A few days ago the radio show Marketplaceinterviewed me about the word "sequester." Because Marketplace is a serious program, they did not include my suggestions for jazzing up the stories. Alas, I'll just have to share them with you here.
Is "Spendocalypse" Better?
The Atlantic Wire tried to make the sequester more interesting by calling it the "spendocalypse" in a headline. I looked at that and thought they were on to something, but they could have done better.
Portmanteaus Are Catchy
Portmanteaus are a popular way to capture the public's imagination (e.g., carmageddon, Brangelina, staycation).
However, the sequester is about cuts, not spending, so a blend meant to focus the public's attention on cuts should have had the word "cut" in it. Plus, I found "spendocalypse" hard to say. I had to slowly sound it out before I got it. Therefore, I propose the following portmanteaus for journalists who want to add a little flashy marketing to their sequester stories:
Cuttastrophy (my favorite)
Maybe some enterprising linguist can comment on why I feel compelled to double the "t" in all these blends.
As I told Marketplace, I'm not opposed to using cheap marketing techniques if it will help people pay more attention to a serious topic such as the sequester.