Communication breakdown

“Big Huge”…Where did this term come from? It is everywhere. I’ve seen it on television shows and movies, read it in newspaper columns and websites, heard it from friends, family and it has even been known to emanate from (gasp!) my own mouth!

This is more than a new idiom of pop culture jargon — it has taken on a form of manifest-destiny and stretched from coast-to-coast.

Seriously. How did the term “big huge” so deeply infiltrate our vernacular? When did it become such an accepted term to describe something large. And frankly, who was the sage elementary student that coined this phrase — sparking a cultural movement that would penetrate the vocabulary of one of the world’s most spoken languages?

Honest-to-goodness, I may be one of the few stirred with such passion, but there’s no way I am the only one who has noticed this linguistic phenomenon!

Is huge, by itself, not dramatic enough to express the immense dimensions of an object, issue or event? Are “colossal”, “astronomical” and “mammoth” not theatrical enough to communicate the titanic-like measurements of Shaquille O’Neill’s gargantuan feet?

Truth be told… I am willing to consider these deeply relevant questions, but defer to a higher standard of neologism. One of the primary reasons for my displeasure, disapproval anddissatisfaction with the term is its basic lack of lexical creativity.

For example, I have heard it often said that something of king-size proportions is “ginormous”. This is a witty combination of the words gigantic and enormous. When something is bigger than enormous and more massive than gigantic… this, my friends, is ginormous. Ginormous! Nicely done my good wordsmith!

Am I overstating the issue? Are these merely the ill conceived ramblings of a man who is taking a break from long hours of work? In a word… yes.

But words still matter. The manner in which we express ourselves is no small trifle! It’s a big! It’s huge! It’s big and huge!

But it is definitely not big huge.