often quite swept up in the moment.

midnightexpress Mon 18-Aug-08 11:28:42

Agree that it makes the teeth grind, but not as much as chefs going on about how they need to 'plate the food'.


Having said that, I do like the way that English is able to do that so easily - it's partly that sort of elasticity in the language that makes it so fabulous, IMHO.

muddleduck Mon 18-Aug-08 14:25:27

I'm a big fan of verbing. I remember a waitress asking me if we'd been "breaded" yet.

But then I liked the use of the word "qualificators" this morning. smile

I can't bear "giving 110%" though so maybe there is hope for me yet.

Habbibu Mon 18-Aug-08 14:29:31

Correct is tricky when you're talking about coinages - any noun can be verbed, and all that. I don't like it, but I hate management ones like "so you'll action that" much more - that's replacing "do" with "action" whereas at least "to medal" has the merit of condensing a longer phrase (by that I mean there is a rationale, not that the longer phrase is worse).

Tigerschick Mon 18-Aug-08 14:42:02

shock @ "you'll action that"! That is appalling!

CatIsSleepy Mon 18-Aug-08 14:45:07

I agree ruby

but still, it's a shame that Beth Tweddle didn't medal
<legs it>

Habbibu Mon 18-Aug-08 14:47:00

I know, Tiger, it's vile. I am a one woman crusade against management speak at work.

Tigerschick Mon 18-Aug-08 15:16:00

Ah but Cat, you can say "there wasn't a medal for Tweddle." Which gets the same effect and is grammatically sound grin

Habbibu - I am so glad I don't work in an office environment, the management speak would drive me mad!

BarcodeZebra Mon 18-Aug-08 19:25:07

You'll all be reassured to learn that Nicky Campbell used the phrase "to medal" on Radio 5 the other morning and instantly told himself off for it.

I think it's ghastly but "to podium" is much, much worse.

I was very tickled by "winningest" though.

Habbibu Mon 18-Aug-08 19:29:40

Tiger - am planning my escape as we speak! To be fair, there's nothing technically grammatically unsound about "to medal" - this is how verbs are coined, after all. Stylistically it's really fucking ugly.

Habbibu Mon 18-Aug-08 19:31:23

Ooh - just checked OED - it's been recorded as a verb since 1822!

Habbibu Mon 18-Aug-08 19:31:55

And in sporting contexts since 1966.

MaloryDontDiveItsShallow Mon 18-Aug-08 19:31:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Habbibu Mon 18-Aug-08 19:33:02

Show him this, Malory:
MEDAL n. Compare French médailler (mid 19th cent., although earlier in past participle: see MEDALLED adj.).]

1. trans. To decorate or honour with a medal; to confer a medal upon as a mark of distinction. Usu. in pass.
1822 BYRON Let. 4 May (1979) IX. 154 He was medalled. 1860 THACKERAY Nil nisi Bonum in Roundabout Papers (1899) 174 Irving went home medalled by the King. 1900 Nation (N.Y.) 4 Oct. 269/2 It would have been much more to the point, anyway, had he [sc. Herr Menzel] exhibited and been medalled [at the Paris Exhibition] as illustrator. 1973 L. M. BOSTON Memory in House ix. 120 Outside it I was introduced to the young illustrator who was also being medalled. 1985 New Yorker 18 Mar. 125/1 He was eulogized..and was renowned and medalled for his war record.

2. intr. U.S. Sport. To win a medal (i.e., to come first, second, or third in a sporting event or competition).
1966 Valley News (Van Nuys, Calif.) 9 June 34 Divers from the Rita Curtis..Club gold-medaled in all of the events but three... In the boys competition the following RCVAC divers medaled:..Phil Loyola, 2nd; [etc.]. 1979 Washington Post 19 June D6/2 Our women are coming along beautifully{em}they've medaled well recently. 1984 Marathon & Distance Runner Oct. 18/1 Gabriella Dorio made her break too early, otherwise she could have medalled. 1994 Coloradoan (Fort Collins) 6 Feb. E1/1 U.S. bobsledders haven't medaled since 1956.

BarcodeZebra Mon 18-Aug-08 19:36:46

No fucking way!!!!!

That's it!! All the standards have officially gone up in smoke!

Where's the Browning Automatic I keep for just such eventualities???


BarcodeZebra Mon 18-Aug-08 19:37:29

This won't be the first time I've shot myself in the head you know...

Rubyrubyruby Tue 19-Aug-08 08:56:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

poppyknot Tue 19-Aug-08 21:49:43

Poor Tweddle didn't medal!

RustyBear Tue 19-Aug-08 21:53:09

While on the subject of Olympic pedantry, surely you can't actually have a 'fastest time'? 'shortest time', yes, but the time is always going at the same speed....

BarcodeZebra Wed 20-Aug-08 21:04:17

I think you're exhibiting a deplorable ignorance of quantum mechanics, Rusty. Call yourself a pedant?

RustyBear Wed 20-Aug-08 22:13:16

And Nicky Campbell is such an expert on quantum mechanics of course....

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