pudd /pʊd/ (verb, third-person singular simple present pudds, present participle pudding, simple past pudded, past participle pudd)

  1. (transitive) to cause an observer to interpret meaning where none exists
    “The beauty of the sunset pudds me into believing that it was put there specifically for me to enjoy.”
    “Interpreting the lyrics pudded Dan with ideas far beyond those intended by the songwriter.”

  2. (intransitive) to interpret meaning (esp. into the meaningless)
    “Though I don’t understand your grunting, I pudd that you are angry about something.”
    “Despite the emptiness of her life, Mary was pudding.”

pudd /pʊd/ (noun, pl. pudds)

  1. The meaning or purpose of something, as understood through individual interpretation, without specific indication any such meaning exists.
    “His pudd is that life is for having fun while it lasts.”
    Pudds are easy to find when you’re looking for them.”

You know how in How I Met Your Mother season 5, episode 3 (Robin 101), Ted says “Anything sounds weird if you say it a hundred times,” and proceeds to say the word “bowl” over and over until it begins to lose all significance for him, becoming a meaningless vocalisation? The phenomenon is called semantic satiation, and the other day I experienced something a little like it, and then – as is my way – went one step further.

For some reason – perhaps saturation of the word in my brain that mirrored the saturation of the food in my stomach at and following last weekend’s feast – I lost the meaning to the word “pudding”. I’d stare at it, but it didn’t make any sense – it was just a collection of letters. I’m sure you’ve experienced something similar at some point in your life.

But then an unusual thing happened: my brain began to see it in a different way, almost adding meaning to it. My imagination whirred. The part of my brain responsible for recognising the components of language, which has recently been spoiled by the regularity and predictability of Esperanto, began to see the word “pudding” as the present participle form of a verb, “to pudd”. I pudd, you pudded, we’re pudding, everybody pudds.

There’s no English verb, “to pudd”, that I’m aware of, so I’ve invented one. The definition is based on the experience that lead me to inventing it, and as a result it is at least a little bit recursive. The definition is as above. I’ve invented an accompanying derivative noun, too. I anticipate that the intransitive verb form is the most useful of the three definitions: in fact, I’ll be using it in this very article.

I don’t pudd that I was somehow supposed to do this; that my temporary inability to comprehend a word was destined to have me invent one: and if you’re pudding that right now, you’re mistaken. But if you must find pudd in this whole jolly story, perhaps you can just settle on that I am a fan of language, and at least a little bit eccentric. Isn’t that enough?

1 reply to Pudd

  1. Oh great! With this additional word being introduced to my vocabulary I’ve now forgotten how to spell hrnlwkhk

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