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Doh! Homer is an English classic

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Homer's catchphrase is now an official part of the English language  


OXFORD, England -- A rich and colourful language that has developed over many centuries and which is now spoken by half the planet has a new word -- Doh!

The famous catchphrase of cartoon character Homer Simpson has made it into the updated online edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, published on Thursday.

It means "Doh" is now an official word of the English language, along with about 250 new entries.

But fear not. Puritans who do not agree with the editors' choices can now officially think them to be "pants" -- that word is also a new addition.

Inspiration for the new additions to the dictionary were taken from a wide variety of sources -- from teenage chatter, the pop music charts and even Bridget Jones's Diary.

Although "bad hair day" has been around for some years, it was the neurotic Londoner's use of this phrase in the best-selling novel by Helen Fielding that prompted the dictionary to include it to describe times when things are not going quite right.

OED's Top Ten New Entries
- Balti -- popular curry dish
- Bollywood -- Indian film industry
- Doh! -- Homer Simpson's catchphrase
- Big Beat -- a popular music trend
- Ladette -- a feisty, outgoing woman
- Mullet -- 1980s haircut, tipped for comeback
- New Labour -- Tony Blair's party
- The Full Monty -- to go naked
- Alcopop -- bottled alcoholic drink
- Six-pack -- muscular stomach

The "planet Zog" is a "place or situation which is far removed from reality or what is currently happening", while "singletons" -- also made famous by Bridget Jones's Diary -- are described as women without a partner.

Bollywood -- the Indian version of the US film industry Hollywood -- now also has an entry in the dictionary.

And the new meaning for the Full Monty that arose after five unemployed steelworkers became male strippers in the film of that name in 1997 gets an entry.

The "full monty" now means to be naked.

Among other new entries is "new man." Originally, the term was used by the Christian Church in the 14th century for anyone spiritually renewed but now it refers to a man in touch with his feminine side.

Going to discos is now officially called "clubbing." And to do that you need to have "street cred" -- a desirable reputation.

There is good news, too, for shopaholics as "shopaholism" -- or "shop 'n' roll" - is officially recognised.

Shopaholics looking up "retail therapy" can now claim with confidence that what they do is in fact a therapeutic experience invented in the U.S. in 1986 -- known as "conspicuous consumption" or "shopaholism."

The concept of "lifestyle drugs," or pharmaceuticals that aim to make people's lives happier or more comfortable -- though not necessarily relieving or curing a serious medical condition -- is another entry.

Hot potatoes

"Serial monogamy" is also acknowledged as an official lifestyle, reportedly the most common way in which young people in the 1990s conducted their relationships.

"Once a word has been used a certain amount of times, appeared in print a certain amount of times and has become current, it is entered into the dictionary," OED spokeswoman Claire Pemberton told CNN.

They range from political hot potatoes such as 'GM foods', 'human BSE' and the 'postcode lottery,' to cultural icons such as 'Bollywood,' the 'mullet haircut' and Homer Simpson's "doh," another spokesperson added.

The dictionary's editors have spent the year sifting through popular culture for words that have become popular.

"My job is the perfect excuse for watching action films, soaps, quiz programmes -- where the language is busy right now," said chief editor John Simpson.

The OED launched its online service just over a year ago and the international fascination with the English language has proved lucrative.

Subscribers are from around the world, including Scandinavia, South Africa, the US and New Zealand.





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