Hi there Buckaroos! It’s that most wonderful time of the year again. Nope, this is not a treacly Hallmark ode to Christmas. It’s the time of year when the Oxford University Press announces the new Word of the Year.
What, you missed that stunning announcement while watching Carolina’s football and basketball teams crash and burn?
Lucky you, as a fine leisure service of Up & Coming Weekly, you will learn the 2022 Word of the Year. You can display your knowledge at the Christmas and New Year’s parties about to descend upon humanity. Dazzle your friends, and more importantly, irritate your enemies by knowing the 2022 Word of the Year.
The 2022 Oxford word of the year is actually two words — GOBLIN MODE. Chosen by a public vote of over 318,000 worldwide word fans, Goblin Mode is the winner. Unsure what Goblin Mode means? As Jules said in Pulp Fiction, “Allow me to retort.” Goblin Mode is “a type of behavior which is unapologetically self-indulgent, lazy, slovenly, or greedy, typically in a way that rejects social norms or expectations.”
Goblin Mode appears on social media, where typists troll other human beings by saying all manner of obnoxious things because they are hidden behind a computer screen.
For a person who is in Goblin Mode, the sky is the limit for letting bad behavior roll.
Goblin Mode grabbed the Gold Medal with 93% of the vote, convincingly beating “Metaverse,” which won the Silver, and the hashtag “#Standwith” which earned the Bronze.
Over at Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the word of the year was “Gaslighting.” Gaslighting is defined as “the act or practice of grossly misleading someone especially for one’s own advantage.”
Politicians are quite familiar with the concepts of Goblin Mode and Gaslighting. You can let your own political preferences decide whether Democrats, Republicans, or MAGAs do these best.
The prominence of Goblin Mode made me wonder about Goblins themselves. Who were the original Goblins, and are there still real Goblins?
According to Mr. Google, Goblins “were small grotesque monstrous creatures found in European folk lore.” Female Goblins are known as Goblettes.
Goblins came in a wide range of shapes, sizes, personality disorders and flavors. Goblins first appeared in Medieval stories. They range from relatively harmless household sprites up the spectrum to malevolent violent critters who would chew off your extremities given the opportunity.
Goblins were closely related to a variety of unworldly creatures such as fairies, brownies, dwarfs, gnomes, imps and Kobolds. For extra credit at a holiday cocktail party, you can let it drop into your conversation that a Kobold is a “small humanoid creature skilled at building traps and ambushes.” Kobolds are genetically related to dragons.
There is a variety of Goblins known as Red Cap Goblins because they wear hats dyed red with human blood. This begs the question of whether there are Green Cap Goblins who wear hats dyed with dollars belonging to other humans.
Dear Editor: I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there are no Green Cap Goblins. Papa says if you see it in the Up & Coming, it is so. Please tell me the truth: are there Green Cap Goblins?
Editor: Yes, Virginia, there are Green Cap Goblins. They exist as certainly as greed and gaslighting exist.
How dreary would the world be if there were no Green Cap Goblins. There would be no childlike faith in them, no poetry, no belief that something that sounds too good to be true is true. Green Cap Goblins exist! They live and live forever. Ten thousand years from now Green Cap Goblins will separate fools from their money. They are no longer called Green Cap Goblins. They are called Multi-Billionaires.
One of the greatest current Green Cap Goblins is our old pal Sam Bankman-Fried, the owner of the now-bankrupt FTX and its ugly cousin Alameda. Sam can do magic. He made billions of dollars disappear. Poof.
Now his depositors have money. Now they don’t. Admire Sam’s recent interview with The Wall Street Journal: People sent him money to invest in FTX to buy cryptocurrency and exotic stuff. Sam ran FTX and its associated bank called Alameda. Somehow $5 billion of the money the suckers (oops, depositors) sent to Sam got misplaced. Some of it went to Alameda, some of it went to FTX and then was sent to Alameda. It was kind of a mess.
Sam explained: “They were wired to Alameda, and … I can only speculate about what happened after that. Dollars are fungible with each other. And so, it’s not like there’s this $1 bill over here you can trace. What you get is more omnibus, you know, pots of assets of various forms.”
This is called Gobbly-Gook. Sam allowed that he was really busy: “I didn’t have enough brain cycles left to understand everything that was going on with Alameda if I wanted to.”
In effect, Sam says the money investors sent him went into his left pocket, called FTX, then he put the money in his right pocket, called Alameda. No one seems to know what happened after that.
And that, Dear Virginia, is what Goblin Mode is all about. Sam is a Green Hat Goblin. Bernie Madoff and Charles Ponzi are smiling in Hell.